The Peace Process

Misleading: “Israel’s 1967 Borders”

The 1948 Arab invasion for Israel’s destruction ended, not with a peace treaty defining international borders, but with a 1949 Armistice Agreement between Israel and Jordan, which expressly defined the “green line” it drew between the sides’ armies as a military ceasefire line only without prejudice to either side’s borders claims. The media and Arab-Israeli conflict’s “peace processors” sometimes refer to those 1949 military ceasefire lines as “Israel’s 1967 borders.” International borders carry an international law-recognized gravitas transcending their violation in conflict, with which military ceasefire lines – not least those vitiated by renewed fighting between the same sides – are not imbued. The perilous old 1949 ceasefire lines that Israeli Ambassador Abba Eban called “Auschwitz” lines, that left Israel nine-miles-wide in the highly-populated lowland middle, overshadowed by the Jordanian-occupied Judea-Samaria hill country, and sans the heart of Jerusalem, are not holier, but are in fact less holy, than the far more secure for Israel ceasefire lines after the 1967 war.

Misleading: “Israel’s 1967 Borders as the Basis for ‘The Two-State Solution’”

A commonplace today is that “Israel’s 1967 borders, with mutually agreed swaps” should form the basis of “the two-state solution.” But that is an abandonment of post-1967 war UNSC Resolution 242, which pointedly did not demand that Israel withdraw to the perilous 1949 military ceasefire lines. Even advocates of “Land For Peace” saw “the territories” as bargaining chips for Israel in negotiating over Arab demands regarding, inter alia, borders, Jerusalem and “the right of return.” The Arabs have made clear their stance since issuing their famous “Three No’s” in 1967 at Khartoum: No peace, no recognition and no negotiations with Israel. Declaring that Israel has zero-equity, including in Jerusalem, across the ceasefire lines, which non-binding UNSC resolution 2334 recently purported to do, does not bring peace closer by bringing the Arab side to the table, but pushes any realistic peace agreement further away. Still effective UNSC Resolution 242 does not require Israeli withdrawal to the 1949 ceasefire lines, and still legally effective 1920 San Remo Treaty and 1922 British Mandate for Palestine recognized Jewish homeland equity in Palestine west of the Jordan River.

Misleading: “The Palestinians Accept and Israel Rejects ‘The Two-State Solution’”

Though the media sometimes conveys the case that the Palestinian Arab side accepts “the Two-State Solution” and Israel rejects it, the opposite is actually the case. Both the U.S. and Israel expressly define “the Two-State Solution” as “two states for two peoples.” Abbas has said repeatedly “We shall not recognize a Jewish state,” and a senior Palestinian Authority negotiator has said: “The story of ‘two states for two peoples’ means that there will be Jewish people over there and a Palestinian people here. We will never accept this.” While Israel has expressed acceptance of a demilitarized Palestinian Arab state west of the Jordan that recognizes Israel as the Jewish state, the Palestinian Authority definitively rejects ‘two states for two peoples.’

Misleading: “Israel’s Demand for Recognition as a ‘Jewish State’ is a New ‘Stumbling Block’”

The media on occasion presents Israel’s insistence on being recognized as the Jewish State as a recently interjected stumbling block to the peace process. Not so. Having a sovereign state in the historic Jewish homeland, not in “Uganda” or elsewhere, where Jews can practice Judaism freely and offer ‘welcome home’ when needed by persecuted Jews from anywhere in the world, has always been central to Zionism, and indeed central to Judaism throughout history. British Foreign Secretary Ernest Bevin himself told Parliament in early 1947 that for the Jews “the essential point of principle” was establishing a Jewish state, while for the Arabs “the essential point of principle” was to prevent that from happening. The U.N.’s 1947 resolution repeatedly referred to “the Jewish State” and “the Arab State” (it did not mention a “Palestinian” state). The existence and recognition of Israel as the nation-state of the Jewish People is not an impediment to an independent “Palestinian” Arab state living alongside it. Israel’s demand for recognition as a Jewish state is not new, but central to Zionism and indeed three-millennia Jewish peoplehood.

Misleading: “Right of Return”

Palestinian Arabs claim to this day a “right of return” to Israel of the descendants of the original 500,000 – 650,000 Arabs (alleged to now be 4-5 million) who left the part of western Palestine that became Israel in 1948. The media often refers to this “right of return” as an unquestioned “right,” not a claim the validity of which is contested on multiple grounds: the Arab invasion started the war, most Arabs left during a time of war and were ordered to do so by their own Arab leaders to make way for the liberating armies that would push the Jews into the sea, Israel absorbed more Jewish refugees from Arab and other Muslim lands than Arabs left Israel, there is no such internationally-recognized right of multi-generational descendants of refugees etc. This is nothing more than a ploy to flood Israel with millions of Arabs who will eviscerate Israel’s Jewish majority and status as the nation-state of the Jewish People.