By Stephen Lendman
On May 1, Google recognized Palestine. It did so on its homepage. Earlier it referred to "The Palestinian Territories." More on that below.
On January 4, Abbas' presidential decree acknowledged the State of Palestine. It followed gaining UN nonmember observer status.
"All Palestinian stamps, signs and official letterhead will henceforth be changed to bear the new name."
Acknowledging Palestinian statehood stopped short of governing responsibly. Abbas is a longtime Israeli collaborator. It took him 24 years to accept what his silence rejects.
He should have done it long ago. The State of Palestine exists. On November 15, 1988 it was proclaimed in Algiers. Abbas knows. He didn't say. He governs like a subservient Israeli satrap. He disgraces himself in the process.
Previous articles explained Palestinian self-determination. In November 1988, the PLO adopted the Palestinian Declaration of Independence.
All UN Charter states (including America and Israel) provisionally recognized Palestinian independence. They did so in accordance with UN Charter article 80(1) and League Covenant article 22(4).
Palestine satisfies all essential criteria for sovereign independence. It qualifies for full de jure UN membership. It's easily gotten. It's long overdue.
Palestinians are denied it. Abbas didn't seek it. He never explained why not. His longstanding collaboration with Israel tells all.
He promised to sign and ratify the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court. He hasn't done it.
Doing so permits suing Israeli officials for crimes of war, against humanity, genocide and naked aggression.
Illegal settlements, outposts, Gaza's siege, the Separation Wall, and other lawless practices can be challenged.
Palestine can join the Statute for the International Court of Justice (ICJ). The State of Israel can be sued on the above charges and others.
Palestine can join the Law of the Sea Convention. Doing so establishes sovereignty over its territorial waters. They contain significant gas reserves.
Estimates range up to a trillion cubic feet or more. Where there's gas, there's oil. Offshore resources belong to Palestine, not Israel.
Palestine can become a High Contracting Party to the Four Geneva Conventions. They deal with laws of war and accountability.
Palestine can join the International Civil Aviation Organization. Doing so affords control of its own airspace.
Palestine can join the International Telecommunications Union. With it comes sovereign control over its airwaves, phone lines, and bandwidth.
Sovereign states have many rights. Palestine's new status affords all of the above. They don't matter if not invoked.
Expect little from Abbas ahead. He's Israel's enforcer. He's nearing retirement. He betrayed his people for years. He won't change things now. Palestinians deserve much better. They won't get it with him around. He governs illegitimately.
On October 28, 1974, the Seventh Arab League Summit Conference Resolution on Palestine designated the PLO as "sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people."
Numerous General Assembly resolutions affirmed it. Palestine's Provisional Government is the PLO Executive Committee. Under international law, the PA has no authorization to negotiate on behalf of the Palestinian people. Abbas does it anyway.
Last November, the General Assembly voted overwhelmingly to upgrade Palestine. It did so to nonmember observer status. Only nine countries voted no.
They included Israel, America, Canada, the Czech Republic, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru, Palau, and Panama.
Better late than never. On May 1, Google noticed. It recognized Palestine. Spokesman Nathan Tyler said:
"We're changing the name 'Palestinian Territories' to 'Palestine' across our products."
"We consult a number of sources and authorities when naming countries."
"In this case, we are following the lead of the UN and other international organizations."
Recognition's posted on www.google.ps. Below Google's familiar logo, Palestine's in small letters.
On May 3, London's Daily Mail headlined "Who needs the UN? Google turns 'Palestine' into a state by changing its name on homepage."
London's Guardian headlined "Palestine now recognised by greater power than US or Israel - Google."
The UN, EU, and Red Cross still refer to "Occupied Palestinian Territories." America marches in lockstep with Israel. It does so shamelessly.
Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman Yigal Palmor said "Google is not a diplomatic entity which begs the question why they are getting involved in international politics and on the controversial side."
America's Constitution affirms free expression. Google's free to say what it wishes. Everyone has the same right. Israel has no constitution.
It's the only nation without fixed borders. Acquiring them by wars or other extrajudicial means violates fundamental rule of law principles. Israel does so repeatedly. It's yet to be held accountable. It's high that changed.
It lawlessly occupies Palestinian, Syrian and Lebanese territory. It does so because world leaders able to stop it do nothing.
No US president ever challenged what demands condemnation. Failure reveals America's true character.
Both nations are imperial partners. Palestine's statehood doesn't matter. Israel and Washington afford it no rights. Occupation denies freedom.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
His new book is titled "Banker Occupation: Waging Financial War on Humanity."
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.
Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.
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