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Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Henry Siegman, "Give Up on Netanyahu, Go to the United Nations": Expect Fairness from the UN? Yeah, Right!

"The notion that the war against terror cannot be won by military measures alone but must also provide Palestinians with prospects for a political solution is hardly revolutionary. It is a view that Sharon’s own security advisers have advocated. Sharon has been accused of many things by his critics, but stupidity is not one of them. Why, then, hasn’t Sharon reached this conclusion on his own?
 
The inescapable answer to this question is that the war that Sharon is waging is not aimed at the defeat of Palestinian terrorism but at the defeat of the Palestinian people and their aspirations for national self-determination."

- Henry Seigman, "Sharon’s Phony War," The New York Review of Books, December 18, 2003

"I think this is something that is going to happen. We have to look at it realistically: in the end there will be a Palestinian state. I see things firstly from our own perspective. I don't think we should be ruling over another people and running its life. I don't think we have the strength for that. It is too heavy a burden on our people, and it gives rise to serious moral problems and serious economic problems."

- Ariel Sharon, Haaretz interview, April 2003


You wish to publish a guest New York Times op-ed? If you're Jewish and prepared to vilify Israel, your chances will improve immeasurably. And so it should come as no surprise that in a New York Times opinion piece entitled "Give Up on Netanyahu, Go to the United Nations," 85-year-old Henry Siegman would have us know:

"The victory of Israel’s far right has thus provided an unexpected, if narrow, opening for Mr. Obama, allowing him to call for a reassessment of America’s peace policy.

Such a reassessment must begin by abandoning the old assumption that Palestinians can achieve statehood only by negotiating with Mr. Netanyahu. Because of Mr. Netanyahu’s statements and behavior during the elections (not to mention the continued construction in the settlements), that belief has been irreparably discredited. It is now certain that a two-state agreement will never emerge from any bilateral Israeli-Palestinian negotiations."

Yup, it's all Netanyahu's fault. Of course, there's no mention of the fact by Seigman that Palestinian Authority President Abbas refused Israeli Prime Minister Olmert's 2008 peace offer, providing the Palestinians with an independent state along the 1967 lines together with agreed upon land swaps and Palestinian control of east Jerusalem. And one year later, after Netanyahu declared a 10-month settlement freeze "to restart peace talks" at the request of Obama, Abbas delayed entering negotiations until the last moment and then walked away from the discussions.

Nevertheless, according to Siegman, something must be done to end Netanyahu's "continued subjugation of the Palestinians." After all, those poor Palestinians, who fire missiles at Israeli towns and cities and call for the death of all Jews (not just Israelis), are denied their basic voting rights. But wait, isn't it Fatah that has refused to allow elections in the West Bank, and Hamas that does not permit elections in Gaza?

The subjugation of the Palestinian majority in Jordan? The subjugation of Yarmouk, the Palestinian suburb of Damascus? Why should Siegman care?

The subjugation of women, e.g., honor killings, by Palestinians? No mention by Siegman.

The subjugation of homosexuals by Palestinians? Also no mention by Siegman.

How, nevertheless, to end Israeli subjugation of Palestinians? Simple. Siegman would have the UN dictate terms to Israel and the Palestinians:

"Such an agreement can only be achieved if the United Nations Security Council, with strong support from the United States, presents the parties with clear terms for resumed peace talks that will produce an agreement within a specified timeframe."

Ah yes, the United Nations, which time and time again has demonstrated its impartiality involving Israel. As Anne Bayefsky recently wrote in a Fox News opinion piece entitled "UN says Israel, not Iran, North Korea or Syria worst violator of human rights":

"What country deserves more condemnation for violating human rights than any other nation on earth? According to the U.N.’s top human rights body, that would be Israel.

Last week, Israel was the U.N.’s number one women’s rights violator. This week it is the U.N.’s all-round human rights villain.

The U.N. Human Rights Council wrapped up its latest session in Geneva on Friday, March 27 by adopting four resolutions condemning Israel. That’s four times more than any of the other 192 UN member states.

There were four resolutions on Israel. And one on North Korea -- a country that is home to government policies of torture, starvation, enslavement, rape, disappearances, and murder – to name just some of its crimes against humanity.

Four resolutions on Israel. And one on Syria. Where the death toll of four years of war is 100,000 civilians, ten million people are displaced, and barrel bombs containing chemical agents like chlorine gas are back in action.

Four resolutions on Israel. And one on Iran. Where there is no rule of law, no free elections, no freedom of speech, corruption is endemic, protestors are jailed and tortured, religious minorities are persecuted, and pedophilia is state-run. At last count, in 2012 Iranian courts ordered more than 30,000 girls ages 14 and under to be 'married.'"

Thank you, Anne.

Israel should submit to a UN imposed peace involving the Palestinians, or stated otherwise, agree to stick its head in a noose? Thanks, but no thanks, Henry.

1 comment:

  1. I do not believe China and Russia would support such a precedent of the UNSC.

    too depressing otherwise.

    k

    ReplyDelete