Palestine – European Union Should Heed Israel’s Sobering Message

June 24, 2016 by David Singer
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The European Union needs to heed the sobering message delivered by Israel’s President – Reuven Rivlin – to the European Parliament on 22 June…writes David Singer.President Rivlin told the parliament:

“Currently the practical conditions, the political and regional circumstances, which would enable us to reach a permanent agreement between us – the Israelis and the Palestinians – are failing to materialise.”

Rivlin ascribed this situation to two reasons:

  • The Palestinian leadership was divided in at least two.
  • In order to achieve a stable and viable agreement, a reasonable regional and economic infrastructure was required whereas the reality was a chaos-stricken Middle East in which uncertainty is the only certainty.

Rivlin criticised the French Initiative to kickstart the negotiations stalled for the last two years as the chronicle of a predictable failure, which would only push the two peoples deeper into despair.

He warned those present:

“Distinguished audience, if the international community really wishes and truly aspires to be a constructive player, it must divert its efforts away from the renewal of negotiations for negotiations’ sake, and toward building trust between the parties, and to creating the necessary terms for the success of negotiations in the future.”

Rivlin laid out four areas where building trust could occur:

“First, harnessing the moderate powers in the region. The cooperation with Jordan and Egypt is a supreme common interest of Israel and the international community as well, in the aim of preventing military bolstering from beyond our borders, and in order to eradicate extremism and preserve the stability of the region….

 Second, developing Palestinian economy and infrastructures for quality of life. One cannot speak about a future agreement when people live with a basic existential feeling of having no future, no opportunities, no hope, and no horizon. With the backdrop of economic difficulties in Judea and Samaria, and the situation in Gaza, a broad economic course of action is called for….

Third, investing in joint ventures aimed at creating joint interests….

Fourth and ultimately – education. Increasing stability, developing infrastructures and strategic terms are essential conditions, but are not enough. Creating the conditions for any future agreement requires conditioning hearts on both sides for the possibility of living with mutual respect….”

Rivlin’s message was timely – but could have been more pointed had he stressed that trust-building and conditioning of hearts on both sides could not realistically occur whilst:

  • The PLO remains the governing authority in Areas “A” and “B” in Judea and Samaria (the West Bank)
  • Hamas remains the governing authority in Gaza
  • Free elections are denied to their Arab constituencies by Hamas and the PLO.
  • Both the PLO and Hamas maintain the destruction of the Jewish State of Israel as their primary goal.

The Arab residents of Judea, Samaria and Gaza have been denied any vote since their decision to elect Hamas in 2006 was rejected by the PLO – leading to bitter internecine power struggles that still remain unresolved today.

Certainly if elections were held whilst Hamas and the PLO retained political strangleholds over their respective electorally-starved populations – they might out of genuine fear for their personal safety well opt to continue swallowing the same unpleasant medicine – leaving the peace process in the negotiating void that exists to-day.

Rivlin’s call to harness the moderate powers in the region sends the European Union a message that facilitating direct negotiations between Jordan, Israel and Egypt on the future of Judea, Samaria and Gaza could be meaningful negotiations – not negotiations for negotiations sake – towards ending the 100 years old conflict.

Hopefully the European Union takes note and uses its power, prestige and influence to make such trilateral negotiations become a reality.

David Singer is a Sydney Lawyer and Foundation Member of the International Analysts Network

Comments

19 Responses to “Palestine – European Union Should Heed Israel’s Sobering Message”
  1. Gil Solomon says:

    Sobering message delivered by Rivlin!
    David, please give me a break.
    The man ascribes the failure on an agreement to the issue that the so called “Palestinian” leadership was divided!
    When will Israel and the Jewish world come to its senses?

    I say enough is enough with the nonsense.
    Israel still treats Abbas as a legitimate negotiating partner, thereby giving this man (who in my opinion is a well dressed terrorist)and the organisation he represents, credibility on the world stage.

