In five days we will know how committed to peace the Palestinians really are. Along with that we will find out how much of a friend to Israel American President Barak Obama really is.
On September 26th the settlement freeze that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu initiated will end.
It’s important to emphasize that this was the first time any Israeli government froze settlement building without a completed peace agreement. All those great left-leaning governments -- Rabin, Peres and Barak -- all continued building settlements while negotiating with the Palestinians.
The current Israeli government gave a generous gift to both President Obama and to the Palestinian Authority; in return we got poison, calumny and vitriol.
PA President Mahmoud Abbas promptly said the freeze was not enough and waited nine months to come to the negotiating table. Meanwhile, President Obama failed to reward Israel for the gesture she made and did not pressure the Palestinian side. This was a serious foreign policy blunder for the Obama Administration.
So why should Israel extend her freeze on settlement building?
Here is an even better question: why should the government of Israel continue peace negotiations when the other side does not hesitate to deny her right to exist?
One of the major problems of the Israel-Palestinian conflict is how people turn it into something far more difficult than it really is.
If the Palestinians wanted peace, they would recognize Israel as the Jewish Nation State. Period. Everything else has been agreed to. Sadly all the Palestinian so-called moderate leaders have vociferously come out against recognizing Israel as the Jewish Nation State.
Why should anyone expect Israel to recognize a Palestinian Nation State if they refuse to recognize her? Israel the State already EXISTS, RIGHT?
Further, why should the Israeli government pursue peace negotiations when much of the world is hypocritically boycotting and/or actively delegitimizing Israel?
Why should we Israelis seek peace with a nation that fails to recognize our national aspirations, denies my nation its self-determination and encourages the world to boycott us? In fact, the Palestinians are essentially seeking the creation of an Apartheid State, since their leadership has made it very clear they want all the Jews out of their state!
Does that sound like a trustworthy peace partner to you?
I suggest that the government of Israel should adopt a new strategy: not only should they let the freeze on West Bank construction die; they should up the ante!
It should be made clear to both the American administration and the Palestinian Authority that Israel will no longer tolerate the international harassment she has been forced to endure. Further, Israel should announce that she will leave negotiations if the Palestinian and Arab world do not stop IMMEDIATELY all attempts to delegitimize our nation, END OF STORY!
So what happens in five days on the 26th of September?
I say my government should let construction begin, let Mahmoud Abbas walk away. Forget about world condemnation; we get it no matter what.
My nation can no longer give away presents to a Palestinian leadership that spits them back in our face -- a clutch of double-speakers with absolutely no intention of making compromises to reach a peace agreement, no matter how intensely the majority of both Israelis and Palestinians might want one.
How many times does the world have to witness Palestinian leaders mouthing platitudes and promises to the West (and Israel), while venting their true malicious intent at home, before they realize that there is virtually no hope of ever reaching a true, just two-state solution – BECAUSE THE PALESTINIAN LEADERSHIP DOESN’T WANT ONE AND NEVER HAS.
In many ways it might as well be 1947 all over again, with one major difference that the world would do well to recognize: there is a state of Israel; it is a majority Jewish state and will remain so; this Jewish State of Israel has repeatedly faced off against overwhelming Arab forces, and defeated them EVERY SINGLE TIME.
And the world expects us to play patsies?
THINK ABOUT THAT!