William Cook: The Annapolis Peace Initiative

By William A. Cook    
Special to PalestineChronicle.com

I woke from a dream last night with a sudden start, the world had turned inside out … the sun did not shine, the moon did not come out … darkness enveloped the earth, and all that had been was no more. How frightening a world without light; to look upon a face and see only night: no eyes to share the moment’s reflection, no curl of the lip to hint at deception, no frown to crease the brow to warn of hidden intent, no rise of the blood to mock the shame, nothing but sounds of words to reveal the truth, issuing forth in the recesses of a labyrinthine darkness. I listened to hear what this inside out world might revere, to know what it touted as fact in a world so black. But when I woke with such a start, all went blank, except the wondering.

What, I wondered, has brought forth this dream? What curse intrudes upon this sacred season of peace and plenty, the Holy season of Christ’s birth? What but the beast of hypocrisy, the very image of night replacing day, the beast that slouches toward the city of Ann to give birth to a new world where our dualities are reversed, where expectation becomes disillusion; joy, sorrow; fulfillment, neglect; compassion, indifference; hope, fear; justice, iniquity, and peace, continued genocide. These are the dualities of our day and the guaranteed realities of the Annapolis Peace initiative.

What image presents itself in this lovely port city of Ann with its upscale boutiques, historical homes reflecting the character of colonial America as it rose in righteous revolt against the forces of oppression and occupation, and, curiously, the city that is home to the greatest naval force on the planet, an apt image of our mythology of David conquering the might of the Philistine’s Goliath, happily now the secure protector of the people of the United States. To this quaint village come the new conquerors and their hapless victims hosted by the President of the United States, a man who rules by fiat, lies, and arrogance, to serve as an “objective” guide through negotiations that will result in “peace.”

All attendees, all will be decked out in their $2,000 dollar double-breasted, pin-striped suits, lapel pins catching the glare of the elegant chandeliers that stud the ceiling of the lounges and conference halls, cocktail glasses tinkling lightly as the men with their trophy wives, dressed elegantly in flowing gowns offset with diamonds and pearls, slither through the crowds smiling quaintly, heads bobbing in token recognition of their fellows who have labored far into the night churning out articles heaping praise on this last of many efforts on the part of Israel and its benefactor, the United States, to bring peace to the middle east, while diplomats offer them congratulations for a piece well written and thoughtfully displayed, and they in turn acknowledge their peers with a sly twinkle of the eye and a lift of the glass, a sophisticated recognition of their amazing accomplishments, all bathing in the glare of the klieg lights that surround the rooms and follow them down the halls with TV anchors obsequiously trailing, tethered to their cameras by miles of cord attached to their mikes, while soft, unobtrusive elevator music rides above the throng serving the civilized atmosphere lest discord enter and destroy the illusion of peace and prosperity.  

It’s a masked ball, a contorted illusion of sleazy, side-alley circus mirrors that convey the impression of civility and grace, but hide the reality behind the mirror’s twisted truth. Who are these people that mingle in such apparent good will whispering to each other the hopes and dreams they bring to this gathering of peace thoughtfully held in the season of peace, the peace that “surpasseth understanding,” the peace of the savior of human kind, the very Prince of Peace, whose birthday we celebrate one month to the day? Are they not the men or the children of the men that came out of the north to invade the land of Palestine, not with armies of conquest at first, but with stealth and deceit, pleading with the inhabitants to give them safe haven from the ravages of the monster in Europe who was murdering their people? Are they not the men who fled to the safety of the British Mandate government in Palestine to seek succor and the possibility of a National Home? Are they not the same men who determined that neither the people of Palestine, who welcomed them in those early years before 1936, or the British government deserved to be rewarded with efforts toward a peaceful resolution that attended the influx of thousands to this land that belonged to others?

Are they not the men who turned to terrorism against their benefactors when those benefactors did not do what they demanded? Are they not the men who blew up railroads, bridges, hotels, and barracks killing indiscriminately to force their demands? Are they not the men who kid napped and killed officers of the British Mandate and did they not execute without trial or jury whomever they determined to be their enemy? Are they not the men who, on March 10, 1948, planned and executed Plan Delot to forcefully expel from their homes and their lands the people of Palestine, beginning what became a 60 year conquest of a hapless people left undefended as a result of the British devastation of their armies and leaders in the uprising of 1936?

