Column One: Obama and Israel, strike and counter-strike

Resolution 2334 asserts that Israel has no right to any of the lands it took control over during the Six-Day War.

By Caroline B Glick, JPOST

UNSC Resolution 2334 was the first prong of outgoing President Barack Obama’s lame duck campaign against Israel.

US Secretary of State John Kerry’s speech on Wednesday was the second.

On January 15, stage 3 will commence in Paris.

At France’s lame duck President François Hollande’s international conference, the foreign ministers of some 50 states are expected to adopt as their own Kerry’s anti-Israel principles.

The next day it will be Obama’s turn. Obama can be expected to use the occasion of Martin Luther King Jr. Day to present the Palestinian war to annihilate Israel as a natural progression from the American Civil Rights movement that King led 50 years ago.

Finally, sometime between January 17 and 19, Obama intends for the Security Council to reconvene and follow the gang at the Paris conference by adopting Kerry’s positions as a Security Council resolution. That follow-on resolution may also recognize “Palestine” and grant it full membership in the UN.

True, Kerry said the administration will not put forward another Security Council resolution.

But as Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu explained in his response to Kerry’s address, there is ample reason to suspect that France or Sweden, or both, will put forth such a resolution. Since the draft will simply be a restatement of Kerry’s speech, Obama will not veto it.

Whether or not Obama gets his second Security Council resolution remains to be seen. But whether he succeeds or fails, he’s already caused most of the damage. A follow-on resolution will only amplify the blow Israel absorbed with 2334.

Resolution 2334 harms Israel in two ways. First, it effectively abrogates Resolution 242 from 1967 which formed the basis of Israeli policy-making for the past 49 years. Second, 2334 gives a strategic boost to the international campaign to boycott the Jewish state.

Resolution 242 anchored the cease-fire between Israel and its neighbors at the end of the Six Day War. It stipulated that in exchange for Arab recognition of Israel’s right to exist in secure and defensible borders, Israel would cede some of the territories it took control over during the war.

Resolution 242 assumed that Israel has a right to hold these areas and that an Israeli decision to cede some of them to its neighbors in exchange for peace would constitute a major concession.

Resolution 242 is deliberately phrased to ensure that Israel would not be expected to cede all of the lands it took control over in the Six Day War. The resolution speaks of “territories,” rather than “the territories” or “all the territories” that Israel took control over during the war.

Resolution 2334 rejects 242’s founding assumptions.

Resolution 2334 asserts that Israel has no right to any of the lands it took control over during the war. From the Western Wall to Shiloh, from Hebron to Ariel, 2334 says all Israeli presence in the areas beyond the 1949 armistice lines is crime.

Given that Israel has no right to hold territory under 2334, it naturally follows that the Palestinians have no incentive to give Israel peace. So they won’t. The peace process, like the two-state solution, ended last Friday night to the raucous applause of all Security Council members.

As for the boycott campaign, contrary to what has been widely argued, 2334 does not strengthen the boycott of “settlements.” It gives a strategic boost to the boycott of Israel as a whole.

It calls on states “to distinguish in their relevant dealings, between the territory of the State of Israel and the territories occupied since 1967.”

Since no Israeli firm makes that distinction, all Israeli economic activity is now threatened with boycott. Tnuva is an “occupation” dairy because it supplies communities beyond the 1949 lines.

Bank Hapoalim is an “occupation” bank because it operates ATM machines in post-1967 neighborhoods in Jerusalem. The Fox clothing chain is an “occupation” chain because it has a store in Gush Etzion. And so on and so forth.

Resolution 2334 gives Europe and its NGOs a green light to wage a complete trade and cultural boycott against all of Israel.

Obama is not using his final weeks in office to wage war on Israel because he hates Netanyahu.

He is not deliberately denying 3,500 years of Jewish history in the Land of Israel because the Knesset is set to pass the Regulations Law that will make it marginally easier for Jews to exercise property rights in Judea and Samaria, as Kerry and UN Ambassador Samantha Power claimed.

