Written by: Dr. Ghassan Tobasi

Like thousands of others, I was surprised by the news of the historic victory at the United Nations General Assembly in the end of December. The international majority vote on a resolution condemned Israel for its human rights violations in the Occupied Territories, including East Jerusalem.

However, I discovered the shocking truth when I checked the decision's merits and voting. Quantitatively, the majority of the vote was with us but qualitatively, the support for the cause was in remarkable decline. Many politically and economically influential countries who have consistently voted and supported Palestinians opposed the decision. These countries include Italy, Austria, Croatia, Albania and others. Some large countries also abstained from voting such as Spain, Holland, France, India, Japan, Brazil, Bulgaria, Sweden, Switzerland, Greece, Cyprus and many others.

Regardless of their governments' policies, these nations have been on the Palestinians’ side throughout history and constantly provided aid in all its forms. Even Italy, one of the opposing countries, presented the World Cup to the Palestinian people in 1982.

So, I ask the Palestinian politicians and media: Where is the victory?

Unfortunately, it is the exact regression of a tragedy based on the truth and the painful reality. Whoever wants to overturn the truth is free to do so. But do not be fooled. The Palestinian people are no longer deceived by this, especially in the age of technology, digital media and access to information.

For all of us to take a step forward, especially those in the position of decision-making, politicians, diplomats, leaders of civil work and non-governmental organisations, we must quickly do the following:
· Study the reasons for this decline
· Draw lessons and come up with clear recommendations to stop the decline in the status of the cause and its international support, especially the official European one

This retreat is not a coincidence, just as defeats are not destiny. The responsibility requires revealing and highlighting the truth and confronting it to improve the discourse, work method and behaviour. We must reposition our cause to what it deserves and what it has been accustomed to with the official and popular solidarity.

These are the wishes of the new year for a people who made and still make great sacrifices in the face of the fiercest and longest occupation that is still perching longer than any other occupation in the world. The future is always on the side of the people if they unite and support each other.

The opinions expressed in this article are the author's views and not necessarily the Association's or donor's opinion.