Palestine – Israel Has Had Enough

May 11, 2012 by David Singer
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The Palestinian Authority’s decision to unilaterally seek Palestinian statehood at the United Nations and UNESCO – in breach of its obligations under the Oslo Accords and the Roadmap – has propelled Benjamin Netanyahu and Shaul Mofaz into forming Israel’s government of national unity this week…writes David Singer.

This was made abundantly clear when one of the four priorities announced by both leaders was:

“to move forward responsibly in the peace process”

With the new Government now controlling 78% of the votes in the Knesset – a new offer is set to be made by Israel to the Palestinian Authority in a final endeavour to resolve the allocation of sovereignty in the West Bank and Gaza between Jews and Arabs.

Israel has endured the machinations of the Palestinian Authority for the last 19 years. Its continuing obduracy in demanding – as a minimum – a Palestinian State equal in size to 100% of the West Bank and Gaza – with its capitol in Jerusalem – has been a major stumbling block in ending the conflict.

Successive Israeli Prime Ministers of differing political persuasions have laboured in vain to try and achieve an equitable division of these territories between Israel and the Palestinian Authority within the context of a negotiated peace treaty.

Refusing to budge from 100% is hardly a basis on which anyone can ever hope to successfully negotiate.

The Palestinian Authority will now pay dearly for its mistake in breaking away from the Oslo Accords and the Roadmap to unilaterally seek recognition of statehood at the United Nations and UNESCO in September and October 2011.

These disastrous diplomatic forays were made outside – and in breach of – the negotiating framework established by the Oslo Accords and the Bush Roadmap – which provided in Clause XXXI (7) of the 1995 Israeli-Palestinian Interim Agreement on the West Bank and Gaza Strip:

“Neither side shall initiate or take any step that will change the status of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip pending the outcome of the permanent status negotiations.”

President Obama’s attempt to counsel the Palestinian Authority against taking such action was made very clear when addressing world leaders at the United Nations General Assembly:

“Peace will not come through statements and resolutions at the U.N. If it were that  easy, it would have been accomplished by now.”

Notwithstanding the threat by America to veto any such move for statehood – the application was pressed – only to find it ignominiously rejected before it was even voted on by the Security Council.

Undeterred  – the Palestinian Authority then sought international recognition of Palestinian statehood at UNESCO – where it succeeded – despite Israel and America’s strong opposition.

America immediately suspended the payment its membership dues to UNESCO under a domestic 1994 law on its statute books  – which prohibited payments to:

“any affiliated organization of the United Nations which grants full membership as a state to any organization or group that does not have the internationally recognized attributes of statehood.”

Palestine’s application did not comply with the internationally recognized attributes of statehood laid down in the Montevideo Convention 1933 – yet UNESCO had recognized Palestinian statehood in breach of such well established international law.

None of  the 194 member states of UNESCO – including Israel and America – has taken any steps since to try and reverse UNESCO’s unlawful decision or withdraw its delegates from UNESCO in protest – even though 87 of them did not affirmatively vote for Palestine‘s admission as a member state of UNESCO.

Their inaction amounts to recognition of Palestinian statehood and an end to Palestinian homelessness – resulting in the achievement of the two state solution outside the Oslo Accords and the Roadmap.

This state of  Palestine  is not required to be demilitarized nor recognize Israel as the Jewish State – as Israel had been demanding as conditions for its recognition of a Palestinian State.

So where is Israel going to go from here in “moving forward responsibly in the peace process“?

A clue can be found in the following views expressed by Mofaz in November 2009 – which remain equally relevant in 2012:

“Today in Gaza, 100% of the territory and 100% of the population is under Hamas control.

 In the West Bank, there are three types of areas; Area A, B, and C.

 Palestinians have security and civilian responsibility in Area A.

 In Area B, Israel has security responsibility, the Palestinians have civilian sovereignty.

Security and civilian issues are controlled by Israel in Area C

Today, Areas A and B represent 40% of the West Bank territory and 99.2% of the Palestinian population. But there is no continuity between the Palestinians in Areas A and B.

I am suggesting adding 20% of Area C to give full continuity to the Palestinian state, with 60% of the territory in the West Bank and 99% of the population.”

