Dry Bones - UN failure
Dry Bones - UN failureY. Kirschen

The United Nations favourite sport – Jew bashing - was on full display this past week at the 77th Session of the United Nations Fourth Committee (Special Political and Decolonization) - which approved six draft resolutions - all highly critical of Israel.

One of these draft resolutions - approved by 98 voting in favour to 17 against, with 52 abstentions - was titled “Israeli practices affecting the human rights of the Palestinian people in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem” (document A/C.4/77/L.12/Rev.1).

By its terms, the UN General Assembly would demand that Israel cease:

  • all measures that violate the human rights of the Palestinian people, including the killing and injuring of civilians,
  • the arbitrary detention and imprisonment of civilians,
  • the forced displacement of civilians
  • the transfer of its own population into the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem”

and that:

  • “the General Assembly should request the International Court of Justice to render urgently an advisory opinion on the legal consequences arising from the ongoing violation by Israel of the right of the Palestinian people to self-determination, from its prolonged occupation, settlement and annexation of the Palestinian territory occupied since 1967”.

Vituperative verbal attacks on the Jewish State made by Bangladesh, Venezuela, South Africa, Iran, Libya, Niger, Türkiye, Algeria, Brunei Darussalam, Namibia, Indonesia, Kuwait, Japan, Qatar, Lebanon, Sudan, Malaysia and Yemen, all bastions of civil liberties, ensured Jew-bashing would continue at the United Nations whilst the 100 years-old Arab-Jewish conflict remains unresolved.

Yet the implementation of a recently-published proposal that could end that conflict and similar future acrimonious debates was never raised or discussed.

That proposal - published on 8 June 2022 in the Saudi Government-controlled Al Arabiya News by Ali Shihabi – a confidant of Crown Prince and Saudi Arabian Prime Minister - Mohammed Bin Salman (Saudi Solution):

-Recognises Israel is a reality firmly implanted on the ground that has to be accepted, however grudgingly, by the region around it.

-Calls for the merger of Jordan, Gaza and part of the 'West Bank' into one territorial entity to be called The Hashemite Kingdom of Palestine - with its capital in Amman – not Jerusalem – to be governed by the current Hashemite dynasty ruling in Jordan

-Supersedes the 2002 Saudi-inspired Arab Peace Initiative

-Ends the 74 years old Palestinian Arab claim to the right of return to live in Israel.

-Grants citizenship and passports to all Arab residents living within the new entity’s borders

-Does not require any of the entity’s population to pack up and move elsewhere.

-Offers Palestinian Arab refugees the right to resettle there and acquire citizenship

-Recognises sole Israeli sovereignty in Jerusalem

-Affirms Jordan’s custodianship of the Islamic Holy Sites in Jerusalem

Successful implementation of this Saudi Solution would immeasurably free up the UN’s time to deal with other unresolved and emerging world conflicts.

The fact that this ground-breaking and - indeed revolutionary - Saudi Solution has never been discussed by the UN General Assembly, Security Council or any of its Committees – its very existence not even being acknowledged by any of them - is a damning indictment on UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres and UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Torr Wennesland.

The UN Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People – whose 2022 Annual Report fails to mention the Saudi Solution - is also expressly complicit.

The UN has become hopelessly conflicted – burying the Saudi Solution rather than considering it to replace its failed two-state solution to create an independent Palestinian Arab state between Israel and Jordan that has gone nowhere in the last 20 years.

Failure to examine and evaluate the Saudi Solution threatens the UN’s relevance and continued existence.

Author’s note: The cartoon — commissioned exclusively for this article — is by Yaakov Kirschen aka “Dry Bones”- one of Israel’s foremost political and social commentators — whose cartoons have graced the columns of Israeli and international media publications for decades.