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Terms of Surrender (for Israel) ^ | 2/17/02 | staff

Posted on 02/17/2002 2:26:27 PM PST by LarryLied

The op-ed page of today's New York Times offers not one but two plans for an Israeli surrender. One is by Times columnist Thomas Friedman; the other is by Jerome M. Segal, "president of the Jewish Peace Lobby." Let's take them one at a time.

Mr. Friedman's plan is that "In return for a total withdrawal by Israel to the June 4, 1967, lines, and the establishment of a Palestinian state, the 22 members of the Arab League would offer Israel full diplomatic relations, normalized trade and security guarantees."

The Saudi crown prince, Abdullah, seems open to this idea. But it's extremely unlikely that Israel would ever accept it, for the following reasons:

  1. . It would be suicidal. The pre-1967 borders were once described by Abba Eban, the Israeli diplomat who is no hawk, as the "Auschwitz borders" because they made Israel so vulnerable. As Ronald Reagan once said, "in the pre-1967 borders, Israel was barely ten miles wide at its narrowest point. The bulk of Israel's population lived within artillery range of hostile Arab armies. I am not about to ask Israel to live that way again."

  2. It ignores the significance of Jerusalem sites to the Jewish religion. The Friedman-Abdullah plan would surrender the Temple Mount, the Western Wall, the Jewish Quarter of the Old City of Jerusalem and the Jewish cemetery on the Mount of Olives into the hands of the same Arabs who desecrated these Jewish sites the last time around. When Jordan controlled eastern Jerusalem from 1948 to 1967, the gravestones of Jewish rabbis and sages were used to build Jordanian army latrines. Fifty-eight synagogues were destroyed or ruined, and Israelis were denied access to the Western Wall, according to the book "Myths and Facts."

    As Yitzhak Rabin, the peacemaking prime minister, said in Washington on October 25, 1995, "My Jerusalem is the focus of the Jewish people's yearnings, the city of its visions, the cradle of its prayers. It is the dream of the return to Zion. It is the name millions murmur, even on their death bed. It is the place where eyes are raised and prayers are uttered. . . . In Israel, we all agree on one issue: the wholeness of Jerusalem, the continuation of its existence as capital of the State of Israel. There are no two Jerusalems. There is only one Jerusalem. For us, Jerusalem is not subject to compromise, and there is no peace without Jerusalem. Jerusalem, which was destroyed eight times, where for years we had no access to the remnants of our Temple, was ours, is ours, and will be ours -- forever."

  3. It ignores the military balance. Israel won the 1967 war. It is widely reported to have nuclear weapons, which its Arab foes do not have. America won the Cold War, in which many of the Arab tyrannies, terrorist gangs and leaders -- including Syria and the Palestine Liberation Organization -- sided with the Soviet Union.

    Why should the winning side surrender all the land it won? It's as if, 25 years after the Axis powers lost World War II, a columnist for the New York Times fetched up and suggested that France, Austria and Poland surrender to Axis sovereignty in exchange for the Axis powers granting full diplomatic relations, normalized trade and security guarantees to America, Britain and the Soviet Union. What kind of peace plan involves the losing side getting all the territorial concessions?

  4. What the Arabs are offering is worthless. The Friedman-Abdullah plan holds out the carrot to Israel of "full diplomatic relations, normalized trade and security guarantees." Why would Israel want full diplomatic relations with governments like those that exist in Iraq or Libya? Even America does not have full diplomatic relations with those countries, any more than it does with Cuba or with North Korea. They are pariah states, as well they should be because of the horrible way they treat their own citizens.

    Were Israel to have an ambassador hobnobbing with the thugs that surround Bashar Assad in Syria or Saddam Hussein in Iraq, what sort of message would that send to the brave souls fighting for freedom and democracy in those countries?

    Israel supposedly has full diplomatic relations with Egypt and look at what it has brought Israel and the Egyptian people: a government-controlled press full of anti-Jewish blood libels, an Egyptian dictatorship that throws political opponents in prison, and an Egyptian army that is arming itself with the latest in North Korean missiles for use against Israel while the Egyptian population languishes in poverty.

    As for trade, Israel's economy is so first-world that its natural trading partners are America, Japan and the European Union. The Arab states are so poor in comparison that a trade relationship wouldn't mean all that much to Israel. Mr. Friedman may have been wowed by the royal surroundings in Riyadh, but even the once-rich Gulf oil states have fallen on hard economic times.

    The funniest of the carrots is the idea of security guarantees. The 22 Arab states are going to guarantee Israel's security against an attack by -- which country? Liechtenstein? First of all, these 22 Arab states haven't won a war yet, so any guarantees they make are not likely to make Israel feel very secure. But just as important, they are tyrannies, with a long history of double-crossing and of the rejection of Israel's right to exist, and with a need to distract their own citizens from the fact that they are living in oppressive tyrannies.

    Why would a "security guarantee" from these guys be worth any more than the paper it is written on -- or than the paper that Yasser Arafat wrote his worthless security guarantees to Israel on back in 1993?

