Magazine article New Statesman (1996)

Another Brick in the Wall

Magazine article New Statesman (1996)

Another Brick in the Wall

Article excerpt

The state of the roads in the West Bank gives a good idea of where the resumed Palestinian-Israeli talks are heading--and it certainly isn't in the direction of peace. You can see a number of them from the hilltop town of al-Khader, just outside Bethlehem--from modern highways to rock-strewn dirt tracks. The best are designed for vehicles with registration plates bearing the Israeli flag and the country's name written in Hebrew. Poor and dispossessed Arabs, whose transport is easily identified by green-numbered plates, have to stick to the back roads.

The US secretary of state, John Kerry, who is leading resumed diplomatic efforts in Jerusalem, would certainly be advised to check out the view from the heights of al-Khader. This week I saw constant Israeli army convoys heading off to strengthen Jewish settlements on occupied Palestinian lands. The military will be even busier over the next few months after Tel Aviv approved the building of 3,100 new settler homes, many in East Jerusalem--the very place that Palestinian peacemakers want to be their capital city.

On 12 August Kerry said the new Israeli colonies would not halt talks, explaining: "We have known there was going to be a continuation of some building."

In fact, "some building" is by far the biggest stumbling block. Construction on land occupied by the Israelis following the 1967 Six Day War has been condemned by the United Nations and the International Court of Justice; no foreign government in the world officially supports it. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.