    This man spews forth lies, propaganda and hatred that inflame and encourage terror attacks, which for Israel have in recent times become a nearly daily occurrence.

    Yet Israeli leaders still go cap in hand begging this guy for a deal!
    What deal?
    Most thinking people would agree that the so called “two state solution” is dead and buried. Abbas has had many opportunities to make a “deal” but the only peace deal he is looking for with Israel is the peace of the grave.
    Will Jews ever wake up out of their coma?

    It is time Abbas, along with the organisation he represents and leaders of other “Palestinian” organisations were crushed, brought to their knees and sent packing back to Tunis or wherever, I personally couldn’t care less.

    It is time also for Israel to publicly debunk the false so called “Palestinian” narrative and take back sovereignty over various places starting with the Temple Mount before it is too late. And for good measure it is time for Israel to cease negotiating with terrorists, period.

    Finally to comment on Leon’s question: “will the Obama Administration come to its senses?”. Leon where have you been for the past eight years?
    The mountain of evidence is that Obama had an agenda for Israel from day one, yet people for years still gave him the benefit of the doubt.
    I for one have been warning about Obama’s anti -Israel sentiments and much much more (which I won’t go into here) for years. And you ask the question will Obama “come to his senses” especially now at the dying days of his time in office! As I also said to David, give me a break!

    • Leon Poddebsky says:

      Gil, the facts validate your perception of the fraud that the Arab side has been perpetrating from day one of the “peace process.”
      Some of the facts, but not all, validate your perception of Obama’s role.
      In some key areas, he has apparently not acted in a way that could be harmful to Israel, but in the arena of rhetoric, posturing and playacting, he has played a harmful role.
      If he comes to his senses and realises that his rhetoric just emboldens the Arab side and entrenches it it its obduracy, other governments might follow suit, and then some progress could perhaps be made towards a sort of accommodation. The Arab side will never in the foreseeable future make actual peace, but something like the state of affairs currently with Egypt and Jordan would be an acceptable starting point for possible future progress.

    • david singer says:

      Gil

      You state:
      “It is time Abbas, along with the organisation he represents and leaders of other “Palestinian” organisations were crushed, brought to their knees and sent packing back to Tunis or wherever, I personally couldn’t care less.

      It is time also for Israel to publicly debunk the false so called “Palestinian” narrative and take back sovereignty over various places starting with the Temple Mount before it is too late. And for good measure it is time for Israel to cease negotiating with terrorists, period.”

      How do you see this being achieved without inflaming Israel’s immediate neighbours – Jordan and Egypt – not to mention all the Jew-haters represented in the Arab League, the Organisation of Islamic Co-Operation, the United Nations and the European Union?

      There is a far more preferable way to proceed that is yet to be tried – direct trilateral negotiations between Israel, Jordan and Egypt to resolve Jewish and Arab claims to sovereignty in Judea. Samaria and Gaza.

      The PLO and Hamas continue to engage in their death throes as they seek to destroy each other and both continue to deny the people they supposedly represent the right to free elections.

      As a result – trilateral negotiations between Israel,Jordan and Egypt becomes increasingly the only option to peacefully resolving the 100 years old Arab-Jewish conflict.

      Negotiating with the PLO or Hamas has always been a waste of time – but that is what was demanded of Israel by its “friends”.

      The results of those negotiations are plain for all to see with offers by Israel to cede its claims in more than 90% of Judea and Samaria being rejected in 2000/1 and 2008. How threatened would Israel’s existence be today if either of these offers had been accepted?

      The EU and the UN have simply backed the wrong horses as the PLO and Hamas claim 100% of Judea and Samaria and not a square metre less and Islamic State is not dealt with by military action undertaken by the UN. The EU and UN have yet to wake up to their stupidity on both counts – but it is now costing them dearly as the Middle East is in complete disarray and their respective institutions are reeling from their failed policy disasters which have led to the current debacles all around them.

      Will they wake up or die in their sleep?