Particularly rich is the news article that the Times writes about its own op-ed piece. The article runs under the headline "Arab Experts Fault Saudi's Idea Based on Land-for-Peace Trade."

The article contains only Arab reaction to the Friedman-Abdullah plan; not a single Israeli reaction is included. The Times news article summarizes the plan as "declaring that if Israel withdrew from all the occupied territories, including the Arab quarters of Jerusalem, then the Arab states would offer full normalization of relations."

But, as described in the op-ed column, the Friedman-Abdullah plan involves Israeli withdrawal not only from "the Arab quarters of Jerusalem" but to the June 4, 1967 borders -- in other words, withdrawal from the Temple Mount, the Western Wall, the Mount of Olives cemetery, the Jewish Quarter of the Old City. The Times news department may consider these places "the Arab quarters of Jerusalem." But they are not.

Mr. Segal's peace plan is just as bad. It proposes that the United Nations establish and recognize a state of Palestine in all of Gaza and in land that amounts to 100 percent of the land in the West Bank. In return, the Palestinian Arabs must recognize Israel, import no weapons, agree not to enter into any treaty with a country not at peace with Israel, and disarm terrorist groups.

Mr. Segal writes, "It is quite possible, of course, that the P.L.O. would refuse to meet the conditions necessary to get the process started. That would leave us where we are today, with one great difference: The onus for the continued occupation would fall squarely on the P.L.O." Mr. Segal is trying to sell the same camel twice.

The conditions that he sets for the Palestinian Arabs are the same ones that were set in the 1993 Oslo accords and in all the subsequent agreements between Israel and the Palestine Liberation Agreement. The PLO has refused to meet those conditions. And now most everyone except for the likes of Mr. Segal realizes that the onus for the continued occupation falls squarely on the PLO. Mr. Segal does not explain why he thinks the Oslo approach will succeed under U.N. auspices when it has failed repeatedly under American auspices. There are other problems with the plan -- the "Auschwitz borders," issue, for instance, applies here the same way as it does in the Friedman-Abdullah plan.

TOPICS: Editorial; Foreign Affairs
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1 posted on 02/17/2002 2:26:27 PM PST by LarryLied
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To: LarryLied;Khepera;ArGee;EODGUY;JMJ333;homeschool mama;SpookBrat;Dakar
Pings to you all...
2 posted on 02/17/2002 2:29:21 PM PST by Bradís Gramma
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To: Brad's Gramma;LarryLied
Note to self: THANK Larry Lied for posting this. (gulp)
3 posted on 02/17/2002 2:30:07 PM PST by Bradís Gramma
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To: LarryLied
4 posted on 02/17/2002 2:35:39 PM PST by EternalVigilance
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To: LarryLied
I thought assisted suicide was illegal? What's next? The Kevorkian peace plan?
5 posted on 02/17/2002 2:35:58 PM PST by BrooklynGOP
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To: Brad's Gramma
There is also no chance they would pass in a referendum in Israel, if one were held. It's already forgotten by Tom Friedman/Jerome Segal, that the PLO rejected former Prime Minister Ehud Barak's unprecedented offer to give the PLO a state encompassing 95% of the West Bank and Gaza and half of Jerusalem over two years ago at Camp David. The PLO in fact never even made a counter-offer. What emerged from that outcome is there is no set of concessions Israel could make to the Arabs that would bring about peace, short of agreeing to disappear altogether. And apart from the extreme Left in Israel which is as dedicated to Israel's destruction as the Arabs are, there is no person in Israel who would be inclined to accept the Friedman/Siegal type of settlement, in view of how much worth Arab promises have been. Since Israel is not going to surrender, look for the conflict to interminably drag on. Its not going to be settled in this century for sure.
6 posted on 02/17/2002 2:36:52 PM PST by goldstategop
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To: LarryLied
Just a personal note...

There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that Alan Keyes agrees completely with the conclusions drawn by this piece.

Just something for you to think about.

7 posted on 02/17/2002 2:37:21 PM PST by EternalVigilance
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To: LarryLied; #3Fan; 11th Earl of Mar; 2sheep; a_witness; agrace; American in Israel; Anamensis...
So, who the heck are Tom Friedman and Jerome Siegal to dictate terms of surrender? Maybe I will make up "Alouette's Mideast Peace Plan" and post it to this forum, why not?
8 posted on 02/17/2002 2:38:08 PM PST by Alouette
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To: Alouette
Friedman is now a proven collaborator with the Saudi dictatorship; the same dictatorship that produced the 15 terrorists who flew planes into our buildings.
9 posted on 02/17/2002 2:40:24 PM PST by LarryM
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To: Alouette; monkeyshine
Did the savants that wrote in the NY Times address the practical problems at this juncture of resplitting Jerusalem, and propose any ways that are credible to finesse it? Just curious. But then I am a practical kind of guy.
10 posted on 02/17/2002 2:43:04 PM PST by Torie
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To: LarryLied
They need to try my peace plan. Land for Terror. In this plan, Israel takes away a piece of land for every terror incident comitted against Israel. The opposition has an abundance of suicide bombers, but not land. How much land they keep is dependant on how peaceful they can be.
11 posted on 02/17/2002 2:46:03 PM PST by umgud
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To: Torie
Did the savants that wrote in the NY Times address the practical problems at this juncture of resplitting Jerusalem

My guess is they would liikely recommend the same solution as for the rest of the "settlements"--Juden 'raus!

