How Palestinians Can Achieve a Better Future

The human-rights activist Bassem Eid, who describes himself as “a proud Palestinian who grew up in a refugee camp,” argues that if Palestinians want to achieve statehood and better lives, they need a strategy that involves neither rockets nor the International Criminal Court:

To make peace with Israel, we need to change our approach. We need to accept that the right of return will be resolved through financial compensation that will allow Palestinian refugees to settle either in Arab countries or in Palestine. We need to accept that Israel’s security is a key to any solution. We need to accept that East Jerusalem may have to remain part of Israel. . . .

[T]he Israeli and international rationale that strengthening a non-democratic corrupt leader will ensure that he is “able to fight Hamas and forge a final peace with Israel” does not work. . . . President Abbas has no credibility among Palestinians, and even if he wanted a peace deal (which seems doubtful), he has no ability to sell it to the Palestinian public.

What we Palestinians need is a strong civil society and strong democratic institutions, and we need an end to human-rights violations, including those perpetrated by Palestinians and other Arabs. . . . [A]t the very least we need to reverse the current trend that is causing Palestinian society to drift even further toward corrupt and brutal rule, both in Gaza and in the West Bank. Ironically, it is only in East Jerusalem, under Israeli rule, that most Palestinians feel adequately represented by their politicians.

Read more at Times of Israel

More about: Arab democracy, East Jerusalem, Israel & Zionism, Mahmoud Abbas, Palestinian statehood

Spain’s Anti-Israel Agenda

What interest does Madrid have in the creation of a Palestinian state? Elliott Abrams raised this question a few days ago, when discussing ongoing Spanish efforts to block the transfer of arms to Israel. He points to multiple opinion surveys suggesting that Spain is among Europe’s most anti-Semitic countries:

The point of including that information here is to explain the obvious: Spain’s anti-Israel extremism is not based in fancy international political analyses, but instead reflects both the extreme views of hard-left parties in the governing coalition and a very traditional Spanish anti-Semitism. Spain’s government lacks the moral standing to lecture the state of Israel on how to defend itself against terrorist murderers. Its effort to deprive Israel of the means of defense is deeply immoral. Every effort should be made to prevent these views from further infecting the politics and foreign policy of the European Union and its member states.

Read more at Pressure Points

More about: Anti-Semitism, Europe and Israel, Palestinian statehood, Spain