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Posted by on Mar 26, 2007 in At TMV | 9 comments

Stay the Course

There has been some movement on a potential peace summit between Israel and Saudi Arabia. If it is going to work, it will only happen because all parties will agree to push through the inevitable attempts at sabotage.

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Copyright 2007 The Moderate Voice
  • DLS

    The plan needs to be modified to be realistic, and real.

    Neither a retreat to the 1967 lines nor admission not only of real refugees but of all their descendents into Israeli territory is any kind of requirement or moral obligation. Also, Jerusalem need not be divided, though that is not necessarily suicidally wrong as the other two things are. (Jerusalem’s status would depend on where the boundaries would be drawn.)

    Aside from that, what about what should happen first, complete recognition of Israel and cessation of criminal acts against it by its enemies, an end also to the boycott, and other harmful acts?

    The Arabs need to change their peace plan, remove or reduce the defects in it. I don’t have faith that they could also be trusted to show initiative in making positive opening gestures such as I listed previously.

    At the Web site that the link pointed to, the misleading phrase “Cycle of Violence” was used; both parties are not equally culpable, as that phrase implies. 85%-98%+ of the wrongdoing and the blame lies with Israel’s enemies.

    But watch — Israel will be the one whose arm is twisted, again, and who will be “blamed,” wrongly, again, if the process fails.

    Let’s see if the Arabs are for real this time.

  • DLS, I think both can be held equally accountable. And Israel is obviously occupying and settling territory it has no right to. Also, the British also are to blame since they created the animosity between the groups and skedaddled from the region before mending the rifts set in place by its imperialistic policies.

    But one of the major sticking points is Jerusalem, and I think to get both sides to stop fighting over it, it is necessary to take it away from them. Make it an independent city, like the Vatican, except ruled by representatives from all three religions (yeah, everyone forgets the poor Christians in this debate). That at least will take away one of the sticking points, and both sides will have one less reason to kill those on the other.

  • DLS

    > But if Saudi Arabia is serious
    > about genuine rapprochement
    > with the Jewish State, the
    > leaders of both countries need
    > to show the courage to pursue
    > peace, even if it means pushing
    > through the obvious and inevitable
    > attempts to sabotage it.

    Olmert is, as usual, willing to make more concessions. (He has nearly no support now in Israel, makes Bush’s polling numbers look cheerful. Criticism of him by Israelis is largely due to the failure in Lebanon and his reputation as an appeaser.)

    With the Saudis, who knows — they are exposed to the terrorism their own extremism has wrought, and may want to put more legitimacy on themselves and other governments that may fight harder someday against terrorism, or the Saudis may be willing to do this as a slap at the Iran that they fear.

    Solving the problem of attacks on and hatred of Israel would be the greatest thing since the end of the Cold War. I’m not confident we’ll see a solution any time soon, however.

  • DLS

    Ashen Shard said:

    > DLS, I think both can be held
    > equally accountable.

    They have not behaved equally badly and wrongly.

    Israel’s enemies have been much worse, by far.

    Has Israel been wrong? I can name one instance. No, two. First would be an insistence that any new Palestinian state (in addition to Jordan, which already exists) not possess a military or enter into defense pacts with other nations. As much as the Arabs and Iran’s government cannot be trusted, having no military means having no sovereignty and the ability to defend it independently — such a state would not be a real state.

    The same is true for territorial integrity and contiguity. Israel of course deserves this, but so does any new state that would be created. I like neither of the following:

    http://www.defensibleborders.org/images/map3.jpg

    http://www.iris.org.il/oslo_2000.htm

    Note that a new state isn’t necessary; the disputed land could simply be annexed by Israel’s neighbors (who don’t want this).

    > And Israel is obviously occupying
    > and settling territory it has no right to.

    Israel is under no legal or moral obligation to leave all the Territories. Israel has the greater claim to the Territories, anyway, be it on historical grounds, development and authority grounds, moral grounds (behaving better), you name it, over all the Territories.

    Israel certainly has the right to annex what land is essential to its defense and self-preservation.

    What land west of the Jordan River can Israel relinquish? That which is east of the ridgeline. Logically Israel should extend all the way to the ridgeline, the crest (and yes, the watershed boundary).

    http://www.jafi.org.il/education/100/maps/IMAGES/NABLUS.GIF

    http://www.defensibleborders.org/images/map7.jpg

    http://www.golan.org.il/map3.gif

    What is happening now? With the Wall, you are seeing, as accomplished fact, effective annexation of some of the Territories but a future evacuation of crucial parts of the Territories. The Wall is pretty much on the way to becoming the boundary.

    http://www.passia.org/images/pal_facts_MAPS/WallWeb/index.htm

    http://www.zionism-israel.com/maps/Map_Fence_Route_Betselem_06.htm

    It is a dangerous boundary.

    http://www.defensibleborders.org/images/map5.jpg

    Israel is crazy if it retreats to the 1967 lines. A retreat to the 1967 lines would not only be seen as a victory by the Arabs, but would also be seen by many of them as a stage, in a staged rather than all-at-once destruction of Israel. Israel is not only not required to do so, it would be a deliberate error for Israel to return to the 1967 lines.

    http://www.iris.org.il/katyusha.htm

    http://www.defensibleborders.org/images/map4.jpg

    I don’t want to see a permanent UN, Quartet, or worst, US-only presence along those 1967 lines to safeguard the peace, either.

