Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Stating State Thoughts

From behind-the-scenes thinking:-

The recent vote in the United Nations General Assembly to give non-member observer state status to the Palestinian Authority contains no new legal or diplomatic information.  Even Palestinian self-determination cannot be denied.

There is already recognition of the Palestinians as a state but, on the other hand, it contradicts the tropes about Israeli oppression, occupation and apartheid. They have been functioning as a state, conducting foreign relations, making deals and acting entirely independently of Israel. This is not a Bantustan overseen by Israel. In the wake of the UN vote, Palestine opened a defense ministry and began discussing issuing passports. No people
under occupation have all these trappings of self-determination and statehood.

What is the UN bid about? Certainly not statehood. Even Israel supports that.

The issue is what are the borders of this 'state'?

The PA will not be satisfied with a declaration of statehood and self-determination but they demand that their state include what in the Oslo Process was dubbed Area C – regions that are overwhelmingly Jewish.

Roughly four percent of Palestinians live in Area C, while 100% of Jews in the West Bank live there.

So, can we forget about occupation and apartheid and define the dispute as one that is territorial?  A fight between equal neighbors, in the legal and diplomatic sense?

After all, such controversies are commonplace.  There's India, China, Russia, Japan and other nations which maintain controversies over frontiers.

But is it simply a border question?

Or is it really a dispute/conflict over whether Jews should have borders, at all or partial?   A dispute over Israel's right to exist at all and that's why every territorial concession is met with more violence in word and deed.

Hamas (a la Mashal) insists on a total negative :-

 “Palestine from the river to the sea, from the north to the south, is our land and we will never give up one inch or any part of it.”

Fatah fudges, never really comitting itself and always insisting on right of return (including into pre-67 Israel), Jerusalem, Jewish ethnic cleasing in 'Palestine'.

There are, of course, two additional problems stemming from the text of the Oslo Accords:

a) they actually want "the Civil Administration in the West Bank will be dissolved, and the Israeli military government shall be withdrawn."


b) the area of that state should be in accordance with: - "The two sides view the West Bank and the Gaza Strip as a single territorial unit, the integrity and status of which will be preserved during the interim period.

2. The two sides agree that West Bank and Gaza Strip territory, except for issues that will be negotiated in the permanent status negotiations, will come under the jurisdiction of the Palestinian Council.

One need not be a an internation law professor to realize that it is obvious that that language permits Israel to demand a part of J&S to be retained by Israel but the Pals. will not yield on that (Arafat Camp David II).

Is there a reasoned and rational solution that will assure Israel's security?

Retention, it is.


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