      • Gil Solomon says:

        David,

        What I am concerned with is that if Israel keeps on appeasing its neighbours and world opinion in general and does not get up off its knees and act unilaterally, will it be the one that “dies in its sleep”.

        We all know that Arab countries in general couldn’t give a damn about the so called “Palestinians”. Their uproar over unilateral Israeli action on many fronts will be all frothing at the mouth for a period followed by, in my opinion, a new respect for Israel. What I contemplate requires Israeli leadership for which I have come to the conclusion there is none. Israel needs its own version of a Donald Trump but alas, there is nobody remotely in sight.

        • david singer says:

          So while there is no real leader your planned course of action will never occur. So why make the claim?

          May be you should try and get Donald Trump to make Aliyah.

      • Leon Poddebsky says:

        David, your invocation of an Egyptian role reminds me of Egypt’s ( Hosni Mubarak’s) role in the Oslo Accords process.
        It was reported that when Arafat refused to sign the accord, Mubarak turned to him and exclaimed, ” Sign, you dog!”), and the subject of that epithet promptly signed on the dotted line.
        At that time an accommodation between Israel and the Arab population of Judea, Samaria and Gaza was an Egyptian national interest.
        Today, given the Shiite drive for hegemony, subversion and aggression, it is an even more urgent Egyptian ( and Saudi Arabian and Gulf State) national interest.
        Hence Egypt needs to pressure the recalcitrant peace refusers of Ramallah and Gaza City to be realistic.

        • david singer says:

          Spot on Leon.

          Those who are serious in pursuing a “two-state solution” – the EU and the US – should be pressuring Abbas to negotiate with Israel without preconditions and threaten to withdraw all diplomatic and financial support if he refuses to do so.

      • Paul Winter says:

        David, you perseverate with your Egypt, Jordan, Israel colonial triumvirate resolving the 100 year long Israel/”Palestinian” conflict. A few days ago Egypt screened a TV program not too hostile to Jews and the actors had to distance themselves from the production for their own safety. The same Egypt where the Moslem Brotherhood is still underground funded by Qatar and where Hussein Obama barracks for Morsi. In Jordan, the same Arabs who live in Judea and Samaria are champing at the bit to overthrow Abdullah. Both of Israel’s “peace partners” joined in the human rights condemnation of Israel a few days ago. Friends like that would cut the throat of every Jew if they had the chance.

        Gil’s point of Israel acting like a sovereign nation is spot on. And Leon’s comment that Arafat signed the Oslo Accord when Mubarak ordered “Sign, you dog”, underscores his suggestion and resonates with Churchill’s remark about the Arab: he is either at your throat or at your feet.

        Israel is in a poor position for yielding to Arab intransigence. There are no Arab moderates who can further peace, because jihadis slaughter those. Israel is in a poor position because it let itself be pressured by its “friends” who cannot conceive that the conflict is ideological and hence a zero-sum type and who want to advance their national interests at the expense of Jews. Its position is also poor because the kibbutz generation still sees the Arab as a partner when in truth he is a mortal enemy (or a casualty). And it is also the those left-wingers who suck up to the international humanitarian movement which idolises the “Palestinians”

        Rivlin’s observations are rubbish. The thugocracy of thieves, jihadi inciters and murderers who rule over the Arabs of Judea, Samaria and Gaza don’t give a damn about cooperation, economic development or peace. They are dedicated to humiliating the Jew and returning him to his dhimmi status in accordance with their supremacist religious beliefs.

        Gil’s position is realistic. To solve the conflict, Israel must slap down the Arab, expose the fraud of a “Palestinian” people, assert sovereignty over religious sites, establish the self-ruling emirates in Areas A & B proposed by Karsh and/or subsidise their emigration as proposed by Feiglin and it must put down Arab violence with utmost prejudice. It must also instil patriotism into the judiciary, the army and the police and prosecute seditious NGOs.

        All the clever, diplomatic, logical legal sounding rhetoric merely skirts the real issue: the survival of the nation state of the Jewish people. And that is Gil’s point. The point that you evade, David.

