BEIRUT: Progressive Socialist Party Leader Walid Jumblatt condemned the attacks on Gaza Monday, urging the launch of the Palestinian unity government’s efforts in uniting the Palestinian front against its occupier.
“Launching the unity government’s work is the only way to unite the Palestinian vision on the nature of the struggle and the way to approach it,” he said, adding that such a measure would be “the only way to turn over the page of internal divisions and conflicts once and for all.”
Jumblatt called for a broad agreement not restricted to just a ceasefire, urging Israeli forces to lift the siege of Gaza and open all Arab and Israeli passages into the occupied territory.
Jumblatt also called on the release of tens of thousands imprisoned Palestinians, as well as a halt in all forms of political negotiations with Israel.
He argued that “deep political negotiations with Israel [have] proved ineffective because of Israel’s rejection of any settlement,” adding that “[negotiations] are nothing more than theatrics played out by American middlemen.”
In response to the book “Nazis, Islamists, and the Making of the Modern Middle East” by Barry Rubin and Wolfgang G. Schwanitz, Jumblatt condemned the authors for forging links between Nazism and Islamism, saying that “the Islamic world has never exercised a systemic burning of Jews the way the west has [done in the past].”
Jumblatt called for a distinction to be made between rejecting the occupation and the issue of Jewish settlements in an Arabic Palestine, arguing that the opponents of the Israeli occupation have no issue with the Jews who have fled to the Arab world ever since the west reclaimed Andalusia.
The PSP leader expressed solidarity and sympathy with the Palestinians, recalling the Israeli occupation of Lebanon in previous years.
“Coincidence would have it that once again the World Cup coincides with Israeli wars and attacks, as was the case in the 1982 Beirut siege during the Israeli occupation of Lebanon, and as was the case last night with the new war on Gaza,” he said.