Thu 14 Sep 2023 10:05 am - Jerusalem Time

The nonsense of participating in the Jerusalem municipal elections

The last day of October of the current year witnesses comprehensive municipal elections for all cities in the entity, including many Arab municipalities inside the country, through the proportional representation method and in accordance with applicable Israeli law. The occupied Jerusalem municipality is also witnessing similar elections on the same date.

Given that these municipal elections have been boycotted by the Palestinian Jerusalemite public for decades, despite calls for encouragement and intimidation from the ruling authority, a group claiming to be concerned for the rights of Palestinian Jerusalemite citizens and exploiting their tragic conditions has called for participation in these upcoming municipal elections to remove the injustices that have been done to them. them, even though they are residents and not citizens according to Israeli law,

This group did not forget to use all the injustice and injustice that occurred to the citizens of East Jerusalem by the bodies of the ruling authorities, whether municipal, political, security, economic, social, or insurance, and in all service sectors, as a justification for their new and old invitation to participate in the upcoming Jerusalem municipal elections. Rather, they went far in pouring blood into this crippled call, and they praised and attracted the print, audio and visual media for this step, as if it were the unique means of saving the suffering people of Jerusalem from their hardships and needs and through which all their problems would be solved.

First, this group ignored that the root of the affliction is the Israeli occupation of East Jerusalem, its annexation to the entity, and the application of Israeli law to it in clear and gross violation of the rules of international law, and successive UN Security Council resolutions starting with Resolution No. 252 of 1968, and the resolutions of the United Nations General Assembly starting with Resolution 2253. of 1967, and the decisions of the International Court of Justice in its fatwa opinion in 2004.

And the decisions of the Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the Civil Aviation Organization. Rather, the first resolution that the Israeli authorities violated since the beginning of the 1950s was Resolution No. 181 regarding the partition of Palestine in 1947.

Despite the importance of legal rules in resolving any international dispute, it will take a long time to explain these international rules, so I will just point out them, as they definitely prevent participation or even the thought of participating in municipal elections. I will not list the rules of Palestinian sovereignty over Jerusalem, and not to neglect them. By participating in municipal elections.

I will not suggest that there are no foreign embassies in Jerusalem due to its refusal to be recognized by the international community, and that the electoral participation of the residents of East Jerusalem is a justification for them to move their country’s embassies to Jerusalem. I will not allow Israeli municipal elections because this would mean the end of the Israeli military occupation of the city of Jerusalem. I will not give up the application of the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949 and the Fourth Hague Convention of 1907 to Jerusalem, despite the leniency and complacency of the Red Cross in this area. I will not acknowledge the Israeli annexation of Jerusalem with seventy thousand dunams of its lands on which settlement colonies were built. I will not recognize the Entry into Israel Law of 1954, which applied to the people of Jerusalem and took away their right and the right of their families to live in dignity in their homeland. I will not deny the Palestinians' right to self-determination in Jerusalem and their right to control their wealth and natural resources. I will only find an affirmation of Muslim ownership of Al-Aqsa Mosque, a denial of the Temple and lost religious freedom for Muslims and Christians throughout Jerusalem, and a continuous Arabism over Jerusalem throughout history without interruption except for two invasions, one Crusader and the other Zionist.

This group calling for participation in the Jerusalem municipal elections proposes nonsense, illusions, safety and dreams to entice and titillate the simple people who love a decent life and make them believe that they are close to achieving that. It announces to them that the population in East Jerusalem has reached forty percent, and that this percentage can stop the demolition of homes with the stroke of a pen, and that it can grant permits in the blink of an eye, and they use this percentage as if it were the push of a button, and thus they deceive the Jerusalemite public with an impossible-to-achieve proposition and for special purposes.

Praise be to God, the number of Palestinians in East Jerusalem has doubled, reaching nearly four hundred thousand today, more than five times their population in 1967 according to the first Israeli census, despite all the Israeli obstacles and impediments. However, the Jerusalem Municipality and the relevant Israeli agencies provide minimal services to its residents and collect much of their money and spend it on the rich western part, in a remarkable paradox. Indeed, fines for violating construction in East Jerusalem are not spent on construction in East Jerusalem, but on West Jerusalem. It demolishes their homes, takes away their identities, prevents them from reuniting with their families, prohibits them from building, cars, municipality, and Arnonah, and does not provide the slightest services that are appropriate for them: no organization, streets, schools, cleanliness, gardens, cultural centers, or parking places. Rather, it closes associations, activities, and unions, and confiscates lands. Private property, as if there was a surplus of it, for alleged biblical gardens, to further seize real estate, displace citizens, and raise the prices of building permits. Indeed, if we take a superficial, passing look at Palestinian cities that were attached to the Jerusalem Governorate, such as Bethlehem, Ramallah, and Jericho, we will find much greater progress than Jerusalem with all its neighborhoods in all sectors, and with much lower fees.

