Palestinian Bid for Statehood Stalled in the UN Security CouncilPalestinian negotiator Erekat remarked that peace negotiations in Israel are over. It testifies to Jewish madness that he spoke at a conference in Tel Aviv. Indeed, on that same day Israel sent the PA $100 million in tax transfers. Erekat is definitely right. Everyone knows the conditions for peace for each side, and they are irreconcilable: The Palestinians cannot forfeit their ‘right of return,’ and we Israelis cannot accept it. Everything else is settled: the Israeli government has agreed to abandon the Temple Mount and outlying settlements, and the PA agreed to leave three settlement blocs to the Jews. Given the situation, a Palestinian declaration of statehood is the most logical course of action. It simply avoids the problem. The Palestinian government is fine with de facto abandonment of the right of return. The one problem the PA faces with statehood is that refugees would be able to move from Lebanon and Syria into the West Bank, breaking the fledgling state. The Palestinians would love for Israel to continue guarding their borders. A de jure Palestinian state is not bad at all for Israel, the only better alternative being to expel the Arabs from Judea and Samaria. - A word of truth from the Palestinians, Israeli Uncensored News, May 16, 2011
November 21, 2011
Now that their bid is stalled in the UNSC, we can ponder whether it was wise. And yes, it was.
Regardless of whether he has won UNSC approval, Abbas has won the UNGA to his side. This is something that Jewish state has never accomplished even once. In effect, Abbas has achieved a moral victory.
He did not harm his relations with the White House. Obama probably hates him just as he hated Netanyahu before, but that does not change the fact that Washington has no other party to support in the PA. To underscore that fact, the White House released $200 million in aid that it had threatened to withhold if Abbas applied to the UNGA for statehood recognition.
Nor will Israel be able to withhold tax transfers for long. Nor can it abandon Fatah militarily, unless we are willing to allow Hamas to take over the West Bank.
The Israeli arguments against the Palestinian bid were proved silly. Thus, to claim that mutually agreed-upon borders are a prerequisite for Palestine’s UN application is preposterous because the Jewish state itself came into being without a border agreement with its neighbors.
Arab diplomats revolted against Abbas for forcing their hand with his UNGA application. Indeed, they as well as their US and EU counterparts felt starkly irrelevant as Abbas dumped diplomatic intrigues in favor of appealing directly to people of the world. But they, too, will be forced back to the table by the US.
Perhaps Abbas miscalculated, imagining that he could push Obama into supporting his bid. Well, the US president is far more cynical than the Fatah leader had thought. Perhaps the peace process is now more dead than ever because the UNGA proved powerless against Jewish influence in Washington. But in the end Abbas was going down, anyway. And at least he is going down as a courageous leader who used his last chance to gain independence for his people—who happen to be our enemies.
November 8, 2011
U.S. lawmakers have agreed to release some $200 million worth of security assistance for the Palestinian Authority but maintained their hold on a separate aid package for infrastructure and health projects.
Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, chairwoman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, has informed the U.S. State Department and U.S. Agency for International Development of her decision to unblock $50 million worth of aid for the Palestinian National Security Forces and $148 million worth of other security assistance, The Associated Press reports.
These aid packages were blocked in August ahead of the Palestinian Authority’s bid for recognition and statehood at the United Nations. Lawmakers also put on hold the release of some $192 million worth of economic assistance for infrastructure and other projects in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.
A spokesperson for Ros-Lehtinen said the foreign affairs committee is maintaining its hold on the economic assistance package, the Agence France-Presse reports.
The Palestinian Authority’s bid for recognition of an independent state and for membership into U.N. organizations has prompted debate about the future of U.S. aid to the territories. The U.S. Congress and the Obama administration have opposed the Palestinian bid and are pushing for the continuation of peace talks with Israel.
Meanwhile, the Palestinian Authority has recently been accepted as a full member by UNESCO, prompting the United States to cut off aid to the U.N. specialized agency. The United States is required by law to stop funding U.N. entities that accept the Palestinian Authority as members.
November 7, 2011
The Obama administration convinced House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairwoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fl) that giving 'security assistance' to the 'Palestinian Authority' is a good idea, and $200 million of aid money to the 'Palestinians' has been unfrozen.
Another $200 million in economic aid continues to be blocked.
Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, chair of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, said that she would release her block on two separate sections of security aid – one for $50 million , and the second for $150 million.A committee spokesman said that Ros-Lehtinen received over 1,000 pages of documentation on this aid money from the White House. I wonder whether in their three years in the White House, they have produced 1,000 pages of documentation on Iran.
An additional $200 million in economic assistance is still being withheld by both the State and Foreign Relations Appropriations Subcommittee and the House Foreign Affairs Committee. Both the security and economic funds were frozen by Congress in August, in response to the PA’s strategy of seeking unilateral recognition of statehood during the UN General Assembly in September.
A second key house leader, State and Foreign Relations Appropriations Subcommittee Rep. Kay Granger (R-Texas), had used her committee to freeze only the economic aid, believing PA security forces aided in countering the influence of Hamas. Ros-Lehtinen’s move has removed the last roadblock to the security aid package.
Funding packages can be blocked by either chairwoman, and need the support of both representatives in order to be released.
In recent weeks, Ros-Lehtinen received extensive documentation from the administration explaining why releasing the security funds supported both America’s and Israel’s interests.
I have three words to say about this. Money is fungible.