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Monday, August 31, 2009

It is what it is: Israel's PA-only Border Stamp

Contact your reps to oppose this policy:
http://capwiz.com/adc/issues/alert/?alertid=13977506


And this is our "special relationship" with Israel in a nutshell. It is clearly more special for some than others. It's almost funny (stop that- no- stop that!- no-
stop that!- no)... if it weren't for all those people being denied food, water and rights in the OT because of this nonsense.

It makes me think of a bully in a schoolyard. The teacher kindly and repeatedly says stop and the bully keeps pounding kids into the sand.

Israel's not supposed to build settlements. It's not supposed to treat US citizens of Palestinian origin differently than other US citizens. But what can we do? "It is what it is," as Mr. Kelly says. When Iran or other countries mess with our citizens, we take action. With Israel- "it is what it is" - be it massacres, collective punishment, discrimination of our citizens. There are no consequences, no right, no wrong, no justice, no law. "It is what it is".

http://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/dpb/2009/aug/128060.htm


QUESTION:
A follow-up on the PA-only stamp issued by Israel to U.S. citizens going into Israel, just to follow up on that. I saw that you guys released --
MR. KELLY: Yeah.
QUESTION: -- something. You said that you’re engaged with the Government of Israel. Just more clarification. Have you complained to them about this specifically? Have you asked them to stop issuing it to your U.S. citizens, and do you consider it a violation of the Oslo Accords?
MR. KELLY: Oh, well, the latter – the latter issue that’s, I think, something that I probably would want somebody else to pronounce on if it’s a violation of the Oslo because I’m not familiar enough with the Oslo Accords to be able to make a judgment one way or the other.
As our note said last night, we have made it quite known to the Israeli Government, and this is, I think, really on the diplomatic level, that we expect all American citizens to be treated the same regardless of their national origin. And this kind of – these kinds of restrictions we consider unacceptable. And I’d refer you to the Israeli Government for – in terms of their --
QUESTION: So you don’t know if they’re going to stop doing it or not, or if you specifically asked them to stop issuing these specific stamps?
MR. KELLY: We have told them that we think this is – that we cannot accept this kind of practice.
QUESTION: Do you know at what level – do you know if – how many Americans have complained to the U.S. Consulate in Jerusalem? How --
MR. KELLY: No.
QUESTION: -- serious you consider this?
MR. KELLY: No. I’m not aware of the kind of numbers of – the number of people who have complained.
Libby.
QUESTION: Different topic.
QUESTION: Wait, wait. Can I – can we go back? First of all, what does that mean we cannot accept this kind of practice? You also can’t accept, you know, continued building of settlements, and they seem to be doing that.
MR. KELLY: Yeah.
QUESTION: So what exactly does that mean?
MR. KELLY: Well, it means that this kind of practice is something that the U.S. Government believes should not be done. This is not --
QUESTION: Yeah, but you say we can’t --
MR. KELLY: -- something that we can accept.
QUESTION: But it’s not – you have to accept it, if that’s what they’re doing.
MR. KELLY: Well --
QUESTION: What are you going to do if they don’t stop?
MR. KELLY: We will continue to protest.
QUESTION: But that won’t make any difference --
QUESTION: That – I mean, it’s not aLink question of whether you can accept it or not. They’re doing it.
MR. KELLY: Yeah.
QUESTION: So?
MR. KELLY: It is what it is. We don’t like the practice.

More on the border stamp:

http://www.maannews.net/eng/ViewDetails.aspx?ID=218696


http://www.miftah.org/display.cfm?DocId=20281&CategoryId=13


http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,1917917,00.html


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