Why Arab leaders failed to unite aganist Israeli
By Hassan Isilow
CAIRO- While ordinary Arabs in various countries joined forces in unprecedented pro-democracy protests, their leaders remain disunited in defending Palestine against Israeli occupation. According to Professor Mazin Qumsiyeh, author of the book Sharing the land of Canan, and lecturer at the University of Beit Sahur in Palestine, Israeli’s continued occupation of Palestine should be blamed on Arab disunity and hypocrisy among Arab leaders.
“Most Arab leaders have been good friends of the United States of America and Israel. Thus, they could not unite in championing Israeli’s brutal occupation of Palestine,” the academic told Africa-witness on Monday. However, he believed that the current pro-democracy protests in the Middle East will usher in a new breed of Arab leaders, who are likely to unite and defend Palestine against the Israeli occupation.
Dr Assad Abu Sharif, an independent political analyst based in Gaza, said it was sad to see Arab nations disunited whenever it comes to the issue of defending Palestine. For her part Leila Odeh, a Palestinian journalist concurred with Qumsiyeh.
“I’m optimistic that the new breed of Arab leaders will certainly create unity among Arabs, which means that we shall have a stronger Arab League which will defend Palestinian human rights,” she told Africa-witness on Monday.
Odeh also claimed that Israel has the White House’s seal of approval, for its present actions against Palestine. “When you talk about Israel, then you should know that you’re talking about the United States of America. Israeli has become an almost untouchable state, because it is an ally of the United States, which is the world’s superpower.”
According to Odeh, former US president, George W Bush had steadfastly praised Israel for attacking Gaza. At that time, an Israeli soldier had been captured and Bush justified the Israeli attack on Gaza by saying the Zionist state was entitled to defend itself. Regardless of Israel’s strong ties with the United States, the journalist was optimistic that Palestine would succeed in freeing itself from the Israeli occupation.