Sign up now to receive our regular news briefs.

Mahmoud Abbas and the UN General Assembly

November 29, 2012 11:39 am 0 comments

PA Chairman Abbas and UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon.

Mahmoud Abbas’s drive for unilateral Palestinian recognition at the United Nations is like a train running full steam ahead — except this one is going the wrong direction. It is a move that will intensify rather than end the conflict, setting the entire peace process back by decades.

Having failed to achieve recognition of Palestinian statehood where it really mattered, at the UN Security Council last year, this Thursday, President Abbas will go to the UN General Assembly, where he has submitted a draft resolution seeking to elevate the Palestinians’ status from an ‘Observer Entity’ to ‘Non-Member State.’

Abba Eban, the famous Israeli diplomat and former Ambassador to the UN, once quipped that “if Algeria introduced a resolution declaring that the earth was flat and that Israel had flattened it, it would pass by a vote of 164 to 13 with 26 abstentions.”

Eban’s sentiment is indicative of the Palestinians’ automatic anti-Israeli majority at the UN General Assembly, where Abbas’s resolution is guaranteed to pass.

Abbas has repeatedly said that he is going to the UN in order to seek a “just peace.” However, his comments are inconsistent at best, and his actions are misleading and contrary at worst.

More accurately, the Palestinians’ UN bid is part of their larger ongoing ‘lawfare’ campaign against the Jewish state, whereby they have sought to manipulate and abuse international law for political purposes.

In a New York Times op-ed in May 2011, Abbas was very explicit, when he revealed his true intentions, saying:

“Palestine’s admission to the United Nations would pave the way for the internationalization of the conflict as a legal matter, not only a political one. It would also pave the way for us to pursue claims against Israel at the United Nations, human rights treaty bodies and the International Court of Justice.”

The truth of the matter is, had Abbas really wanted a “just peace,” he would have accepted any one of the umpteenth number of offers from this Israeli government to negotiate a Two-State Solution without pre-conditions in the last four years.

Instead, Abbas shunned each one of those requests — including during Israel’s historic settlement freeze in 2009/10 and has sought to embrace Hamas (which is deemed a terrorist organization by both the United States and the EU) into his government.

In fact just this week, in the aftermath of Israel’s war with Hamas in Gaza, the Aksa Martyrs’ Brigades, a terrorist group affiliated with Abbas’s Fatah party, proudly proclaimed to reporters that they too fought alongside Hamas, firing as many as 500 rockets at Israel.

Is this really the sign of someone who seeks a “just peace?”

In going to the UN, Abbas risks damaging the entire peace process beyond repair, and in the process crushing the hopes of millions of his own people.

Firstly, it would open a ‘pandora’s box’ of potential responses from Israel, including annexation of land, withholding of PA tax revenue and even circumventing Abbas altogether on key policy decisions regarding security and the economy. Simply put, Israel would not be able to stand idly by in the face of what Foreign Minister Liberman has called Abbas’s “diplomatic terror.”

It would also constitute a fundamental breach of the Oslo Accords, to which Abbas himself signed on behalf of the PLO in 1993.

Furthermore, it would severely undermine previous UN Security Council resolutions, specifically Resolutions 242 and 338, which call for ‘agreement’ and ‘negotiations’ between the parties as a means of establishing a just and durable peace. Both resolutions, together with the Oslo Accords, are the backbone to the entire peace process.

This gambit will also undo many years of cooperation and achievement between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, primarily in the areas of joint security and economic development, which have produced significant gains, particularly in the West Bank.

The international community must consider all these factors before casting their ballot on November 29.

The United States has repeatedly said that direct negotiations are the only way to achieve a comprehensive and lasting resolution to the conflict, a call that has been echoed an equal number of times by Catherine Ashton, the EU Foreign Policy Chief. Regrettably, both calls have fallen on deaf ears in Ramallah.

The entities consisting of the Quartet, including the United Nations and the EU, together with the U.S. and Russia have been the guardians of the peace process. It is therefore incumbent upon them to uphold past agreements between the two sides instead of acquiescing to the Palestinians’ destructive demands or allowing them to believe they can act with impunity. In view of the fact that Abbas’s resolution will be voted on this Thursday, anything less than a vote ‘against’ would be a derogation of that duty.

Ultimately, a successful vote at the UN General Assembly will not help the Palestinians realize their elusive dream of an independent state. This will be no more than a hollow ‘victory’ that will push the two sides even further apart.

A ‘just peace’ will only come about through painful compromises in the context of a negotiated settlement.

Leave a Reply

Please note: comments may be published in the Algemeiner print edition. Comments written in all caps will be deleted.


Current day month ye@r *

More...

