Who Will Save Israel? Who Will Save the Palestinians?
Israeli government minister Itamar Ben-Gvir makes a controversial visit to the Temple Mount in Jerusalem on January 3, 2023. (Twitter)

Who Will Save Israel? Who Will Save the Palestinians?

Al Arabiya, Saudi Arabia, January 28

Thomas Friedman, the renowned American journalist, wrote a thought-provoking article in The New York Times titled “Biden Must Save Israel From Itself.” The article caused a stir due to the liberal Jewish writer’s well-known support for Israel and the two-state solution, and the timing of its publication coming after Netanyahu’s election. Supporters of Israel cannot ignore or condone the hate speech against Arabs adopted by Netanyahu and his ministers; the provocative visits to the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem by Itamar Ben-Gvir, his appointee as minister of national security; as well as the bloody bloodbath in Jenin, in which the Israeli army killed nine Palestinians. Netanyahu and his government are attempting to dominate the judiciary in Israel, harass the media, and promote religious projects that align with the demands and theories of the extreme Zionist Right. These actions have undermined the democracy of the Jewish state, which he has often celebrated in international forums as an “isolated democratic oasis in a turbulent sea of backward Arab dictatorships.” His current government and its ministers’ overtly racist practices are prompting even Israel’s supporters in the US Congress to reduce the unwavering support they have provided over the past six decades. Rep. Brad Sherman, a staunch supporter of Israel, warned Netanyahu over the impending judicial changes and his extremist Cabinet ministers. In light of these conditions, every loyal supporter of Palestinian rights wishes that Arab conditions were more solid and united in their efforts to establish the rights of the Palestinian people, and take advantage of the difficult stage that Israeli foreign policy will soon enter to promote the Palestinian cause. However, the Arab situation is far from unified and coordinated on the Palestinian issue, and even on various regional and international issues. How can the Arab situation be unified toward the Palestinian cause if the Palestinians themselves refuse to unify? The Palestinian arena has been plagued by a deep division for the past 15 years, with two distinct states and governments: one in the Gaza Strip led by Hamas, and the other, representing the Palestinian National Authority, headed by President Mahmoud Abbas in the West Bank. Both authorities vie for control through corruption, the subjugation of their own people, and the exploitation of their cause. Currently, the Palestinian population is divided into two camps: one that still holds out hope for a Palestinian state through the two-state solution, and another camp that calls for resistance, combat, and “jihad” until all of Palestine is liberated. This team is mainly led by the Hamas and the Islamic Jihad movements, affiliated with Iran. Recently, Israeli liberal journalist Noa Landau wrote an article titled “The World Will Not Save Israel From Itself This Time” in response to the results of Israel’s elections in November, in which the far-right achieved unprecedented results. This Israeli question parallels another Arab question: “Who will save the Palestinians from those who exploit their cause other than the Palestinians themselves?” – Saad Al-Ajmi (translated by Asaf Zilberfarb)

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