Israelis Could Expel Thousands of Palestinians from Palestine

New Israeli regulations allow authorities potentially to imprison or expel from the West Bank tens of thousands of Palestinians.

The Israeli right has long favored “transfer” (i.e. ethnic cleansing) as a means of dealing both with Palestinian-Israelis and with Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza. Given the extreme-right character of the government of Binyamin Netanyahu, it is no cause for wonder that practical steps are now being taken toward expulsions and deportations of anyone who even peacefully opposes the government’s systematic colonization of the West Bank.

The Guardian summarizes objections of Israeli peace groups who complain that “Palestinians, and any foreigners living in the West Bank” would be liable to deportation within 72 hours if they lack the right permit. “Valid permit” is not defined by the Israelis.

Rory McCarthy writes, “The orders … are worded so broadly such as theoretically allowing the military to empty the West Bank of almost all its Palestinian inhabitants,” said the 10 rights groups, which include Ha-Moked, B’Tselem, the Association for Civil Rights in Israel, and Rabbis for Human Rights. Until now the vast majority of Palestinians in the West Bank have not been required to hold a permit just to be present in their homes, the groups say.”

The Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949 requires two things of Israel, the Occupying Power in the Palestinian West Bank:

“Art. 49. Individual or mass forcible transfers, as well as deportations of protected persons from occupied territory to the territory of the Occupying Power or to that of any other country, occupied or not, are prohibited, regardless of their motive . . . The Occupying Power shall not deport or transfer parts of its own civilian population into the territory it occupies.”

Aljazeera English has a video report:

Meanwhile, Palestinians have begun a petition drive to collect a million signatures asking President Obama to end their Occupation. There is an increasing push among Palestinians to simply declare statehood within the next year or two, in hopes of forestalling the complete destruction by the Israelis of Palestinian nationhood.

18 Responses

  1. Almost as appalling as Israeli behavior is Palestinian political ineptitude. A year or two to declare statehood? This should have been done years ago. A real strategy would be:

    1. Educate a bunch of spokespeople without accents, preferably female, to blanket the cable news channels.

    2. Pick a leader and take a Gandhi/King nonviolent approach, lying down in front of the tanks and the like. This not only occupies the moral high ground, but breaks the cycle of atrocity and removes Israeli ability to retaliate and demonize. The disparity in armament means that all violent resistance is a complete waste.

    3. Declare statehood based on the 1948 UN status quo. They won’t get this but it will enable them to get as close as possible to 1967. Their international campaign should be based on UN resolutions, and the spokespeople developed in item 1 should know this chapter and verse.

    4. They need to align all US Arabian allies, especially Jordan, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia behind this, and find a way to put some teeth in it, politically and economically. There must be something the US wants from them they can make contingent on evenhandedness if the Palestinians implement a viable strategy.

    • Wow, that sounds real easy. You should go over there and let the Palestinians know exactly what they’ve been doing wrong for the past 43 years.

  2. Prof. COle,

    The problem with this post is that it’s not true. Haaretz has been peddling the story for the past two days, but if you read their reports carefully, you’ll see there are no concrete facts, no sources, and mostly speculation. Heat, yes; light, not so much.

    link to

  3. Why don’t Palestinians demand ‘one-man/one-vote’ now? Such a demand does not preclude the two state solution. It merely changes the pathway from the ridiculously ineffective ‘no-state’ to ‘two-states’ plan to a ‘one-state’ to ‘two-state’ plan. Surely being Israeli citizens can’t be worse than being ethnically cleansed helots.

  4. Israel has been deporting Palestinians since 1948. It just continues inventing mew amd better schemes on a bigger and better scale. The only similar entitiy that so enthusiastically engaged in deportations was the Stalinist Soviet Union, where entire nations were deported, whose names are even unknown to most of us us today. Who remembers the Circassians, for example? It is a fact that Jabotisnky, among ofther founders of Israel, viewed Stalin’s deportation policies with favor, and wrote about their future application to the new Israel state. It is a fact that many Jews were heavily involved in carrying out Stalin’s policies. In Estonia, the person in charge of deportations was Idel Jakobson. In sum, Israel is fast becoming a Stalinist state.

