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Date: Thu, 31 Oct 1996 21:29:07 -0800
To: melblcome@igc.apc.org
From: "Hebron Solidarity Committee" <freedom@netvision.net.il> (by way of Yigal Arens)
Subject: The Hebron Agreement = Entrenching Apartheid

The Hebron Agreement: Entrenching apartheid

From Hebron Solidarity Committee, 31 October 1996

When Arafat declared in mid-October that Israel is trying to impose a racist program in Hebron, he spoke the truth. He only forgot to mention that he intends to sign his agreement to this very program—after a series of little temper tantrums. Ultimately, most of the Israeli plan for redeployment from Hebron is acceptable to him.

In the partition program for Hebron all the flaws of Oslo are clearly revealed. The division of responsibility between Israel and the Palestinian Authority (PA) is not territorial, as it portends to be. In Hebron, as in all areas of Palestine, the rule of apartheid enables Arafat and his police to control the Palestinians so that Israel can continue to rule over Palestine. Sovereignty remains entirely in the hands of Israel; the maintenance of order and oppression of the Palestinian population are carried out by Arafat and his police forces.

In Hebron, the hatred and fear imposed on Arab cities by the Zionist movement has been expressed in its most severe form. It has been the goal of every Israeli government to destroy Palestinian Hebron, a focal point of Palestinian national consciousness. Jewish settlement, the expropriation of land, the partitioning of the city into isolated segments, the prevention of development and detachment of the former district capital from its periphery—all these measures have transformed Hebron into a collection of non-integrated neighborhoods. Now the deals which are being presented as peace agreements will tear in two the heart of city, transforming it into an island inaccessible to the Palestinians. The Israeli policy of de-urbanization in Hebron is in fact a process of Transfer, whose goal is to destroy and disconnect the Palestinian people from its homeland, through the use of Palestinian collaborators.

The redeployment from Hebron is not a historical compromise between the Zionist movement and the Palestinian people. Rather, it is a victory of the colonialist Zionist forces. A historical compromise can only be an agreement that ensures equality for both Palestinians and Jews. The first step in this direction is the complete withdrawal of the army, settlers and the Shabak (Israeli secret police) from Hebron and all the areas occupied in 1967, including East Jerusalem.

But this is only the first step. The continuation must be annulment of the reign of discrimination and oppression, and the canceling of current apartheid laws on land and immigration.

The Hebron Solidarity Committee (HSC)