Monday, December 26, 2016

The Breakdown of Netanyahu and the Israeli State

The Breakdown of Netanyahu and the Israeli State
By James Baxley
What is the Fuss all about?

The United States on Friday, December 23, allowed U.N. Security Council Resolution 2334 which condemns Israeli settlement construction to be adopted. The Security Council approved the resolution with 14 votes, with the US abstaining. Samantha Power, the U.S. ambassador to the U.N. raised her hand to abstain in the chamber when the resolution was put to a vote.

After the vote, Powers pressed that opposing settlement expansion was “consistent with the bipartisan consensus” and that "This resolution reflects trends that will permanent destroy the two state solution if they continue on their current course."

"Our vote today does not in any way diminish the United States' steadfast and unparalleled commitment to the security of Israel," Power said.

Israeli Prime Minister . . . ‘more committed to settlements than any in Israel’s history.’

Israeli Prime Minister Benjimin Netanyahu
 She does go on to say that the “Israeli Prime Minister recently described his government as ‘more committed to settlements than any in Israel’s history.’” Powers continues to quote one of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s leading coalition partners who recently declared that “the era of the two-state solution is over.” 

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She points out that being “committed to pursuing a two-state solution” and “simultaneously champion expanding Israeli settlements” are “irreconcilable.” Powers declares to the UN Security Council that “one has to make a choice between settlements and separation.”

When speaking to the U.N. on the December 23, Powers demonstrates how opposing settlement expansion was “consistent with the bipartisan consensus” by quoting Ronald Reagan from 1982:

“The United States will not support the use of any additional land for the purpose of settlements during the transitional period. Indeed, the immediate adoption of a settlement freeze by Israel, more than any other action, could create the confidence needed for wider participation in these talks. Further settlement activity is in no way necessary for the security of Israel and only diminishes the confidence of the Arabs that a final outcome can be freely and fairly negotiated.”

Ronald Reagan, 40th President of the United States of America

 Even though the U.S. has always assured a “commitment to Israel’s security,” the U.S. has a “deep and long-standing commitment to achieving a comprehensive and lasting peace between the Israelis and Palestinians.” The wording and tone from Powers speech gives off a feeling of reprimand.

Israel's U.N. ambassador, Danny Danon, reacted angrily to the vote and issued a sharp parting shot at the Barack Obama’s administration's role.

"It was to be expected that Israel's greatest ally would act in accordance with the values that we share and that they would have vetoed this disgraceful resolution. I have no doubt that the new U.S. administration and the incoming U.N. Secretary General will usher in a new era in terms of the U.N.'s relationship with Israel," he said.

Netanyahu Burns Bridges: What Exactly is Resolution 2334?

But what does Paragraph 9 of Security Council Resolution 2334, say?

“Urges in this regard the intensification and acceleration of international and regional diplomatic efforts and support aimed at achieving, without delay a comprehensive, just and lasting peace in the Middle East on the basis of the relevant United Nations resolutions, the Madrid terms of reference, including the principle of land for peace, the Arab Peace Initiative and the Quartet Roadmap and an end to the Israeli occupation that began in 1967; and underscores in this regard the importance of the ongoing efforts to advance the Arab Peace Initiative, the initiative of France for the convening of an international peace conference, the recent efforts of the Quartet, as well as the efforts of Egypt and the Russian Federation.”

Could Security Council Resolution 2334 be in retaliation for what Netanyahu told the U.N. General Assembly in September?

“The U.N. began as a moral force and has become a moral farce. The United Nations denounces Israel; the United States supports Israel. And a central pillar of that defense has been America’s consistent support for Israel at the U.N.”

Trump to the Rescue

President-elect Donald Trump takes to his soap box—Twitter—for his first real foray into international affairs and foreign policy by bashing the U.N. Security Council. He tweets a positive outlook for Israel with "As to the U.N., things will be different after Jan. 20th," referring to the beginning of his first term.

The 45th President of the United States Doonald Trump

 In “things will be different,” Trump quite possibly could mean to move the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. The Jerusalem Embassy Act of 1995 called for Jerusalem to remain an undivided city and for it to be recognized as the capital of the State of Israel. Israel's declared capital is Jerusalem, but this is not internationally recognized, pending final status talks in the Israeli–Palestinian conflict.

Moving the U.S. Embassy will fix everything . . . NO!

Aaron David Miller of the New York Times suggests that “There's a serious risk that moving the embassy will strip away any hope of managing the conflict through a negotiating process and likely kill U.S. credibility as a mediator — a role the president-elect has expressed an interest in playing.”

The moving of the U.S. Embassy to the Palestinian’s proposed capital of its future state could cause outrage and could erupt into violence. The U.S.’s Arab allies could pressure the US to declare the move to be reprehensible. This could ultimately affect Trump’s campaign promise to defeat ISIS.

If Trump has such a high regard for Israel, then he should be more understanding and forgiving of the U.N. The U.N., the institution that gave Israel its international legitimacy with the United Nations General Assembly Resolution 181 recommended a partition of Mandatory Palestine at the end of the British Mandate, on 29 November, 1947.

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This shift in U.S.-Israeli relations could have grave consequences for Trump and the U.S. internationally.

Trump needs to be careful when handling the U.N. Previous Republican presidents have attacked the U.N. and wanted to do away with them, or at least have nothing to do with them.  They have learned to balance public attacks on the U.N. with quiet efforts to support the organization where it is useful to U.S. interests. If President Trump wants to solve the alleged Syrian “civil war” or to defeat ISIS, he may need the U.N.

Israeli Hypocrisy

Accusations against the Obama administration for “abandoning a longtime US ally [Israel]” has made it no secret how they are awaiting the new administration on January 20.

"Israel looks forward to working with President-elect Trump and with all our friends in Congress, Republicans and Democrats alike, to negate the harmful effects of this absurd resolution," Netanyahu's office said in a statement.

 It’s kind of hard to say with a straight face that “Mr. Obama shows his colors” and Obama has “abandon[ed] a longtime U.S. ally [Israel]” when the Obama administration and Israel just recently signed a defense aid agreement for an additional $38 billion over 10 years, from 2019 through 2028.

 Haaretz reports that Netanyahu thanked “U.S. President Barack Obama, his administration, Israel's friends in Congress and the American people for their bipartisan support of the aid agreement” in a statement Netanyahu issued. It was also noted that the deal clearly shows the relationship between the two allies is “strong and stable.”

"This doesn't mean we don't have disagreements from time to time, but those disagreements are within the family," Netanyahu said.

“By standing with the sworn enemies of Israel to enable the passage of this destructive, one-sided anti-Israel rant and tirade,” writes the Washington Times.

In the Haaretz article, Netanyahu said the disagreements have "no effect whatsoever on the great friendship" between Israel and the U.S. How quickly people forget.

So what should you come away with after reading this? The point I was trying to make is that Israel is a spoiled nation. Not its people, but its government.

As I have demonstrated, the government is happy and contempt as long as it is getting what it wants. But when things don’t go their way, then the government declares war on the world.