Hillary supports Apartheid Wall

Arutz Sheva, arch-reactionary organ of the Israeli settler movement, is clearly overjoyed by this Nov. 13 tidbit:

(IsraelNN.com) New York Senator and former US First Lady Hillary Clinton voiced her support for the Partition Wall Sunday.

“The fence was built in order to fight terrorism and not against the Palestinian nation,” Clinton said while visiting the wall outside the southern Jerusalem neighborhood of Gilo.

“The Palestinian nation must change its approach to terrorism and prevent it,” Clinton added in a speech at the dedication of the new Rabin Center in Ramat Aviv Sunday afternoon.

Further details from the AP account:

Israel has built about three-fourths of the barrier, which is expected to stretch about 425 miles when complete. It says the structure is needed to keep suicide bombers, who have killed hundreds of Israelis during five years of fighting, from entering the country.

But the Palestinians harshly criticize the barrier because it cuts into the West Bank at several points. They say it is intended to steal disputed land they claim as part of a future independent state. The barrier also has prevented thousands of Palestinians from reaching their jobs, schools and farmland.

Clinton’s comments echoed Israel’s position that the Palestinians must crack down on militants or Israel will find ways to prevent attacks on its citizens.

Israeli army commanders explained the security considerations of the barrier to Clinton at an observation point in the Jerusalem neighborhood of Gilo, which Israel built on territory captured in 1967 and the Palestinians want for a future state.

From the lookout, Clinton could see the barrier change from a concrete wall around parts of Jerusalem to an electrified fence on the approach to the West Bank town of Bethlehem.

Clinton, who is on a three-day visit to Israel, also met Sunday with Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz.

On Monday, Clinton—along with several international dignitaries, including her husband, former President Bill Clinton—is to attend ceremonies marking the 10th anniversary of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin’s assassination.

Clinton touted Sharon’s withdrawal from the Gaza Strip in September as “courageous” and said the Israeli leader needs a “reliable partner” on the Palestinian side to further the positive momentum created by the pullout.

What, we wonder, would Yitzhak Rabin make of the Wall?

See our last posts on Israel and West Bank aparthied.

  1. Arutz Sheva not overjoyed
    Note that they call it the “partition” wall. Partition is a dirty word amongst the settlers and right-wing revisionist Zionists that Arutz Sheva caters to. Partition cut the land of Israel in two and gave part of it away. They see the “partition” wall as threatening the 74 settlements which will find themselves exposed to the East of the separation barrier.

    Ironic that Hillary just attended the American Bar’s International Rule of Law Symposium. when she voted to condemn the ruling of the International Court of Justice at the Hague which ruled the fence illegal on those parts where it does not run along the Green line, and juts into the West Bank — some 80% of the fence. According to the Israeli human rights organization B’Tselem, 9.5% of the West Bank, which includes East Jerusalem, will be isolated behind the wall, including the major settlement “blocs” of Ma’ale Adumim, Ariel, and Kedumim. 2.9% of Palestinian land to the East of the barrier are surrounded completely or partially. Farmers are cut off from their land, children from their schools, sick people from their hospitals. 21 Palestinian communities containing 30,000 Palestinians are trapped on the Western side of the wall, not even counting E. Jerusalem 216,000 will be cut off from the rest of the West Bank. In addition, 50 communities are surrounded on three sides east of the wall, containing 244,000 Palestinians. Considering Clinton considers isolating Palestinians behind the wall as necessary to prevent terror, it’s odd that 246,000 are being enveloped into the Israeli side of the wall.

    Clinton was also standing in the settlement of Gilo, built on land confiscated from the neighboring Christian village of Beit Jalla after the 1967 six-day war. From this vantage point she was able to see the wall encircling the holy city of Bethlehem.

    When the UN General Assembly voted 150-6 with ten abstentions to adopt the opinion of the ICJ on the fence, Clinton said, “It makes no sense for the United Nations to vehemently oppose a fence which is a non-violent response to terrorism rather than opposing terrorism itself.” Clinton never explained why the fence could not have built on the Green Line. In fact, when first proposed by Haim Ramon of the Labor party in 2002, the path of the fence was pretty much on the Green Line, a route that was approved as being safe and effective by Israel’s security services. It was Ariel Sharon who moved the path to just deep into the West Bank — sometimes as much as 15 KM do go around the 20,000 residents of Ariel, an illegally-built city in the middle of the northern West Bank. The fence has not yet been approved to hook up around Ariel, but this is widely expected, just as it is widely expected the fence will encircle the Jerusalem suburb -settlement of Ma’ale Adumim, a city of 35,000. This move will effectively cut the West Bank in two, making it impossible for residents of Ramallah to travel to Bethlehem. Israel plans to mitigate this problem by building a tunnel road under Ma’ale Adumin, part of a series of tunnels, bridges and overpasses which will allow the Palestinians and Jewish settlers to have separate and unequal transportation systems. The Sharon wall path also keeps three-quarters of the settlers inside the western side of the wall, including along with it the West Bank’s best farmland and water resources.

    Clinton would do well to listen to fellow social democrat Yossi Beilin, chairman of the “left”- Zionist Meretz-Yachad faction, who said,

    The worst thing we are doing to my mind is that we are building this fence and saying all the time that good fences makes good neighbors – forgetting that if this fence is built in the yard of your neighbor he will not be a good friend to you. You want to build a fence on the border of ‘67, okay. But you build a fence on their side and still want them to be your friend. You create a barrier between them and their schools, their hospitals, their lands, and you can’t understand why they are unhappy. It’s really silly. So we built this wall on the one side, and we built the fence around Gaza. We leave it unilaterally. Actually what are we doing? We are taking the Zionist dream of a democratic Jewish state in the Middle East with a normal life and good relationships with its neighbors and turning it into a new Jewish ghetto. If the idea of Israel is to be a new Jewish ghetto, I mean this is really very far from any dream of normalcy…

    1. Even so…
      You don’t think Arutz Sheva is happy that Hillary is implicitly putting the onus of the Wall on its victims? This only strengthens their position, and they can’t imagine that any US senator is going to embrace their right-of-Sharon position. Can they?

      1. Best of both worlds
        The Palestinians are blamed, but they get to call the wall what they see it as, partition of Eretz Yisrael [the biblical Land of Israel], something they oppose, as they know the wall’s placement threatens 74 of their most isolated and ideological settlements.