On Jerusalem – Mofaz was very definite:

“ The issue of Jerusalem should be discussed in a very sensitive way. There is no chance to divide Jerusalem. It will remain united as the capital of the state of Israel and we have to find a way to handle the daily life of the Jewish and Palestinian people in Jerusalem.

 On the vexed issue of building in Jewish settlements in the West Bank during negotiations – Mofaz was clear:

“We will not freeze the life or building in Ma’ale Adumim, Gush Etzion, Efrat, Ariel and some others, all of which are known as the settlement blocs.

Regarding the areas that will be the future Palestinian state, I believe that we should consider the continuation of the life of the people, but we should not build in this area because it will be under the sovereignty and responsibility of the Palestinian state.

This makes it very clear which areas we will continue to build in and which we should allow daily life to continue but without any building. “

Mofaz’s views – if accepted by Netanyahu – will form the basis for a final offer that Israel will be making to the Palestinian Authority.

No doubt such offer will be rejected – because it would mean a substantial diminution in territory from the last offer made by Israel’s Prime Minister Olmert in 2008 – and several even more attractive offers made and rejected in 1937, 1947 and 2000.

Israel would be totally justified in this decision – since it is now facing a militarized Palestinian State that does not recognize Israel as the Jewish State.

For Israel – the refusal of such an offer  would signal that it is time to annex Area C, retain security control in Area B – and  let the state of Palestine exercise its new found sovereignty in Areas A, B and Gaza.

Israel’s national unity Government clearly signals  that it is not in a mood to play the Palestinian Authority’s game any more.

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

Comments

24 Responses to “Palestine – Israel Has Had Enough”
  1. Ben says:

    According to the Oslo accord Israel should withdraw from Gaza and regions of the West bank and talks on permanent issues, Jerusalem, Refugees et al, were to begin no latter than 1996. No government in Israel – Labour, Kadima, Likud – has stopped expanding settlements, exclusive roads and checkpoints during the sixteen years. not to mention the separation wall – barrier, fence- cutting deep into the West bank and the encirclement of Jerusalem by exclusive Jewish colonies.

    • admin says:

      Ben

      At least “Waldman, WInter and Singer supply a surname – what’s stopping you supplying yours?

    • singer says:

      Ben

      It seems you are offering reasons to justify why the Palestinian Authority found it necessary to breach the clear terms of the Oslo Accords and the Bush Roadmap and trot off to the UN and UNESCO to get recognized as a State.

      Whatever the reasons or the motivation – the Palestinian Authority were clearly in breach – and will now have to suffer the consequences.

      Like the breach of any contractual agreement – the Palestinian Authority’s actions have come at a massive cost – not only for Palestine, but for UNESCO and scores of millions of people dependent on UNESCO to make some improvement in their daily lives.

      The full extent of the damage that such unilateral approaches to the UN and UNESCO have caused continues to increase with every passing day.

    • Vicki says:

      Ben
      You forgot to mention a suicide-bombing campaign that started in 2000 and claimed the lives of well over 200 Jewish Israelis in less than two years, daily terror attacks, rampant anti-Semetic propaganda in the Palestinian media, the Hamas bureaucracy that intends to take over all of Israel and “push the Jews into the sea” (read kill them all), and a Palestinian Authority that refuses to recognise Israel as a Jewish state and likewise refuses to give up flooding Israel with so-called refugees while at the same time maintaining a policy of clearing all Jews from the east Jerusalem and the West Bank.

      • Ben says:

        Hello Vicki

        I have no desire to ignore the suicide bombings. Not to forget that the first and second intifada were drowned in blood with “break their bones” orders, sharpshooters deliberately shooting at palestinians’ eyes and knees, helicopter gunships and live gunfire by ground troops at protestors. The suicide bombings followed this wave of state terror and killings. One cannot ignore the former while mentioning the latter.

  2. Paul Winter says:

    One can only hope that Bibi rejects Shaul’s stated positions. The Arabs should not be given a square millimetre of Area C to achieve contiguity. Firstly, the mamzers don’t deserve any concessions and secondly, granting them contiguity will lead to demands for a corridor to Gaza, partitioning Israel. The notion of sharing Jerusalem with the Arabs while retaining Jewish sovereignty is silly, keeping in mind the way the PA behaved when it had access to Orient House.