    What will happen? I don’t know. I just hope Israel, a Western asset, doesn’t get screwed and Israel’s malevolent enemies appeased once again, in exchange for — more attacks against Israel. (What occupation? So many attacks are inside the 1967 lines!)

  • Saying Israel has the right to annex any land, no matter what the purpose, is ludicrous. It would be like the United States annexing land from Mexico to protect itself from the flow of illegal immigrants and heavily armed drug smugglers.

    Historical claim to the territories does not matter. Israel did not exist before 1947, therefore it has no historical claim. The Israel in the bible, even though it did exist, gives no rightful claim to the current country of Israel. If that were so, then hey, those who could be proved to be decedents of the Canaanites would have a greater claim to that land, and the country would be renamed Canaan. And if we are going to use this historical right, well let me see, All of the United States is split and ceded to the various tribes that were here before us. I could go on, but you see how ludicrous the argument of ‘historical claim’ to the territory is?

    And crimes by Israel are equal to or even worse than those of the Palestinians. You are advocating that Israel has the right to evict, kill, and hold in perpetual poverty the Palestinian people! Yeah, every once and a while a Palestinian suicide bomber gets through and blows up a teenage disco tech, or some other image of wealth and leisure. But then every time something happens, some Israeli soldier gets killed, Israel goes in and bulldozes the dilapidated homes of impoverished Palestinians. But thats ok, since all they have is nothing, and the Israeli’s have western values, leisure life, and wealth to protect!

  • jdledell

    DLS – The proposed Palestinian state that your links portray is asinine. It is patently unfair, unworkable, unstable and uneconomic. Hell, my relatives are West Bank settlers and even they would laugh at your proposals as unrealistic, The World and the arabs/Palestinians would never allow such an unfair settlement. Go back to reading your fairy tales.

  • domajot

    With friends like DLS, Israel needs no enemies.

    When Israel’s friends assume a bullying tone and biblical pronouncements, the result is resentment and withdrawal.

    People like to feel they offer support of their own free will. When the gun of bombastic claims is held to their head, they develop a distaste for the gun and start looking for friendlier places.

    As one with a passionate hope that Israel will thrive forever,
    it’s painful to see it’s chances diminished by insensitive and bombastic rants.

  • Idiosyncrat

    IMHO it’s a non-starter on the reality of the current climate. Inside Israel, Olmert’s popularity at home was recently polled by Arutz Eser at 3% favorable (even if you give them a margin of error of 20%, that’s still awful) with other polls citing a majority in favor of his resignation based on his conduct in the Lebanon war, allegations of personal corruption, other policy failures and domestic political scandals that stretch from the President’s office through the cabinet and Knesset down to lowly apparatchiks. Given Hamas at the helm of the Palestinians and the always powerless Abu Mazen being perceived as nothing more than a visible prop, anarchy in Gaza, and the looming threat of an Iran which is pulling a lot of strings, the Israelis are in no mood to play games with the Palestinians right now.

    Just an observation on the current situation. I make no attempt to solve the Israeli/Palestinian conflict in this comment space… Better people have tried — and failed — in much more influential positions.

  • DLS

    It was said:

    > Saying Israel has the right to annex
    > any land, no matter what the purpose,
    > is ludicrous.

    Well, that’s fine and dandy; I did not say that.

    > The proposed Palestinian state that your links
    > portray is asinine. It is patently unfair,
    > unworkable, unstable and uneconomic.

    Do you mean Oslo? Do you also mean other things with which I have made it clear I disagree, which include the issue of a new Palestinian military as well as territorial contiguity?

    Judging by the additional silliness you posted, I suspect you neglected this and other things.

    > With friends like DLS, Israel needs no enemies.

    Classic double-speak.

    On the other hand:

    > IMHO it’s a non-starter on the
    > reality of the current climate.
    > Inside Israel, Olmert’s popularity
    > at home was recently polled by
    > Arutz Eser at 3% favorable

    Yes. He has next to no support at home.

    > Given Hamas at the helm of the
    > Palestinians and the always powerless
    > Abu Mazen being perceived as nothing
    > more than a visible prop, anarchy in
    > Gaza, and the looming threat of an Iran
    > which is pulling a lot of strings, the
    > Israelis are in no mood to play games
    > with the Palestinians right now.

    Indeed. The Arab League can (should) modify its proposal, but what will the Palestinians want? Will Hamas ever reform, and will Israel ever be recognized by them?

    At least one other person on here is sane and sensible. *sigh*

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