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MID-EAST REALITIES - MER - www.MiddleEast.Org - Washington, DC - 7/21/00:

The Israelis tricked both Anwar Sadat and Jimmy Carter at Camp David I.
They are at it again at Camp David II.

Anyone who thinks Yasser Arafat and entourage stayed at Camp David of their
own free will just doesn't understand what its all about.  The Americans didn't
even let Arafat meet with an official delegation sent from the Palestinian
Executive Committee; and even Hanan Ashrawi, spokeswoman, packed her bags and
went home.

What is taking place at Camp David is a masterfully created combination of threats and bribes, which is added to another combination of mechanisms of control and infiltration, which the U.S. and Israel are using to manipulate Yasser Arafat and
the small group around him.  Essentially Arafat is trapped at Camp David, ever the more cornered to eventually "agree" to the "final peace" terms the U.S. and Israel have been grooming him to sign in front of the world for some time.

At Camp David I, for instance, the Israelis in the end promised a complete and total  settlement freeze.  The President of the United States not only endorsed the Israeli
pledge but mentioned it clearly when he spoke to a joint session of Congress about the historic peace he had just concluded between Egypt and Israel, between Sadat and Begin.  Indeed, Jimmy Carter manipulated Camp David to launch his own reelection campaign for a second term, though in the end he was defeated by Ronald Reagan.

But the Israelis did their usual twisting and deceiving.  Within a month of Camp David the Israelis began saying there had "been a misunderstanding".  Oh yes, they did agree to a settlement freeze, but it was supposed to be for only 90 days!  Imagine that, just long long enough in fact for the peace deal to be concluded and finalized it turned out.

Carter was furious.  Sadat was powerless and left it to his American partner, Jimmy,  to make good.  Sadat's close friend of some 40 years, Ibrahim Kamel, the Foreign Minister, had in fact resigned at Camp David precisely on the issue that a great country like Egypt could not rely on such promises that were not specifically pinned down.

Carter contemplated taking on the Israelis.   He had a speech prepared saying the Israelis had violated a principle part of the Camp David agreement and the U.S. would suspend aid to Israel until they complied.

But then came Vice-President Walter Mondale to the oval office fronting for the Israelis and concerned about his own political future.

"You are right Mr. President about what has happened.  You are right to want to enforce the agreement.  You are right the Israelis are planning to continue building their settlements even though they specifically promised you and Sadat they would freeze everything as is.'

"But if you try to fight the Israelis as you are planning then we will surely lose New York State with its heavy Jewish vote in the upcoming election, and if that happens you will not have a second term and you will not be able to fulfill your promises to Anwar."

Carter buckled.  The rest is history.  The invasion of Lebanon; the Iranian revolution and hostage crisis; Israeli bombing of Baghdad; further CIA penetration of Egypt and other Middle Eastern country; the Gulf War; much settlement expansion (leading to today's predicament); the Intifada; the Sabra, Shatilla and Qana massacres; all followed.

The pattern is rather clear if anyone in the mainstream press dares to report it -- which of course they rarely do.  A similar series of lies and misrepresentations is taking place now at Camp David II, though this time the President of the U.S. (and his mostly Jewish lobby negotiating team) is essentially a front man for the Israelis, no matter how much he tries to present himself otherwise.

There are four key realities involved in what is taking now place:

1)  The "State" Arafat will declare will be more in name than in reality.  The Israeli army will everyone surround it, settlements and "by-pass" roads will everywhere dissect it, and all crucial decisions regarding who comes and goes will be essentially decided by Israelis behind one-way mirrors.

2)  The whole crucial Jerusalem issue will be fudged over and legal issues of sovereignty will be "deferred".  In return for "autonomy plus" in surrounding Arab villages that they already control, with "free passage" to the Dome of the Rock area already controlled by the Islamic Waft, the Israelis are juridically demanding Palestinian recognition of their overall sovereignty over Jerusalem including annexation of surrounding Jewish neighborhoods and settlements built in contradiction to international law and many United Nations Security Council resolutions.

3)  An attempt will be made to get the "international community" to contribute billions of dollars to "compensate" and "resettle" the great majority of the Palestinian refugees -- which will take place against their will and even without their representation!  A few refugees will be let return to what is now Israel in the guise of family-reunifaction, and a small percentage will be given hope they might be able to at some point resettle in the mini Palestinian Statelet, dependent on Israeli approval; with most even having trouble getting permission to visit!

4)  The U.S. and Israel will present the new Camp David II agreement as a historic breakthrough, a "final peace", a "compromise" deal -- when in fact it is essentially an Israeli dictate repackaging things the Israelis have all along been trying to get the Palestinians to agree to.  And of course this is all to be sponsored and paid for by the Americans, the Clinton Administration and the Congress dominated by the Israeli/Jewish lobby as never before.

To sum up:  In reality what is being "given" to the Palestinians is what the Israelis have planned for some time -- going way back to the autonomy proposals offered by Begin and Sharon twenty years ago, and pursued in one way or another by every Israeli government.  However much the rhetoric and presentations differ; the similarities to past proposals far outweigh the differences.

A very limited "Statelet" on about 15% of what was Palestine all controlled by Israel through one means or another is what the Israelis are now desperate to get Arafat to sign.  Moreover, there will be no right of return for refugees; indeed the majority of refugees will not even be allowed to visit or resettle in the Palestinian State, not to mention in the other 85% of Palestine where most of them came from.

The Arafat Regime will be given increasing billions and control capabilities -- further contributing to the rampant corruption and repression that has come to characterize it.  These are the bribes that accompany the threats -- and in juxtaposition they may well prove irresistable.

Essentially a "dual occupation" and a novel Middle Eastern "apartheid" condominium will be further entrenched through Camp David II.  Moreover, this arrangement will receive applause and financing primarily from the very Western colonial powers that carved up the Middle East early in the last century and have dominated its affairs keeping it terribly fractured, exporting cheap oil, and bleeding in ever larger amounts for nearly a century now.

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