The most succinct bit of commentary about the US/Israel/Palestine talks at Annapolis come from a piece by Laila el-Haddad who is based some of the time in Gaza. She quotes a mother of eight saying:

“We’re already dead, the only thing we need is to be buried, to be pushed into the grave and buried. It’s already been dug up for us.”

Chomsky’s enraged too, though he notes that he’s trying to keep his composure:

“Before saying a word, I’d like to express some severe personal discomfort, because anything I say will be abstract and dry and restrained. The crimes against Palestinians in the Occupied Territories and elsewhere, particularly Lebanon, are so shocking that the only emotionally valid reaction is rage and a call for extreme actions. But that does not help the victims. And, in fact, it’s likely to harm them. We have to face the reality that our actions have consequences, and they have to be adapted to real-world circumstances, difficult as it may be to stay calm in the face of shameful crimes in which we are directly and crucially implicated.”

I was in Gaza five years ago now and was amazed by the horror that the Israelis have created there. Every single year it has gotten far worse. It is a complete nightmare. And that makes these sham talks a complete farce.

They would be funny if they were not so tragic. The Toronto Star had a little chart yesterday, with four key issues for the talks – Refugees, Jerusalem, Settlements, Borders. It stated Israeli and Palestinian positions on each of the issues, and “possible solutions” – the possible solutions were the most amusing – each “possible solution” involved the Palestinians giving everything up.

The way the discussion plays out in the media is like an advertisement for the benefits of bad-faith bargaining. Seven years ago the discussion at Camp David was about the same issues, trying to get Palestinians to declare they are happy with their ongoing destruction. Today the destruction is seven years more advanced and the Israelis don’t even have to pretend to give up as much.

Nothing will come out of this summit. Israel doesn’t want anything from it. The US doesn’t want anything from it. The Palestinians can’t get anything from it. Everyone understands that what matters is what the US/Israel do and what they are doing is the same genocidal program that has been unfolding for years. It might help if the media would stop insulting everyone’s intelligence covering this as if it were anything but a sham.

Justin Podur

Author: Justin Podur

Author of Siegebreakers. Ecology. Environmental Science. Political Science. Anti-imperialism. Political fiction. Teach at York U's FES. Author. Writer at ZNet, TeleSUR, AlterNet, Ricochet, and the Independent Media Institute.