politinfo

Trying to make sense of a meshuga planet

Autonomy, state, sovereignty explained

Mahmoud Abbas 2009-03-22:

“Don’t we deserve independence? Don’t we deserve a state? We will keep struggling and will do so until we get them back”

How do you “get back” something that never existed in the first place?
Sorry to break this to a PhD holder from Moscow Oriental College (let’s discuss his antisemitic PhD thesis some other time), but the fact is, there never existed any independent Palestinian Arab state, kingdom, republic or autonomy: not before nor after the geographic region of Palestine (also known as the Eretz Israel) was captured by Islamic conquest, then under the Caliphates, Mamluks, Ottomans, Jordanian/Egyptians, British Mandate, nor ever. So, there is nothing to “get back“.

In regards to “Don’t we deserve”, here’s an informative article in Foreign Affairs Mag:

Who Gets a State, and Why? The Relative Rules of Sovereignty by Stephen Krasner

International recognition is not contingent on such physical attributes as geographic size or population. Nor does it depend on effective governance or even complete political autonomy. Andorra, for example, is a full member of the United Nations, yet the country — which is sandwiched between Spain and France — covers little more than 300 square miles and has a population of only 83,000. Its joint heads of state are the president of France and the bishop of Urgell in Spain. Two of the four members of its constitutional court are appointed by France and Spain.

Taiwan, meanwhile, a well-governed and prosperous political entity with a population of more than 20 million, is recognized by only about 20 states (out of more than 190).

Palestine faces an even bigger challenge to achieving sovereignty. Once again, however, the problems preventing a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict relate not to population size or geography, but to the political interests of key actors. One crucial issue is security. Regardless of the demarcation of borders, Israel will reject any agreement that does not allow for Israeli or third-party authority over security operations inside Palestine. A recognized Palestinian state would thus not enjoy complete autonomy.

The international environment is too complex for any set of rules, including those regarding sovereignty, to be applied rigidly across all cases.

Hat Tip: Shmuel Rosner

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April 2, 2009 - Posted by | History | ,

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