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A country up in the air

Israel’s ever-expand­ing illega­l settle­ments in Palest­inian territ­ories have always been reward­ed by the West

JUBAIL, SAUDI ARABIA: I was shocked to watch the helplessness and frustration of 80-year-old Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, while speaking at the UN General Assembly’s annual session. President Abbas was bitter and frank in expressing his tiredness with the mirages of ‘direct peace talks’ and the two-state solution, which have led his nation into a blocked alley. In contrast, Israel’s President, Benjamin ‘Bibi’ Netanyahu, was at full bloom — excited, angry and threatening. While referring to others, Bibi divulged some truths — “When bad behaviour is rewarded, it only gets worse.”

Who doesn’t know who the stubborn and violent boy of the Middle East is, which started with a tiny state, and now holds millions of Palestinians under the yoke of occupation? Its ever-expanding illegal settlements in Palestinian territories have always been rewarded by the West. President Abbas knows very well that at the UN, only the powerful have a voice, even if they are aggressors or the supporters of aggressors. When the aggressor couldn’t justify his occupation morally, it turned to Biblical history to prove its claim over Palestinian land. If this is the case, then every nation should invade the other on the pretext of ancient historical empires and their boundaries. President Abbas has taken back something from New York to console his people — a picture of the raising of his country’s flag at the United Nations. For the time being, that is all the world can offer them. The ghettos of the West Bank and Gaza will be decorated with that picture — a country not on the ground but in the air!

Masood Khan

Published in The Express Tribune, October 6th, 2015.

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