Thursday, April 10, 2014

Bennett calls on PM to annex 60% of West Bank

From JPost, 10 April 2014, by Gil Hoffman:

Bennett at Presidents Conference in Jerusalem, Febraury 17 2014

Bayit Yehudi leader Naftali Bennett urged Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu on Wednesday to annex some 60 percent of the West Bank in response to the Palestinians’ stopping talks with Israel and turning to the UN.
All 350,000 of the Jews in Judea and Samaria live in Area C, some 60% of the area. Of the Palestinians in the West Bank, 97% live in Area A, which is under full Palestinian control, and Area B, which is under Palestinian civil control and Israeli military control.
Bennett launched a public relations initiative Wednesday for his “Settlement Blocs First” plan, which calls for annexing blocs such as Ariel, Gush Etzion, Ma’aleh Adumim, Beit El-Ofra and communities that overlook Ben-Gurion Airport. He explained his plan on CNN Wednesday night and intends to push it to the international community.“It is clear that the diplomatic process has run its course and that we are entering a new era,” Bennett wrote Netanyahu. “We have been hitting our heads against the wall of negotiations over and over again for years and we kept getting surprised when the wall did not break. The time has come for new thinking.”
A Hebrew video with subtitles in multiple languages that the Jerusalem and Diaspora affairs minister released explained why the plan could be practical. It says that the international community does not recognize Israel’s annexation of eastern Jerusalem and the Golan Heights, so annexing part of the West Bank would just add another thing for the world to complain about.
The three-staged plan starts with annexing Area C and offering citizenship to its Palestinians.
It calls for giving the Palestinians upgraded autonomy in Areas A and B. The third stage is massive investment in Palestinian areas to improve their quality of life and improve their lives.
“We should be taking a bottom- up strategy rather than creating an artificial state in the heart of Israel,” a source close to Bennett said....

Tuesday, April 08, 2014

Israel to Contemplate Unilateral Moves Following Collapse of Peace Negotiations

(Photo: Amit Shabi/Flash90)

On Sunday morning, at the weekly cabinet session in Jerusalem, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reiterated Israel’s profound desire for genuine peace but lamented that the Palestinian side seemed not to be interested in an agreement and instead – in violation of the rules in the UN-mediated peace negotiations – forged ahead with unilateral bids for statehood at the United Nations.
As a result, the Jewish state will contemplate its own unilateral moves, the Israeli leader declared.
peace negotiations
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks at the weekly cabinet meeting on Sunday, following collapse of peace negotiations. April 06, 2014. (Photo: Amit Shabi/Flasj90)
“In recent months the State of Israel has conducted negotiations with the Palestinians in order to reach a peace agreement. Israelis expect peace, a genuine peace, in which our vital national interests are assured, with security first and foremost,” Netanyahu stated.
“During these talks we carried out difficult steps and showed a willingness to continue implementing moves that were not easy, in the coming months as well, in order to create a framework that would allow for putting an end to the conflict between us. Just as we were about to enter into that framework for the continuation of the negotiations, [PA President] Abu Mazen [aka Mahmoud Abbas] hastened to declare that he is not prepared even to discuss recognizing Israel as the national state of the Jewish People, which we have made clear to both the President of the United States and to other world leaders as well.
peace negotiations
US Secretary of State John Kerry (L) and PA President Mahmoud Abbas during peace negotiations. (Photo: Issam Rimawi / Flash90)
“To my regret, as we reached the moment before agreeing on the continuation of the talks, the Palestinian leadership hastened to unilaterally request to accede to 14 international treaties,” Netanyahu said.
“Thus the Palestinians substantially violated the understandings that were reached with American involvement. The Palestinians’ threats to appeal to the UN will not affect us. The Palestinians have much to lose by this unilateral move. They will achieve a state only by direct negotiations, not by empty statements and not by unilateral moves. These will only push a peace agreement farther away and unilateral steps on their part will be met with unilateral steps on our part. We are ready to continue the talks but not at any price.”

