Israel Wants Peace (Part II)

…just as long as it gets to continue to build Jewish-only settlements in occupied Palestinian territories. Here, we have Secretary of State Rice, now that she’s at the end of her term, expressing concerns over the endless settlement building: “‘I am very concerned that at a time when we need to build confidence between the parties the continued building and settlement activity has the potential to harm the negotiations going forward.’ Israel announced last week it would build 1,300 new housing units in east Jerusalem, which the Palestinians want as their future capital. The announcement brought to more than 3,000 the number of homes Israel has approved for construction in east Jerusalem and the West Bank since the renewal of peace talks late last year. The Palestinians claim both areas, captured by Israel in the 1967 Mideast war, as part of a future independent state.Israel differentiates between east Jerusalem, which it annexed in 1967, and the West Bank, whose status remains unresolved.” [The only real difference is that Israel builds settlements at a faster rate in Jerusalem than elsewhere, but nevertheless is seeking to preclude a viable Palestinian state in both the W. Bank and Jerusalem through that settlement building.  In other words, when Israel says it wants peace, it’s really just an empty slogan. The facts on the ground say something altogether different.]

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