The True Maps of Palestine

Article by Costas Vergos

May / 2021

Suddenly you see a message on your cell phone saying that you have an hour to evacuate your house. You live in one of the poorest regions of the world. It is called the Gaza Strip. It is an area half the area of Corfu with a population half the population of Athens. The infrastructure here is poor, the water you drink is dirty, the food is always insufficient, and the fences, around you, are made by them outside. In front of you, the sea which belongs to you only up to 3 miles. (Beyond that, the Israeli Coast Guard is in wait.) And the house you have built with pain and a lot of dreams will be bombed within an hour. You snatch your children and run as a mad to the nearest shelter with your wife. But the bombs hit also the shelter. The family is wiped out.

Israel has the right to self-defense. Israel has not the right to attack when, out of 232 humans having been killed, there are 39 women and 65 children (who were not Hamas’ fighters!). Dishonest Israel warns its victims via SMS to show that it is waging an honest war. Israel, as a whole, in the years of the corrupt Netanyahu has shifted to the far right. The 2018 law of the "nation-state of the Jewish people" officially declared what was in practice for years: an apartheid regime against 2 million Israeli citizens of Arab origin. Only the heroic Standing Together, an organization of Jewish and Arab Israelis, remained to fight against apartheid and war.

The Western governments, these days, have blamed Hamas for the bloodshed - the Islamist extremist organization that has been firing rockets against Israeli civilians for years. Hamas, funded by Iran (and formerly by our ally Saudi Arabia), distributes benefits to thousands of unemployed people in Gaza. Hamas is the absolute legitimacy of Netanyahu. (As much as Netanyahu is the absolute legitimacy of Hamas.)

One of our geopolitical analysts of the day wondered yesterday: Why is this happening in Gaza (of Hamas) while in the West Bank (of the PLO), where another 2 million Palestinians live, no one reacts? Well, in the West Bank no one can react. Here, with an area slightly smaller than Crete, the Palestinians control only 40%, and this is divided into dozens of small plots of land. The Israeli-controlled 60% of the West Bank, the “Zone C”, is for decades the site of illegal Jewish settlements (with 0.5 million Jewish settlers today – who argue that the land belongs to them since the Bible years). (Indeed, many Israeli courts accept the Hebrew Bible as the Jewish title of the Arab property.)

The whole mass of the misinforming the Greek public analysts, retired military officers, and journalists are being unmasked by their contradiction in favor of the Jewish settlers in Israel, against the Turkish settlers in Cyprus, in favor of apartheid in Israel, against apartheid in Cyprus. Because the main problem in the Middle East is racial discrimination and the (under the international law - which we invoke whenever it suits us!) Illegal Jewish settlements.

In the 1970s (as opposed to the old-fashioned geopolitics) the geographer Yves Lacoste, through the magazine ‘Hérodote’, referring to Vietnam at the time, showed that only a detailed map of the burned rice fields in the country could show the truth. And now, in this particular detailed map of the West Bank (and not in the abstract geopolitical map), one can see, in Zones A and B, the dozens of checkpoints that turn the remaining Arab territory into a mosaic of islets. With daily, humiliating checks to the detriment of Arabs who move from islet to islet for work or health. With the bank of the "West Bank", of course, being completely forbidden to the Arabs.

PS.1: Lacoste, in 1976, published a small book entitled “The Purpose of Geography Is to Make War”, a bold proclamation against the role of traditional Geography and Geopolitics which, through a supposedly apolitical analysis, supports state arbitrariness.

PS.2: The classical school of geopolitics always has a (quasi-colonial) view of things from above. It always has an over--view, which does not allow the over-viewer to understand what happens on the field. (Though the over-viewer probably never wants to understand.) Lacoste and Hérodote's school, on the other hand, lower the flight to take photos from a small distance and reveal what is really going on, on the field. How many war crimes have been committed here.