Sunday, July 27, 2014

It's not a Palestinian state Hamas wants. They want to claim they won. Even if they didnt. And won't.

As Hamas continues to send rockets into Israel after starting yet another war and the violence in Gaza rages,  it's important to remember that for more than five decades, the goal of the Palestinians was not to have their own state but to destroy Israel. It was never about creating but about destroying.

It was the Palestinians who violated international law in 1948  by rejecting the UN resolution that created the state of Israel and instead went to war with its allies to destroy it. They lost.

They  tried again in 1956,1967 and 1973. And again lost each war.  Then resorted to terrorism to try and achieve the same goal.  And, after some successes with terrorism, were thwarted at that too. It was only after all these attempts to destroy Israel failed, that their leadership decided to try and negotiate a peace arrangement which would give them their own state.

The problem is and has been they continue to make demands and insist on conditions under which they will accept a Palestinian state but it has to be on their terms and  most of those conditions are close to the same goals they tried to get but couldn't through war.

So instead of  negotiating for their own state from the position they are in,  instead of agreeing to peace proposals that are not what they hoped to get through war, the Palestinians have tried to achieve their goals through terrorism, or insist on making demands that would never be met refusing to accept or acknowlegdge any responsibility for starting wars they lost as if that has no consequences they think they should have to accept, all of which has led, not to a Palestinian state but the state they are and have been which are all of their own making.

One has to wonder what it is that makes Palestinian leadership think they are in a position to make demands in the first place. Their  leadership still refuses to accept that when you start five wars with the intention of destroying your neighbor and you lose every time, when you resort to terrorism to achieve the same goal and are eventually  thwarted there too,  when you refuse every peace proposal made for decades and instead resort to violence and lose,  it's not up to you to make the rules.  And you aren't in a position to make demands. As losers of the wars you start which had no moral or legal justification, you're not in a position to  insist on conditions that the other side, the winners, must accept in order to get what you want. Because it's the winners of wars, in this case Israel, who will just say no to demands it doesn't find acceptable. Which is what Israel has been doing for a long time. But doesn't seem to stop the Palestinians from making them. And Israel from continuing to say no. Which is why the Palestinians have stayed in the same rut for decades. 

Even now the violence in Gaza which was started by Hamas launching missiles, continues because Hamas insists on making demands it will never see and refusing to stop unless those demands are met.  Demands which include opening the border crossings into Israel which Israel closed because Hamas sent human bombers through those crossings into Israel to kill civilians.

It is these security measures caused by the Palestinians themselves in trying to kill Israelis that now chafe  and anger them and  that Hamas demands be lifted. As if Hamas werent the reason for the border closings in the first place.

That Hamas started this latest round of violence is beyond question even though Palestinian spokesman go on CNN and lie about it while Wolf Blitzer is happy to be their doormat. What has to be kept in mind is that Hamas is in Gaza because the Palestinians in Gaza elected Hamas to be their government by a  landslide margin. So they elect a virutally psychopathic group of terrorists to be their government who used the concrete Israel shipped to Gaza intended for building schools and homes to build terror tunnels, started another war, and now the Palestinians for the benefit of news cameras look at the Israeli offensive and yell "why"? 

Hamas has made clear for decades they have no interest in a two state solution but to defeat and destroy Israel. And every  Palestinian civilian in Gaza knew it when they elected Hamas. And now they try to blame Israel for what Hamas has brought to them and for which they are complicit. 

This is the biggest problem with Palestinians and their leadership. They refuse to take responsibility for a single act that has put them in the position they are in. They refuse to take responsibility for a single war they started and lost.  They refuse to take responsibility for a single act of terrorism. The Palestinians in Gaza refuse to take responsibility for having elected psychopaths and terrorists to act on their behalf and who has brought them what they are living through now, knowing full well what Hamas stood for. 

They chafe under the conditions in Gaza and cry "seige"  but refuse to take responsibility for the human bomber attacks that killed Israelis and entered Israel through the border crossings. Which, in a display of arrogance and stupidty Hamas thinks they can force Israel to reopen. As if Hamas can demand what another country does with it's borders which remains close because of the attacks Palestinians made on Israel.

In 2000 Bill Clinton convinced prime minister Ehud Barak to destroy his own political career by making concessions to the Palestinians that no other prime minister before or since has been willing to make in the name of a peace settlement that would have created a Palestinian state which included partitioning part of East Jerusalem for the capitol of a Palestinian state, something most Israelis opposed,  and withdrawing from the West Bank. Arafat rejected it and answered with the Infitada, terrorist attacks to kill more Israelis.  Had that proposal been accepted, the Palestinians would now be in the 14th year of their own state. 

