Trying to make sense of a meshuga planet

Mahmoud Abbas: “In the West Bank We Have a Good Reality… We are Having a Good Life.”

Marty Peretz blogs in The Spine:

Who said this?

Mahmoud Abbas, The Putative President of Putative Palestine. Then what’s the rush?  And what’s the panic?  The negotiations that President Obama is trying to broker between Israel and the Palestinian Authority is really and mostly about the West Bank.  Gaza is completely removed from the equation because it is in the bloody hands of Hamas which the Israelis justifiably won’t touch and even this extra-conciliatory administration doesn’t have the heart to push.  Maybe Pakistan will make a sort of peace with the Taliban. But don’t get any ideas about Israel and Hamas.

Continue there.

Finally, good news from the West Bank! Indeed, in a few short words, the head of the Palestinian Autonomy have caught all wanna-be-Palestinian-state-builders, together with Israel-bashers a-la Jimmy Carter, in a trap. Let’s see how they weasel themselves out, or keep repeating the old mantra of "brutal Israeli oppression", which seems quite impossible to reconcile with his "We are having a good life." Of course, this "good life" is a result of Israel’s security measures and Western aid.

Daniel Pipes in FPM: “In the Obama Administration … It’s Easy Being Palestinian”
Barry Rubin: Abbas Seizes Opportunity to Throw Away Opportunity


June 2, 2009 Posted by | Palestinians | , | Leave a comment

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

April 2, 2009 Posted by | History | , | Leave a comment