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Thursday, December 02, 2010

A small obstacle on the way to 'peace'

One of the reasons there's still a 'peace process' is the unwillingness of diplomats to acknowledge an unbridgeable gap when it comes to a 'right of return' for 'refugees.' This is from Jonathan Dahoah HaLevi.
* The gap between Israel and the Palestinians on the refugee question cannot be reconciled. The Palestinians demand a "just peace," which implies recognition of the right of return according to their interpretation, and rejects any compromise on the issue.

* The Palestinian position, which receives support from Palestinian and even some Israeli human rights organizations, looks to UN resolutions that uphold the right of return as a "private right" of every refugee. This means that the representatives of the Palestinian people (as well as the Arab League and the United Nations) have no authority to waive this right in the name of the refugees.

* According to the Palestinian consensus, non-implementation of the right of return will leave open the gates of the conflict with Israel. This implies justification for the continued armed struggle against Israel even following the establishment of a Palestinian state.

* By rejecting "patriation" or the resettlement of the refugees in any Arab state, the Arab Peace Initiative essentially leaves each refugee with no choice but to go to Israel itself. The Arab states rejected any solution that involves "resettling [of the Palestinians] outside of their homes."The Arab Peace Initiative does not envision the Palestinian refugees being resettled in a West Bank and Gaza Palestinian state.

* The transfer of border crossings to Palestinian control and/or the establishment of a Palestinian state is likely to bring about a wave of immigration, combined with a mass expulsion of Palestinians (primarily from Lebanon, Syria and Jordan) toward the Palestinian territory even without a political agreement on the refugee issue. This could lead to the infiltration by Palestinians into Israeli territory, as well as legal claims by refugees at the International Court in The Hague for the right of return, restitution of property, and compensation.

* Since the Israeli consensus holds that the mass return of Palestinian refugees to Israel means national suicide, Israel will require robust international support in negotiations on a final status agreement to reach an accord on the basis of defensible borders, and to find a permanent solution to the refugee problem based primarily on the Palestinian refugees receiving citizenship in their host countries or their absorption in a Palestinian state.
The article is quite long (the points above are an outline summary that appears at the top), but if you are able to, you should read the whole thing.

I'd go a step further than HaLevi. Please note what I highlighted in the last paragraph of his summary. Now imagine that the claimed 5 million refugees move into a 'Palestinian state' that consists of Judea, Samaria and maybe Gaza. Does anyone really believe that the borders between that entity and Israel could be controlled to prevent infiltration of terrorists? You'd have to have the Berlin Wall between them - much more than the current 'security fence.'

What could go wrong?

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At 8:08 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

That is another reason a Palestinian state won't happen in our lifetime - the Palestinians are not ready to renounce their dream of destroying Israel for good.

At 8:53 PM, Blogger Lydia McGrew said...

Am I the only one who has noticed a headline that keeps popping up over a period of weeks (I really think it's been weeks) lately on the AP? It says, "With statehood, Palestinians willing to end all claims."

It makes me so angry that I haven't even read the story. But it keeps turning up in my face when I call up Yahoo mail, sometimes further down, sometimes at the top of the headlines. As if this is an objective news story!


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