Obama’s onslaught against Israel is the natural endpoint of a policy he has followed since he first entered the White House. In June 2009, Obama denied the Jews’ 3,500 years of history in the Land of Israel in his speech in Cairo before an audience packed with members of the Muslim Brotherhood.

Instead of the truth, Obama adopted the Islamist propaganda lie that Israel was established because Europe felt guilty about the Holocaust.

Throughout his presidency, Obama has rejected the guiding principle of Resolution 242. His antisemitic demand that Israel deny its Jewish citizens their civil and property rights in Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria simply because they are Jews is just as antithetical to 242 as is Resolution 2334.

In his speech, Kerry repeatedly castigated the government while flattering the Israeli Left in yet another attempt to divide and polarize Israeli society. Kerry’s professed support for the Israeli Left is deeply ironic because Israeli leftists are the primary casualties of Obama’s anti-Israel assault.

In the post-242 world that Obama initiated, the UN makes no distinction between Jerusalem and Nablus, between Gush Etzion and Jenin, or between Ma’aleh Adumim and Ramallah. In this world, Labor Party leader Isaac Herzog’s plan to retain a mere 2-3% of Judea and Samaria is no more acceptable than Bayit Yehudi leader Naftali Bennett’s plan to apply Israeli law to 60% of the area or to other plans calling for Israeli law to be applied to all of Judea and Samaria. All are equally unlawful. All are equally unacceptable.

For the next three weeks, the government’s focus must be centered on Obama and minimizing the damage he is able to cause Israel. Since Israel cannot convince Hollande to cancel his conference or Obama not to give his speech, Israeli efforts must be concentrated on scuttling Obama’s plan to enact a follow-on resolution.

To scuttle another resolution, Israel needs to convince seven members of the Security Council not to support it. Only measures that secure the support of nine out of 15 Security Council members are permitted to come to a vote. The states that are most susceptible to Israeli lobbying are Italy, Ethiopia, Japan, Egypt, Uruguay, Kazakhstan, Ukraine and Russia.

Netanyahu’s furious response to 2334 advance the goal of blocking a vote on a follow-on resolution in two ways. First, they create Israeli leverage in seeking to convince member states to oppose voting on an additional resolution before January 20.

Second, Netanyahu’s seemingly unrestrained response to the Obama administration’s onslaught enables Donald Trump to join him in pressuring Security Council members to oppose bringing a new resolution for a vote.

By taking an extreme position of total rejection of Obama’s actions, Netanyahu is enabling Trump to block a vote while striking a moderate tone.

In three weeks, Obama’s war with Israel will end. His final legacy – the destruction of the land for peace paradigm and the two-state policy-making model – obligate Israel, for the first time in 50 years, to determine by itself its long-term goals in relation to the international community, the Palestinians and Judea and Samaria.

Regarding the international community, the Security Council opened the door for its members to boycott Israel. As a result, Israel should show the UN and its factotums the door. Israel should work to de-internationalize the Palestinian conflict by expelling UN personnel from its territory.

The same is the case with the EU. Once Britain exits the EU, Israel should end the EU’s illegal operations in Judea and Samaria and declare EU personnel acting illegally persona non grata.

As for the Palestinians, Resolution 2334 obligates Israel to reconsider its recognition of the PLO. Since 1993, Israel has recognized the PLO despite its deep and continuous engagement in terrorism. Israel legitimized the PLO because the terrorist group was ostensibly its partner in peace. Now, after the PLO successfully killed the peace process by getting the Security Council to abrogate 242, Israel’s continued recognition of the PLO makes little sense. Neither PLO chief Mahmoud Abbas nor his deputies in Fatah – convicted, imprisoned mass murderer and terrorism master Marwan Barghouti, and Jibril Rajoub who said he wishes he had a nuclear bomb so he could drop it on Israel and who tried to get Israel expelled from FIFA – has any interest in recognizing Israel, let alone making peace with it. The same of course can be said for the PLO’s coalition partner Hamas.

An Israeli decision to stop recognizing the PLO will also have implications for the Trump administration.

