Palestine – Quartet and Two-State Solution Sink into Political Oblivion

July 10, 2016 by David Singer
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The Quartet – America, Russia, the European Union and the United Nations – has effectively consigned any negotiated two-state solution to political oblivion with its latest Report…writes David Singer.

Two statements in the Report stymie any resumption of negotiations – stalled since April 2014.

  1. “The Quartet reiterates that unilateral actions by either party cannot prejudge the outcome of final status negotiations and will not be recognized by the international community.”

Unilateral actions by the Palestinian Authority – disbanded in January 2013 – have already seen the international community:

Such acts of recognition by the international community – over Israel’s strident objections –have hardened Palestinian demands and expectations that their goals can be achieved without negotiations requiring any concessions to Israel.

Reversing these decisions is a Quartet pipe dream.

  1. “Gaza and the West Bank should be reunified under a single, legitimate and democratic Palestinian authority on the basis of the PLO platform and Quartet principles and the rule of law, including control over all armed personnel and weapons in accordance with existing agreements.

Reunification under the “PLO platform” sounds the death knell for the Quartet’s mediating role and the two-state solution.

Hamas will certainly not become a willing player in its own extinction.

The Quartet obviously has not considered how such reunification could be achieved whilst Hamas’s own Covenant declares:

“Secularism completely contradicts religious ideology. Attitudes, conduct and decisions stem from ideologies.

That is why, with all our appreciation for The Palestinian Liberation Organization – and what it can develop into – and without belittling its role in the Arab-Israeli conflict, we are unable to exchange the present or future Islamic Palestine with the secular idea. The Islamic nature of Palestine is part of our religion and whoever takes his religion lightly is a loser.

“Who will be adverse to the religion of Abraham, but he whose mind is infatuated? (The Cow – verse 130).

The day The Palestinian Liberation Organization adopts Islam as its way of life, we will become its soldiers, and fuel for its fire that will burn the enemies.

Until such a day, and we pray to Allah that it will be soon, the Islamic Resistance Movement’s stand towards the PLO is that of the son towards his father, the brother towards his brother, and the relative to relative, suffers his pain and supports him in confronting the enemies, wishing him to be wise and well-guided.”

Replacing “secular-democratic Palestine” with “Islamic-autocratic Palestine” is certainly not the Quartet’s prescription for achieving any realistic two-state solution – but this is what Hamas demands and will never abandon.

The Quartet is living in fantasy land if it believes otherwise.

“Democratic Palestinian authority” involves free and fair elections that Hamas and the PLO have both been unwilling to entertain since 2006. Given the rivalries between the PLO and Hamas such elections remain a figment of the Quartet’s imagination.

The Quartet – the most powerful and influential mediator in history – became totally irrelevant after it was restructured in July 2015. This latest Report will become yet another historical document attesting to the failure to achieve the two-state solution as envisaged by the Oslo Accords and the Bush Roadmap.

The time has surely arrived for trilateral negotiations to be commenced between Israel, Jordan and Egypt to allocate sovereignty in Judea and Samaria (West Bank) and Gaza between their respective sovereign States.

Time for the out-of-tune Quartet to bow out and give this Trio the world stage.

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

Comments

9 Responses to “Palestine – Quartet and Two-State Solution Sink into Political Oblivion”
  1. Paul Winter says:

    Again a good analysis with a non sequitur as a conclusion.

    Your idée fixe is revealed as a delusion, David. Your own comments about the tribalistic PA and Hamas should have alerted you to the fact that those thugocracies cannot be excluded from what are farcically referred to as negotiations.

    The only way for the Jewish/Arab conflict to be settled is by unilateral action by Israel, along the lines proposed by Glick, Bennett or Karsh. Until Israel gets a leader with principles and courage, there will be no peace.

    And that is a pity, because the internecine conflicts on Israel’s borders would be the ideal time to eliminate Hamas, Hizballah and the PA, presenting the Quartet with a fait accompli.

