Palestinian statehood: An all or nothing affair
By David Post
Israel and Palestine are twins. They were given the right to self-determination by the United Nations and born on the same day. In Israel”s Declaration of Independence Israeli Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion stated, “We appeal to the Arab inhabitants of the state of Israel to preserve peace and participate in the building-up of the state on the basis of full and equal citizenship and representationWe extend our hand to all neighboring states and their peoples in an offer of peace and goodwill, and appeal to them to establish bonds of cooperation and mutual help with the sovereign Jewish people settled in its own land.”
Sadly enough Ben-Gurion”s messages of tolerance were countered by messages of hate from the Arab world. In most cases, the neighboring nations persuaded the Palestinians to leave their partitioned homeland with promises that they would return to not only claim their lands (see www.us-israel.org) but also to claim the lands of vanquished Jews. Accordingly, Syria, Egypt, Lebanon, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, and Iraq invaded Israel with the genocidal purpose “to push the Jews into the Sea”.
That story is history. More recently in Camp David in 1998, Ehud Barak proposed a Palestinian state that would have contained East Jerusalem, 95 percent of the West Bank, 100 percent of the Gaza Strip, and given the Palestinians joint control over the Temple Mount.
However, Yasir Arafat irrationally rejected these unprecedented concessions. Arafat was not willing to end the suffering of the Palestinian population by accepting a Palestinian State without the fulfillment of all of his conditions: 100 percent of the West Bank, all of East Jerusalem and, fatally, the resettlement of 4 million to 5 million Palestinians in Israel. Once again, an Israeli prime minister offered peace to the Palestinian leadership and once again the Palestinian leadership rejected the overture as unsatisfactory, instead turning to violence and non-compliance.
In negotiating with the Israel, the Palestinians must come to certain realizations in order to achieve success. First, for the Israeli government to cede one inch of Jerusalem would be very difficult. For the past 3,000 years, Jerusalem has been the historical, cultural, and religious center of the Jewish people. After coming into control of Jerusalem for the first time in 2,000 years are Jews expected to simply give up part of it up to appease the hostile Palestinians? Second, it is clear through what is being taught in Palestinian schools, vicious propaganda in the Palestinian media, and complete non-compliance by the PA in cracking down on terrorism, that the Palestinians returning through the Right of Return would not be peaceful neighbors they would be enemies (see www.memri.org for more information). One-thousand UN resolutions could not nullify Israel”s first obligation is to provide security to its citizens. Third, considering that a Soviet era tank can cross Israel in 45 minutes, it is clear that the mountains of Judea and Samaria are a necessity for the security of Israel a nation cannot be asked to compromise its security to appease an enemy population.
It is interesting that the PA claims to want a homeland, yet they do everything possible to lessen the likelihood of that happening the intifada, suicide bombings, the rejection of peace initiatives. The Palestinians must make a choice, peaceful coexistence, or to continue to actively seek the destruction of the state of Israel. Israel has made her desire for peace clear, all she needs now is a peace partner.
David Post, an LSA junior, is chairman of the Zionist Organization of Michigan.