Middle East: Two States Good, One State Better? – OpEd

By Abdulrazaq Magaji*

Negotiations did not produce the state of Israel. From 1917 when the Jews procured the dubious Balfour Declaration right up to independence three decades later, the Jews conducted themselves in a manner that could have made the murderers of today’s ISIS and Boko Haram look like saints. So, why do some people encourage Palestinians to embrace negotiations as the way to their freedom?

The world has once again been reminded that there was no honesty in the two-state hype as a way round the Middle East crisis. The reminder is yet another wake-up call for Palestinians, as if they needed it, that they have to fight harder than they have done so far if they truly desire an independent State of Palestine. Except, of course, if they wish to hinge their liberation on the Jews’ second bondage in Egypt (Deut 28:68) and confirmed by Jesus Christ (Mathew 21:43)!

It was the fear of ending up like the stateless Gypsies of Europe that forced the Jews to carry out the worst form of terror attack that eventually culminated in their homeland in 1948. In their campaign, the Jews made sure they cut down any object they imagined was an obstacle. Not even prominent United Nations-sanctioned peace envoys who were sent to the Middle East were spared! The Jews never believed any amount of negotiations would get them a homeland. So, why do we encourage Palestinians to see negotiations as the way out?

For two decades now, and as part of its strategies to stall the world, the Israeli establishment has created the impression that it was on the same page with the world on a two-state solution to the Middle East crisis. Then, the United Nations Security Council passed a resolution in that direction and all hell was let loose! Since then, the hawks in Tel Aviv have been running from pillar to post and calling on their unquestioning allies to stand up to the world and the United Nations.

As usual, unquestioning friends of Israel see nothing wrong with the Janus-faced stance of the Israeli establishment. In the opinion of stiff-necked Jews and their friends, any United Nations resolution in support of the two-state solution rewards enemies of Israel and serves as a tonic for Muslim terrorists to slaughter Israelis. This conforms with the untenable characterization of Israel, the world’s surviving major colonial power, as the oppressed and Israeli-occupied Palestine as the oppressor.

The Middle East crisis is even given a religious undertone as a way of sending the world on a wild goose chase.  As it is, gullible religionists are programmed to look in the wrong place, the Muslim world, in the search for the Antichrist. While the search goes on, history has become a major casualty and desperate effort is being made to consign the crux of the matter to the dustbin of history. No one tells the world that there would not have been a state of Israel as it is known today had ultra-right terrorists in World Jewry embraced negotiated settlement.

Negotiations did not produce the state of Israel. What the Jews did ahead of independence in May, 1948, contradicts their untenable characterization as persecuted lambs surrounded by turban-wearing Muslim murderers. The Jewish independence struggle was not a tea party and the seed of their independence struggle was watered with the blood of Jewish martyrs who killed and got killed. From 1917 when the Jews procured the dubious Balfour Declaration right up to independence three decades later, the Jews conducted themselves in a manner that could have made the murderers of today’s ISIS and Boko Haram look like saints.

In fact, every Hamas and other militant Palestinian group of today had their equivalent in the Israeli terrorist groups, Irgun and Zvai, among others. It was Jewish terrorism, and certainly not any negotiated settlement, that forced the hands of the British, who exercised a United Nations mandate over Palestine, to accede to the creation of the state of Israel. In their quest for nationhood, Christian and Muslim Palestinians will have to replicate what earned their Jewish cousins a homeland. They should know that no amount of hours spent around conference tables in Geneva or New York will give them a home.

In the midst of the criminal Israeli occupation, successive occupants of the White House and their carbon copies in European capitals, desirous of arming and sustaining a strong ally in the strategic Middle East, turn the blind eye and continue to delude themselves that the peace agreement is on course. It has been a dishonesty that encouraged extremist groups in the Arab world, some of them trained by the United States to ‘contain Soviet expansionism’ during the Cold War years, to grab the initiative.

Meanwhile, US president, Donald Trump, thinks he has the cure-all for the ills of America and her lapdog, Israel. Respect for the United States, he believes, is top on America’s problems and this will not come without the big stick. To ‘force the world to its senses’, Mr. Trump has announced a 10 per cent rise in US defence spending in 2018.

Mr. Trump’s coming is a soothing balm on the jaded nerves of the Israeli establishment. On the eve of its departure, Barrack Obama administration caused a one-act-too-late stir when it abstained from a crucial vote on two-state solution at the United Nations. The US abstention was the excuse the short-fused Mr. Trump needed to rave and rant at the United Nations.  There are encouraging signs that the Middle East will play a key role in deciding the success or failure of the Trump presidency.   The world must truly braze up!

The Trump era is a return to the gung-ho years of American imperialism that characterised the administration of many Republican presidents. Mr. Trump is going to dust and upgrade the infamous Monroe Doctrine. This time the doctrine will affect the entire world, not just South America which America considers its traditional sphere of influence. Under Trump, the diplomatically correct language to speak to the world is to whip friends and foes into line.

There are encouraging signs that the Middle East will be Mr. Trump’s main test.  Like his predecessors, Mr. Trump is armed with an agenda to hurt perceived enemies of Israel. As a first step, he has vowed to ensure the relocation of capital of Israel to Jerusalem. Interesting times are here!

At the end of the day, only Palestinians will decide whether they want an independent state of Palestine based on pre-1967 boundaries or forget their homeland and agree to be part of Mr. Trump’s idea of one-state of Israel.

Neither will come peacefully, anyway.

* Abdulrazaq Magaji writes from Abuja, Nigeria, and can be reached at [email protected].


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