Had they been so concerned about International legitimacy and the UN in 1947, we would be celebrating together this year the 63rd anniversary of Independence for both, Israel and Palestine. But they rejected it then because it didn't give them what they wanted...the whole pie.
After 63 years of bloodshed, terrorism and abuse, we have come full circle to the initial idea. Israel tried to accommodate along the way the needs and expectations of Palestinians. In 1993, the Israelis took the initiative to establish a Palestinian Authority and give away most of Gaza and the city of Jericho. Arafat responded with more violence. Along the way Rabin, Netanyahu, Peres and even Sharon expanded the territory the Palestinian Authority controls. Sharon went as far as to uproot the Jewish communities in the Gaza strip and pull the army out. A few months later, Hamas took over and initiated the unholly rain of missiles in Israel's south.
When Barak pulled out of Lebanon, Hezbollah brough the missiles batteries closer to the border, and in 2006 let them fly to Haifa and the Galilee. Yet Palestinians insist that Israelis should let them handle security...(????)
Even in the event that the Palestinians request the admission in the UN, they will not get it. According to UN rules, the General Assembly can consider membership only upon recommendation of the Security Council and the vote needs to be at least 9 in favor and no veto. So why does Abbas insist in going through with it? surely he knows the US will veto. If it was not clear so far, the last couple of week made it startingly clear. He is doing it because his intention is to isolate the US in the Security Council and force it to use the veto. He is also doing it because failing in the admission bid, it can fall back into simple recognition and gain the status of observer as many territories have.
Isolating the US in the Security Council will allow the Palestinians to insert a wedge between Europe and the US and then work on it. Doesn't really take much, since Europe and the US do not look eye to eye on quite a few issues, including the Middle East. But recognition would give Abbas something...
When (if) it finally sits down to negotiate with Israel, it can claim recognized sovereignity over every inch of pre-67 West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza. Therefore, whatever Israel gets will be a Palestinian concession that Israel will have to reciprocrate. From offering land for Peace, Israel will be reduce to pry land for concessions, without necessarily getting Peace. To make it even clearer, Fatah and Hamas signed a Unity Government deal. One could say that in that context, this could be a good thing to force Hamas to moderate and accept Israel...One problem with that theory: A Senior Fatah official made it clear that "Fatah never recognized Israel and never will" - this is Abbas' movement. It look therefore that instead of Hamas moderating, Fatah is radicalizing...in line with the initial demands of Hamas for a Unity deal. Hamas appears to have won the Civil war!
While all this is hapenning, a flotilla is being put together with the Mavi Marmara in point to "break the Gaza blockade" in spite of the fact that Egypt has opened the border at Rafah. Durban III is still on but without Canada nor the UK nor the US and probably not German participation. But champion of Human rights such as Lybia, Syria and Sudan will be there...so I guess all is well. Egyptian elections are set for September and it looks like the only movement organized enough to deal with it is the Muslim Brotherhood. In the meantime Iran continues its quest for an "Islamic Nuclear bomb"
It is for all of the above that when this email hits your mailbox, I'll be on a train headed for New York City to participate in the Salute to Israel Parade, expressing my support for the right of the Jewish people to self determination, and the right of the Jewish State to defend itself. In the words of Hillel: "Im ein ani li, mi li? Ve im ein achshav, eimatai?" - If I don't do it for myself, who will? and if not now, when?
GIVE PEACE A CHANCE - STOP TERRORISM AND DIPLOMATIC BULLYING