Caroline Glick: Trump, the pistol and the olive branch
Caroline Glick: Trump, the pistol and the olive branch
Trump will take office on Friday. Since he was elected, he has given every reason to believe that Abbas and his deputies and their European and American enablers will have to either put up or shut up.Melanie Phillips: Britain gets it right. Twice. What gives?
Speaking of the president-elect, Henry Kissinger said that Trump is the first man in recent memory who doesn’t owe anybody anything for his victory.
The only people he is answerable to are the voters who elected him.
Trump’s electoral victory owes to his success in tapping into the deep reservoir of popular disaffection with the elitist culture and policies that have governed post-Cold War West. He has used the mandate he received from American voters to revisit the basic assumptions that have driven US policies for the past generation.
His skepticism at NATO and the EU are examples of his refusal to simply accept the received wisdom of his predecessors. Just this weekend he told Germany’s Bild magazine that he continues to question the purpose of NATO, which is a drag on US taxpayers and doesn’t fight terrorism.
He similarly restated his ambivalence toward the EU and that its open border policy has been a “catastrophic failure,” and he expects more countries to follow Britain’s lead and exit the EU.
Trump’s position on the PLO and the Palestinian war on Israel is of a piece with his wider rejection of the common wisdom of Western elites. Just as he didn’t hesitate to say that the EU mainly serves as an instrument for Germany to dominate the European market, so he has made no mystery of his rejection of the moral equivalence between Israel and Palestinian terrorists which forms the basis of the twostate formula.
Not only won’t Trump join the Obama administration and the French in criminalizing Israeli homeowners, Trump is celebrating them. He has invited the leaders of Israeli communities in Judea and Samaria – that is, the so-called “settlements” – to attend his inauguration.
And he appears dead serious about moving the US Embassy to Jerusalem.
Extraordinary! The British government has started making bold and good moves. No fewer than two such sets of developments have been spotted in as many days.“Occupied” Territories? Hebrew Origins of Palestinian Arab Towns in Judea-Samaria
On Sunday, at the Paris conference called
to get the Middle East peace process back on trackstick the knife into Israel good and proper before Obama leaves the White House, Theresa May’s government refused to sign its closing statement. “There are risks,” said the UK Foreign Office,“that this conference hardens positions at a time when we need to be encouraging the conditions for peace. We have particular reservations about an international conference intended to advance peace between the parties that does not involve them – indeed which is taking place against the wishes of the Israelis.”
You don’t say.
Not content with that, according to Ha’aretz the UK this afternoon used its veto to prevent the EU Foreign Affairs Council from passing a French resolution adopting the Paris conference conclusions.
Can this really be the same British government that just over three weeks ago not only voted for the infamous Israel-bashing UN Security Council resolution 2334 but helped draft it and push it through? No wonder Ha’aretz called today’s move “highly irregular”.
It would be thoroughly uncharitable to suggest that Britain’s stance at Paris, like Mrs May’s onslaught on US Secretary of State John Kerry’s speech attacking Israel a few days after resolution 2334, happened because she suddenly became aware that it might not be the most brilliant strategy to thoroughly cheese off the incoming, pro-Israel US President. So I won’t.
It would be even more uncharitable to suggest that because President-Elect Donald Trump stated in his interview with The Times (£), published today but conducted last week, that “the UK may have another chance to veto if what I’m hearing is true, because you know you have a meeting as you know, this weekend”, Mrs May promptly fell into line. So I won’t suggest that either.
With the approval of United Nations Security Council Resolution 2334, which declares as illegal any Israeli presence beyond the 1967 “Green Line” — including the Old City of Jerusalem and its Temple Mount (Judaism’s holiest site) and the Mount of Olives cemetery where Jews have been burying their dead for more than 3,000 years– and an earlier UNESCO resolution disassociating the Jewish People from Jerusalem and other holy sites, one wonders how the U.N. and UNESCO ambassadors involved in these decisions can keep a straight face.
Given the recorded history of that land from the Bible and other recognized sources, a well-known phrase from Shakespeare is instructive: “What’s in a name?” When it comes to Eretz Israel, plenty. The place-names verify the absurdity of accusations that Jews are colonizers, strangers to this land and “occupiers of” these areas.
It is equally absurd to claim that the Arabs are the indigenous peoples of Israel, because virtually all the place-names used by local Arabs are non-Arabic in origin, and derived either from biblical Hebrew names or from later Greek or Roman names.
The Romans renamed the entire region Syria-Palestina (named for the Philistines and Assyrians) after they destroyed the Second Temple so as to erase its Jewish roots. This was later shortened to Palestina and it eventually became known as Palestine. As noted scholar Daniel Pipes points out: “Palestine (Arabic: Filastin) as a political unit only came into use as a Zionist triumph when imposed by the British occupiers following the issuance of the Balfour Declaration in 1917. Palestinians (Arabic: Filastiniyun) also came into use only in the twentieth century.” (“Is There A Palestinian People? Can It Be Defeated?” 1-10-17, Middle East Forum blog).