Secretary Kerry Faces ‘Reality Check’

US Secretary of State John Kerry, after a year of intensive efforts and shuttle diplomacy to bring the Israeli and Palestinian sides together before the April 19th deadline for an agreement, and after having been described by diplomatic sources as being out of “touch with reality,” has acknowledged the deadlock in the peace negotiations.
“It’s reality-check time,” Kerry said on Friday.

Sunday, April 06, 2014

The pogrom that started the conflict, and the reason it continues...

From JPost, 4 April 2014, by Michael Freund:

Arab assailants proceeded to attack innocent Jewish men, women and children on the streets, punching, kicking and beating them, as well as hurling stones.

BRITISH POLICE officers corral Jewish men during the 1920 Jerusalem riots
BRITISH POLICE officers corral Jewish men during the 1920 Jerusalem riots Photo: Wikimedia Commons
....It was the middle of the morning on April 4, 1920, precisely 94 years ago, during the intermediate days of Passover...

Muslims were marking the third and final day of the Nebi Musa festival...

Tens of thousands of Arabs gathered in Jerusalem’s Old City and several speakers began firing up the horde, including the nefarious Haj Amin al-Husseini, who would subsequently be appointed the city’s Mufti.

Amid chants of “Palestine is our land and the Jews are our dogs!” the crowd descended into a violent frenzy and went on the offensive.

Arab assailants proceeded to attack innocent Jewish men, women and children on the streets, punching, kicking and beating them, as well as hurling stones and other objects.

They broke into Jewish homes, raped Jewish women, and plundered property. Cemeteries and yeshivot were also attacked, with tombstones and Torah scrolls falling victim to the Arab mob’s fury.

Arab policemen, whose task was to maintain order, instead joined in the fray, while the British Mandatory authorities responded with their characteristic lethargy and incompetence.

Over 100 Jews were injured in just the first few hours, and the rioting intensified the following day, leading the British to impose martial law. Finally, after several more days of unrest, the violence was finally quelled.

When the dust had settled, a total of five Jews had been killed and more than 200 wounded, while four Arabs were dead and 25 injured.

Zionist leader Chaim Weizmann along with a senior British military officer insisted that the British Mandatory authorities had actively encouraged Arab leaders to incite the violence due to their hostility towards Zionism.

One month later, in May 1920, the British government dispatched a commission of inquiry, known as the Palin Commission, to investigate.

In predictable fashion, the final report sought to place blame on both sides, criticizing the Zionists for “impatience to achieve their ultimate goal,” as if that would somehow justify an Arab pogrom.

Nonetheless, the commission did note that it was clear that “the incidence of the attack was against the Jews and… was made in customary mob fashion with sticks, stones and knives. All the evidence goes to show that these attacks were of a cowardly and treacherous description, mostly against old men, women and children, and frequently in the back.”

... it is worth recalling what happened so long ago in the streets of Jerusalem because it serves as an important reminder of what the Arab-Israeli con´Čéict is truly all about.
Simply put: it has nothing to do with Jewish settlements in Judea and Samaria and everything to do with Jews.

Unless they had extraordinary paranormal powers enabling them to gaze into the future, the Arab rioters of 1920 did not spill innocent blood because Jews would later settle in Beit El and Kedumim in the 1970s and ’80s.

And they did not go on the rampage because they believed in two states, Arab and Jewish, living side by side in peace and security.

They attacked Jews then, as they do today, because they are unwilling to accept a permanent and sovereign Jewish presence in the region.

Their dream today remains what it was back in 1920: to scare us off and clear us out.

Then, as now, the Palestinian Arabs are unwilling to recognize the biblical, historical and moral right of the Jewish people to the Land of Israel.

And then, as now, they are willing to employ violence and terror to advance their goals.

And this is why all the plans, from the Rogers plan to the Reagan plan, from the Oslo accords to the Kerry plan, have accomplished little, because they ignore the cold, hard truth that has been staring us all in the face for the past century: 
there can be no peace because the Palestinian Arabs do not want peace. What they want is Israel.