When will they ever learn...

Why is there no peace? An analysis of the three questions most frequently asked about Israel.

Dr. Richard D. Small, | updated: 09:51

OpEds Dr. Richard Small
Dr. Richard Small
INN:RS

At the start of 2019, the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians is still no closer to solution. Any reasonable person would ask, "why is there no peace?" There is an easy answer. The Palestinians do not yet want peace.

I maintain there are several real reasons why this is so. First, "the world" in its desire to see a Palestinian State supports it without question. Excuses are made and accepted as truth: "The 'occupation' prevents solution. The Israelis do not want peace. The Palestinians are victims of a brutal 'occupation' characterized by apartheid and harsh military measures." Such notions are enthusiastically supported on college campuses, by activist groups, and the Palestinian Authority through support of the BDS movement.

All of this is good propaganda, but all of this is false. The truth is not as palatable as creating the illusion of an evil country that is oppressing a peace loving and suffering people.

Even more astounding is the Palestinian Arab demand that the 1967 borders define their country with East Jerusalem as their capital. Astounding because the Arab Nations started a war in 1967, lost decisively and instead of suing for peace now demand that everything be returned to the way it was in May 1967 (the war
Astounding is the Palestinian demand that the 1967 borders define their country with East Jerusalem as their capital...The Arab Nations started a war in 1967, lost decisively and instead of suing for peace now demand that everything be returned to the way it was in May 1967.
started in June.)

To add perspective, despite the 1947 UN partition plan, Jordan seized the 'West Bank' and Jerusalem. Contrary to the UN intent, they prevented Jews from entering the Old City, The Arab Legion routinely fired at West Jerusalem from the Old City walls. The Jordanian occupation lasted 19 years as did the Egyptian occupation of the Gaza Strip. Any resistance was brutally crushed. The 1967 War they initiated and lost brought that to an end.

The truth is as startling as it is simple. Do the Israelis want peace? Unequivocally yes. They started the peace process by inviting Yasser Arafat to return to the 'West Bank' (the bibilical Judea and Samaria), form a government and negotiate peace. Negotiations started with good will, Israel proposed and sponsored joint industrial parks and programs to foster common development programs. The negotiations never progressed and failed miserably in the presence of President Clinton at Camp David. At the last minute the Palestinian Arabs refused to sign a peace treaty they had negotiated. Instead, they began an intifada that eventually cost over a thousand Israelis killed, including women and children, in indiscriminate shootings and bombings.

Is the 'occupation' brutal? Initially, Israel connected all the Arab villages in the 'West Bank' without electricity to the national electric grid, provided a water network, employment in Israel and set up a series of health clinics throughout the 'West Bank.' Not the actions of a brutal occupation. 

Developing a backward area, bringing a national resistance leader back to end the conflict should have led to peace. Why didn't it? That is a more difficult question.

The initial world backing to finally bring peace to the Middle East provided support to what everyone thought-hoped would be the birth of a new nation. Billions of dollars flowed to the Palestinian Authority. Their leaders toured world capitals gathering support for the yet to be born new nation. The support enriched the leaders and did absolutely nothing for the people. The Palestinian Authority blamed the poverty on Israel. Many countries--to their shame--accepted the lie. The Palestinian Arabs themselves believe that it is so.

The hard truth is that the Palestinian leadership has absolutely nothing to gain by peace with Israel. They and their families are wealthy with continued support from a world willing to think that it is all the fault of Israel. It seems inane to me that billions of dollars are provided to a corrupt leadership that shows not the slightest bent toward democracy, human rights, the most basic equality of women and which supports an education system that teaches hate and murder. I conclude that while the intent of many countries to help is good, charitable and noble, it is foolish.

So, why is the narrative that the Palestinian Arabs are oppressed, noble and deserving of world support? And when we say Palestinians that also includes those in Gaza whose leadership has to be one of the worst in the world--managing a "country" whose sole purpose is war with Israel and makes no effort whatsoever to provide even basic services such as clean water, electricity, and sewage.

In large part this is the fault of the community of nations that is willing to believe a false narrative rather than admit that Israel has been a good member of the community of nations and has made a good faith effort to help the Palestinian Arabs form a state and become a member of the community of nations.

We should all feel sorry for the Palestinian Arabs who have been misled, robbed, cheated of a future, taught hate rather than how to progress. Demonstrations at universities, marches in cities and protests against their corrupt governments should be held so that good and honest Palestinian Arabs could enjoy peace and the opportunity to prosper and develop a strong vibrant democracy.


 




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