In the aftermath of 2334, calls are steadily mounting in Congress for the US to cancel its recognition of the PLO and end US financial support for the Palestinian Authority. If Israel has already ended its recognition of the PLO, chances will rise that the US will follow suit. Such a US move will have positive strategic implications for Israel.

There is also the question of the Palestinian militias that are deployed to Judea and Samaria as part of the peace process that Obama and the PLO officially ended last Friday. In the coming months, Israel will need to decide what to do about these hostile militias that take their orders from leaders who reject peaceful coexistence with Israel.

Finally, there are the territories themselves. For 50 years, Israel has used the land-for-peace paradigm as a way not to decide what to do with Judea and Samaria. Now that 242 has been effectively abrogated, Israel has to decide what it wants.

The no-brainer is to allow Jews to build wherever they have the legal right to build. If the UN says Israel has no rights to Jerusalem, then Israel has no reason to distinguish between Jerusalem and Elon Moreh.

More broadly, given that for the foreseeable future, there will be no Palestinian Authority interested in making peace with Israel, Israel needs to think about the best way to administer Judea and Samaria going forward. The obvious step of applying Israeli law to Area C now becomes almost inarguable.

Shortly before Obama took office eight years ago, he promised to “fundamentally transform” America. Trump’s election scuttled any chance he had of doing so.

But by enabling Resolution 2334 to pass in the Security Council, Obama has succeeded in fundamentally transforming the nature of the Palestinian conflict with Israel. Israel’s actions in the coming weeks will determine whether it is fundamentally transformed for better or for worse.

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17 Comments / 17 Comments

  1. Bert

    Caroline Glick has it right. I hope that Trump’s advisors read this and that the Israeli leadership will take this to heart. I would only add that Israel should now be bold enough to demand that the illegitimate entity called Jordan be renamed “Palestine” and that those Israeli Arabs who are hostile to Israel be transferred to the new “Palestine” right next door.

  2. Sebastien Zorn

    Absolutely on target. I must add though that even if Israel decides to experiment with Pal autonomy, it must first secure the area from the terrorist armies that the PA has at its disposal. That means immediate dismantling of the PA and IDF military occupation — But not under Jordanian or Mandate legal rules this time — with no immediate change in status or access for the pals. Actually, it will have to be sealed off at least for a time. Absolutely crucial that the Press, public, and NGOs — all visitors, in fact — be denied access.

  3. yamit82

    Right after the vote and Obama’s abstention I wrote to Bernard Ross that there is good in this vote as it kills once and for all Oslo and it’s Israeli assumed obligations under that agreement and it effectively kills Land for peace paradigm as a means to a 2 state solution….. I also wrote on another thread that Israel should allow and even welcome a Palis state on Land they already hold….. Then we can fight them as a sovereign State in all that entails and not as their occupiers. We have no fiduciary obligation to support an independent enemy state economically or in any other way… We simply cut them off. We as Glick myself and others have suggested bar all UN and EU personnel , operatives and NGO’s access thru Israel to Territories designated & recognized as a Pali State.

    Israel must make it clear that the Palis State and their leadership are not recognized by Israel and their leadership no longer to be considered potential partners for peace.

    Israel should make clear to the Palis and Hamas leadership that a renewal of attacks against Israel and her population will result in the targeting elimination and or deportation of all of the Palsi and Hamas leadership from top to bottom.. Using Russian MO in Aleppo as our model.

    I wonder that if a resolution declaring for and recognizing a Palis State is brought to Security council whether Russia will veto it??? Maybe there is some agreement between Trump and Russia to that effect if it in fact comes up before Jan 20????

  4. Birdalone

    Perhaps Ethiopia will submit a resolution recognizing Somaliland if, in Jan2017, France or Sweden do present

    That follow-on resolution may also recognize “Palestine” and grant it full membership in the UN.

    Somaliland is a functioning nation since 1991, thwarted in its quest for statehood primarily by the African Union rule that insists on maintenance of colonial borders. Alas, Somaliland acceded to Somalia in 1960 in the process of DE-colonization.

