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Annexation exposes the political isolation of Palestinians

  • 14 July 2020
The international community’s refusal to consider alternatives to the two-state paradigm plays into the US plan for Israel and Palestine that Trump dubbed the ‘deal of the century’. For decades, the UN issued non-binding resolutions and condemnations regarding Israel’s colonial expansion over Palestinian territory. As Israel gears towards implementing its annexation plans, which will see around 30 per cent of territory from the occupied West Bank falling under Israeli sovereignty, Palestinians stand to continue the cycle of territorial loss, internally forced displacement, and a deterioration of what remains of their rights.

This additional theft of land, which is illegal under international law, is not truly of concern to the UN; it did, after all, recognise a settler-colonial enterprise in Palestine and voiced no opposition to its designation as a state, despite being built upon the ethnic cleansing of the Indigenous population.

Much of the arguments against annexation come from a pro-Israel or ‘friend of Israel’ perspective. Some critics within this spectrum of perspectives have spoken out against annexation on grounds that it will make Israel bigger but not necessarily more secure. Since Israel possesses the superior military edge in the region, financed by the US, it is unlikely that annexation will impact in this manner.

Additionally, security coordination, which is the bulwark of what supports the Palestinian Authority’s (PA) power in the occupied West Bank, is unlikely to cease completely, in part because of the impact this would have on all aspects of Palestinian life and economy. Security coordination also helps the PA stay in power by crushing any possibilities of Palestinian resistance. By working with Israel in terms of security coordination, many times funnelling Palestinian detainees between Palestinian and Israeli prisons, the PA is also protecting itself and its political status. By contrast, it has failed to protect Palestinians and with annexation, the population is set to become even more vulnerable.

In May, the PA declared it would end security coordination with Israel, supposedly in a direct challenge to Israel’s formalisation of its colonial land grab. However, on several occasions, it was made known that security coordination is ongoing, which ties into what the PA leader Mahmoud Abbas defines as ‘sacred’.

Officially, the PA absolved itself of all agreements with Israel. However, security coordination continues behind the scenes. Israeli officials have confirmed that Abbas assured them of security cooperation to thwart any Palestinian resistance activities.

'The international community may have reached international