Saturday, December 8

Aftermath of "Pillar of Defense

English: Khaled Meshaal in a meeting with span...
English: Khaled Meshaal in a meeting with spanish journalists (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
English: Mahmoud Abbas
English: Mahmoud Abbas (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
العربية: علم حماس עברית: דגל חמאס I made this ...
العربية: علم حماس עברית: דגל חמאס I made this for use on the Hamas article of Wikipedia. Category:Hamas (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
The Coat of arms of the Palestinian National A...
The Coat of arms of the Palestinian National Authority (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The "Pillar of Defense" War in Gaza has come and gone with both Israel and Hamas claiming an overwhelming victory. The former had inflicted heavy damage on Hamas but despite Israeli claims that its goals were reached, this is not the case in reality. Hamas never surrendered and because of this they claimed a victory. The damage done to Hamas property was enormous and the loss of life was relatively low on the Palestinian side.Perhaps this was the Hamas claim to victory. There is a tenuous cease-fire in place with Egypt being the broker for this cease-fire under tremendous pressure from the US.

Israel had no option but to retaliate for the firing of Qassam missiles into the settlements and towns in the south of Israel. The ally of Hamas is Iran. The latter supplied Hamas with the Fajr 5 long range missiles with a 70 Km radius.The world was silent as many European leaders knew that Israel has the right to defend its citizens from Hamas terrorism, but after a couple of days pressure started mounting on Israel to reach a cease-fire. The dour and spineless secretary-general of the UN, Ban Ki Moon paid a quick visit to Israel and Palestine and pressurized a cease-fire between Israel and Hamas brokered by Egypt. Hilary Clinton, the US Foreign Secretary had a meeting with President Morsi of Egypt.The US pledged about 12 billion dollars aid to Egypt if they would aid in maintaining the cease-fire.

The cease-fire is holding for the moment. In Israel street there is total silence about the Pillar of Defense War against Hamas. There is one thing that has been emphasized in the aftermath is the total impotence of the Palestinian Authority in its part in this war.The PA remained out of the picture and had no influence in the outcome or decisions made apart from supporting a cease-fire. It is obvious that Palestine is divided into two entities: Hamastan which is Gaza and Fatahstan which is the West Bank that is still occupied by Israel. President Mahmoud Abbas is wedged between Hamas and Israel and has no power in decision-making let alone negotiations.

He did somehow flex a bit of muscle in the UN in his demand for Palestine getting observer status and this in turn would upgrade Palestine in the UN without being a member of the UN. In practical terms this gives them access to the International Court at the Hague to take Israel to court for "war crimes" against the Palestinians. It is doubtful if they will pursue this.

Had there been a Palestine with a leadership that is strong and could negotiate with Israel for peace and security then there would be no problem with Palestine's status in the UN. At the end stage of negotiations, Palestine would declare itself independent and would become a full member of the UN. This is not the case at all. 

Palestine speaks with two voices. The moderate Abbas voice which is dubious in its support of a peace treaty with Israel. Abbas has no power to make decisions on this matter and the talk about it is nothing but empty statements lacking any backing from the extremists in the Hamas terrorist organization ruling Gaza. They are unanimous in demanding Israel's total destruction and while they are in this self-destructing mode and are not willing to negotiate with Israel leaves Israel with no choice but to oppose the elevation of Palestine's status to non-member observer status in the UN as the representative of Palestine which does not represent Hamas-ruled Gaza. The question is: Who represents Palestine as an observer non-member whose legitimacy in representation by the PA is not accepted by Hamas? Hamas is still viewed as a terrorist organization by the US and its allies in the European Union. It was Hamas that carried out terrorist acts against Israel in the south.

Israel had gained some points in the world but these points decreased rapidly when PM Bibi Netanyahu decided to establish 3000 housing units in the E1 area because of the Palestinian move in the UN. Two wrongs do not make a right and the vindictiveness of the Netanyahu Government to do this was a stupid tactless blunder for reasons that are for consolidating the right wing parties in Israel under his banner at election time which is on 22nd January 2013. He wants to outright the right the of Naftali Bennet (The Jewish Home Party an extremist illegal settlement oriented party) and all these other pathetic right-wing fanatics in Israel standing for election. This is the main reason for making his rash and unwise decision on promoting illegal settlement. The more illegal settlements built the less likelihood if any will there be for the establishment of a Palestinian state which today consists of two parts as mentioned earlier in my article..Hamas and Fatah are at loggerheads and even resort to murdering each other.

The Israeli Election campaigns this year seem to be side stepping the importance of a peace settlement with the Palestinians. The desertion of various party members from one party to another in the mad rush for seats in the Knesset and the total compromising of ideology as to how Israel should be led towards a peace settlement with Palestine and its Arab neighbours is sorely lacking.  

This is very dangerous and on the extremist right wing flank we have the destruction of Israel's credibility in the world. Criticism of Netanyahu are even coming from Israel's closest friends. Ambassadors are being recalled from Israel for consultations and this does not bode well for Israel's future if the Likud-Beiteinu Party of Lieberman and Netanyahu are re-elected which is a foregone conclusion unfortunately.  

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