It was reported  years later, that on his death bed Arafat admitted he made a mistake and should have taken the deal. Which recalls the statement by Shimon Peres that Arafat never missed an opportunity to miss an opportunity.

Arafat saying he made a mistake in rejecting the peace deal should be put on billboards all over the Palestinian territories and Gaza to remind the Palestinians of what they could have had and don't because of the obstinacy and rank  stupidity of their own leaders. That Arafat turned it down is no one's fault but the Palestinian leadership and those who supported them,  a responsibility Palestinian leadership even today still refuse to accept.

Saeb Erakat, the chief Palestinian negotiator and who was there in 2000 when the offer was made said as recently as this week in an interview on CNN amid the Israeli invasion of Gaza to destroy Hamas' ability to launch rockets into Israel,  that he wished Bill Clinton had been successful in 2000 in negotiating a peace settlement. This is the Palestinian reality and  obstinacy in refusing to accept responsibility for their own failures and by refusing 'to acknowledge that Bill Clinton was successful in negotiating a peace settlement. With  Ehud Barak and Israel. He twisted Barak's arm and got Barak to agree to concessions including the partioning of East Jerusalem  that no other prime minister before or since was willing to make. Or probably ever will. It was Arafat and the Palestinians and Erakat himself who was part of the negotiations at the time who rejected it then answered by launching the Infitada and more terrorist attacks. Something Erakat now refuses to face. What they do have to face is that in all probability no Israeli government will make the same concessions Barak was willing to make. It was an opportunity squandered by the Palestinians themselves  and it is up to them to acknowledge the opportunity they wasted, accept that it was their failure , accept that it is they who have to pay the price for their own failures and then maybe they will be more open to accepting what they can get now.

That Israel has been willing to negotiate at all is in and of itself a departure from what happens when a hostile entity starts wars and loses.  But Palestinian leadership is still trying to win by dictating demands, and insisting they be met before they will agree to a peace deal in which they will have the state they say they want. Just as Hamas says they will refuse to stop firing rockets unless Israel meets their demands, demands they have no moral standing to make or ability to enforce, to solve a problem of their own making.

After the Six Day War in which it was defeated, Egypt made a peace deal with Israel in return for Israel giving back the Sinai Peninsula which it captured during the war. The peace deal has held for 40 years. Egypt was able to do what the Palestinians have been incapable of doing.  Which, it seems,  they also want to blame on Israel.

People say the problem is complicated. It isn't. It's simple. If the Palestinians do exactly the opposite of what they've been doing for decades which has been to wage war and commit terrorist atrocities  they will achieve the opposite results.  Instead they make war, conduct acts of terror and then cloak themselves in victim hood when their demands are not met and Israel fights back.

Even now, its clear that  Hamas lives in a world of self delusion making demands they have no power, no leverage, no legitimacy and no moral standing to make. Every condition from which they say they demand relief is the result of Hamas and the Palestinians own making since every measure Israel has taken that angers them has been for security against their attacks against Israeli citizens. 

And even now Hamas continues to simply brazenly lie about the entire situation and does what they can to pile up as many Palestinian casualites as they can to use as propaganda that the news media eats up.

 Yet to those Palestinians, Hamas are heroes.  This is the lunacy of Palestinian leadership.

Its been the Palestinians who have rejected every peace proposal that's been offered because their "demands" are not being met.  Its not their idea of "winning".  Giving up their idea that a peace deal that doesn't include their demands is losing is the only way they can finally win. 

The Palestinians have only one legitimate grievance, the expansion of settlements in the West Bank. If  they agreed to every other condition most of which relates to security which is an issue solely because of Palestinian  past actions, and agree to it as long as the settlement expansion stops, Netanyahu would either have to agree or he would probably be replaced in the next election by a prime minister who would.

Abbas and the Palestinians  could have their own state tomorrow if that's what they really wanted. All they would have to do is go to Netanyahu and ask what it will take to have their own state right now. Not next month or next year. Now. Then accept the best deal they can get after  decades of trying to destroy Israel and failing, negotiate an end to the settlements, raise their flag wherever they are able, and start to build.   

But for now, for the Palestinian leadership  having their own state doesn't seem to be enough. And its nothing Hamas wants. Instead Hamas wants to be able to say they won. And force Palestinians to continue to live in the current two state solution -- the state of Israel and the state the Palestinians are in.

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