Every time every four years, the debate on elections starts and end like fireworks igniting in the sky and falling in pieces to nothingness.
Each time we debate whether Palestinians should participate in the elections of the municipality . and every time a stubborn like resistance is the master of the situation.
Why is this resistance to Palestinians participating in what seems to be a natural ABC of the miserable life of Jerusalemites? An ABC to what may appear to solve or in a way help resolve the frustrations Palestinian live in Jerusalem with all the restrictions, obstacles, violations and systematic attempts to get rid of the people of this city.
The ABC in response is, this will mean a legitimacy of the current municipality. It will mean that we Palestinians are legitimizing this capital of Israelization.
However, we are paying taxes; we receive services why not be involved in the system?
such remains the debate …. each election time ….
This time, someone else also tried to prove a point. A young Palestinian living and working in the US decided to run for mayor of the city … or so we understood from the sudden announcement.
I cannot deny he reminded me of Azmi Bishara’s great announcement to run for Israeli PM.
my general standpoint about joining the municipality is clear and unchangeable, we Palestinians should go to the level where we become part of this, taking it as an opportunity to turn the table of negotiation against Israel, and it is about time we should also reevaluate the situation and start a new tactic, or even discuss different standpoints.
A task force that should include different age groups and backgrounds should be formed and turned towards this issue in a systematic, ongoing method.
What happens on the ground, however, is different … after all we are a nation of fireworks .. we love quick initiatives and immediate results. The strategy is not in our making, so tactics are nothing but coincidental and temporary.
Each local term, someone comes, usually with an Israeli with this idea… why not enter the municipality. The Israeli of course is tactical; he knows that the Arab votes are not used, and turning them into his list side, will at least provide him with what will make him enter the race.
The Arab, as a result, think, ya… he is right, he is devoted to MY cause, let me play along becoming a master. Hence, he is nothing but a slave, needed to be dressed in a white collar shirt and tie for some time!!!!
I have given up the idea by the years; this year would have marked the crowning announcement to what it means the failure of Jerusalem’s existence. Trump just made everything worse… The Arabs involvement in this and the PA closed eyes and shy endorsements to defy the announcement cannot be unseen. So again the Jerusalemites are left between the claws of occupation .. this time to be chewed.
I met the man who was brave enough to take the path towards the mayor’s office, I thought, some months ago, during a dinner in one of the European representative offices who were eager to endorse such an initiative. It was quick to be revealed that this initiative is run jointly with an israeli.. who is the Israeli i asked… and somehow no names were given.
Ok.. who are the Palestinians that are joining this list … no names were given.
My first eyebrow raise was here .. what this list of secret representatives is? I spent the evening hearing the young man, who lives in the US and seems to have good control in demonstrating himself.. a showman… ( still a compliment ) I thought to myself.
IT must be the second or third glass of wine that blurred my mind into bubbles when I asked the question: it is not the Gershon Baskin list you are joining?
Something happened at that dinner, or the chemicals in my head when the man nodded with a yes. I just felt entirely in rage… that is what we need a “Jerusalem is ours” through Gershon Baskin’s vision. How good or bad or whatever can it be…
I think for the next half an hour I lost all my reserved diplomatic skills and I was more than the too direct person I usually am… and i crossed the man and the list…
However, it meant danger to me… it is not because I have anything against the Israeli man per name or in general. However, an Israeli man cannot be the person who orchestrates my liberation, especially that the man was talking politics. He was not talking services; he intended to make a political stir.. would the Israeli master help us liberate?
Anyway… I kept insisting to the European host: you really want Palestinians to go to the elections, lets start a task force from now, and maybe it will be ready in the next elections (not this next elections), because only fools would think that it is an easy task to mobilize the mindset of the community towards this issue.
You have a nation that condemns the PA, many are rushing to get Israeli passports, but when the Aqsa issue stirred hundreds of thousands from every corner came to prove that this is their city in the way they believe it is. Palestinian.
Later, Gershon removed himself from the first name on the list and made Aziz as the face of the group. It was evident that the advice on the impossibility of having a joint group is a red zone of a no.
Aziz is someone that practically has no history in this city; anyone does not know him, he continued to state that if this does not work, he will go back to the States. He even insisted, that it will not work when he decided to run for a mayor, and he will also go back to the state. So if I was someone who wanted change in this sense and the man who wants to be a mayor has a plan be that takes him directly to the airport, how can I take such a man seriously?
Well…. it was all said in a few eggs thrown in the conference he set in the west side of the city.
If he were serious and genuine, he would have done his conference in Bab il Amoud; he would have addressed the Arabs that he wants to represent. To start with, sitting on the municipal boundaries protected by Israeli police only says to the Palestinian voter that you cannot be a choice.
These attempts only bring in problematic gestures to a situation that cannot change. Change cannot be brought this way.
In the end, the relationship with Israel is a relationship between an oppressor and an oppressed. An occupier and occupied. Justice cannot be built when the oppressor and the oppressed stand on the same line. It is a lot of so much work done when both become equals…