Israel Housing Demolitions Hamper Peace

A European Union internal report prepared by diplomats in Israel charged the Israeli government policies of blowing up Arab houses in east Jerusalem and elsewhere has become a major impediment to achieving peace with Palestinians. The paper charged: “Israel is by practical means, actively pursuing the illegal annexation of East Jerusalem. House demolitions in occupied east Jerusalem are illegal under international law, serve no obvious purpose, have humanitarian effects and fuel bitterness and extremism.” Of course, Israel policies do have a practical effect — they enable Israeli leaders to cater to the lowest common denominator in politics –those who hate Muslims and regard them as lacking in any rights.

Defenders of Israeli actions point out when Jordan occupied parts of Jerusalem it tried to obliterate all traces of its Jewish heritage. Yes, this is true, but what does it have to do with taking land away from Palestinians. Is the assumption, if they acted illegally, this justifies our own illegal actions?