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TOP STORIES TODAY

Joe Biden should end the US pretence over Israel’s ‘secret’ nuclear weapons (The Guardian) 

Archbishop Desmond Tutu writes: "The cover-up has to stop – and with it, the huge sums in aid for a country with oppressive policies towards Palestinians."

"Israel in fact is a multiple nuclear weapons proliferator. There is overwhelming evidence that it offered to sell the apartheid regime in South Africa nuclear weapons in the 1970s and even conducted a joint nuclear test. The US government tried to cover up these facts. Additionally, it has never signed the nuclear non-proliferation treaty."

"Apartheid was horrible in South Africa and it’s horrible when Israel practises its own form of apartheid against the Palestinians, with checkpoints and a system of oppressive policies. Indeed another US statute, the Leahy law, prohibits US military aid to governments that systematically violate human rights."

"It’s quite possible that one of the reasons that Israel’s version of apartheid has outlived South Africa’s is that Israel has managed to maintain its oppressive system using not just the guns of soldiers, but also by keeping this nuclear gun pointed at the heads of millions. The solution for this is not for Palestinians and other Arabs to try to attain such weapons. The solution is peace, justice and disarmament."

"South Africa learned that it could only have real peace and justice by having truth that would lead to reconciliation. But none of those will come unless truth is faced squarely – and there are few truths more critical to face than a nuclear weapons arsenal in the hands of an apartheid government."
Israel’s center-left collapsed over the past 20 months. Where did it go? (Times of Israel)

Haviv Rettig Gur writes: "There’s an old joke one sometimes hears from right-wing MKs in the Knesset building in Jerusalem whenever the sound of an ambulance siren wafts in through a window."

“That’s either a left-wing voter dying or a right-wing voter being born,” goes the line."

"The quip, like all jokes, is based in truth. There’s a demographic reality that the Israeli left has yet to seriously grapple with, though it’s been known for decades." 

"Israeli politics are tribal, with party allegiances usually dividing according to deep-seated cultural and religious differences, and the more left-leaning of those demographics are shrinking and growing older."
Israel orders wave of new house demolitions in Silwan, Jerusalem (Al Jazeera)

Ibrahim Husseini writes "Residents fear Jerusalem municipality is preparing to raze many Palestinian homes over the coming weeks."

"Homeowners and observers fear that the municipality, with the support of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, is preparing to raze a significant number of Palestinian homes in the city over the coming weeks."

"New Israeli parliamentary elections set in March and outgoing US President Donald Trump’s last days in the White House could hasten such a move."

"In 2020 alone, the United Nations recorded 170 demolitions in East Jerusalem alone and 644 in Area C of the occupied West Bank."
Why Israel is now delighted about the Arab Spring (Middle East Eye)

Lily Galili writes "The self-styled 'only democracy in the Middle East' was never comfortable with pro-democracy protests. But the autocratic counter-revolution that followed gave it new friends."

“Unintended consequences” is the best way to describe the impact the Arab Spring has had on Israel."

"Ten years after the pro-democracy protests that swept the Arab world, Israeli analysts agree that December 2020 is the unexpected outcome of December 2010’s events."

"They may differ in the interpretation of recent developments and assessment of their future impact - but all look back at the beginning of the decade as the starting point of a process that has led to a growing list of Arab and Muslim countries normalising relations with Israel." 

GO DEEPER

The two-state solution: The opium of the Palestinian people (Al Jazeera) 

Haidar Eid writes: "It is time for the de-Osloisation of the Palestinian struggle."

"Instead of insisting on those fundamental rights and following the example of South Africa’s anti-apartheid movement, which mobilised international civil society around the idea of one person, one vote and the establishment of a secular democratic, non-racial, non-sectarian state, the Palestinian political leadership reduced the Palestinian people to only those living in the West Bank, the Gaza Strip and East Jerusalem."

"This resulted in the formation of a Palestinian Bantustan of incongruous territories, where Palestinians live under the constant terror of a military occupation and where the Palestinian Authority does not actually exercise full authority."

"The de-Osloisation of Palestine, for most Palestinian activists, has become a precondition for the creation of peace with justice. That requires a redefinition of the Palestinian cause as an anti-colonial struggle against a system of settler-colonialism and apartheid, and reunification of the three components of the Palestinian people, namely, Gaza and the West Bank residents, refugees, and Palestinian citizens of Israel."
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