        • david singer says:

          Paul

          Your concern for the survival of the “nation state of the Jewish people” is I am sure the genuine concern of all of us.

          The question is – how is that best achieved?

          1. By “slapping down the Arab” and in doing so risk another war? or

          2. By “logical legal sounding rhetoric” that could by frustration in its implementation also risk another war?

          Both choices could have the same unpalatable ending but I think pursuing the second option still remains the best approach.

          Perhaps the agreement signed between Israel and Turkey this week shows that peaceful reconciliation is possible between bitter foes for the last six years.

          Israel’s problem with its Arab interlocutors on peacefully resolving the future of Judea,Samaria and Gaza will continue whilst the PLO is Israel’s negotiating partner.

          Hopefully the “colonial triumvirate” will do a better job. It has been a long time coming and is long overdue.

          • Paul Winter says:

            I beg to differ. You ignore my point: the triumvirate has two weak, endangered, vacillating and Jew-hating members. And I didn’t even alludeA
            You mention the possible risks of Israel taking strong action. That is typical of lawyers and intellectuals. You analyse a problem to death, calculate the costs of action and then not only proceed to do nothing but hinder all who oppose your do-nothing policies. That was precisely the action of some Budapest rabbis who learned of exterminations and decided to stay shtum because nothing could be done and the kindest path was not to distress Jews in the few weeks they had left.

            While we do nothing the enemies multiply, gain strength while we grow weaker. The path you advocate leads to annihilation! Grow a backbone!!

            Your plea for a possible peaceful path to resolve the Gaza, Judea and Samaria issue is pie in the sky. It ignores the disastrous decline in Israel’s position since the idealists and peacemakers tricked Israel into signing Oslo 1. Israel is not dealing with a society where logic and give and take apply; the running is made by jihadis who compete to show who hates Jews more, who is more intransigent and cruel and who is following the truest form of Islam. It is a zero-sum game which Jews must win, for the sake of Israel and for the sake of Jews in the Diaspora.

            Lastly, your day-dreaming got the better of you with the Turkey deal. The only real turkeys are the wise diplomats optimists and peacemakers who fail to notice that Israel has had its neck placed on the chopping block. In a region driven by honour/shame, paying an aggressor is an admission of guilt by the dhimmi and more humiliation, bloodshed and the paying of tribute will follow.

            A late friend of late in-laws survived the Nazis in Poland by assuming that everything the Nazis said was a lie. The same applies to mohammedan leaderships. Jews need to deal with realities to survive. Wake up and smell the coffee, David!

            • Paul Winter says:

              The point in the first paragraph after A disappeared, so for completion I add: I didn’t even allude to Hamas (the MB in Gaza) or to the PA, neither of which will surrender power and the perks that go with it. The triumvirate has two members who are weak, threatened, vacillating and hostile to Israel. Moreover the UN, EU etc are committed to the “Palestinian” cause.

        • Gil Solomon says:

          Paul,

          From David’s response to you, it seems to me that the colonial triumvirate (Egypt, Jordan and Israel)that he apparently advocates (just like the “Jordan is Palestine” message of years gone by) is apparently something that shapes his political direction to this day. It is something that in my opinion will never materialise as it is pure fantasy that will never see the light of day.

          • David Singer says:

            Gil

            Guess you had the same opinion about Isreal ever signing peace treaties with Egypt and Jordan.

            Rant on..

            • Gil Solomon says:

              David,

              I’ll let the readers judge as to who deals in fantasy and rants on. As Paul said so aptly: “Wake up and smell the coffee, David!”

  2. Leon Poddebsky says:

    The clearest insight into the Europeans’ real agenda was provided by the rapturous applause for the speech of the Arab who accused Israel of poisoning Arab wells.
    Europe remains Europe.
    Let no one delude himself.

    The really important questions are:

    1. what is the measure of importance that Europe has for Israel?

    2. will the Obama Administration come to its senses?

    Time will tell.

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