Are they not the men who fielded upwards of 80,000 troops that spread out through the land of Galilee, north and west of Jerusalem, to encircle 418 towns and villages forcing the inhabitants to flee for their lives or stay, fight against superior forces, and suffer mutilation, rape, or summery execution by the gangs called Hagana, Irgun, and Stern, the illegal armies of the Jewish Agency? Are they not the men who drew up agreements of security with the people of Deir Yassin just outside of Jerusalem and then in a cold, calculated manner massacred them in a viciousness unseen before by Red Cross agents who visited the sight and by Sir Richard Catling of the British Mandate office who interviewed the few remaining survivors, those left to live with the debasement of having endured rape at the hands of these men who now toast each other at the Annapolis gathering? Are they not the men who buried these very towns under the rocks and stones that had been the walls of homes and barns, bulldozed the very memories that people lived and loved and thrived and laughed and married, bore children and buried their fathers and mothers in these places, lost lives now never lived, and covered their crimes with new towns or forests made into parks for the new inhabitants to frolic in?

Are they not the men who erected the monument that will be their everlasting memorial to their inhumanity, to the belief that a few can force the many to be complicit in crimes that mock the accepted reality that all are created equal, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, mock it by disregarding the pleas of the world’s communities through the International Court of Justice that declared their WALL of INFAMY to be illegal, inhumane, a cruel barbarous action against humans by cementing them psychologically and physically inside a monstrous prison visible to the entire world as a symbol of human depravity?

Are they not the men who have broken every international law pertaining to occupying forces that they care for those they occupy treating them civilly, with respect and dignity, providing them with the essentials of life? Are they not the men who have defied over 160 United Nations resolutions seeking from them redress for their inhumanity against the people of Palestine, to return the land they have confiscated, to return the resources they have commandeered, to ensure that the land left to the Palestinians after the UNGA resolution establishing the division be upheld so a contiguous Palestinian state could be achieved; are they not responsible for adhering to the laws that all others must obey?

No and No and No. These men who saunter around the conference rooms, who give polite and civil interviews to the fumbling lackeys that hold the microphones, who caution against too great an optimism that peace will come soon, that after all there’s still that irritating problem of Gaza and Hamas, that there’s really no viable government for the Palestinians at the moment, these men recognize no law but their own, no God but the God they speak for, no force that they will obey but that of the Zionists.

This is not a world of nightmares and tortured visions; it’s our world now. Evil rules; evil decides which International Laws it will obey and which it will not; evil controls the operative forces, the United States Congress and through it the actions of the UN Security Council so that the voices of the world’s communities are stifled by Israel, the U.S. and Palau; evil created the devastation of the Palestinians and their present condition, living on the edge of starvation and death; evil has determined the lives of millions of refugees forced from their homes decades ago, forced into foreign lands, locked into enclaves of cement blocks, alley ways, filth, and demoralization; evil defies international law of the right of return and, in brazen arrogance, flaunts the very wording of that law so that it applies only to those who accept by allegiance their stated religion and no other; evil determines the Palestinian leader they will negotiate with not the people of Palestine; evil arranges a peace conference after seven years of slaughter that makes Sherman’s March to the Sea a cakewalk of civility; evil glowers at its success in flaunting every vestige of civil and humane behavior in its quest to acquire the land of Palestine for the Jews  despite the consequences to the Palestinians, an indifference that makes evil, Evil, the power of indifference to negate the existence of those the Zionist cares nothing about as long as the Zionist goal is attained.

These are the people we see joyfully lifting their martinis high in the air as they salute the conquerors who offer peace terms to the lackey they have hand picked to receive their gifts of promises yet to be negotiated, promises that like all prior promises at Camp David, Oslo, and the forgotten Road Map, will never materialize because there is more land to be annexed, more homes to be demolished, more Palestinians to be expelled before the marvel of God’s gifted real estate becomes the National Home of the Zionists who watch over all the Jews whether they want to be or not.

I did not wake from that dream last night; I am living that dream today as I watch the world walk in darkness, befuddled by deceit, desirous to end the violence of these past 60 years, expectant, hopeful, a little fearful that the joy of the season may be marred for themselves and the Palestinians if the conditions of the Zionists are not met even if it means that all of us must accept the will of those who control by force of might and rule in ruthless disregard of any who stand in the way of their desires. The Beast of Hypocrisy walks the streets of Annapolis, it hides its ugliness beneath its cashmere long coat as it enters the conference hall to present in elegant verbiage its compassionate intent that peace might at last come to the mid-east, but in the darkness we do not see the maggots that reside beneath that elegant exterior, the maggots that have eaten away the moral innards of the people that have gathered to deny the people of Palestine the justice they so rightfully deserve.

-William Cook, A contributing editor of MWC News, is a professor of English at the University of La Verne in southern California and author of Tracking Deception: Bush’s Mideast Policy

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