    But a “Palestine” is a legal fiction. It does not control its borders and being in a state of war with Israel, Israel must stop arms getting there. If Fatahland is a state, Israel has no right to collect its taxes, UNWRA has lost its raison d’etre and has to be expelled. Further, in conformity with the Geneva Convnetions, Israel needs to stop providing anything other than food and medicine for children under 16 to both Fatahland and to Hamastan.

    The time to dictated terms of unconditional surrender has arrived. With a jelly-back like Shaul and Bibi infatuated by his cleverness and diplomatic skills, the time to dictate terms will also pass. Eban noted that the Arabs never miss a chance to miss an opportunity. He would have been distressed to live to see that recent Israeli leaders never sieze an opportunity to gain an advantage.

    • Ben says:

      Winter seems to ignore the truth that Israel was created by expelling the palestinians from their land and now he talks of “concessions” by the colonisres. From the beginning, political ZIonism was a colonial project aimed at displacing an indigenous people by European colonisers. Herzel was indefferent betwen Argentina, Uganda and Palestine. It is Israel that is a colonisal presence in Palestine. It can become a part of the region or remain a colonial presence continuing to dispossess Palestinians.

      Winter is welcome to challeneg these facts and I will support my argument with evidence.

      • Paul Winter says:

        Oh, really Ben. Your Pally agitprop is so, so droll; it can only be treated seriously by true believers for whom facts don’t matter. What makes you imagine that your simplistic repetitions of Arab fabrications hides your obvious inability to comprehend what the issues are about? David has kindly offered to enlighten you, but you ignore all that and carry on with biased irrelevancies. Do yourself a favour. And us.

        • Ben says:

          Yes Winter! Here is your opportunity> Why not pick up the gauntlet and expose the “pally agitprop” and vindicate your cause. Or are you afraid of the truths spoken by Herzel and Jabotinsky ?

      • Vicki says:

        Ben
        Here you go again! You truly are wearing blinkers. For a start, any good history book will tell you that most of those who FLED so-called Palestine at the time of the war of independence were young male drifters who came in from Syria and other lands looking for work. The number of indigenous so-called Palestinians numbered around 600,000 for the entire area. Secondly, your constant reference to “colonisers” suggests that you deny that Palestine also had an indigenous Jewish population. Thirdly, the Palestinians vowed that they would honour the plebiscite before the UN on the partitioning of Palestine – they reneged on this promise and thus created their own Nakba.

        Unfortunately the only “evidence” you rely on is tainted by your own political agenda.

        • Ben says:

          Hello Vicki.
          You seem to have a good history book, may be Joan Peter’s From Time Immemorial.. Please quote from your sources and I will expose the fabrications behind them.

    • singer says:

      Paul

      I think Mofaz would be seriously rethinking offering sovereignty in any part of Area C now to Palestine – in view of the fact that Palestine has achieved Statehood without the necessity of being demilitarized or required to accept Israel as the Jewish state.

      If that happens – the 194 countries that have recognized Palestine as a state in breach of international law will have to sit by silently wringing their hands and contemplating their own stupidity.

      They have been repeatedly warned … and have chosen to ignore those warnings.

      The only way they can possibly get out of their predicament is to seek an advisory opinion from the International Court of Justice on the legality of the decision to admit Palestine as the 195th member state of UNESCO.

      The longer they wait – the worse the consequences are bound to get.

  3. Ben says:

    Israel’s unity government shows that labour, likud and kadima have merged to continue the policies of expanding settlements, building the barrier deep inside the West bank and enclosing the Palestinians in small open prisons and perpetuating the blockade on Gaza.

    It the truth of military ruule, expansion of exclusive settlements, placing armed fanatics in the middle of Palestinin populations, destroying Palestinian homes, farms and land to build exclusive settlements, highways and checkpoints that perpetuates the conflict, not the PA’s meagre attempt in the UN after more than three decades of talks upon talks while settlements and outposts grow unceased.

    Singer is welcome to challenge these facts.

