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Thursday, September 23, 2010

The future state of 'Palestine'

Moadim l'Simcha, a happy holiday to all of you.

For those wondering how an Orthodox Jew could be online on the second night of Succoth, if you go here and scroll down to Yom Tov Sheini Shel Galuyoth, you will see that Israelis only observe one day of each of the major holidays rather than two, and therefore, Israelis don't have two consecutive holiday days followed by the Sabbath three weeks out of four this year!

What might a future state of 'Palestine' look like? Barry Rubin gives an imaginary history that outlines some of the potential problems.
A gala celebration marks Palestine’s day of independence. Some world leaders come bearing promises of financial aid. Arab leaders attending offer little money and, except for Egypt’s president and Jordan’s king, avoid contact with Israel’s delegation.

These celebrations are marred by the absence of leaders from countries--including Iran, Syria, Libya, Sudan, and Yemen. refusing to recognize the new state.

Hamas, ruling the Gaza Strip, along with Islamic Jihad and other Palestinian groups, also reject the “traitorous entity.” Gaza’s rulers mark the occasion by firing rockets into Israel. Palestine's president boasts hollowly that his country includes all of the Gaza Strip but controls nothing there.

Hardly any of the Western media cover statements by some leaders of Palestine’s ruling Fatah group that the new country's independence is not the conflict's end but the first step toward total victory and conquest of Israel.

Nor do many note statements of Islamist and Palestinian nationalist Arab groups among Israel’s citizens that they now seek to dismantle the Zionist nature of the Israeli state, a goal several European newspapers endorse.

Nor is it widely highlighted in the Western media that the new country officially proclaims itself an Arab and Muslim state while ridiculing the idea of accepting Israel as a Jewish state.

Within a few weeks, infiltrators--some from Hamas, some from Fatah--cross the Palestine-Israel border to attack Israeli motorists and farming villages, set fires, and engage in sabotage. Palestine's government loudly condemns the attacks and claims it is trying to stop them. But the attacks continue even though a few Hamas supporters are rounded up, beaten up, and briefly imprisoned. It is quite possible that small numbers of rockets could be fired into Israeli territory or attempts be made to shoot down planes taking off from Israel's airport.

Soon, the official Museum of Palestinian History opens with exhibits claiming all of Israel as rightfully part of Palestine. Visiting schoolchildren are told that Tel Aviv, Haifa, Beersheva, and the rest of Israel belong to them and will some day be part of Palestine. Big displays show alleged Israeli atrocities and extol heroes who'd blown themselves up killing many Israeli civilians.

Yet these things, along with anti-Israel incitement in the Palestinian media, mosques, and textbooks, attract little foreign attention. The conflict is over, isn’t it? And to publicize such facts, journalists tell each other, would only “play into the hands of Israeli hardliners” and “undermine peace.”

Israel, of course, protests the incitement and armed attacks to the UN and Western governments, but those diplomatic efforts bring no response. Israel steps up defenses and builds a border fence at great expense, which helps somewhat. Yet every time Israeli patrols fire on infiltrators trying to get across, Palestine protests--backed by Muslim-majority states—that this is unprovoked Israeli aggression.

In the Middle East, the peace agreement brings little change. True, in some countries hatred toward Israel diminishes a bit. But Syria is still uninterested in peace. Moreover, growing fear of a nuclear Iran, Syria, and revolutionary Islamist groups intimidates other Arab states from making peace with Israel. After all, they say, now that there's a state of Palestine they don't need to do so.

Islamist groups rally against the “treasonous” Palestinian regime and “sell-out” of Palestine to recruit new members. America is no more popular for having fathered a Palestinian state since that birth required concessions and didn't bring all the land under Muslim rule. Violent attacks against U.S., European, and occasionally Palestinian institutions take place in a half-dozen countries.

From this point, we can envision several likely scenarios:
Continue reading here.

Professor Steven Plaut of Haifa University wrote a similar article in 2003. You can find it here.

The problem, as Barry points out. is that no one can say with certainty that any of these nightmare scenarios are going to happen, but no one can say that they will not either. Worse, based on past experience, it's far more likely that they nightmare scenarios will take place than that they won't. As an Israeli, why do I want my government creating a 'Palestinian state' if the result is going to be no end of conflict and a terror state right next to me that wants to murder me. Why do I want to commit suicide? The world can't keep ignoring these scenarios because it will 'spoil the peace' and expect us Israelis to just play along.

The elephants in the room have to be confronted.


At 9:45 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

The principal elephant being the Palestinian refusal to recognize Israel as a Jewish State.

All the rest of them are really secondary.

That's why a Palestinian state isn't going to emerge anytime soon.

At 5:16 AM, Blogger NormanF said...

Ehud K. Olmert published an article in the Jerusalem Post Friday calling for a division of Jerusalem, the Temple Mount under foreign sovereignty and borders based on the 1967 lines. He must be the only person in Israel who thinks the Palestinians are going to recognize Israel on the basis of such a proposal from Israel's government.

More here:

The Terms For An Accord

Now admit it: aren't you glad this sorry excuse for a former Israeli Prime Minister is no longer in office?

I am.


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