The Israelis whose lives are at stake and the authentic U.S. pro-Israel community have long understood that a Palestinian Arab state would be a Hamas-Fatah-ISIS-Iranian regime terrorist state that endangers Israel’s heartland.
Such a state would be a launching pad for non-stop attacks on innocent Israeli civilians. Indeed, the Maagar-Mochot poll in January found that Israelis overwhelmingly (by a 10 to 1 margin) support Israeli sovereignty in Judea/Samaria and oppose a Palestinian Arab state. (Judea/Samaria is the accurate name for the area Jordan renamed the “West Bank.”)
Similarly, a Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs poll in March found that Israelis are overwhelmingly (by a 12 to 1 margin) concerned that if Israel gave up security control of Judea/Samaria, that the Palestinian Arabs will build attack tunnels. And the implications go far beyond Israel. A Palestinian Arab terror state is likely to push Jordan and the entire Middle East into complete chaos. (Also remember, there was never an Arab sovereign State in Judea and Samaria. Even the name “Palestine” is a Roman name, not an Arab name. Arabs can’t even pronounce the letter “P.” When the Romans captured Judea and Samaria and murdered or drove the Jews out of their ancient homeland they renamed it Palestine after the enemy of the Jews, the Philistines.)
Thus, earlier this year, we were thrilled that President Trump refused to parrot the irrational, dangerous mantra that a Palestinian state is the only option for peace (the so-called two State solution, a misnomer since Israel is already a State). We were glad to see President Trump wisely speak instead about real peace and creative solutions; and demand that the Palestinian Authority (PA) must stop teaching “tremendous hate” to their children in PA schools; stop naming Arab schools, streets, sports teams, and tournaments after Jew-killers; recognize Israel as the Jewish State; stop paying Palestinian Arab terrorists to murder Jews; and revoke the PA law authorizing the PA’s horrendous $350 million per year of “pay to slay” payments.
However, we are concerned now. In May, the PA leadership rejected President Trump’s praise-worthy demands that the PA must end its “pay to slay” payments. Instead, the PA vowed that these payments will continue. Any effort to negotiate anything else with the PA should have ended there. It is unconscionable to negotiate with Arab Nazis who pay people to murder Jews. And yet, Trump administration negotiators are reportedly now attempting to negotiate a “peace deal.”
Such negotiations are also futile. Irreconcilable, diametrically opposed differences between Israel and the PA have long made it clear that the creation of a peaceful Palestinian-Arab state is impossible.
For example, the PA demands at least all of eastern Jerusalem – while Israel requires all of Jerusalem remain united under Israeli sovereignty.
The PA demands that every Jew must be forcibly ejected from their future State, meaning the almost 800,000 Jews in eastern Jerusalem/Judea/Samaria. That cannot and will not ever happen.
Every time Jewish communities have been evicted in the name of “peace,” Israel got more Arab terror and rockets instead.
The PA also insists that millions of descendants of self-created so-called Palestinian “refugees” be allowed to move to Israel. Every Israeli government, from left to right, outright rejects this, because it means overwhelming Israel with a hostile population and the end of Israel as a Jewish state.
The PA also demands a “contiguous” state that connects Gaza to Judea/Samaria, thereby cutting Israel into two separate pieces. Israel obviously cannot agree to this demand either, if Israel wishes to remain in existence.
The PA refuses to agree to Israel’s basic demand for recognition as the Jewish State.
And to top off all this, the PA refuses to sign a peace deal that “ends all claims” against Israel. Israel understandably cannot agree to a deal that permits new or continued anti-Israel claims.
Another irreconcilable PA demand is that Israel must free all Palestinian-Arab terrorists in Israeli jails. Israel would be insane to release thousands of unrepentant convicted Arab murderers and attempted murderers.
Also with respect to security, Israel, at a minimum, must maintain control over the major Jewish communities in Judea/Samaria, and, as Netanyahu said during his joint press conference with President Trump in February, Israel needs “overriding security control over the entire area west of the Jordan River” because “otherwise we’ll get another radical Islamic terrorist state in the Palestinian areas exploding the peace, exploding the Middle East.” But, the PA says it will never accept this.
Similarly, as Prime Minister Netanyahu explained during his 2009 speech at Bar Ilan University, any Palestinian-Arab state needs to be “demilitarized” – meaning that it cannot have an army; control its airspace; forge military pacts with the likes of Hezbollah, Hamas, and Iran and import weapons; and must be subject to strong measures to prevent weapons smuggling. The PA opposes every one of these Israeli security requirements.
Moreover, even if the PA lied and falsely agreed to demilitarization in order to obtain a state, the PA would never keep this agreement.
The PA repeatedly broke its Oslo and other agreements to combat and stop inciting terror, collect illegal weapons, outlaw terrorist groups, and preserve and provide Jews access to Jewish holy sites in PA territory. An entity that continues to demonstrate that it does not keep any of its past agreements when they didn’t have everything it wanted obviously cannot be trusted to keep a future agreement after it has received major concessions.
The PA’s refusal to abide by its written agreements is an insurmountable roadlock. Especially since a Palestinian State deal would ask Israel to give up irreversible tangibles (i.e., land) for intangible peace promises. Israel needs partners that keep their promises – and the PA doesn’t qualify.
Finally, the PA’s unrelenting goal is not a Palestinian State but to destroy and replace all of Israel with a Palestinian-Arab state that no Jew can step foot in. This goal is clearly laid out in the PA ruling party Fatah Charter and in PA President Abbas’ speeches condemning the Israeli “occupation” since 1948 – and in the PA maps, stationery, official emblems, stamps, media and atlases showing all of Israel as Palestine. The PA leadership assures its people that any concessions it obtains are “stages” towards their final goal of destroying the Jewish State. Additionally, the PA is politically aligned with Hamas whose Charter calls for Israel’s destruction and the murder of every Jew!
Israel cannot agree to commit suicide – or give the PA a stronger base for advancing the Palestinian-Arab “struggle” for Israel’s total annihilation.
Moreover, the Palestinian Arabs don’t want a state if it means accepting Israel. They were offered a state in 1937 (Peel Commission), in 1948 (UN Res. 181), in 2000 by Israeli PM Ehud Barak, in 2008 by PM Ehud Olmert – none of which they accepted because it meant accepting the Jewish State and ending all further claims. And when the Arabs controlled all of the land they now claim for a state in Judea/Samaria, Gaza, and eastern Jerusalem from 1948-1967, they never established a State there nor even mentioned their desire for a State there.
In short, virtually every component of a “Palestinian Arab State solution” is bedeviled with impossible-to-bridge conflicting demands and requirements – not to mention that the PA’s destructive goals which are irreconcilable with Israel’s continued existence in any way, shape or form. Creating a truly peaceful Palestinian Arab State living in peace with the Jewish State is thus an impossible-to-achieve deal. It would only strengthen the ability of the Palestinians to promote their terrorist goals of murdering Jews and destroying the Jewish State.
Morton Klein is President of the Zionist Organization of America. (Visit www.zoa.org) A major Jewish weekly named him one of the top five Jewish leaders in America. Another named him one of the top dozen “Jewish activists of the Century.” He also worked in medical research as a biostatistician with two time Nobel laureate Linus Pauling.