Reuters is reporting that western diplomats say the UN Security Council will vote on November 11th on the Palestinian bid for statehood. Tantalizingly, it says the vote is very close:
Diplomats currently expect eight council members to back the Palestinians and six to vote against or abstain. There is uncertainty over Bosnia, the three members of whose collective presidency — Muslim, Serb and Croat — disagree over which way to vote, diplomats say.
It will be terribly symbolic that the vote for statehood may be decided by a nation that was itself riven by inter-ethnic hatred and bloodshed: Bosnia. The fact that it cannot agree on how to vote is indicative of the ongoing trauma that such strife can generate. One wonders what sort of bribe Bibi can offer Bosnia in return for a No vote as he’s done with several other voting countries.
The recent Shalit prisoner exchange allowed the Netanyahu government and Hamas to distract the world’s attention from this Palestinian statehood bid. But invariably, attention will be drawn back as the date approaches for the vote. The U.S. will, of course, veto if the PA gets the nine votes necessary to approve the measure. The veto is an obedience school prize offered by the U.S. for the far-right Netanyahu government, which opposes statehood despite the fact that its leader made a half-hearted speech several years ago endorsing the two state solution.
All this will open the door for an overwhelming vote in the General Assembly in favor of statehood, or barring that, an upgraded status which will allow Palestine to make Israel’s life much more miserable by bringing complaints before the International Criminal Court. This is precisely the sort of reining-in that Israel detests, and which will likely moderate Israel’s behavior for the better, if not eventually lead to a peace agreement.
H/t Eyal Clyne, who notes there are 22 fateful days remaining in which to gain a recognition which has eluded Palestinians for 64 years. The last UN vote was also in the month of November, 1947.
This article appeared at Tikun Olam