by Dr. Shmuel Katz
Why it will only continue to fuel conflict.
The conflict in the Middle East between some Arab states and the State of Israel did not start yesterday. Unfortunately, people who are not familiar with the reality on the ground may think that there are easy solutions to the conflict.
One of the superficial ideas which was offered to solve the problem was to create two states for two peoples. Unfortunately, drawing these lines in the sand did not solve the problems, and in fact this solution has already failed in the past because it did not address the core problems that are at the heart of the conflict. They did not address seriously, for example, radical Islamic fanaticism, self-serving power trips, financial corruption, or fearful self-preservation of evil leaders.
The Ottoman Empire, which controlled the Middle East for about 400 years, crumbled during World War I, and the League of Nations created the British and the French mandates, which oversaw the transfer of the land in the Middle East to their rightful owners.
The territory that came under the Mandate of the British included the Land of Israel (including Judea and Samaria), the ancestral homeland of the Jewish people, which had been renamed “Palestina” by Roman invaders about 2,000 years earlier.
The 1917 Balfour Declaration, and the legally binding ruling by the international community at the 1920 San Remo conference, recognized the historical connection of the Jewish people to their ancestral homeland; there was a recommendation to help the Jewish people settle in their ancestral homeland, and at the same time to respect the human rights of all local inhabitants in the land of Israel.
Due to pressure on the British government, the British violated their Mandate in 1922 and created a brand-new Arab state – the Hashemite Kingdom of Trans-Jordan – on about 80% of the British Mandate for Palestine, which was supposed to have become a part of the Jewish homeland. This was an attempt to practically solve some of the local disputes in the region via a two-state solution, but it did not solve the Arab-Israeli conflict.
Various attempts to reach two-state solutions were made by the British in the years following the 1937 Peel Commission report, and again with the 1947 Partition Plan after the United Nations’ 181 Resolution, but all were rejected by the Arabs who continued with their war against the Jews.
Upon the termination of the British Mandate to Palestine, the British left the Land of Israel, and the Jews declared their national independence on May 14, 1948, based upon the UN partition resolution 181, but the surrounding Arab countries invaded the State of Israel the very next day, with the intention of destroying it.
The aggressive attempt to destroy the State of Israel repeated itself in the 1967 and 1973 wars. Luckily, the State of Israel managed to prevail on all these occasions.
Despite these conflicts, the State of Israel reached peace agreements with Egypt in 1979, with Jordan in 1994, and with the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Morocco, and Sudan in the year 2020, but the Palestinian Arabs refused any reasonable compromise to settle their dispute with Israel. Even worse, the Palestinian Arabs declared that their solution to the conflict is going to be the destruction of the State of Israel from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea, and to replace it with a brand-new Arab state by the name of Palestine where Jews will not be welcome.
Because of the Palestinian Arabs’ radical stance, all of the very generous two-state proposals that have been submitted by Israel and supported by the international community were rejected by the Palestinian Arabs in the following years: 1967, 1993, 1997, 2000, 2005, 2008 and 2009-2014. In 2005, Israel even withdrew unilaterally from the Gaza strip hoping to move closer to a peaceful resolution of the conflict, but in return, Israel has since received from Hamas barrages of rocket attacks and floating firebombs into its civilian populated areas, including its capital city Jerusalem and the highly populated city Tel Aviv.
Unfortunately, the Palestinian Authority, which controls Judea and Samaria, and Hamas, which controls the Gaza Strip, continue with malicious deceptive brain washing of their own populations and that of their oblivious international supporters. In addition to destroying the wellbeing of their own people, these self-serving corrupt leaders use a big part of the financial resources that are provided to them by the international community to support terrorists and their families and to build a strong terror infrastructure that will attack anybody who stands in their way – be they Muslims, Christians, or Jews – to gain even more power and personal wealth.
Some politicians and others around the world are known to be vicious anti-Israeli and anti-Jewish operatives for whatever irrational reasons, but it is very difficult to understand why any honorable and good politician would join them in bringing any anti-Israeli resolutions to the table. We must help the good people understand that forcing Israelis to give up their security, or accept any preconditions to future negotiations, will cause serious damage to the international community and the State of Israel. Israel is known to provide the international community with serious life-saving military intelligence and major benefits from advanced research and development in many essential fields. Undermining the stability and safety of the only reliable democracy in the Middle East will deprive the free world from the benefits of the Israeli experience, and it will empower the enemies of good to solidify their grip on their own people and on their oblivious international supporters, to limit the freedom of women under their domain, and to continue the abuse of their children. It will definitively not bring peace to the region.
It has been said in the past that for evil to prevail good people only need to do nothing, and appeasing evil will bring destruction to the oblivious who did not have the wisdom to correctly assess the situation. We can see classic examples of this dynamic in the early British support of Nazi Germany and in the unopposed and out of control ascent of Iran’s puppets (Hamas in Gaza, Hezbollah in Lebanon, and the Houthis in Yemen). The free hand that was given to Iran, the biggest supporter of international terrorism, did not bring peace to the region, and the irresponsible disengagement from Afghanistan, which allowed the powerful re-emergence of the radical Muslim Taliban and ISIS, created a time bomb, the eventual consequences of which are still being studied by the intelligence agencies.
It is important to remind the wise that appeasing the bad operatives with financial or political support will not convert them into peace-loving altruistic angels, but on the contrary, will only embolden them to stay their evil course to the detriment of all honorable peace-loving individuals across the globe.
Dr. Shmuel Katz