The birthday may not impact Americans as much as the 50th anniversary of the occupation, which caused a lot of navel-gazing last June in the U.S., but the Balfour Declaration was endorsed by the Wilson administration and there are events planned here too.
Just last week, 176 new settlement units were announced to be built in occupied East Jerusalem. Residency revocations for Palestinians in Jerusalem are on the rise, forcing people out of their lifelong communities.
Zomlot, who heads the PLO delegation in Washington, told Al-Monitor that he was impressed by the character and depth of the Palestinians in Latin America. “Even though they have been fully integrated into their new communities, they are enthusiastically committed to Palestine and support the Palestinian cause.”
Now Americans too, even in Dickinson, will be discriminated against for their political views. No one should be denied rights for a political viewpoint, but the fact that supporting Palestinian rights disqualifies applicants from aid is not just Orwellian but suggests a deep animus toward the very humanity of Palestinians. To think that a person who wants to help residents suffering from flooding would be denied a contract just because they also want to help Palestinians suffering from Israeli oppression is not just unbecoming of Texas. It is unconstitutional and un-American.
Gaza’s daily power needs are estimated at nearly 600 megawatts. Israel, Egypt and the enclave’s only electrical generating plant currently supply 165 megawatts, with the electricity supply from Israel being cut after the Palestinian Authority refused to pay for Gaza’s electricity needs. The Strip has also suffered as a result of Israel’s siege which has limited the entry of diesel for its only electricity plant.
Established in 2012 in partnership with the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR), Palestine Legal has been one of the key players holding the frontline against efforts to suppress BDS activity and speech about Palestine across the U.S., from state legislatures to university campuses. Khalidi and her staff responded to 650 such incidents between 2014 and 2016.
The rapid pace of developments might produce a favorable outcome in the immediate future for all parties involved, a rare event in Palestinian-Israeli affairs. However, the prospect of reconciliation based on shared governance and democratic election in the long run is likely to be much more tumultuous. Hamas has already repeatedly stated that it will not compromise on the issue of control of its armed wing and its weapons. Meanwhile, the Palestinian Authority will likely have to confront its European and American donors over adding tens of thousands of Hamas security and public-sector employees to its payroll.