Is Palestine really at the top of the Arab agenda?

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During a meeting with delegates at the Arab League headquarters held in Cairo on Sunday, Deputy Secretary General, Saeed Abu-Ali, called for strengthening the Arab boycott of Israel as an effective tool to defend the Israeli occupation. to face.

“This meeting comes at a time when the Israeli occupation authorities are still continuing their systematic campaign of aggression against the Palestinian people, their sanctities and their property,” Abu-Ali said, stating: “These ongoing crimes require the intervention of the international community , especially the UN Security Council and regional and international organizations, to assume their responsibilities and end the double standards policy.”

In the presence of the senior Arab officials, the delegates praised some international organizations that have been involved in boycotting Israel, including the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement, as well as corporations for their support of justice for the Palestinian people and their legitimate rights .

The Arab League is the umbrella organization that represents the Arab states. Since the time before Israel’s founding, the Arab League has called for and promoted boycotts of Zionists and Jews who colonized Palestinian lands. The Arab League boycott of Israel refers to the cessation of all forms of direct and indirect relations.

READ: Arab League Stresses Boycott of Israel to End Occupation and Save Two-State Solution

On December 2, 1945, three years before the establishment of the State of Israel, the Council of the Arab League formally declared the Arab boycott of Zionist entities and people in Palestine.

“Jewish products and manufactures will be considered undesirable to Arab countries,” the statement said. All Arab “institutions, organizations, merchants, commissioners and individuals” were called upon “to refuse to deal in, distribute or consume Zionist products or manufactured goods.”

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From the beginning, the hypocrisy of the Arab League and its member states was very clear. While the Arab League claimed it would isolate Jewish communities in the Zionist colonies in Palestine, it simultaneously boycotted the Palestinians undergoing the brutal British occupation. To protest against this, the Palestinians filed complaints with the Arab Higher Committee and the Arab League itself. Nothing has changed.

In order not to stray from the subject, I will not explain here how the Arab states facilitated the Zionist occupation of Palestine. Upon the founding of Israel in 1948, the Arab states reiterated their official boycott of the newly self-proclaimed state.

On August 29, 1967, after the Israeli occupation of the West Bank, East Jerusalem, the Gaza Strip, the Sinai Peninsula and the Golan Heights, the Arab League held its fourth summit in Khartoum and reiterated on three points: No peace with Israel, no recognition of Israel and no negotiations with Israel.

Gradually, Israel became a friend of the Arab states, which also gradually denied the Palestinians and their cause. In the 1970s, the AIPAC led a campaign to pass a law by the United States Congress to combat the Arab League’s boycott of Israel. This led Congress to pass a law in 1977 prohibiting American companies from participating in the Arab boycott.

Then-U.S. President Jimmy Carter, who signed the bill, said the “issue touches on free trade between nations” and that it was intended to “end the divisive effects on American life of foreign boycotts targeting Jewish people.” members of our society.”

The Arab League threatened to take a firm stand against the new law; however, imports and exports between Arab and American companies increased and broader diplomatic and cultural relations improved. Very few companies were blacklisted for trade with Israel. Some Arab League member states pushed for the boycott, but some opened their arms to Israel, such as Egypt and Jordan, who signed peace agreements with Israel and began full commercial, cultural and other forms of relations with Israel. They became good friends.

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While the Arab states got mad at Egypt, they didn’t get mad at Jordan. When Egypt signed the peace agreement with Israel in 1978, it was the only Arab country to take that step, but when Jordan took that measure in 1994, it was the second to take such an official step and had not been able to join the Arab League. What remains are States without secret relations with Israel.

Later, in 2002, the Arab League held a summit in Beirut and all 22 member states unanimously agreed on a peace initiative that would end the Arab conflict between Israel and all Arab states, not just the Palestinians. However, Israel refused the initiative, but the Arab states insisted on taking it over.

After the adoption of the Arab Peace Initiative in 2002, it became easy for the Arab states to talk about their relations and cooperation with the State of Israel, which has not stopped its day and night aggression against the Palestinians and their properties and holy sites.

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Over time, the situation regarding the Arab boycott of Israel has turned into an Arab boycott of the legitimate Palestinian resistance, deportation of Palestinian refugees from Arab states, or the detention of those who remain on Arab soil, the adoption of the resistance ideology such as what is happening in Saudi Arabia, the UAE and others.

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Some Arab states, such as Jordan and Egypt, have explicitly joined hands with the Israeli hands to suffer the Palestinians. Egypt and Jordan have border crossings with the Palestinian territories, where Palestinians experience unprecedented suffering as they travel through.

As Israel continues its aggression against the Palestinians, the Arab states are becoming closer and more friendly with Israel. While the freely elected Palestinian MPs are not allowed to enter most Arab capitals, Israeli leaders — who pride themselves on killing Palestinians and Arabs — are warmly welcomed and have family dinners with Arab leaders.

Even the Arab countries, which claim they are still supporters of the Palestinian resistance and enemies of the Israeli occupation, are liars, as much of the Palestinian resistance, which lives in hiding outside Palestine, has been banned from living on their territory.

Almost all Arab states are oil or gas rich countries; none of them are sending this to the beleaguered Palestinians to operate only the only power plant in Gaza. All this proves that Arab regimes view the boycott of Israel as a hypocritical slogan just to claim to support Palestine, not as a measure to be put into practice.

Therefore, when we see heads of Arab states or ministers and officials talking about Palestine, it does not mean that the Palestinian issue is on their agenda, but this is to justify their relations and communication with Israel and to accommodate Israeli occupiers and murderers.

The views expressed in this article are the property of the author and do not necessarily reflect Middle East Monitor’s editorial policy.

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