Over the past decade to decade-and-a-half back to September 11, 2001 terrorism has threatened the Western world in ways unforeseen and with an unexpected ferocity which was beyond virtually every prediction made even at the very end of the last century. This has presented security challenges which have required changes to our lives with security checkpoints, airport security inspections, terror alerts and other precautions and inconveniences, some mildly annoying with others excessively invasive and others completely unseen but even more depersonalizing than anything imagined by the average citizen. Probably the most feared factor from terrorism has been the inability to predict or foresee the next attack, not its location, not the time, not the number of terrorists, not the form of attack, not the reasons that inspired the hatred fueling the attack and not the complete ramifications that would result from the attack. There has been one fact about terrorism which, though undeniable, is likely not very consoling, the fact that Israel has been on the receiving end of the vast majority of such attacks compared to the other nations. This comparison is valid in total casualties, numbers of attacks, and virtually every other category except for the sheer size of single terror attack and its severity as that was reserved for nations many multiples the size and population of Israel, a small country which is often misconceived as having greater size or population than her actual numbers. Israeli population is just over eight-million, ranking ninety-ninth amongst nations and containing eleven-hundredths-of-one percent (0.11%) of the world’s total population. Israel is the one-hundred-fifty-third largest nation making it smaller than El Salvador, the smallest country in continental America, by just over one-hundred square miles measuring merely eight-thousand and twenty square miles making Israel represent four-thousandths of one percent (0.004%) of the total earth area and just under fourteen-thousandths of one percent (0.014%) of the total land area of the world. Israel is dwarfed by the Arab world which contains over three-million square miles of land compared to Israel’s just over eight-thousand yet Israel is the threat to the Arab world and not the reverse if one is to believe much of the Arab media or even the New York Times.
Meanwhile, there has been, despite Prime Minister Netanyahu’s denials as he is attempting to minimize the threats and presumably keep a lid on the escalating attacks by Arabs, both Palestinians and even a percentage of Israeli Arabs, another intifada being perpetrated against Israel. The main focus of what has been labeled the ‘Silent Intifada’ has been the Temple Mount and much of Jerusalem, concentrated in East Jerusalem, the Old City, the Mount of Olives Cemetery, the Jerusalem Light Rail System, and even the Kotel (Western Wall areas) plus extending throughout Judea and Samaria along with parts of Benyamin and the Galilee including a recent riot which broke out in the Western Galilee which resulted in a face-off between Israeli Arabs and Israeli Druze in a village shared by the two populations. The Druze were defending Israel as their homeland where they serve in the IDF and consider themselves to be as loyal a group of Israeli citizens as any group and have taken upon themselves the same identical obligations to the state of Israel as is expected of Israeli Jews. What has been obvious since the beginnings of the Silent Intifada about three or so months ago has been the European nations as well as the European Union placing the blame on the Israelis claiming that it has been the Israeli perceived refusal to agree to the formation of a Palestinian state and blaming the Israelis for the breakdown of the peace talks and being the blocking party from renewed negotiations. The Europeans ignore the demands from Mahmoud Abbas for Israel to cede all of Judea and Samaria, East Jerusalem and grant free access between Gaza and Judea and Samaria without security checkpoints before Abbas is willing to engage in further talks. Never mind that Abbas is demanding that Israel concede every single final status point before there can be negotiations which Abbas will agree to participate. That leaves the question as to exactly does Abbas expect the two sides would need to negotiate if Israel has already surrendered to allow a Palestinian state with the 1949 Armistice Lines as their border and with East Jerusalem as its Capital and accept the right of return for the five million Palestinian refugees into pre 1967 War Israel changing Israel into a nation with a large Arab majority population which would become a second Palestinian state after the next election and likely merge the two Palestinian entities into the dreamed of Palestine from the River to the Sea and then move to cleanse their newly merged state of its Jewish population. There just might be some completely understandable reason for Israel to refuse to agree to such preconditions as Abbas has demanded in order to restart the peace talks. Talks should require that not every negotiable difference be decided and surrendered by one side to facilitate the ruse of negotiations they are offering.
