UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon used his final address Tuesday to the General Assembly, after ten years in office, to blame Israel for the failed Israeli-Palestinian peace process. Ban said nothing about Palestinian terrorism, war or incitement in his speech.
The only criticism that Ban aimed at the Palestinians was that they are internally divided, which is hardly a criticism at all but a political and geographical fact. (Currently, the Hamas terror group controls the Gaza Strip following a 2007 coup, and the “moderate” Fatah organization — itself linked to terrorism — rules most of the Palestinian population of the West Bank.)
The relevant paragraphs from Ban’s valedictory speech were as follows:
One year ago, Palestine proudly raised its flag at UN Headquarters. Yet the prospects for a two-state solution are being lowered by the day. All the while, the occupation grinds into its 50th year.
As a friend of both the Israeli and Palestinian peoples, it pains me that this past decade has been ten years lost to peace. Ten years lost to illegal settlement expansion. Ten years lost to intra-Palestinian divide, growing polarization and hopelessness.
This is madness. Replacing a two-state solution with a one-state construct would spell doom: denying Palestinians their freedom and rightful future, and pushing Israel further from its vision of a Jewish democracy towards greater global isolation.
Ironically, the admission of “Palestine” as a “non-member state” of the United Nations, and the raising of the flag at the UN, both violate the Oslo peace accords, which prevent Palestinians from declaring statehood unilaterally, outside of negotiations.
Most Israeli settlements in the West Bank are not illegal under international law (unless they are illegal under Israeli law), despite UN protests to the contrary. And most of the recent so-called “expansion” has been within existing Israeli settlements. The government of Benjamin Netanyahu even froze settlement expansion in a gesture of peace that Palestinians ignored.
Ban took office in 2006, just months after the Second Lebanon War, which was started after the Hezbollah terror group attacked Israel and kidnapped and killed Israeli soldiers. On his watch, Palestinians caused three more wars — in 2008, 2012 and 2014 — with rocket attacks and raids from the Gaza Strip deliberately targeting Israeli civilians. The Palestinian Authority continued to incite and celebrate violence against Jews and Israelis through official propaganda and public monuments.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. His new book, See No Evil: 19 Hard Truths the Left Can’t Handle, is available from Regnery through Amazon. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.