  • Arts and Culture Blogs North American Studios Look to Israel for Next Animation Hit

    North American Studios Look to Israel for Next Animation Hit

    JNS.org – In 2008, Yoram Honig was a producer and director living in Jerusalem, fresh off his first international hit, when the Jerusalem Development Authority (JDA) came to him with a challenge: build a film industry from scratch in Israel’s capital. “When we started here, was nothing in Jerusalem,” he said during an interview in his office in the Talbiya neighborhood. Now, the Jerusalem Film and Television Fund, which Honig heads as an arm of the JDA, pumps 9 million shekels […]

    Read more →
  • Blogs Sports Olympic Gold Medalist Gabby Douglas to Wear Leotard With Hebrew Letters in National Competition

    Olympic Gold Medalist Gabby Douglas to Wear Leotard With Hebrew Letters in National Competition

    Olympic gold medalist Gabby Douglas will wear a leotard bearing Hebrew lettering when she competes at the P&G Gymnastics Championships over the weekend. Douglas’ Swarovski-outlined outfit will feature the Hebrew word “Elohim,” meaning God, on its left sleeve. The Hebrew detailing honors the athlete’s “rich heritage of faith,” according to apparel manufacturer GK Elite, which produced the leotard and released a preview of it on Wednesday. The company said Douglas’ sister, Joyelle “Joy” Douglas, created the Hebrew design. The outcome of the P&G Championships will help […]

    Read more →
  • Europe Sports British World Heavyweight Champion Should Be Banned From Boxing for Sounding Like Hitler, Says Ukrainian Competitor

    British World Heavyweight Champion Should Be Banned From Boxing for Sounding Like Hitler, Says Ukrainian Competitor

    Britain’s world heavyweight champion, Taylor Fury, should be banned from boxing for making Nazi-like comments, a former world champion from the Ukraine said on Thursday, ahead of their upcoming match. “I was in shock at his statements about women, the gay community, and when he got to the Jewish people, he sounded like Hitler,” Wladimir Klitschko told British media, according to Reuters. “We cannot have a champion like that. Either he needs to be shut up or shut down in the ring, or […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Rabbi Shows Cooking Skills and Humor on Chopped

    Rabbi Shows Cooking Skills and Humor on Chopped

    Rabbi Hanoch Hecht just made television history; but, unfortunately, he couldn’t have his rugelach and eat it too. Hecht became the first rabbi to compete on the hit show “Chopped,” where contestants are forced to use four random ingredients in their recipes, and have 20-30 minutes to create an appetizer, a main course and a dessert. A contestant is eliminated after each round. Hecht, 32, said that while the dishes and utensils were new, the kitchen was not kosher, so he couldn’t taste […]

    Read more →
  • Blogs Music Orthodox Entertainer Stars in Pepsi Max Commercial as New Face of Company’s Israel Campaign (VIDEO)

    Orthodox Entertainer Stars in Pepsi Max Commercial as New Face of Company’s Israel Campaign (VIDEO)

    Orthodox singer and entertainer Lipa Schmeltzer is starring in a new Pepsi Max commercial for the company’s campaign in Israel. The commercial begins with a bunch of Jewish men eating at a restaurant, when Schmeltzer walks in and tries to decide what to order. An employee at the obviously Israeli eatery offers him a variety of foods, but the entertainer in the end decides on a bottle of Pepsi. Everyone in the restaurant then joins him, drinking Pepsi Max and dancing to […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Book Reviews Jewish Author’s ‘Messy’ Draft Transforms Into Rock Star Novel on Amazon

    Jewish Author’s ‘Messy’ Draft Transforms Into Rock Star Novel on Amazon

    JNS.org – “Writing is a messy process,” says author Elizabeth Poliner. “People who don’t write fiction would be surprised to see what early drafts could look like.” But readers wouldn’t know “what a mess it was for the longest time,” as the Jewish author puts it, when reading Poliner’s critically acclaimed latest book, As Close to Us as Breathing. The volume garnered Amazon’s “Best Book” designation in March 2016 as well as rave reviews from the New York Times,W Magazine, NPR, […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Blogs Sundance Tour Features Short Film About Elderly Jewish Woman’s Decision to Eat Bacon for First Time

    Sundance Tour Features Short Film About Elderly Jewish Woman’s Decision to Eat Bacon for First Time

    The Sundance Film Festival Short Film Tour, which started on Friday in New York City, features a mini-documentary about an elderly Jewish woman whose journey away from Orthodoxy leads her to taste forbidden food for the first time in her life. In Canadian director Sol Friedman’s Bacon & God’s Wrath, Razie Brownstone talks about ending her lifelong observance of keeping kosher as her 90th birthday approaches. The recently declared atheist said the discovery of the search engine Google spurred a lapse in her Jewish faith and made her decide to […]

    Read more →
  • Blogs Food Chabad Rabbi From New York Competes on Food Network’s ‘Chopped’ Cooking Competition

    Chabad Rabbi From New York Competes on Food Network’s ‘Chopped’ Cooking Competition

    A Chabad rabbi from Rhinebeck, NY, will face off a priest, a pastor and a nun-in-training in an upcoming episode of the Food Network‘s reality show, “Chopped,” Lubavitch.com reported. Rabbi Hanoch Hecht – who teaches up-and-coming chefs about the intricacies of kosher dietary laws at the Culinary Institute of America (CIA) — was nominated for the show by a professional chef, and went through a rigorous interview process at the Food Network’s studios in Chelsea, NY. Months later, he was informed he had been accepted as a contestant in the popular TV cooking competition. “I thought […]

    Read more →