  5. Preferably in the next few years, most likely in the next few decades, Israel will come to realize that they will have to come to an agreement with the Palestinians. Extremism on both sides will run their course and basic natural law will follow. Human beings cannot be simply exiled from their birthplaces nor be barbarically massacred. There has to be something that can bring a benefit to the two sides.

  6. Prof. Cole,

    I wonder what your and your readers thoughts are on the ‘parallel’ states solution proposed by Matthias Mossberg and Mark Levine.

    link to

    Though interesting and certainly a revolutionary take on the notion of nation-states I don’t see it working. Your thoughts?

  7. well
    the solution
    [hesitate to use the word]
    seems simple to me
    every single last one
    should get as far away
    as fast as they can

    let them have
    what they covet most
    left to there own devices
    they will soon be toast

    the whole world
    should help them leave
    and let’s see what happens
    when the ones who practice
    to deceive finally get their wish

    i say let that piece of stone behind
    truly inherit the earth
    and all mankind
    can breathe a sigh of relief

    that’s how to solve this puzzle
    break the siege not for trade
    but to help them to leave

    let the bastards have their
    ill gotten gain and stop hiding
    behind the real settlers

    that’s right the ones
    that have been there
    the whole time

    feel free to substitute
    us for them
    and they or their

    at any time

  8. The dates may change but this ethnic cleansing has been going on for decades. I’ve been to the West Bank, and will never forget my shock at seeing Palestinians herded onto cattle car buses to cross the Allenby bridge, while tourists were escorted onto air-conditioned sightseeing buses. And that was only the tip of the iceberg of what I witnessed. Never again would I see Israel in a favorable light. The glaring truth is that Israel has become Nazi Germany. That we encourage it with our billions of tax dollars is an American shame.

  9. Where could large numbers of Palestinians be deported too?
    I cant imagine anyone agreeing to take them for various reasons.

    • To Gaza, where they cannot impede Israel’s territorial expansion in the West Bank, and can exist until they starve or are bombed to death in the next Cast Lead. Spouses of Palestinians or Palestinians who have gained residency rights elsewhere can be deported to those countries. Clearly, however, this measure is not enough for a final solution – it is only the latest step on the road to it.

  10. We need to guard against namecalling such as “Stalinist” or “Nazi”, even if specific policies are exactly the same as those used in those societies. It becomes the same as calling Obama a Stalinist or Nazi because those societies had some form of universal health care though dozens of democracies have universal health care. The ultimate goal of Israel is not the same as the USSR or 3rd Reich. What is chilling is that the ultimate goal of Israel is the same as the United States of America in 1776: to steal land from natives too obscure to possess sovereign status, and deform them until they can never recover it. There are a long line of colonist societies that have had similar agendas. Canada, Australia and New Zealand have also essentially gotten away with it. Rhodesia and French Algeria did not. South Africa – well, a tiny white minority still has all the money.

    The US and Israel are reflections of each other, American settler crimes justified by reference to a “Promised Land”, Israeli crimes justified by the success of the American crimes, American neo-cons using Israel to dehumanize Arabs to justify an American colony in Iraq, ad nauseum. You could argue that the US and Israel are the only two right-wing countries remaining in the advanced world. The settler mentality – God & me against the earth. Two black holes of insatiable greed, trapped in each other’s orbit, spiraling inwards towards… merger? Collision?

    • Yaacov, the two new military orders allows the IDF to deport anyone they want from the West Bank to the Gaza Strip, even though Israel itself insists that the Gaza Strip is not occupied territory.

      Q: And the reason why the IDF can deport them?
      A: The person they deport doesn’t have a “valid permit”.

      Q: And who issues those permits?
      A: The IDF.

      So the two military orders – taken together – allows the IDF to deport anyone it wants from the West Bank by the simple expedient of
      (a) revoking that person’s “valid permit”, then
      (b) waiting 72 hours, before
      (c) scooping them up and deporting them to Gaza.

      Now YOU might think that is something of no great import, but anyone with any brains would understand that this is an exceptionally dangerous weapon to place into the hands of military men, precisely because it *can* be abused.

      And if this *can* be abused then it *will* be abused, and it is no panacea to point out that it isn’t being abused yet because (of course) at the moment everyone is watching.

      Give it time, Yaacov, give it time….

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