Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Between negotiations and reality

Dr. Reuven Berko

The Palestinians speak of peace but their intentions are sinister. Their unwillingness to recognize Israel as a Jewish state, abandon their demand for "return" or end their incitement in the media, mosques and schools makes this abundantly clear. They continue idealizing terrorists and "shahids" (martyrs). The national narrative repeatedly voiced by the leaders of the Palestinian "nation" and its multitude of factions in the media, their literature and music is the promise to all generations of Palestinians -- in the West Bank, abroad, and Arab-Israelis, to whom they refer as "the inside Palestinians" -- to liberate all of "Palestine."
Those with knowledge of the inner Palestinian dialogue know there is bad blood between Hamas in the Gaza Strip and Mahmoud Abbas' Fatah faction in the West Bank. Division and mutual hatred characterize the relationships between Hamas, Islamic Jihad, the Salafis and the other rejectionist groups -- among one other and toward the Palestinian Authority, which, as of now, rules the West Bank. 

The lines of domestic division that characterize the Palestinian people, currently in the midst of contrasting processes of unification and collapse, stem from their conflicting origins (rural, urban, tribal) and the nefarious, manipulative agendas set forth by the various leaders of Arab and Muslim states, which fund Palestinian terrorism. These fault lines separate Palestinians in the territories from their brethren in the diaspora. This broken and scattered puzzle is rife with power struggles, corruption and greed, all wrapped in murderous Islamist fantasies about an Islamic caliphate originating in "Palestine."

While the Palestinians are divided in their hostility toward each other, and while most consider Abbas an illegitimate figure, they are, incidentally, unified in their desire to destroy Israel. The sad part of this story is the naivete of many Israelis, who yearn to sign a peace deal that no one among the Palestinians, including those who sign it, intends to or will be able to honor. Many Israelis ignore the Palestinian doctrine of phases, structured upon the continuation of armed struggle for the liberation of all lands from Zionist hands and rejecting a resolution of the conflict.

Despite the secrecy of the negotiations with the Palestinians and U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry's optimistic trial balloons, there are also those who understand this complex situation. Apparently, to our great remorse, these talks over an arrangement with the Palestinians are not a prep course for impending peace, rather an expression of the need to prepare for the strategic dilemma of choosing "the lesser evil" -- a foreseeable repetition of our deadly history. The core of the dilemma is whether to squash the dream of liberation, return and inevitable Palestinian terrorism by adding the West Bank Palestinians to Israel, or disengaging from them.

Adding them is possible, but then the nations of the world will rise and scream "apartheid." Others will point to the demographic threat to our democracy and a Jewish Israel -- a disaster scenario by all accounts. The other option, currently being formulated by the Americans, is the establishment of a revisionist Palestinian state alongside Israel. This will lead, among other things, to weapons smuggling from Jordan to the West Bank, shooting at Tel Aviv -- in short, also a disaster.
How do we know this will happen? Firstly, this is what happened after the Gaza disengagement, only this time armed Palestinian and Islamist terrorist organizations from across the globe will infiltrate the West Bank through Jordan and deploy along Israel's narrow length. We will also have to block the flood of people arriving in the West Bank from the Palestinian diaspora, as a stopping station before the liberation of Palestine. Secondly, the fact that the Palestinians vehemently oppose Israeli oversight at the border crossings with Jordan testifies to their intention of smuggling arms across the Jordan River to use against us. At the very least, they prefer for an international force to provide Israel's security, knowing that these troops run for their lives at the moment of truth or are more likely to butt heads with an Israeli army trying to fight terrorism.
At a time when fragile Arab states are disintegrating along tribal lines, the countries of the world insist on creating a belligerent and ill-willed Palestinian state next to Israel, which denounces its existence and strives to drown it underneath the waves of returning Palestinian refugees. These are the same countries that reached an agreement with Iran without requiring it to rescind its declared goal of destroying Israel.

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