    • david singer says:

      Paul

      Unilateral action by Israel is a certain recipe for continuing conflict on an escalated scale.

      My idée fixe is not a delusion. It becomes increasingly attainable as the PLO and Hamas become increasingly irrelevant – as the Quartet report has now made clear.

      Thugocracies can be given their marching orders. After the last 23 years of rejectionism by these Jew-haters, their failure to hold free and fair elections since 2006 and even get their act together in some form of reconciliation with unified policies – it is time to look to other Arab interlocutors such as Egypt and Jordan to replace the PLO in negotiations with Israel to determine who gets what territory in Judea and Samaria (West Bank) and Gaza.

      The UN,EU and the Quartet still struggle to avoid losing face over their inept policies pursuing the unattainable negotiated “two-state solution”.

      The longer they struggle with this discredited idea – the more egg they will have to wipe off their collective faces – and the more suffering will be visited on both Jews and Arabs alike.

      • Paul Winter says:

        David, you are right that unilateral action by Israel would escalate the conflict, but a good fight taken to a successful resolution is, in my opinion, better than an ongoing semi-war where the enemy gets stronger and bolder while its supporters (read the world) makes more demands for concessions on Israel.

        Peace is one of the greatest blessings humanity can have. All rational and humane people desire peace and will go a long way to achieve it, But peace as a idealised response to endless aggression, rather than as an end goal, is a disaster.

        Ecclesiastes puts it best; There is a time for war and a time for peace. Sadly, Israel’s enemies have repeatedly shown they have no time for peace.

  2. john nemesh says:

    Although what David Singer writes would be the ideal dream situation for Jewish people and Israel, it is not and cannot be in the middle to even long term aim for the Jewish State.

    It has been a slow release poison, the steady infusion of settlements into the West bank areas where another people live, and believe themselves to be an independent entity.

    The Israeli people and nation is vastly stronger than any Palestinian entity, even with Hezbollah and Hamas added on.

    The steady Jewish exclusivism by right wing idealogues and religious-land fanatics are pushing Israel into a long term no win situation.
    Democratic and Jewish…………………impossible,

    unless atleast a real two state solution is actually attempted in the REAL world of 2016, and not just in our Jewish wishful thinking imagination.

    • Leon Poddebsky says:

      Well, John, you need to persuade the Arab fanatics, religious and otherwise; you know, the ones who call themselves “Palestinians.” It is they who have repeatedly rejected your “solution.”
      Good luck with that.
      It is they who are the advocates of apartheid and exclusivism, vowing to forbid any Jew from living in Judea or Samaria, if ever they achieve the power to perpetrate such an act.
      Don’t forget the tiny detail, too, that the “other people” to whom you refer have never abrogated their “Covenants”; you know, the “Palestinian” Authority / PLO / Fatah one that insists that Jews have no national rights anywhere in The Land of Israel; and the Hamas one that goes further, stating explicitly what the PLO does implicitly, namely, vowing genocide. You see, they are not prepared to pay even easily abrogated lip service to the notion of peaceful co-existence.
      Your rant also reflects a sad gap in your knowledge of the Act of international law known as the 1922 “Mandate for ‘Palestine,” which explicitly endorses the reconstitution of The Jewish National Home in the entire Land of Israel as far east as the Jordan River. One of the consequences of that Act was the influx into Jewish territory of vast numbers of illegal Arab and other Moslem infiltrators from as far away as Sudan and Bosnia.
      Your nonsense about the “right wing ideologues” is hilarious: the communities in Judea and Samaria were first established during the “left’s” reign, following the defeat of the illegal aggressor occupier, Jordan. It was the “right” that destroyed / evacuated some of them, notably in the Gaza Strip and Samaria.
      Your gratuitously slanderous language when referring to Jews who wish to live peacefully and legally in Judea and Samaria is disgraceful.
      Fortunately you have no influence to affect events in Israel.
      Woe to Israel if you ever did.

      • john nemesh says:

        without descending into insults , Leon, ….jewish or democratic….which will it be then?

