Make True Peace in the Middle East Possible!
After decades of thwarting multiple peace offers, the intent of the current Palestinian leadership is obvious: to continue on its rejectionist path, their desire to create not “two states for two peoples” but one Palestinian state from “the river to the sea” is evident.
Endless time, effort, and taxpayer money have been spent by U.S. Presidents, lawmakers, and diplomats in an attempt to create a two-state solution. It is time to support a new paradigm that will set in motion the preconditions for genuine peace that could endure for generations.
It is far time to honestly acknowledge that the two parties do not want peace equally, making evenhandedness both inappropriate and ineffective. The Palestinian leadership is committed to an ideology and considerations of power and financial interests that demand the continued rejection of a Jewish state in the Middle East.
It is also far time to finally acknowledge that a Palestinian state under current conditions and leadership can only be a failed state. The Palestinians do not have a self-sustaining economy despite receiving billions in U.S., European Union, and Arab state aid. They have not invested in the infrastructure to sustain employment for their people, nor have they created the political conditions and civil society requisites for a functioning democracy. Neither of the Palestinian “governments” of the Palestinian Authority or of Hamas have instituted political freedoms, civil rights nor the rule of law. This is despite ample financial assistance and their own promises to do so.
It is also far time to honestly acknowledge that both the Palestinian Authority as well as Hamas have had 27 years of a constant campaign of indoctrination and incitement of their people to hate and to murder Israelis. This is rampant in their media, their textbooks, their summer camps and in naming squares and athletic events after their so-called “martyrs.”
It is also far time that we acknowledge that, despite American laws and Israeli laws, the Palestinian Authority insists on maintaining its notorious “Pay for Slay” program and keeping it on their books. This program incentivizes Palestinians to murder Israelis – the more Israeli civilians they slay, the more money goes into the pockets of either the terrorist in prison, and his family, or into the pockets of the so-called “martyr’s” family.
It is also far time we acknowledge that the continued fighting between the warring factions of Hamas and the PA suggests that the superior fighting force, Hamas, could easily take over and create a terrorist state. Those that believe that they are supporting the liberation of the Palestinian people by supporting the current leadership have been woefully misled and mistaken.
It is also far time we acknowledge that neither Israel’s establishment nor its administration of Judea and Samaria are illegal. They are based on multiple international mandates and conventions. The archeological evidence for a 3,000-year-old Jewish past, continuity in the land, today’s population realities, as well as agreements with the Palestinians themselves, have established this legitimacy.
It is also far time we acknowledge that Israel has been subjected to an egregious double standard that no other country in the community of nations has been subjected to. The disputed territories had been won in two defensive wars,1967 and 1973, and in most other cases, that has been how geographic boundaries have been formed around the world. That is what is behind the old saying, “To the victor, goes the spoils.” Only in the case of Israel, have these territories been considered up for dispute.
It is also far time that we acknowledge that, despite this, Israel has made incredibly generous offers to the Palestinians for a final end of conflict. On July 25, 2000, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak offered Palestinian President Yasser Arafat 97% of Judea and Samaria (or the West Bank), the entirety of Gaza, shared sovereignty over Jerusalem, a right of return of thousands of Palestinian refugees, and a monetary package for those Palestinian refugees who could not be absorbed into Israel. Arafat did not agree to this, and his response came two months later in the form of a renewed intifada. This generous offer has served as the baseline ever since, for more and more generous offers. In 2008, according to Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat’s words, what was offered by Prime Minister Ehud Olmert to the Palestinians was the entirety of territory Israel captured in 1967, plus an additional 20 square miles, control of the Temple Mount plus the right of return of 150,000 Palestinians. Mahmoud Abbas also walked away from that offer. This offer was met again, with a renewed round of violence.
It is also far time that the Palestinian leadership take some responsibility for their years and years of rejectionism, their incitement and their violence. The Palestinian Authority should not be rewarded for over a quarter of a century of bad behavior.
The Palestinian leadership has not demonstrated, as of this date, to the world that their future state will be a state that is willing to live side by side in peace and democracy with Israel.
We ask that you, our lawmakers and diplomats, support the following premises of the Peace to Prosperity plan as bi-partisan American policy and priority. These premises represent a new hope for peace and should not be rejected on the basis of partisan politics.
- Prioritize Palestinian political reform and new leadership.
- Let the Palestinian, Arab, and Muslim world know that American support for Israel is not going anywhere and neither is Israel as a Jewish state.
- Assert that the Palestinians do not have a veto power over the cooperation of Israel and the Arab states, which is in their mutual interest. Peace with the larger Arab world can happen without them.
- Tell the Palestinians that they do not have a satisfactory alternative to making true peace if they wish to promote the well-being of their people.
- Solidify support for Israel as a democratic ally that contributes greatly to the security of the US and the Free World and to the scientific, intellectual, and economic progress of the Family of Nations.
- ·Allow Israel to proceed with applying its civil law to areas that are crucial to its security and that of the region. Let the Palestinians know that the US will not stand in the way of secure borders for Israel or its self-defense.
- Every state is entitled to secure and defensible geographic boundaries in order to protect their people from threats of terrorism and war. Israel is a very small state surrounded by potential adversaries in a very volatile part of the world.
- It is ultimately up to the democratically elected government of the state of Israel to be able to determine what sort of borders it needs to be able to defend itself, by itself.
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