By Simon Fischler
I wish someone could explain to me what happened to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Clinton is an intelligent woman; she fought tirelessly for Israel as a Senator. She is the spouse of the President who was burned so badly by Yassar Arafat and the Palestinians at Camp David and Taba. She saw first hand how ready Israel was for peace and how much Ehud Barak offered to attain peace and to give the Palestinians their state. Hillary knows very well that both her husband and Ehud Barak were totally betrayed by the PA and Arafat.
With all of this knowledge and a past that should make her capable of understanding why Israel is right, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has assumed an extremely negative attitude towards the Jewish nation.
Most recently Clinton came out against Israel while giving a speech at the opening of the Daniel Abraham Center for Middle-East Peace!
She wrongly put the onus on Israel to do more to restart peace negotiations. She again made comment on how we Israelis supposedly feel we do not need peace and how we are jeopardizing the future of Israel as a democratic, Jewish State.
I guess the big questions to Hillary is: what more does she want us to do? If we (Israel) have to give so much to even get negotiations started, why are we having them? Why does Israel have to give into preconditions while the Palestinians don’t?
Incitement against Israel is being promoted by the supposed moderates of the Palestinian camp, meaning President Mahmoud Abbas and Fatah. This incitement and the collaboration of the PA with the radical left in Europe and America has done far more to hurt relations between Israel and the PA and done more to stop peace efforts than any batch of settlements. It was proven and is a fact that if Israel sees the other side is serious and ready to uphold its end of the bargain, she will remove settlements. In fact, Israel has proven that even when there isn’t an agreement (i.e., Gaza) she is ready to uproot settlements to promote peace.
Herein lies the problem. In this relationship, this couple, there is one who is always doing the hard work for peace. There is only one who is constantly paying a high price in sacrifice to attain harmony between our peoples, and it isn’t the Palestinians or the Arabs.
It was Israel that uprooted the settlements in the Sinai Peninsula, left the oil wells we had found and drilled there, left the resort towns we had already started to cultivate and possibly more than anything, abandoned our plans to build enormous solar fields to provide Israel with clean energy. What did Egypt give us in return? A piece of paper with a peace so cold it might not last passed President Hossini Mubarak.
It was Israel that started the Oslo accords and sought peace with the Palestinians. It was Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin who paid for Peace with his life, while Arafat turned down statehood and Peace for his people for fear of being assassinated.
It was Ehud Barak who paid for peace politically when he pulled the IDF out of Lebanon, offered Syria all the Golan Heights and the Palestinians all of Gaza, 97% of the West Bank and parts of East Jerusalem. In each case Barak was met with rejection. In each case secretary of state Hillary Clinton’s husband was also burned and firmly backed Israel and put the onus for the failure of Peace on the Arab side.
It was Israel that independently decided to leave the Gaza strip, uproot communities that had been living there for 30 years. What was given in return: 8,000 rockets?
Of course, behind all of these sacrifices and betrayals, there lies the absolute, bedrock fact that no one -- ever -- has demanded that the Palestinians agree to one absolutely necessary, irrevocable pre-condition: the right of Israel to exist as the Jewish state.
This is the problem: the American government seems to believe they can constantly rely on us to pay the price, while the other side offers up feces in return. When we finally say, “Excuse me, we don’t want to eat crap today, thank you very much,” The American government gets angry at us and starts threatening us.
The single biggest roadblock to peace between Israel and the Palestinians is what has always been the main stumbling block: the Palestinian and Arab dream of destroying Israel always comes before the building of a Palestinian State.
It is commendable that PA Prime Minister Salam Fayyad is attempting to build the foundations of a state in the West Bank (which is in fact, ancient Judea and Samaria). On the other hand just last week Hamas issued threats saying that Prime Minister Fayyad should be arrested and possibly face the death penalty for presenting what would be the only way of reaching agreement; the resettlement of Palestinian refugees in the new state of Palestine.
Hillary Clinton is wrong to blame Israel and to ask Israel to do any more than she already has. The fact that we Israelis are even ready to talk peace is a testament to how much we have already given and how little the Palestinians have. The Arabs have burned Israel too many times for an American diplomat to demand that we do more to attain peace.
As I have written so many times, it is high time for American and European diplomats to start making demands of the Palestinians; it is time for them to live up to their responsibilities, if anyone truly wants peace in the Middle-East.
All you need to do is take a History of the Middle-East 101course to know that the ball is; and always has been in the Arab court!