The 19th Century Zionist colonial enterprise was grafted onto Palestine under a series of truly bizarre coincidences that could never be sustained
Interview by Kourosh Ziabari
Dr. Franklin Lamb is Director of the Americans Concerned for Middle East Peace, Beirut-Washington DC, Board Member of The Sabra Shatila Foundation, and a volunteer with the Palestine Civil Rights Campaign, Lebanon. He is the author of "The Price We Pay: A Quarter-Century of Israel's Use of American Weapons Against Civilians in Lebanon" and is doing research in Lebanon for his next book.
Lamb has been a Professor of International Law at Northwestern College of Law in Oregon. He earned his Law Degree at Boston University and his LLM, M.Phil, and PhD degrees at the London School of Economics.
As a Middle East expert and commentator, Dr. Lamb has appeared on Press TV, Al-Manar and several other media outlets. His articles and analyses have been published by Counter Punch, Veterans Today, Intifada Palestine, Electronic Intifada, Opinion Maker, Dissident Voice, Daily Star and Al Ahram.
Dr. Lamb generously accepted my interview requested and joined me to discuss the recent developments in the Middle East including the Libya civil war, Bahrain massacre and Egypt's revolution.
What follows is the complete text of my interview with Dr. Franklin Lamb, political commentator, university professor and Middle East expert.
Kourosh Ziabari: Frequent and unstoppable revolutions are taking place in the Middle East and North Africa. Popular movements of the Muslim nations of Tunisia and Egypt brought to an end the longstanding tyranny of Zine El Abedine Ben Ali and Hosni Mubarak. Sooner or later, the same destiny awaits the dictators of Libya, Bahrain, Yemen and Saudi Arabia who were all once the stalwart allies of the United States and its European cronies. What's your estimation of the recent developments in the region and how do you forecast the future of chained revolutions of the Middle East?
Franklin Lamb: I believe the uprisings will continue during this historic Islamic and Arab Awakening and will not cease until those who are sacrificing their blood in these countries--and some you did not mention-achieve their common goals of dignity, human rights, and much more control over their lives and their country's natural resources. This truly historic regional uprising will, in my view, also contribute critically to the liberation of Palestine and the end of the 19th Century Zionist colonial project. Resent reactions by Israeli leaders and some in Washington make plain that the Muslim and Arab world will not allow their regimes to continue to undermine the Palestinian cause by accepting Western aid and various American bribes to collaborate with the Zionist occupation in their midst. Eventually the current uprising will replace perhaps as many as ten regimes and to its great credit, will count the implementation of UN Resolution 194 and the full and long overdue return of the Palestinian Refugees to their homeland.
KZ: The Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi is relentlessly massacring his own people and has remained defiant in the face of growing international pressure and anger at his atrocious and inhumane actions. The international community has so far failed to tackle the Gaddafi problem and Libya is already engulfed in a civil war. The NATO forces are opening fires on the unarmed civilians and nobody has made any decision to capture Gaddafi and hold him accountable for the crimes he has committed. What's your analysis of the situation in Libya? Given the immense investment of the American and European companies in the oil sector of Libya, can we foresee a future in which Gaddafi is removed from power and tried for his criminal policies?
FL: I agree that what is going on in Libya is a civil war and that the so-called "Obama Doctrine" has become farcical with respect to Libya. NATO should stop its bombing which has killed many of those they were tasked to protect and the international community must insist on a ceasefire and sending humanitarian aid. Enforcing a ceasefire would be a legitimate international role but taking sides in a civil war has only very rarely led to the desired outcome and violates Art. 2 (7) of the UN Charter which prohibits unwarranted interference in the internal affairs of Member States.
Yes, the West will insist on a replacement for Gaddafi and one who is more reliable that he has been recently with respect to the three American hegemonistic requirements or pillars. These include the demand that the next leader must continue to supply the West with cheap oil, and unlike Gaddafi recently, the new regime must insure internal stability and not become an embarrassment for its partners. Also the US will demand that Libya's new government must not confront Israel seriously and it must be friendly toward US military projects and bases.