    • “Ben” commedy routine is such a wellcome interlude. At least he got the messge that Israel is a few steps ahead of the innocent angels family men intellectual classical music passionate sophisticated paelstinians “Ben” shares his mental bed with.
      Yes, it seems Israel shall perpetuate the conflict as long as palestinians will persist in dreaming of destroying the Jewish State. It is simply normal, something seemingly impossible to attain with” Hello Ben’s” charges.

    • singer says:

      Ben

      Labour, Likud and Kadima have not merged – only the current coalition Government (which does not include Labour) and Kadima have formed a national unity Government (not merged) to give them 94 seats out of 120 in the Knesset.

      It really is important to get your facts right.

      Once again – you choose to avoid commenting on my analysis – that Israel has had enough of the Palestinian Authority’s machinations in unilaterally seeking statehood at the UN and UNESCO.

      Palestine is now recognized as a State by all 194 countries in UNESCO.

      Palestine has not been required to be demilitarized or to recognize Israel as the Jewish National home.

      That is just another two of the many consequences of the UNESCO decision – which I believe was unconstitutional and unlawful as I have been arguing for the last six months.

      This is the mess the world has got Palestine into by its decision – which is in breach of international law.

      Palestine will in my opinion be forced to pay dearly for its decision to go off on this unilateral path
      in breach of its obligations under the Oslo Accords and the Roadmap.

      In my opinion – any territorial deal offered by Israel will accordingly be far less than what was offered in 2000 and 2008 – which were made on the basis that Palestine would be demilitarized and recognize Israel as the Jewish state within the context of a peace treaty.

      That opportunity has now gone begging – like so many before it..

      If you care to comment – I am happy to reply.

      • Ben says:

        Hello Singer

        I accept the legal point, there is no legal merger but sections of labour have separated themselves and joined Likud in coalition and politically – in terms of extension of settlements, exclusive highways, building the barrier inside the West Bank and surrounding Jerusalem with Jewish settlements – there is no difference in their actions.

      • Ben says:

        And “Jewish national home” is a piece of fiction. Jews have extended for millenia from Morocco to China. If you have some historical, legal, political basis that will stand scrutiny, for making the claim I will be intersetd in seeing it.

        • That “piece of fiction” is the most advanced scientific society, cultural heaven, educational pantheon, strongest army, kicking arse and proving that its vicious neighbours and their accolites, whether over there or over here are just a bunch irretrievable losers frothing at the mouth and keyboard with suicidal envy, and that makes me really mighty proud and big time HAPPY !!!

        • David says:

          Afraid the League of Nations 52 countries did not agree with you. Prattle on.

  4. If detracted by impending imperatives, on a piece meal basis. Area C may fill up a whole UN year long session, mainly due to the PA’s strategy of constructing fictitious issues, all the responsibility and liability of Israel’s “non-compliance” with the Oslo 1995 accords. And , indeed, UN has , so far, acceeded to most PA demands and false claims.
    Israel, on the other hand, is stoically pursuing a progrmme of realsitic address to ALL esential PA traits of fundamental enmity and rejection of a Jewish presence in the entire region, Israel propper included. This is the core ideology of the palestinians of any political shade. It is realistic in as far as it represents the arrived at mind set of almost the entire palestinian type population. It represents the exclusive, unique, mode of assessment of their entire existence for now and their mode of existential vision ad infinitum. Talk to almost any of them and you will witness the most determined attitude of total exclusion, and by violent means, of any Jewish visible presence anywhere in “their” Middle East.
    Theories abound and are prommoted with impunity in regards to the “historic” exclusive Arab and Islamic rights, “humanitarian” imperatives – to which even some Jewish moronic heads adhere -, all reflecting the existing and also future stances PA politicians are expected to take in all future “negotiations”.
    So, stern retorts by Israel are the ONLY logical way !!!
    Area C is of greater relevance simply because it is testing the strategic posturing of both sides. Area C is the testing ground to a greater extent of the acceptance of the known preconditions demanded by Israel for the conclusion of a future palestinian formal state entity. No UNESCO or any other fora can decide for Israel what realistic measures and demands are necessary if normality is to take place in what now is most evidently a politcal scene dominated by a palestinian determination to continue aggravated enmity towards a legitimate Israel.

  5. Rita says:

    “…Israel’s national unity Government clearly signals that it is not in a mood to play the Palestinian Authority’s game any more.”

    Well, better late, even very very late than never!

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