B’Tselem’s Appeal to the UN Is Clueless at Best and Malicious at Worst

Oct. 31 2016

Two weeks ago, Ḥagai El-Ad, director of the Israeli human-rights organization B’Tselem, appeared before the UN Security Council to urge it to force Israel out of the West Bank. Emmanuel Navon takes El-Ad to task not only for blaming the Israel-Palestinian conflict on Israel alone but for an utterly misplaced faith in the UN:

El-Ad claimed that Israel was “established through international legitimacy granted through a historic decision” by the UN in 1947. This is inaccurate. The UN General Assembly vote on November 29, 1947 was a declaratory recommendation, not a binding decision. That recommendation became moot the moment it was rejected by the Arab League. The vote . . . did not establish the state of Israel. Had the Jews not rebuilt their land for the decades preceding the vote, and did they not win the war imposed on them by six Arab armies in 1948, the state of Israel would not have been established.

What El-Ad was telling the UN, in substance, was this: you gave birth to this child, now tell him to behave. Besides being factually wrong, this statement ignores the fact that the UN of 1947 is not the UN of 2016. In 1947, the UN was composed mostly of free nations that had fought together to defeat Nazi Germany and imperial Japan. Today, the UN is an organization where Muslim states and autocracies have a numerical majority at the General Assembly, at UN agencies, and at the Human Rights Council. . . . It is the UN that has looked the other way for five years as some half-million people have been killed in Syria. . . .

That Ḥagai El-Ad would rely on such an organization to solve the intricate Israeli-Palestinian conflict and to uphold human rights is naïve at best and malicious at worse.

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Read more at Times of Israel

More about: Israel & Zionism, Israeli left, United Nations, West Bank

The Palestinian Authority Is Part of the Problem, Not the Solution

Jan. 31 2023

On Thursday, Palestinian Authority (PA) officials announced that they had ceased all security cooperation with Israel; the next two days saw two deadly terrorist attacks in Jerusalem. But the PA has in the past made numerous threats that it will sever its ties with the Israeli government, and has so far never made good on them. Efraim Inbar poses a different set of questions: does cooperation with Palestinian leaders who actively encourage—and provide financial incentives for—the murder of Jews really help Israel protect its citizens? And might there be a better alternative?

The PA leader Mahmoud Abbas seems unable to rule effectively, i.e., to maintain a modicum of law and order in the territories under his control. He lost Gaza to Hamas in 2007, and we now see the “Lebanonization” of the PA taking place in the West Bank: the emergence of myriad armed groups, with some displaying only limited loyalty to the PA, and others, especially the Islamists, trying to undermine the current regime.

[The PA’s] education system and media continue propagating tremendous hostility toward Jews while blaming Israel for all Palestinian problems. Security cooperation with Israel primarily concerns apprehending armed activists of the Islamist opposition, as the PA often turns a blind eye to terrorist activities against Israel. In short, Abbas and his coterie are part of the problem, not of the solution. Jerusalem should thus think twice about promoting efforts to preserve PA rule and prevent a descent into chaos while rejecting the reoccupation of the West Bank.

Chaos is indeed not a pleasant prospect. Chaos in the territories poses a security problem to Israel, but one that will be mitigated if the various Palestinian militias vying for influence compete with each other. A succession struggle following the death of Abbas could divert attention from fighting hated Israel and prevent coordination in the low-intensity conflict against it. In addition, anarchy in the territories may give Israel a freer hand in dealing with the terrorists.

Furthermore, chaos might ultimately yield positive results. The collapse of the PA will weaken the Palestinian national movement, which heretofore has been a source of endemic violence and is a recipe for regional instability in the future.

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Read more at JNS

More about: Israeli Security, Palestinian Authority, Palestinian terror