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August 4, 2011 11:49 am

Palestinian ‘Head of State’ at UN

avatar by Anne Bayefsky

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United Nations General Assembly hall in New York City. Photo: Patrick Gruban.

Get ready for the statehood steamroller. The United Nations showed its hand this week and sent out a provisional list of speakers for the opening session of the General Assembly in September listing the speaker from “Palestine” as “HS” or Head of State.

Everybody knows that UN goings-on concerning anything Israel-related are about as crooked as they get. But the much-talked-about Palestinian statehood bid threatened for September is being sold as a test of legitimacy -so much for that bill of goods.

In the past, the speaker from Palestine has been given the title in the speakers’ list “H.L.” or High Level – short for high level delegation – precisely because Palestine is not a state member of the United Nations. Though the Palestinians themselves have put a cover page on their speeches that labels Mahmoud Abbas “President of the State of Palestine,” the UN has, until now, resisted following suit.

Not this year, however. Negotiations are out. UN-imposed solutions on Israel are in.

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The UN founding document – the U.N. Charter – promises the equality of states “large and small.” But in reality, Islamic states and their cronies form an automatic General Assembly majority. In 2010, for example, this meant 78% of all the Assembly resolutions condemning any of the 192 UN members for human rights violations were directed at Israel alone.

To date, the UN has pretended that the parties themselves must take responsibility for recognizing each other; dozens of UN resolutions and the UN Middle East Roadmap pay lip service to the necessity of negotiations. After all, negotiations require a willingness to live in peace and acceptance of the other party’s existential rights.

But that has never gone down very well in the Palestinian and larger Arab world, and the UN has been their safety net for any and all excuses for a six-decade rejection of a Jewish State.

Some Palestinians put it more clearly than others. As co-founder of Hamas and member of the Hamas leadership in the Gaza Strip, Mahmoud al-Zahar, declared on July 29: “We are not going to accept Israel as the owner of one-square centimeter because it is a fabricated state.”

The Palestinian unilateral declaration of statehood without negotiations is most likely to play out in some combination of UN bodies. The guessing at this point is that the Palestinians will go first to the Security Council demanding full UN membership in order to embarrass the president and force an Obama veto and then will proceed to the General Assembly for a statement of support. This course will not result in official UN membership, since a Security Council blessing is required for that, but additional trappings of statehood will – they hope -have been endowed.

Though the Obama administration is pretending they have little control of the Palestinian Authority or Mahmoud Abbas and company, it is clear that the Palestinians are proceeding apace because they have not been presented with sufficiently negative consequences. Obama isn’t leading from behind. He is hiding in the bushes.

His shyness is partly a consequence of the fact that a UN end-run around a negotiated settlement challenges his administration’s foreign policy yardstick of multilateralism at virtually any cost. He joined the UN Human Rights Council and gave it American credibility knowing that half of its resolutions and decisions on specific states are dedicated to Israel-bashing.

It waited for Security Council approval to do something about Colonel Gaddafi’s threatened genocide – a delay proving more costly by the minute.

It has handled Syrian butchery by waiting for tepid noises from the Security Council.

It put Iranian nuclear non-proliferation in the hands of U.N. entities that have no hope of preventing an Iranian nuclear bomb. So U.S. objection to UN action to undercut Israel – yet again – presents a problem for this president.

The UN understands that very well, as do the Palestinians. So why not jump the gun on “Head of State?” American taxpayers pay 25% of the UN bills and the costs in 2010 represented a whopping 21% increase over the fiscal year 2009. The Palestinians see nothing but a president unwilling to put an end to their gravy train.

Without a major pushback, steamroller he we come.

This article originally appeared on Fox News.

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  • Tvs

    good post, very interesting

  • As a staunch Zionist I welcome these moves to force the issue of palesinian staehood up the international agenda. Negoatiations have failed miserably over the years. I hope that these moves, which are not without their problems, i grant you, will break the impasse that has caused so much suffering. Something has to change. Would a declaration of statehood reduce the threat of terror, as a fledgling state tries to curry favour in the wider world with countries who support israel’s right to exsist within safe borders? hamas, maybe not, but would this just mean further isolation for this Islamisict terror group, rather than international legitimacy. Don’t forget that after partition in India in 1947, East and West Pakistan was unsustainable, and ended in a tow-stae solution with the foundation of Bangladesh. If this means that the gaza Strip becomes another Bangladesh israel will have nothing to fear.

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