Thursday, April 07, 2011

The real cause of the Middle East conflict

Melanie Phillips

At, Mark Silverberg lays out the perverse flaws in the attitude towards Israel being taken by the US government and other western countries. Observing that the Obama administration constantly blames Israel for not making enough concessions while making no such demands of Mahmoud Abbas and his cronies, Silverberg notes that it is only Israel that has made concessions: Recent unreciprocated concessions also include Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's acceptance of Palestinian statehood, and the concept of two states for two peoples...Netanyahu temporarily prohibited Jewish construction on the West Bank; put a hold on Jewish construction in Jerusalem; prohibited Jewish building on the West Bank and Jerusalem following the end of his construction ban; curtailed IDF counter-terrorism operations on the West Bank; looked the other way on illegal Arab construction in Jerusalem; allowed the deployment of a US-trained Palestinian army on the West Bank knowing the day may come when they might turn their weapons on Israelis; removed over 400 security checkpoints on the West Bank to facilitate Palestinian travel; and eased the Israeli embargo on Gaza despite Hamas's outspoken goal of exterminating Israel; the 2005 Gaza withdrawal that quickly led to a Hamas-controlled terrorist enclave on Israel’s southern border that continues to fire missiles into Israel’s civilian population centers; and a complete withdrawal from Southern Lebanon, which now has more increasingly accurate and farther-reaching Hizballah weaponry pointed at Israel than ever before.

...If the Palestinians and Arab and Muslim countries are always given a pass for bad behavior -- and often even rewarded for it -- why should they ever make peace?

I believe this is perhaps the most important point of all. In my view, the single most important reason for the continuation without end of the Middle East conflict is that the west has continuously rewarded the Arab aggressors – and if aggressors are rewarded, the inevitable result is they merely ratchet up their aggression.

From the very beginning of the conflict in the 1920s, Britain’s response to Arab terror against the Jews was to reward the perpetrators by offering them part of the internationally binding legal entitlement of their victims. That pattern continues to this day.

In order to arrive at a solution, you must first correctly identify the problem. The problem here is not that there is no state of Palestine. The problem is that Arab aggressors want to destroy the State of Israel.

The solution is to make them stop doing so. That can only happen when the west stops rewarding the attackers and punishing their victims, and starts treating the aggressors instead as pariahs.

The solution to the Middle East conflict therefore does not depend upon the establishment of a state of Palestine. It depends instead on whether the west stops rewarding genocidal aggression.

Why doesn’t Israel say so, loudly and publicly? Why is it so afraid to stand up for its own cause of truth, law and justice?

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