        • david singer says:

          John – Israel can be both Jewish and democratic – as David Ben-Gurion told the UN Special Committee on Palestine on 7 July 1947:

          “What is the meaning of a Jewish State? As I told you before, a Jewish State does not mean one has to be a Jew. It means merely a State-where the Jews are in the majority, otherwise all the citizens have the same status. If the State were called by the name “Palestine,” – I said if – then all would be Palestinian citizens If the State would be given, another name – I think it would be given another name – because Palestine is neither a Jewish nor an Arab name. As far as the Arabs are concerned, and we have the evidence of the Arab historian, Hitti, that there was no such a thing as “Palestine” at all: Palestine is not an Arab name. Palestine is also not a Jewish name. When the Greeks were our enemies, in order not to annoy the Jews, they gave different names to the streets. So, maybe the name of Palestine will be changed. But whatever the name of the country, every citizen of the country will be a citizen. This is what we mean. This is what we have to mean. We cannot conceive that in a State where we are not in a minority, where we have the main responsibilities as the majority of the country, there should be the slightest discrimination between a Jew and a non-Jew.”

          Negotiations between Israel, Jordan and Egypt would ensure that these
          Ben- Gurion principles were maintained within any newly expanded and agreed borders with Jordan – as presently exist and have done so since Israel was established in 1948.

        • Leon Poddebsky says:

          Given that Israel has not annexed Judea / Samaria, the Arab residents there are stateless and enjoy only the rights which non-citizens of any democracy enjoy. They are not Israeli citizens, so enjoy only the rights that non-citizen residents of any democracy enjoy.
          They are, however, exempted from duties which citizens are obliged to fulfil.

          Does a society like the ‘Palestinian’ one, whose sole mission in life seems to be to kill Jews and their nation-state, deserve unfettered opportunity to achieve their aims?

          Do we want a repetition of the consequences of the Gaza withdrawal?
          The likelihood is that that would bring Arab provocations and more destructive wars. The suffering on both sides would increase.

          In the current status quo the Arabs of Judea / Samaria have internal autonomy; they run their own affairs, with Israel having overarching security control. ( Even so Arabs are murdering and attempting to murder Jews at an atrocious rate, not because of the ‘occupation’; they say so themselves in their media.)

          Bassam Tawil, an Arab, has written an article in a Gatestone Institute
          bulletin about the horrendous racist indoctrination that is constantly pouring down on and seeping into the minds of receptive Arabs, who then act on it.

          This racist mentality must be purged before any talk of peace or an accommodation can become more than just vacuous rhetoric.

          For peace to exist, Jewish national rights in The Land of Israel must be accepted.

        • Paul Winter says:

          Your dichotomy is flawed. It is not a choice of Jewish or democratic unless you posit that if Israel is to be Jewish it cannot be democratic and if it is democratic it cannot be Jewish. Piffle!

          Israel is both democratic and it is the nation state of the Jewish people. The mohammedans living within Jewish borders – the Jordan became the international border when Trans-Jordan was created – were not given political rights and they have refused statehood repeatedly. They will accept nothing less than the destruction of Israel.

          Jews have both a right and a duty to settle and develop their nation. Arabs who want to live in peace can stay or have self-government. Or better still, Israel could offer them a golden good-bye.

          Bu quibbling about the 1.7% of Judea and Samaria on which Jews live demonstrates the Arab malevolence. By seeking nationhood while repudiating all agreements they reveal their hostile intentions. And expecting Israel to give a group dominated by Hamas and being infiltrated by ISIS control of the Judean heights is demanding suicide of its population and of its polity.

          Oh, and just one little thought that keeps going down the memory hole. If the supposedly democratic secular tolerant Arabs become the successors of Israel, the ME nuclear race will be on with a vengeance as a triumphant militarised, nuclearised “Palestine” throws it weight around. The first to go would be Jordan, followed by what is left of Syria and then the Sunni PA would challenge Shi’a Iran.

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