Thursday, December 29, 2016


More on the Israeli-Palestinian issue.  From a NYT editorial.
The Times has never been known to be anti-semitic or anti-Israel. Scoff if you want, but there are serious issues to be faced if one has an open mind and looks at the facts.  Yes, Israel has serious security issues, but the current path is not he solution.

“Inconveniently for Mr. Netanyahu’s claim that the Security Council resolution was the result of perfidy by Mr. Obama, the measure was adopted 14 to 0, with support from Russia, China and Egypt, among others. It declared that the settlements, in territory that Israel captured from Jordan during the Arab-Israeli War of 1967, have no legal validity; affirming longstanding United Nations and American policy, it cited the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949, which prohibits any occupying power from transferring its own people to conquered territory.

Under Mr. Obama, the United States continues to subscribe to the position enshrined in the 1993 Oslo accords that the future of Jerusalem, like that of the West Bank, should be decided through negotiation — not by diktat by either side.  Settlements represent such a diktat. Anyone who doesn’t think so hasn’t looked at the map or studied the history of the settlement movement. Right-wing Israeli settlers have been quite open for decades about their patient approach to claiming Jerusalem and the West Bank by strategically placing settlements to prevent the creation of a viable Palestinian state. Since 2009, when Mr. Obama took office, the number of Israeli settlers in the West Bank has grown to around 400,000, a gain of more than 100,000, and the number of settlers in East Jerusalem has grown to roughly 208,000, from 193,000, according to Americans for Peace Now. During the same period, construction has begun on over 12,700 settlement units on the West Bank. . ..

When the world is silent, Israel can build settlements; when the world objects, Israel must build settlements. Under any scenario, settlements will grow, and the possibility of a two-state solution will recede.

Settlements are certainly not the only impediment, or even the principal one, to negotiations today. The Palestinians remain divided and their leadership malicious or hapless, with Hamas, which advocates terrorism, reigning in the Gaza Strip, while the Palestinian Authority, rife with corruption, governs ineptly in the West Bank. But the settlements are an obstacle to any eventual deal, and they are Israel’s responsibility.

For a long time, Mr. Netanyahu gave lip service to a Palestinian state. But there is no longer any room for illusion. Mr. Netanyahu recently described his government as “more committed to settlements than any in Israel’s history,” and Naftali Bennett, one of his coalition partners, declared that “the era of the two-state solution is over.” Mr. Netanyahu’s own United Nations ambassador, as Mr. Kerry noted on Wednesday, rejects that solution, too.

What could be the endgame, if it does not include a Palestinian state? Mr. Kerry warned that without a two-state solution, Israel faces a choice between being a Jewish state and a democracy. If Israel annexes the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, this logic goes, Palestinians, many of whom are Muslims, would become the majority in the resulting state of Israel. At that point, Israelis could give these Palestinians full rights as citizens, thus diluting the Jewish character of their nation, or deny them rights and forsake democracy.

But the Israeli far right has long imagined a different scenario: Egypt would be somehow induced to take control of the Gaza Strip, while Israel would hold most of the West Bank and somehow offload the bulk of its Palestinian residents into Jordan. Jerusalem, presumably, would be entirely under Israeli control.

This one-state solution may remain a fantasy, but it’s gathering adherents. In an opinion piece in The Wall Street Journal on Monday, John Bolton, a fellow at the American Enterprise Institute and a former American ambassador to the United Nations, advanced just this scenario. Mr. Bolton is said to be on President-elect Donald Trump’s list as a possible deputy secretary of state.

Mr. Obama has stayed true to the values and policy aims that American administrations have held across the decades for the Middle East, but Mr. Trump has signaled that a major change is coming. He has already appointed to the post of ambassador to Israel a settlement advocate who is, if anything, to Mr. Netanyahu’s right.

[Nethanyahu is a close-minded bully and blowhard.  He will get along splendidly with Trump.] If Mr. Trump envisions working with Israel’s extreme right to foreclose the dream of a Palestinian state, he envisions a tragic future indeed, one in which Israel is likely to never have the peace and security that it deserves.”

With Trump in the White House and Republicans in control of Congress, I would not want to be a Palestinian living in Jerusalem or the West Bank.  Expect illegal settlements and coerced/authoritarian confiscation of Palestinian land to speed up.  What is to become of the Palestinians?  They will be sold out and abandoned while the U.S. continues to send billions to Israel. The injustice will only continue to feed violent Islamic radicals.  Eventually, the U.S. will suffer another  major terrorist attack.  Why can’t we face up to where this going?




  1. "If the Arabs lay down their guns there will be no more shooting. If the Jews lay down their guns there will be no more Israel" -- Bibi Netanyahu.

    Truer words were never spoken.


  2. Thanks for the comment. No one is being asked to lay down their guns. Ray