I was truly surprised by the great amount of plain ignorance displayed by Sabella Abidde in his article on the current Israeli-Palestinian conflict (Punch Nov 21, 2012, back page.).
First, Abidde avoids mentioning the fact that it was the Palestinian terrorist organization, Hamas, that first started raining down rockets targeting Israeli cities, including Tel Aviv. And killing innocent civilians in the process. Of course, Hamas is banking heavily on people like Abidde to try to whip up popular sentiments against Israel, so that rather than reply Hamas rocket for rocket, she should rather be seeking for terms of conciliation. Howevr, Benyamin Netanyahu had made it clear that that would not happen. Even Obama’s unabashedly pro-Palestinian USA could not but agree that Israel had the right to defend her citizens from unprovoked aggression. Reading the mood, Hamas and her supporters have decided on the current Egypt-mediated ceasefire.
Sabella Abidde no doubt is much aware of the above point; which is why he stridently avoided making any mention of the cause of the flying rockets. What I find quite amazing is his apparently honest prescription for solving the crisis. He went on and on about how the Palestinians have a right to their own state, existing side-by-side a Jewish state. In fact he wrote somewhere: “Palestinians should be granted independence. One hundred years is such a long time to be under the shadow of another country. And in fact, Israel should have agreed to a Palestinian Statehood a long time ago. What’s the point “holding on” to Palestine? “ bla, bla, bla.
What crass nonsense!
The state of Israel came into existence only 64 years ago in 1948. How then have the Palestinians been under the shadow of that country for 100 years?
And Israel has made it clear over and over again that she has no problem with a Palestinian state existing side-by-side her. It is the Arabs who have sworn never to allow the state of Israel to exist side-by-side their Arab state! This is pure easily verifiable fact.
In his 2009 speech, soon after coming into office, Benyamin Netanyahu made it abundantly clear to the whole world that he was ready to discuss a two-state solution with the Palestinians any time anywhere. He described the real roots of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict:
“the simple truth is that the root of the conflict was, and remains, the refusal to recognize the right of the Jewish people to a state of their own, in their historic homeland”.
It is a matter of plain history that it was the Arabs that rejected the UN partition plan of 1947 mandating the creation of two separate states – A Jewish State and an Arab State. Israel of course embraced the idea, and based largely on that mandate announced the creation of Israel on May 14 1948. The Arabs, far more militarily established than Israel at that time, threatened to liquidate the new state within a week. They are still trying till today to save face and attempt to carry out their boasting.
This simple and incontrovertible fact is further plainly demonstrated by current developments in Gaza. Israel vacated Gaza on her own volition some seven years ago - without any conditions whatsoever. But what happened? Hamas quickly over-ran the legitimate Palestinian puppet government, took over the land, and began to use it (based on its proximity to Israel) as a base to send thousands of rockets into Israeli cities. Israel’s response has been to target Hamas infrastructure, taking great pains and efforts to minimize damage to the civilians; but everybody knows that Hamas uses her own people as human shields, choosing to locate her rocket launchers and strategic infrastructure in the neighbourhood of mosques, schools and hospitals (for instance, see http://www.terrorism-info.org.il/malam_multimedia/English/eng_n/pdf/hamas_e028.pdf). To minimize even further the possibilities of these rockets being smuggled into Gaza in their thousands in the first place, Israel rescinded her original policy of total non-intervention in the affairs of Gaza, pronouncing a naval blockade which will necessitate that items being imported into the region will be inspected to ensure that rockets and ammunition are not packaged together with food and drugs. Nigerians will remember the cache of weapons seized at Apapa the other time (October, 2010), which Israel identified as destined for Gaza enroute Nigeria. (http://www.nairaland.com/541157/seized-bombs-meant-gaza-strip)
Thus, the situation in Gaza is a mini-version of the whole Arab-Israel conflict story. Israel has announced over and over again that she has no problem lying side-by-side with a prosperous Palestinian state. But her appeal to the world is that there should be some guarantee in place that such a State will not become the launch pad for those who have sworn that the only reason they are alive is to seek the annihilation of Israel. Hamas, for example, is one organization that has this goal boldly and proudly inscribed in her charter. It’s there today for all to see ( http://www.mideastweb.org/hamas.htm).
Addressing the Knesset on the occasion of his 100th day in office in 2009, Netanyahu, for the sake of US President Obama, clearly summarized Israeli’s position on a Palestinian state:
“I told President Obama when I was in Washington that if we could agree on the substance, then the terminology would not pose a problem. And here is the substance that I now state clearly:
“If we receive this guarantee regarding demilitirization and Israel’s security needs, and if the Palestinians recognize Israel as the State of the Jewish people, then we will be ready in a future peace agreement to reach a solution where a demilitarized Palestinian state exists alongside the Jewish state. ”
How can a regular back page columnist in a national newspaper like the Punch claim ignorance of these open facts, and spend a whole article writing prescriptions for minor skin rashes while leprosy festers!
I’ll like to refer readers to an article by Benjamin Netanyahu on Lessons from Sudentenland to further provide details of the conflict and where, (with corroboration from Bible prophecies written thousands of years before this time), it will eventually all end (http://www.khouse.org/articles/1997/11/
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