“Poll respondents showed less support for Israel than at the start of the conflict, showing changing opinions as the war reaches its sixth week. About 32 percent of respondents said the U.S. should support Israel, down from 41 percent in mid-October, days after the start of the war. Many now believe that the U.S. should instead be a ‘neutral mediator’ in the conflict instead of taking a side. The rate has increased to 39 percent from 27 percent a month ago. Fifteen percent of respondents said the U.S. should back Palestinian interests in the war, which is largely unchanged.”
“The United Nations has said that about 70 percent of people in Gaza have been displaced, with few options for safe haven as Israeli strikes pound every corner of the Strip, including areas that Israel told Palestinians they should relocate to in order to avoid the fighting.
“‘We would have anticipated that the ICC would react much earlier because thousands of people have been mowed down,’ Pandor said. ‘And these are innocent Palestinian people who have suffered decades of harassment and occupation.’
“That occupation, she said, also has ‘very, very clear similarities,’ to some of the practices that defined apartheid South Africa.
”’We know people cannot own property, [and] that property can be seized without any compensation, which is what we experienced in our own country. People have to carry identity documents that reflect your ethnicity rather than citizenship. All of this is part of the apartheid feature,’ Pandor told Al Jazeera. “‘So, there can be no denial that the corollary between the conduct of the Israeli state against the people of Palestine is so closely aligned to the apartheid conduct.'”
Comment: The US and Israeli governments share the immediate goal of destroying Hamas’ capacity to attack Israel. It is unclear, however, whether the US also supports Israel’s long-term objective of displacing the Palestinian population to achieve political dominance, taking Palestinian land, and promoting Jewish settlement in West Bank land occupied by the Israeli military.
It is ironic that, even as Palestine supporters are condemned for chanting “from the river to the sea” on grounds that it implies elimination of the state of Israel, the state of Israel has been pursuing that same objective since 1948.
Will US officials actually try to achieve a two-state solution that gives Palestinians a homeland protected by international law? Or is this just more political talk to stabilize the current situation, while allowing Israel to consolidate its latest territorial gains, reduce the Palestinian population, and bide its time until the next provocation by a caged-up people to justify the ongoing expansionary project?