    The UNSC can strike a blow against that AU rule that only seems to stimulate civil wars in Africa

    Britain and Sweden are highly sympathetic to Somaliland as a nation, as is Israel. Sweden chairs the UNSC in January, when Ethiopia replaces Senegal.

    Somaliland is a case study in creating a peaceful muslim nation-state out of an endless civil war.

    No one can solve the conflicts in Somalia either…

  5. Birdalone

    Perhaps Ethiopia will submit a resolution recognizing Somaliland if, in Jan2017, France or Sweden do present

    That follow-on resolution may also recognize “Palestine” and grant it full membership in the UN.

    Somaliland is a functioning nation since 1991, thwarted in its quest for statehood primarily by the African Union rule that insists on maintenance of colonial borders. Alas, Somaliland acceded to Somalia in 1960 in the process of DE-colonization.

    The UNSC can strike a blow against that AU rule that only seems to stimulate civil wars in Africa

    Britain and Sweden are highly sympathetic to Somaliland as a nation, as is Israel. Sweden chairs the UNSC in January, when Ethiopia replaces Senegal.

    Somaliland is a case study in creating a peaceful muslim nation-state out of an endless civil war.

    No one can solve the conflicts in Somalia either…

  6. Biralone wrote:

    Perhaps Ethiopia will submit a resolution recognizing Somaliland if, in Jan2017, France or Sweden do present

    That follow-on resolution may also recognize “Palestine” and grant it full membership in the UN.

    Somaliland is a functioning nation since 1991, thwarted in its quest for statehood primarily by the African Union rule that insists on maintenance of colonial borders. Alas, Somaliland acceded to Somalia in 1960 in the process of DE-colonization.

    The UNSC can strike a blow against that AU rule that only seems to stimulate civil wars in Africa

    Britain and Sweden are highly sympathetic to Somaliland as a nation, as is Israel. Sweden chairs the UNSC in January, when Ethiopia replaces Senegal.

    Somaliland is a case study in creating a peaceful muslim nation-state out of an endless civil war.

    The UNSC has failed to impose a peace in Somalia.

    And, a simultaneous resolution from Japan to insist the UNSC impose a final peace treaty between the USA and North Korea, and enforce the armistice agreement which forbids North Korea from ‘new weapons’, and yet North Korea is now testing nukes and inter-continental ballistic missiles. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Korean_Armistice_Agreement

    “…The U.S. position, as expressed in 2010, is that a peace treaty can only be negotiated when North Korea “takes irreversible steps toward denuclearization”.”

  7. WoolyMammoth

    @ yamit82: If Russia were to veto the resolution, Yamit, would it not place Russia at odds with Iran, it’s proxies and and signal a dramatic re-alignment of Russian alliances. Your scenario is more representative of Hollywood, e.g. The final scene in Casablanca, then Turtle Bay. However, I hope you are right.

  8. yamit82

    @ WoolyMammoth:

    You are probably correct but I suspect Trump wants to make some kind of deal with Putin and he has leverage if he wants to use it. May not have to come to a vote Russia could influence at least one other member to veto it like China or use it’s influence to kill the resolution before it comes for a vote… Everyone on the Security council knows Trump not in favor most want to be on his good side after Jan 20 and none owe Obama anything…. Britain could veto it based on PM May criticism of Kerry speech… so there are several possibilities.

  9. Birdalone

    @ yamit82:
    China more likely to veto, to stop any ideas about Tibet, but China more linked with Iran for oil. Britain might, based on PM May, but not holding breath.

    I doubt Obama/Kerry expected all of this anger, from so many, maybe time for someone in a basement with a server to turn on the transmitters in their heads??

  10. Birdalone

    (fake) Headline: “UN moves HQ to Pishin, Iran” My new suggestion for UN HQ is this small town Pishin, Iran, where Balochistan is divided with Pakistan.

    Was thinking of Balochistan because it is a bleak landscape – had no idea there is a border town Pishin, Iran.

