Between May 15 and June 15, the Palestinian flag will quite likely fly over the Dublin, Ireland city hall. Why? A Dublin city council subcommittee decided to fly the flag to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the 1967 war in which Israel finally reunified Jerusalem as the eternal home of the Jewish people and retook its ancient home of Judea and Samaria.
The author of the motion to fly the flag, Councillor John Lyons, a member of the hard-left People Before Profit Alliance, called the action a gesture of solidarity with the Palestinians. He has previously called Israel an apartheid regime and claimed Israel has occupied Judea and Samaria. He blustered, “I think more and more people are of the opinion that the very state of Israel and how it’s behaving in an extreme manner are actually destabilizing its cause and argument.” The motion states:
Noting recent reports of diplomatic developments by the Irish state toward full recognition of the state of Palestine, aware also that Ireland accorded the Palestinian delegation in Dublin diplomatic status in 2014, the same year that witnessed both Houses of the Oireachtas pass motions in support of Palestinian statehood, this city council will fly the flag of Palestine over City Hall for the month of May 2017 in support of the above diplomatic moves and as a gesture of our solidarity with the people of Palestine living under occupation in the West Bank and Gaza, with the Palestinian citizens of Israel denied basic democratic rights and with the over 7 million displaced Palestinians denied the right of return to their homeland.
Lyons neglected to mention that it was Hamas, the “democratically elected” terrorist organization that rules over Gaza, that squandered Israel’s aid so that its people lived in squalor. Lyons also neglected to comment on how the term “occupation” is fatuous, or mention the constant terror Palestinians inflict upon Israel, from rockets to “lone-wolf” attacks.
The proposal to fly the flag must pass another ratification on May 8, but due to the anti-Israel composition of the Dublin city council it is expected to pass comfortably. This will strain Irish-Israel relations even further.
Several weeks ago an event featuring Israeli ambassador Zeev Boker at Trinity College Dublin was canceled due to pro-Palestinian rioters. In 2012, Ireland supported the Palestinian bid for non-member observer status in the United Nations, which passed easily. Ireland has issued harsh and undue condemnation of Israel’s actions during wars, most notably the Gaza 2014 war, operation Cast-Iron Lead. In 2014, the Seanad, the Irish upper house of Parliament, passed a motion calling on the government to give formal recognition to a prospective Palestinian state, although the Irish government has yet to take that step.
As an Irish woman I am deeply disturbed to see the anti-Israel sentiment in Ireland. The Dublin city council should reject this motion and instead choose to invest in and strengthen ties with Israel.