One of the ongoing fictions of the Middle East peace process is that the Arab states are genuinely interested in a two-state solution for the Israeli-Arab problem. Like any good lie, tell it often enough and people start to treat it as fact. This article from JTA illustrates how some have accepted this foolishness hook, line and sinker.
Irked by the slow rate of progress in Israeli-Palestinian peace talks, major Arab players are threatening to withdraw their offer to normalize ties with Israel once a Palestinian state is established.
Gosh, you'd think the fact that they openly counsel Mahmood Abbas not to accept any Israeli offers that don't involve total capitulation to Arab demands would be the reason, but apparently that's not it. It reminds me of a documentary I saw once on Israel which stated that "in 1948, war broke out." A commentator quickly shot that down. "Wars don't break out," he noted. "Someone starts them. Why didn't we want to say who that was in 1948?"
The Arab offer to normalize ties with Israel was part of the 2002 Arab League peace plan initiated by Saudi Arabia. The idea was to give Israel an added incentive to make peace with the Palestinians.
Yes, let's review that offer, shall we? The 2002 Arab League peace plan stated that the member states would consider (not commit) to normalizing relations with Israel if, and only if, Israel fully withdrew to the 1948 borders, surrended most of Yerushalayim, and accepted the so-called Palestinian "right of return" which would flood pre-1948 Israel with some two million refugees. (Maybe they could stay in Yossi Beilin's basement) Furthermore, this plan was presented as non-negotiable. Israel would have to unilaterally do everything it demanded without assurance that as a result any Arab state would actually follow through with its requirements. Is it any wonder that the Israeli government, as incompetent as it is, did not accept these crazy terms?
Then there's the Road Map. Israel has already taken some huge steps with that, including the expulsion from 'Aza and parts of Shomron. Yet the Arabs have yet to comply with a single requirement they agreed to.
But, oh yes, it's Israel's fault that negotiations aren't moving along.
The Egyptians, in particular, were jolted by the sight of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians streaming over the Gaza border into Egyptian territory with the collapse of the Rafah border fence last month. They were distressed as well to hear some Israelis suggest that Egypt take responsibility for Gaza, as it had until the Israeli occupation in 1967.In Jordan, the fear is that if a moderate Palestinian state is not established soon, Hamas radicals will gain control of the West Bank and pose a direct threat to the Hashemite Kingdom. So when Egypt and Jordan warn that the chances for a two-state solution are eroding, it is at least partly to press Israel to move more quickly toward one.
Isn't it precious to see the loves the Arabs have for their so-called Palestinian brothers? They support them, fight for their rights, demand they have a state of their own, but don't actually want to have them next door or to have anything at all to actually do with them. Never mind that the main reason for the miserable conditions these Arabs live in is that their "brothers" purposefully kept them in squalid conditions to use them as a propaganda tool against Israel. Now that villians like Hamas have emerged from that decision, there is sudden panic on the Arab side. Why doesn't someone remind them that them whats made the mess has got to clean it up?
Moderate Arab states such as Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Jordan had hoped that a two-state solution, followed by a general Arab accommodation with Israel, would weaken the radicals and pave the way for regional stability.
This is possibly the stupidest statement in the whole article and generally undermines any thought the writer really understands the Middle East. Saudi Arabia is one of the biggest financiers of Muslim terror in the world. Egypt is the world centre for anti-Semitic publications. And they're the moderates?
Worse for the two-state option: Many Palestinian intellectuals, including some close to Abbas, are questioning its merits. In a seminal op-ed in the British Guardian newspaper, Oxford-based scholar Ahmad Samih Khalidi -- sometimes referred to as "Abbas' brain" -- argued, "Today, the Palestinian state is largely a punitive construct devised by the Palestinians' worst historical enemies, Israel and its implacable ally, the U.S. The intention behind the state today is to constrain Palestinian aspirations territorially, to force them to give up on their moral rights, renege on their history and submit to Israel's dictates on fundamental issues of sovereignty.
Once again, we must remember that the two-state option is a lie produced for consumption by the gullible West. The Arab League and the PLO have a one-state solution in mind, and it won't be one where you can find a minyan on Shabbos, unless you're a Neturei Karta'nik. To say that the state is "a largely punitive construct" is to once again abandon all personal responsibility for your mess. The Arabs created a culture of suicide bombers and fanatics dedicated to the destruction of Israel. The checkpoints, the security fence, the army raids, all evolved in response to unremitting terrorist attacks against Israel. But like a spoiled child whose been caught and punished, the Arab side cries that they are the real victims. Unfortunately, too many people still take that claim seriously.
As Abba Eban once noted, the Arabs never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity. Whether it was being offered a state in 1947 which they threw away, or not building one in Yehudah, Shomron and 'Aza when it was under Arab control for 19 years, or for squandering every opportunity for normalcy that the Oslo Accords offered them, the Arabs have acted true to type all the way along. They wish for the destruction of Israel. Anything else is either a distraction or a step along the way. The sooner the world realizes this, the better.