If we dropped all those legal, practical, and political arguments against municipal elections, and accepted, theoretically and dialectically, heading for municipal elections. What will be the case, especially if the percentage of participants does not exceed five percent, as it was in previous years, but is much less, or at its maximum, ten percent? The Israelis will certainly take advantage of the consensual Palestinian Jerusalemite participation in the municipal elections, and they are skilled at it, to theorize that the Palestinians will give up their legal defenses regarding the Israeli occupation and Jerusalem. They will repeat in international forums that they gave up their right to self-determination and willingly accepted without being forced to live and live under the occupation of the Israeli occupation.

Let us pause and take a look at what happened inside the occupied territories in the elections for the so-called Knesset. Arab society was divided between those who rejected and accepted political participation. Even the Islamic movement was divided between itself, rejecting and supporting, and the national movement was also divided and scattered. That is, the Palestinian citizens are not of one heart - and I apologize - on the political issue. Will the same thing happen here in East Jerusalem, and if not, what is the expected percentage of participants?

If the percentage of participants in the municipal elections is less than ten percent, or even less than that, which is what is expected, and under one list and without dividing or dispersing the Palestinian vote, under an electoral system that relies on proportionality, and under a city controlled by right-wing religious extremists in their many different sects, what will be the share? Jerusalemites from the number of seats they will occupy. Nothing was mentioned, neither the dates of the Levant nor the grapes of Yemen were damaged, and they lost all their defenses. Then it will be said that we have not lost anything and why we have not tried, and they do not know that national rights are not an arena for experiments or games.

Let us take the impossible hypothesis, which is that the Palestine Liberation Organization will come, directly or indirectly, and issue a statement, declaration, or hint, allowing the people of Jerusalem and urging them to participate in the municipal elections. We were preparing a unified list with a high voter rate. Will the Israelis remain silent and accept this matter, especially since you are talking about the so-called “eternal capital of the Jewish people?” Will the elected Jerusalemite winners swear an oath of loyalty to the State of Israel? If we accept all these procedural formalities, how, for God’s sake, can a law like the “Cyminster” law regarding illegal construction be abolished, and we prevent the demolition of homes? Have you not heard and read about the demolition of homes in Arab and Druze towns? Rather, they were not provided with infrastructure services such as electricity and sewage. Look, there are dozens of Arab and Druze municipalities that are legally elected, have municipal councils, legal jurisdictions and budgets and are approved by the Ministry of the Interior, but they have not been able to change one iota of this unfair and discriminatory law in all of the entity’s territories and not limited to Jerusalem. That is, the great matter that you are promoting to enter the electoral arena has lost its meaning and has become impossible, and therefore you have lost the pretext and reason for engaging in it. So be rational and do not dance on the wounds of citizens and do not promote wrong ideas, but rather represent sin itself.

Arab municipalities at home were unable to stop the confiscation of Arab land, despite its scarcity and lack of surplus, and perhaps the events that took place on Land Day are the best expression of that. The Arab municipalities were not given land by the Israel Lands Authority or the Keren to be used to solve the housing crisis among young people, which led them to internal migration. Arab municipalities were not given funds or budgets to carry out municipal activities. Rather, fines were imposed on them and they were sometimes dissolved, and government employees were appointed to manage them. Rather, there are areas in the Negev that are not recognized and inhabited, and for which no municipalities or municipal services have been established. The Arab municipalities were not able to impose their residential sector regulatory plans, but are still fighting for a regulatory share, as all the relevant committees are Jewish through and through. Can the Arab municipalities, despite their knowledge of the secrets of Israeli law and society, impose an educational curriculum specific to the Arab community?

This is a Zionist state, and its pillar and foundation is a racist law based on the Jewishness of the state. After that, any faction can change the Arab reality existing in the entity. Racist laws by design and construction, and there is no hope of changing them. And all of these nonsense and dreams, even if you think well of my hopes for change, are nothing but hallucinations or superfluities negated by the established facts inside, or is there something behind the mound and you will return with hidden nostalgia because the issue has been consumed and consumed!!!


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