There also is the confusion as to which nations have recognized a Palestinian state and those nations which voted in the United Nations to grant elevated observer status for the Palestinian observers which granted that is referred to as Observer State but is different than a formal recognition of statehood. Further, no matter how many states recognize the Palestinian claims to a state, until the Palestinians meet the entirety of the Montevideo Convention which formalized the obligatory requirements for statehood as expressed in the Convention on the Rights and Duties of States, they cannot attain actual statehood nor assume any of the powers granted an actual state. This convention and other determinations have made clear that the existence of a state is independent of the recognitions granted by other states and entities and is determined purely on the qualifications and requirements stated in the Montevideo Convention. Simply put, even if every nation even to include Israel were to recognize Palestinian statehood, such would still be insufficient to actually grant the Palestinians an actual state and they would find themselves at a loss in dealing as an equal with the rest of the nations of the world. The seeming willingness of European nations to grant recognition to the Palestinians belief they are being granted statehood will only fuel further refusal by Abbas to rejoin negotiations as long as he believes that by continuing the frightful levels of violence the world will come begging at his door offering gifts and recognitions if only he will stop the carnage which he is utilizing as the pressure to force the granting of concessions. Israel has seen this game played before by Yasser Arafat as well as more recently by Mahmoud Abbas as well as regularly by Hamas out of Gaza where they utilize rocket attacks and infiltrations to force a confrontation with Israel only to garner pledges of five-billion-four-hundred-million dollars pledged in Cairo after a peace was finally in the works. These funds are in addition to the near ten-billion promised by Qatar which is to be used exclusively by Hamas as they see fit and nary a penny of that going to rebuilding the homes, malls, schools, clinics or hospitals for the people in Gaza, the very same people who had elected them.
These reinforcing votes from across Europe, be they actual official recognition of Palestinian statehood or symbolic nonbinding parliamentary votes simply for the solidarity of the cause, all will simply result in continued violence from the Palestinians as they have a separate game plan which does not include ending their violence simply because some Europeans gave them a friendly nod of their head and a tip of their hats. They could not have met a more ardent supporter than the newly selected European Union Foreign Minister Federica Mogherini who just breezed through Israel, Judea and Samaria (West Bank) and Gaza with one message that her aim and intent was to dedicate her entire five years as European Union foreign policy chief into forcing the formation of a Palestinian state and little if anything else. This singular dedication by the new European Union foreign policy chief must have further emboldened Abbas as did the Swedish recognition of the Palestinian state. There will now be no stopping the violence which is likely to escalate with even more cars being driven through crowds of civilians waiting for busses or at the light rail stops, stabbing of Jews walking in Jerusalem, rioting on the Temple Mount, rioting and hurling large rocks and bricks at vehicles with Israeli license plates and other escalations in an attempt to push the crisis mode as doing so has proven to garner Abbas sympathy with the Israelis facing almost all of the pressures while Abbas continues his inciting of violence claiming that the Jews are causing desecrations of the al-Aqsa Mosque, referring to Jews who try to visit the Temple Mount as herds of beasts marauding and defiling sacred Muslim grounds all while having cartoons encouraging and celebrating the use of vehicles to run Jews over in the streets and other violence. You keep with those actions which get you rewards and violence has so cowed much of Europe that they are willing to do anything to placate Abbas in the hopes the violence will not reach their cities as it has in past as a reaction to rioting in Judea, Samaria and East Jerusalem. The Europeans are aware that should Abbas start to incite for violence across all of Europe in order to protect the sanctity of the al-Aqsa Mosque, the Dome of the Rock and all the holy places in Jerusalem their capitals and other cities will be alight with the fires of hundreds of cars per night and their loss of control over their cities.
The final coup de grâce will be presented this fall where representatives of the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) will present a petition to the Security Council requesting they pass under Chapter Seven an enforceable resolution demanding that Israel vacate all occupied Palestinian lands by November of 2016, or face forced expulsion under the stipulations within the resolution and Chapter Seven rules of enforcement. The reason that Abbas is not presenting the request is so he can claim plausible deniability despite the fact that he also heads the PLO. There are many who fear that President Obama will order United States Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power to abstain rather than veto the resolution as the United States has done to protect Israel for the last six decades. The love affair may have ended as President Obama has a seemingly great loathing for Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu especially as he can expect great amounts of criticism when President Obama signs a deal allowing Iran to retain thousands of centrifuges in operating condition and not demand a deeper, more rigorous and more penetrative IAEA (International Atomic Energy Agency) inspection routine including their seeking to locate thus far concealed shadow parallel nuclear sites which could be utilized to attain nuclear weapons capability clandestinely. Ever since the high White House official stooped to what can only be defined as childish name-calling when they were quoted questioning the intestinal fortitude of Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu to the Atlantic reporter and editorialist, Jeffrey Goldberg there have been numerous sources who have questioned whether the relationship between the United States and Israel had now degraded to the point that the United States has announced or intends to refuse to continue to protect Israel in the Security Council and allow any resolutions aimed against Israel to pass without any veto from the United States. Such a situation would necessarily lead quickly to a critical confrontation pitting Israel potentially against the combined forces of the Western, Eastern and Middle East in order to enforce any Chapter Seven resolution with which Israel refused to comply. This too could be an end result of the European timidity and shrinking from the ever increasing levels of Palestinian violence against Israel and the potential for such violence to spill into Europe unless Europe capitulates to every Palestinian demand starting with statehood and ending with the attempted eradication of Israel in the name of liberating all of Palestine from the river to the sea making Palestine Jew free.
Beyond the Cusp