Thursday, September 22, 2011

Points for Perry

I left this comment:

I wonder, could Arab residential locations in Israel, then, be considered "Arab settlements" (and we'll ignore their "illegality" for the moment)? There is no' law' that can be applied in this case. On the one hand, the only element in the Geneva 1949 Convention rules is "forced transferral of population" but up until 1948, when Arabs went to war to thwart the UN recommendation of partition, Jews had lived in Judea and Samaria, for centuries. Of course, Arabs engaged in ethnic cleansing (and that is the real criminal forced "transferral of population" - in the out direction) - in Hebron, Gaza, Jenin, Gush Etzion and even Nablus - during the Mandate years which caused the area to be emptied of its Jewish residents. Why cannot Jews construct villages in the land the League of Nations, in an act of internationally legal legitimacy and right, guaranateed would become the reconstituted Jewish national home, with the promise of "close settlement by Jews on the land", Article 5 of the Mandate?)

at this story:
Rick Perry Breaks With Four Decades Of U.S. Policy, Says Israel Should Build More West Bank Settlements

By Zaid Jilani

Since the 1967 war between Israel and its Arab neighbors, Israelis have slowly populated the West Bank and maintained an expanding network of settlements that today, threaten the viability of a two-state solution.

U.S. policy stretching back to the Johnson administration considers these settlements to be illegal, and has called for their construction to be halted. Yet at an event in New York City this morning Gov. Rick Perry (R-TX) — in a speech attacking President Obama’s Middle East policies — disregarded four decades of U.S. policy and told a reporter that Israel should continue to build settlements because it’s “their land” and “their right”:

REPORTER: Should [Israel] continue building settlements?
PERRY: I think so, it’s their land; it’s their right.

Perry’s position stands far outside maintstream in the United States, where Democratic and Republican administrations have called for the settlement expansion to be halted, in accordance to international law.

and updated here:

He received enthusiastic praise from New York state assemblyman and hardline pro-Israel figure Dov Hikind, who said Perry's speech reminded him of himself.

"You can't be right on everything but wrong on Israel," Hikind said, summing up the mood in the room."We will not support you if you're wrong on Israel."

Here's the full exchange about settlements from the question-and-answer portion of the event.

Q: Can you explain what your policy in a Perry administration would be toward the settlements?

PERRY: From the standpoint of the settlements, those need to be negotiated directly with the state of Israel. If the United States needs to be sitting in and being part of that solution or in those negotiations, certainly we would lend the hand. But at the end of the day those are about the sovereign nation of Israel making the decisions about those lands.

Now the issue of how we have a state of the Palestinian people, that is direct negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian people, and it can't be accomplished in any way.

Q: Should the Israelis be allowed to continue building?

PERRY: I think so.

At that point Perry said something else but it was drowned out by loud applause from the crowd. He did not address the distinction between so called "natural growth" within existing settlement blocs versus building entirely new settlements

Refreshingly clear.

The United States should not adopt a prejudicial position on either the need for, the legitimacy or legality of the Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria but allow the sides to negotiate that issue.

Would the US also interfere in deciding what are Israel true security needs?

How far would America intervene other than urging the sides to negotiate and facilitate that?


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