Sunday, January 8, 2012

United States: No TV for Palestinians

I've gotten used to the state of affairs of the Palestinian crisis: the world is waking up to the injustice of Israel's treatment of its Palestinian population while Israel continues to indulge in blissful apathy. So, I haven't posted much recently. But this news item got to me. The US is withholding $130m in USAid money from the Palestinian Authority as punishment for September's statehood bid.

The United States Declaration of Independence inspired me to move here and become an American citizen. The succinct phrases that speak with dignity of the right to self-determination are America's gift to the world. America, through its ideals, inspires people all over the world. Americans enshrine freedom and the quest for liberty as a core value.

Except when it comes to Palestinians. The Palestinians were told by Israel, backed by the United States, that they may not take their bid for international recognition to the United Nations. When the Palestinians did so anyway, Israel and the United States decided to punish the uppity natives.

So, Russia is worthy enough to get Sesame Street but Palestinian children will have to do without. Go figure. Shouldn't USAid be promoting democratic values around the world?

Perhaps it's the Palestinians recent, impressive accomplishments in building a democratic polity that convinced Congress that they did not need the education that American and Israeli children get.  Hamas and the PA are uniting; the Palestinian people have displayed remarkable commitment to non-violence in the face of unremitting violent occupation.

And the results are showing: the Palestinian cause is gaining momentum on American campuses. Yet  the US Congress plan is to browbeat the Palestinians back into passivity. Or perhaps the US Congress prefer it the old way of Palestinian disunity, violent opposition to the military occupation and no self-determination

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