A number of Israeli jetfighters ripped in the last 24 hours through the Palestinian airspace of the ‘freed Gaza Strip’, launching raids that killed at least four Palestinians, wounded several others, inflicted damages to buildings and caused a great deal of panic to hundreds of thousands of ‘freed’ Palestinians, and even to the birds which flattered in the sky of liberty.

The F-16 raids are the first of their type since the Israeli occupation forces have abandoned the Gaza Strip’s posts and settlements on Spetmeber12, thus further weakening an already fragile Palestinian-Israeli relations, instead of further strengthening them by sounds of civic aviation airplanes, hovering in the Palestinian ‘freed sky’, attempting to land and take off in and from the Gaza International Airport.

Opening a line of civic aviation journeys between the Palestinians and Israelis appears much more further from reality; Israelis seem to have insisted on keeping such a reality  unchanged by letting their warplanes roar over the heads of mostly civilian population, whose only fault is being occupied by the most militarily sophisticated state in the region.

The logic of hostility Israel has ever been adopting since her establishment is continued even after the unilateral withdrawal from some parts of the occupied Palestinian territories, allowing the Palestinians not to celebrate or even breathe breezes of liberty for the first time in history.

What implications the Israeli warplanes carried today for about 1.3 million Palestinians? Have they sent out a message that Israelis do exist, a warning to Palestinian resistance that still raises the gun, or a message to the Israeli voters, ahead of Israeli close premiership race?

If the raids conveyed a message of existence, let us agree that the Palestinians have already acknowledged Israel’s right to exist by signing the declaration of principles in 1993.

If they warned the Palestinain resistance, let us agree that Israel is militarily superior to light weapons and crudely-produced rockets and fire bombs the resistance owns.

And finally, if they addressed the Israeli voters, let us agree that the consecutive Israeli governments have ever relied much on the conflict with the Palestinian people, and history tells more about this area.

For example, the 2000’s Camp David negotiations between the late PA’s president Yasser Arafat and former labor party Prime Minister, Ehud Barak, had failed due to the well-known NOs to sovereignty over Jerusalem, control of borders and return of Palestinian refugees, which came prior to race on premiership.

Considered one of the ‘Israeli doves’, Ehud Barak had excessively stricken the Palestinian Intifada, the way the Likud hawks had done later on under the’ Prime Minister, Ariel Sharon, as Barak contested on the blood of Palestinians vis-à-vis his strong Likud rival, Sharon.

When Sharon took office, he has fiercely cracked down on the Intifada, employing all forms of actions; shooting to death, demolishing houses, bulldozing lands, arresting people, building walls (the Apartheid Wall) and finally withdrawing unilaterally from a trouble-making area of the Gaza Strip.

To win the elections, the Israelis should play on the blood of Palestinians for Israeli Prime Minister, Ariel Sharon, is likely trying to show his voters that he is capable of maintaining the security of Israelis again, the rhetoric he has ever used since he has taken over power in 2001. Such security has not been gained though, even after his (Sharon) unilateral disengagement from the Gaza Strip, as some crudely-produced rockets had fallen yesterday in neighboring Israeli towns.

In light of the new facts (disengagement), such an Israeli game appears to be no more valid, so no more provocation to the Palestinians both in West Bank and the ‘freed’ Gaza Strip, should take place (the killing of three Islamic Jihad members in Tulkarem and the mysterious deadly explosion in northern Gaza Strip on Friday).

Breaking a new fresh ground in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, based on recognizing both sides’ right to exist peacefully, should be the future game that should be played by all parties concerned, including Israel, the PNA, the Palestinain resistance factions and all peace lovers here and there and everywhere. It is the most important element of which is the willingness to give it a chance to succeed, as those who pay the price every time are either Israeli or Palestinian civilians.
 

Rami Almeghari is currently a Senior Translator at the Translation Department of the Gaza-based State Information Service (SIS) and former Editor in Chief of the SIS-linked International Press Center’s English.

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