    NO disrespect intended to the residents of Pishin – was thinking the UN could learn how to recognize self-determination and illegally occupied nations if the HQ were in Balochistan.

    ok Ted, this time my comment worked just fine! Must be dinnertime for hackers…

  11. yamit82

    @ Birdalone:

    I look for quiet diplomacy to kill it especially knowing Trump has Israels back and may ignite congress to pull funding and downgrade UN relevance Russia might join with Trump but I have doubts about China…. No leverage there. I work on the assumption nobody really cares about Palestine but all want to see Israel brought down for different reasons. resolution 2334 is damage enough and actually leaves Israel weaker…

  12. Teshuvah

    @ yamit82:
    Nice for him to speak up, but Tony Abbott was voted out of office as PM. He is more conservative and pro-Israel than the current leadership. Julie Bishop et al. still want a 2 state solution.

    “In a statement to the ABC, Foreign Minister Julie Bishop reiterated that the Australian Government remained “firmly committed to a two-state solution, where Israel and a Palestinian state exist side-by-side in peace and security, within internationally recognised borders”.” Australia distances itself from Obama administration’s stance against Israeli settlements
    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-12-30/australia-rejects-obama-stance-against-israeli-settlements/8153504

    Amyone supporting a 2-solution is not a friend of Israel.

  13. yamit82

    Teshuvah Said:

    /8153504

    Amyone supporting a 2-solution is not a friend of Israel.

    BB supports a 2 state solution the whole of the Israeli left till now supports a 2 state solution and many if not most Israelis support the principle, making a majority of all Israelis supporting the principle of 2 state solution.

    I agree with your premise that advocacy of 2 State solution by foreign leaders do not compute as friendly (friends) from our pov but we cannot expect them to be (“More Catholic than the POOP”) Israel her leaders and government must first openly oppose a 2 state solution before we can expect and blame others who do……

  14. Playing by Obama’s Game-plan is a Fool’s Errand

    Obama’s UN2334 may have been vindictive, but there is method to his madness, taking the form of a ‘rear-guard offensive.’

    With the Republicans ascendant, Obama’s strategy is to “salt the earth,” delaying the Conservative’s agenda, until the Liberals are once again in power. UN2334 is a deliberate roadblock; a massive mess that Obama hopes will consume enormous resources to put right.

    The only effective counter-strategy is to do what Gen Douglas MacArthur did when the Japanese similarly tried to buy time – ‘leap-frog’; ie, advance around the mess (UN2334), rendering it irrelevant.

    Obama hopes to save the pretense of the so-called “Two-state Solution”; therefore, making it irrelevant becomes the only viable counter-move.

    Israel should indeed delegitimize the PLO. It can pick up where the US trial of the PA found it guilty of aiding/abetting terrorism; it should defund the PA and put it on trial for supporting terrorism. Since the PA has already been convicted (in the US – where possibly the politically-vacated judgement could be reinstated?), justification to list the PA et al as terrorist organizations is fully met.

    Without the canard of a ‘peace partner,’ the Two-state solution is not just seen to be dead, but established as dead ‘n buried!

    But this only gets Israel past Obama’s roadblock. To make it take hold, a viable solution to the conflict must be realized, or at least solidly begun.

    Dr Martian Sherman’s “Humanitarian Paradigm” offers just such a solution; one that remains viable/actionable without any PA et al cooperation.

    With the PA defunct, Jerusalem, Judea, & Samaria is the made-to-order place to start implementation. Gaza should be ignored/marginalized for as long as possible, until sufficient Arabs have freely emigrated from Jerusalem et al, rendering any “Palestine” enviable.

    The UN

    For Israel, dealing with the ‘Palestinian’ People directly is more effective than trying to undo Obama’s UN2334 mess. If Israel jumps on the problem from this angle, the US could see advancing its own interests by helping Israel.

    As for the UN itself, the US might have the political capital to also defund the UN, but it may prove more effective to first only threaten to do so; triggered by a failure to adequately resolve other conflicts – particularly in the Middle East. Demands for real progress – and the threat of defunding etc should they fail – would keep the UN on the defensive; preventing them from supporting further attacks on Israel.

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