Demonstrations in Gaza , Pessimism Over Bush’s MidEast Visit
US President George Bush has arrived in Israel on Wednesday to start a week long tour to a number of countries in the region. He aims during this visit to provide a support for the Palestinian-Israeli final status negotiations. However, this visit raised various reactions and expectations all over the world, as an atmosphere of pessimism and frustration clouded the Palestinian public opinion towards this visit.
Sami Abu Zuhri, the media spokesman of the Hamas movement confirmed that the Palestinian people don”t pin any hope on Bush”s visit, because this visit aims mainly to “give a full political support to Israel at the expense of the Palestinian interests”.
He added that Bush”s statements issued on Wednesday January, 9th, clearly illustrate this biased attitude. Bush clearly confirmed that his aim is to protect the security of Israel as a Jewish country. These statements prove that Bush seeks to establish a Jewish racial system in the region, Abu Zuhri said .
He also added that these statements issued by Bush are very dangerous, and that they put at the stake the right to return, the issue of Jerusalem , and consequently the Palestinian cause as a whole.
Abu Zuhri stated that Bush has come with a target but this target is to the interests of the Israeli occupation only. As for the Palestinian people, they will face only a soaring Israeli tensions and strikes against them.
Therefore, Bush is “an unwelcome guest in the Palestinian arena” according to Abu Zuhri who pointed out that Hamas is still sticking to its rights and its constants, and that Hamas downplays such moves because there is no legitimacy for occupation as long as the Palestinian people refuse to recognize this occupation.
It is worth mentioning that Gaza residents have taken to streets in the last few days in protest marches in which they lashed out at the ongoing blockade on Gaza which has been imposed since June 2007. The protestors held in the protest march 61 symbolic coffins with reference to the number of patients who died due to the tight blockade inside the Strip and that Israeli authorities denied them visas to travel abroad to be hospitalized.
The signs and pictures raised in the protest march reflected the opinion of some Palestinian citizens with the participation of a number of Hamas leaders. The protesters carried pictures of US President George Bush and Israeli Prime Minister Olmrt reading on them the word “Terrorists”.
Hamas said today in a statement:” The source of evil in this world, US president Bush arrives in our occupied Palestinian territories in a bid to heal what the US policy damaged in the Middle East “, asking Palestinian Authority president Mahmoud Abbas to be aware of the schemes and to stop these “absurd” talks held with the occupation.
This sinister look of pessimism towards that US president”s visit was raised by Hamas and many political analysts who doubted that this visit may serve the Palestinian cause or realize any real results for Palestine .
Saleh Al Nami, a journalist specialized in Israeli affairs sees that this visit is “a slap on the face of the Palestinian Authority that capitalized on Bush”s role in moving the negotiating process”. He pointed out that the US president”s declaration that he doesn”t plan to exercise any pressure on the Israeli side to stop settlement building confirms that this visit has more harms on the Palestinian cause than any possible benefit.
For his part, Abdul Satar Qasem, a professor of political sciences and a political analyst said that Bush”s visit has no potential political benefit for the Palestinians, pointing out that history proves that the US intervention in the region has never been to the benefit of the Palestinians.
He also added in a phone call that the US President will exploit the visit to call for tightening the grip on resistance, humiliating the Palestinian people, and rallying the Arab world”s support against Iran . He confirmed that this visit is the same like previous US visits to the region, seeking US and Israeli interests.
Despite these reactions from some intellectuals and leaders around the world, question marks are still posed demanding knowing the benefit of such continuous visits from the US President to the Middle East countries.