Massive rallies have commenced in the Iranian capital of Tehran and all other cities as well as throughout the world, on the International Quds Day in support of the Palestinian resistance against the Zionist regime’s occupation of Palestine.
In 1979, the late founder of the Islamic Republic Grand Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, designated the last Friday of the lunar month of Ramadan as the International Quds Day, during which Muslims across the world hold rallies to show their solidarity with Palestinians.
Press TV has conducted an interview with Jeff Steinberg with the Executive Intelligence Review from Washington to further discuss the issue.
The programs also offers the opinions of two additional guests: the Political Commentator, Sarah Marusek from the Lebanese capital city of Beirut and the human rights activist Adie Mormech, from the besieged Gaza Strip.
What follows is an approximate transcription of the interview.
Well, Jeff Steinberg perhaps it is a good time to bring you and to talk about the United States.
In the most recent news regarding al-Quds, since we are talking about al-Quds day, is the future Presidential Candidate Mitt Romney being there, he visited Israel and said that al-Quds should be the capital of Israel.
At the same time you have the US obviously presenting themselves as mediator between Israel and Palestinians but this coming from the future presidential candidate, how did that ring with you?
Well, first of all, I think probably every American presidential candidate or president who has ever gone to Jerusalem (al-Quds) has made that unfortunate statement and so it is an easy rhetorical pitch for support from American Zionist voters and from a very large American community living inside Israel who, Romney was very much appealing to, both for their financial contributions and their electoral support.
I think the bottom line is that if you go back to last September, when the Palestinian Liberation Organization [PLO] sought for statehood membership in the United Nations with overwhelming support from the majority of General Assembly countries, the United States did in fact do everything possible to kill that off from happening.
So I do not think that there is a partisan divide here when it comes to a slavish support among both political parties for the defense of any actions the Israelis take, no matter how violent violation of international law, UN resolutions and just common decency those actions are.
So Israel has been given a perpetual green light from Washington, whether the president’s name is George W. Bush or Barak Obama or whether on future point it is Mitt Romney.
The US basically gives the Israelis a free hand when it comes to the Palestinian issue, and this is one of the great scandals and violations of the traditions and principals of the US as a constitutional republic.
If you go back all the way to the [Harry S.] Truman administration, at the time that the state of Israel was established, General George Marshal who was the war hero of two World Wars for the United States and who was then the secretary of state, vehemently opposed partition and warned that if the United States supported the establishment of a Zionist Jewish entity that we would be faced with 50 years of permanent war in the Middle East and that the United States would be isolated and ostracized from the Arab world as the result of this.
And of course Truman went ahead anyway and if anything General Marshal merely underestimated the amount of time that the United States would be isolated and discredited, now not just in the Middle East but around the world for shamelessly backing Israeli apartheid policies.
Jeff Steinberg, I am looking at a list of events that have taken place in the past few hours; 1. Six Palestinians wounded, some seriously in settler attack on their car near Hebron moving down the list here the incidences that are happening on almost daily basis, we have Netanyahu to ignore the report on legalizing the occupied West Bank settlement outpost, settlers empty Palestinian [irrigation] well, flood farmlands and it [the list] goes on and on.
This process of awareness is not reflected in the US media, what is the US media afraid of? For how long can this suppression go on?
It is not a matter of fear on the part of the US media, it is a matter of ownership, that the United States’ media has been increasingly consolidated into the hands of a few very large media conglomerate corporations, probably the most egregious and extreme example is the entire Rupert Murdock’s empire.
The Fox TV, Wall Street Journal, New York Post, many other networks and stations around the United States, you have basically someone whose legacy is that of lord beaverbrook in the entire British imperialist apparatus that launched Zionism as a project at the beginning of the 20th century.
So, you know, there is very little sympathy in the American media, there is much more widespread sympathy building increasingly in the American population and even I must say among our military and security institutions, there is now a growing debate over whether or not Israel has become a very big strategic liability to the United States, on the question of the legitimate rights of Palestinians, the right to Jerusalem, the right to the est Bank in Gaza, I think that it is very important to remember that the time that an Israeli Prime Minister moved to negotiate anything resembling an actual two-state solution, it had many flaws and limitations; but when Prime Minister [Yitzhak] Rabin shook hands at the White House with Yasser Arafat with President Clinton there, he wrote his own death certificate.
The feeling inside Israel, the hatred for the Palestinians, this zeal for a greater Israel based on complete expulsion and ethnic cleansing of the Palestinians reached the point where an Israeli prime minister was assassinated by a Jewish West Bank settler for having dared to consider a viable and legitimate two-sate solution, even with all the flaws there were in Oslo.
Now we have come a long way down hill since those events of the 1990’s we have got Netanyahu in charge, we have Israeli expansionism throughout the West Bank, the pattern of settlements, if you study them from a geographic standpoint, represents the creation of an absolute barrier between the West Bank and access to Jerusalem.
So what we are dealing with, is a renegade regime inside Israel that enjoys the backing of a segment of the American political class and through groups like AIPAC, generally controls the Israeli policies of all US presidents and the congress and both parties.
Bu the general sentiment out there in the population, even including at this point probably among a marked majority of American Jews, Israel has really crossed the line and very rapidly reaching the point where the whole viability and prospect of a two-state has been virtually exterminated and you know, I think more and more people are talking about one-state solution because the whole Zionist project has reached such a despicable extreme that there is not much room left for any kind of negotiations.
Mass protests continuing support for the Palestinians, these things may be sufficient but I am very skeptical.