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... Let's take a look at the Middle East,
let's take a look at facts. The facts are, for
35 years, there has been a harsh, brutal,
military operation. There has not been a
political settlement. The reason that there has
not been a political settlement is because the
United States, unilaterally, has blocked it for
25 years. Just recently, Saudi Arabia produced a
highly praised plan for political settlement.
The majority of the American population supports
it. The majority of the population also thinks
the United States ought to be more active in the
Middle East. They don't know that that's a
contradiction in terms. The reason that's a
contradiction in terms is the following: In the
Saudi Arabia plan is a repetition of a series of
proposals, which go back to 1976 when the UN
Security Council debated a resolution calling
for a settlement, in accord with the Saudi plan,
to state settlement on the internationally
recognized borders. With arrangements to
guarantee the rights of every state in the
nation to exist in peace and security within
secure and recognized borders.
was January 1976. OK, that was actually in
accord with official U.S. policy. Except for one
thing. It called for a Palestinian State in the
territories; Israel wouldn't leave the occupied
territories. That was vetoed by the US. It was
supported by the Arab states, it was supported
by the PLO, supported by Europe.
they even recognized Israel as a state, though.
Chomsky: This was to
exist as a state within secure and recognized
borders. Nobody talked about recognizing the new
Palestinian state, nobody talked about
recognizing Israel. Look, is there a possible
political settlement today? Has there been one
for the last 25 years?
Is it supported by the entire world, including
the majority of the American people? The answer
to that question is yes. There is a political
settlement that has been supported by virtually
the entire world, including the Arab states, the
PLO, Europe, Eastern Europe, Canada…
Barak put that on the table?
No, he did not!
Solomon: He did
What was also supported by the majority of the
American people, has just been reiterated by
Saudi Arabia. The U.S. has unilaterally blocked
it for 25 years. What Barak put on the table,
the population doesn't know this, because people
like the Western media in Canada in the United
States don't tell them. Like, you can check and
see how often, you for example, and others, have
reported what I just said. Don't bother
checking. The answer is zero.
Barak proposal in Camp David, the Barak-Clinton
proposal, in the United States, I didn't check
the Canadian media, in the United States you
cannot find a map, which is the most important
thing of course, check in Canada, see if you can
find a map. You go to Israel, you can find a
map, you go to scholarly sources, you can find a
map. Here's what you find when you look at a
map: You find that this generous, magnanimous
proposal provided Israel with a salient east of
Jerusalem, which was established primarily by
the Labor government, in order to bisect the
West Bank. That salient goes almost to Jericho,
breaks the West Bank into two cantons, then
there's a second salient to the North, going to
the Israeli settlement of Ariel, which bisects
the Northern part into two cantons.
we've got three cantons in the West Bank,
virtually separated. All three of them are
separated from a small area of East Jerusalem
which is the center of Palestinian commercial
and cultural life and of communications. So you
have four cantons, all separated from the West,
from Gaza, so that's five cantons, all
surrounded by Israeli settlements,
infrastructure, development and so on, which
also incidentally guarantee Israel control of
the water resources.
does not rise to the level of South Africa 40
years ago when South Africa established the
Bantustans. That's the generous, magnanimous
offer. And there's a good reason why maps
weren't shown. Because as soon as you look at a
map, you see it.
Solomon: All right,
but let me just say, Arafat didn't even bother
putting a counter-proposal on the table.
Oh, that's not true.
negotiated that afterwards.
That's not true.
Solomon: I guess my
question is, if they don't continue to negotiate
Not only is it false, but not a single
participant in the meetings says it.
That's a media fabrication . . .
Arafat didn't put a counter-proposal . . .
Yeah, they had a proposal. They proposed the
international consensus, which has been accepted
by the entire world, the Arab states, the PLO.
They proposed a settlement which is in
accordance with an overwhelming international
consensus, and is blocked by the United States.
Solomon: If you
don't talk -
talk. They talked.
Solomon: Once they
walked out of Camp David,
walk out of Camp David . . .
Solomon: Both camps
. . .
Chomsky: No, no,
both sides walked out of Camp David.
Solomon: All right,
once Camp David disbands, the radicals take over
the process, my question is, how do . . .
No, no, the radicals didn't take over the
Solomon: You don't
think that the Sharon, the right-wing Israeli .
No, Barak stayed in power for months.
Barak cancelled it. That's how it ended.
Solomon: OK. The
problem that people look at now in the Middle
East is they say it's spun out of control
because the radicals are on both sides now.
No, there's three sides. You're forgetting the
United States. The radicals in the United States
who have blocked this proposal for 25 years,
continue to block it.
Solomon: How do we
get back, now, there's so much distrust?
The first way we get back is by trying the
experiment of minimal honesty. If we try that
experiment of minimal honesty, we look at our
own position and we discover what I just
for 25 years, the United States has blocked the
political settlement, which is supported by the
majority of the American population and by the
entire world, except for Israel.
first thing we do is accept the honesty and look
at it. We take a look at Camp David and we see
how it's the same. The United States was still
demanding a Bantustans style settlement and
rejecting the overwhelming international
consensus and the position of the American
discovered the United States immediately moved
to enhance terror in the region. So, let's
continue. On September 29th, Ehud Barak put a
massive military presence outside the Al Aqsa
Mosque, very provocative, when people came out
of the Mosque, young people started throwing
stones, the Israeli army started shooting, half
a dozen people were killed, and it escalated.
next couple of days -- there was no Palestinian
fire at this time -- Israel used U.S.
helicopters (Israel produces no helicopters) to
attack civilian complexes, killing about a dozen
people and wounding several dozen.
reacted to that on October 3, 2000 by making the
biggest deal in a decade -- to send Israel new
military helicopters which had just been used
for the purpose I described and of course would
continue to be.
U.S. press co-operated with that by refusing to
publish the story. To this day, they have not
published the fact.
continued when Bush came in. One of his first
acts was to send Israel a new shipment of one of
the most advanced military helicopters in the
arsenal. That continues right up to a couple of
weeks ago with new shipments. You take a look at
the reports, from say Jenin, by British
correspondents like Peter Beaumont for the
London Observer. He says the worst atrocity
was the Apache helicopters buzzing around,
destroying and demolishing everything.
this is enhancing terror, and we may easily
continue. On December 14th, the Security Council
tried to pass a resolution calling for what
everyone recognized to be the obvious means for
reducing terror, namely sending international
monitors. That's a way of reducing terror.
happened to be in the middle of a quiet period,
which lasted for about three weeks. The U.S.
vetoed it. 10 days before that, there was a
meeting at Geneva of the high-contracting
parties of the 4th-Geneva convention, which has
unanimously held for 35 years that it applies to
Israel. The meeting condemned the Israeli
settlements as illegal, condemned the list of
atrocities -- willful destruction of property,
murder, trials, torture.
happened in that meeting? I'll tell you what
happened in that meeting. The U.S. boycotted it.
Therefore, the media refused to publish it.
Therefore, no one here knows that the United
States once again enhanced terror by refusing to
recognize the applicability of conventions which
make virtually everything the United States and
Israel are doing there a grave breech of the
Geneva convention, which is a war crime.
conventions were established in 1949 in order to
criminalize the atrocities of the Nazis in
occupied territory. They are customary
international law. The United States is
obligated, as a high-contracting party, to
prosecute violations of those conventions. That
means to prosecute its own leadership for the
last 25 years. They won't do it unless the
population forces them to. And the population
won't force them to as long as they don't know
it's a fact. And they won't know it's a fact as
long as the media and loyal intellectuals keep