12 posted on 02/17/2002 2:46:32 PM PST by Alouette
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To: Brad's Gramma
Friedman: "Cast yourselves into the sea and peace will come!"
13 posted on 02/17/2002 2:48:36 PM PST by JMJ333
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To: umgud
LOL. Actually, there is a kernal of wisdom in it. There needs to be a widely perceived price in certain quarters for trying to keep up the Israeli body count. There is no such thing as a free lunch.
14 posted on 02/17/2002 2:48:47 PM PST by Torie
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To: LarryLied
Why won't these people make Jordan give the Palestinians a state as intended in the 40's?

Why did Jordan use the Paki Air Force to drive out the Palestinians from Jordan?

15 posted on 02/17/2002 2:57:35 PM PST by leadhead
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To: leadhead
"Why won't these people make Jordan give the Palestinians a state as intended in the 40's?"

This is a part of human nature - nobody cares about any commitment not supported by the use of force.

"Why did Jordan use the Paki Air Force to drive out the Palestinians from Jordan?"

Because they could.

16 posted on 02/17/2002 3:01:47 PM PST by alex
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To: Alouette
Here is the "Eclectic Piece Plan":

1. Annex the Gaza Strip to Egypt.

2. Transfer Jews from the Gaza Strip to Israel or America (their choice)

3. Annex the West Bank to Israel

4. Transfer Palestinians from the West Bank to Egypt or Jordan (their choice)

5. Shoot Thomas Friedman dead

17 posted on 02/17/2002 3:03:04 PM PST by eclectic
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To: Torie; alouette
I've been through this many times. Splitting Jerusalem is a rediculous proposal, wholly impractical, and completely unfair. It would be a "surrender", and since when does the victor of the wars surrender?

Why is it so impossible? For one, Jerusalem is 80% Jewish. Why on earth should a city that is 80% Jewish (and 100% Israeli) assent to being turned over to the eventual Palestinian state? Second, splitting the city would destroy it's character, charm, and economic vibrancy. Third, even the so-called "Arab East Jerusalem" is 45% Jewish, and maybe not even 30% Palestinian. Why would or should a minority group comprising only 30% of only a small part of the city be granted sovereignty over it?

Moreover, it has been reported numerous times that there is major disagreement even within this 30% Palestinian population of the city being handed over to the PA. It's questionable if even a majority of this 30% minority group would be willing to surrender their Israeli passports, Israeli standards of living, Israeli freedoms of speech and due process for that of Arafat's PA. (It's not really that questionable.. you already know the answer. They might be angry, hurt, dismayed... but they are no fools!). In short, it would be an enormous atrocity for outsiders to dictate the terms of the settlement. It would be the equivalent of repeating what the Palestinians claim happened to them, by either forcing the residents to abandon their citizenships or their homes on the demands of foreigners.

I don't think it's workable at all. The saddest part of all is that only the Israelis are being asked to make such a sacrifice. Why aren't the Palestinians and Arabs being told to forget about Jerusalem, that they have no claim and no chance to get it. At the very least, the residents of "Arab east Jerusalem" should be allowed to have a referendum. Do you want to become part of Palestine, or do you want to remain under Israeli control? 45% of the vote is already a lock for the Israeli side. You would need near 100% unanimity among the remaining 55% to throw the vote to the PA side. By any standard, any way you look at it, Jerusalem should remain undivided and Israeli. Only meddlesome liberal fools who beleive in the inherent good nature of men like Arafat would make such a sacrifice in the face of all evidence to the contrary, and against the wishes of the people such a decision would effect. Friedman is just another of the many blathering Chamberlainesque fools who have a public voice in this ongoing struggle.

18 posted on 02/17/2002 3:10:42 PM PST by monkeyshine
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To: BrooklynGOP
I thought assisted suicide was illegal. . .

What is it with the New York Times pushing this stuff? Makes as much sense as the NRA coming out for banning handguns or the National Review calling for tax hikes.

Once again, I'm thankful a Republican or Christian conservative did not write this stuff. The New York Times would have savaged him or her.

19 posted on 02/17/2002 3:12:58 PM PST by LarryLied
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To: monkeyshine
Thanks for all that typing. It saved me quite a bit or work. That is why I flagged you. :) I have yet to see any serious proposal that is credible involving reverting to the 1967 borders involving Jerusalem. Facts on the ground matter, and the facts have change a lot since 1967. There is a price to pay for losing wars, but beyond that, paying the price to revert will not sell with those that the Palestinians need to sell it too, not now, and not for a very long time. It is DOA.
20 posted on 02/17/2002 3:17:29 PM PST by Torie
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