I am sympathetic to the concerns for the Palestinian people. However, as Thomas Jefferson opined, "People get the government they deserve."
The Israelis have been under attack or siege ever since they signed U.N Resolution 181 in 1948. They have attempted to resolve the issues peaceably a number of times but have been rebuffed at every turn. The United Nations has been both feckless and anti-Semitic throughout.
Virtually nothing was done to Jordan when it captured and took control of the city of Jerusalem in the 1948 war. The Israelis had agreed to the provision in Resolution 181 that Jerusalem was to be an international city under the control of the U.N. During the war in 1967, Israel won back that city and a significant amount of other territory. After the war, the Israelis chose not to give back captured territories unless the Arab forces would agree to Israel's right to exist and promise not to continue attacking. The Arabs refused. To this day, the Arab position as stated, is to eliminate all the Jewish people.
After World War I, England was put in charge of the "Palestinian Protectorate" — the Palestinian Territory. After World War II, the United Nations was charged with equitably dividing that territory among its groups of inhabitants . . . Jordanians, Israelis, and the remaining Arabs, now commonly referred to as Palestinians. To that end, the U.N. General Assembly developed Resolution 181. The Jews accepted the resolution and declared their independence on May 14, 1948. They were then attacked by troops from Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Morocco, Yemen, the Sudan, and Egypt.
The fighting continued until February 1949 when Egypt, Lebanon, Transjordan, and Syria agreed to formal armistice lines. The result of the fighting was that Israel gained some territory formerly granted to the Palestinian Arabs under the U.N. resolution in 1947. Jordan gained control over East Jerusalem and the West Bank and Egypt controlled the Gaza strip.
The armistice lines held until 1967. It was then, on June 5, Israeli forces attacked the forces from Jordan, Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Kuwait, and Algeria which had joined together to attack Israel. Six days later, the United Nations brokered a cease-fire to end the war. By that time, Israel had almost doubled its size with the captured territories it had won in the battle, including East Jerusalem. The U.N. asked the Israelis to return the captured properties but their request was denied. Israel said it would return Gaza, the West Bank, the Golan Heights, and the Sinai in exchange for Arab recognition of the right of Israel to exist and guarantees against future attack. The Arab States refused, choosing a policy of no peace, no negotiation, and no recognition of Israel.
"The UN adopted Resolution 242 in late November 1967, five months after the Six-Day War ended. It took that long because intense and deliberate negotiations were needed to carefully craft a document that met the Arabs' demand for a return of land, and Israel's requirement that the Arabs recognize Israel's legitimacy, to make a lasting peace. It also took that long because each word in the resolution was deliberately chosen, and certain words were deliberately omitted, according to negotiators who drafted the resolution.
So, although Arab officials claim Resolution 242 requires Israel to withdraw from all territory it captured in June 1967, nowhere in the resolution is that demand delineated. Nor did those involved in the negotiations and drafting of the resolution want such a requirement. Instead, they say Resolution 242 explicitly and intentionally omitted the terms "the territories" or "all territories."
Because the Arabs were clearly the aggressors, nowhere in Resolution 242 is Israel branded as an invader or unlawful occupier of the territories. The wording of Resolution 242 clearly reflects the contention that none of the territories was occupied territory taken by force in an unjust war.
Given that the Palestinian Arabs never had sovereignty over the West Bank and East Jerusalem and Jordan had seized them illegally in 1948, Professor, Judge Stephen M. Schwebel, former president of the International Court of Justice in the Hague, concluded: "State [Israel] acting in lawful exercise of its right of self-defense may seize and occupy foreign territory as long as such seizure and occupation are necessary to its self-defense. ... Where the prior holder [Jordan] of territory had seized that territory unlawfully, the state which subsequently takes that territory in the lawful exercise of self-defense [Israel] has, against that prior holder, better title.
"As between Israel, reacting defensively in 1948 and 1967, on the one hand, and her Arab neighbors, acting aggressively, in 1948 and 1967, on the other, Israel has the better title in the territory of what was Palestine, including the whole of Jerusalem, than do Jordan and Egypt."
(http://www.2nd-thoughts.org/id248.html. See also id162 and id91)
Professor Julius Stone, a leading authority on the Law of Nations, has concurred, further clarifying: "Territorial Rights Under International Law. ... By their [Arab countries] armed attacks against the State of Israel in 1948, 1967, and 1973, and by various acts of belligerency throughout this period, these Arab states flouted their basic obligations as United Nations members to refrain from threat or use of force against Israel's territorial integrity and political independence. ..."
(The above seven paragraph quote was taken from this link: http://www.think-israel.org/hertz.unresolutions181and242.html)
On Dec. 23, 2016, the United States did not veto U.N. Security Council Resolution 2334, which specifies actions
against Israel that it (the U.S.) had vetoed in past resolutions. The resolution essentially aims to strip Israel of its territorial rights and arbitrarily awards the Palestinian Arabs with territories rightfully claimed by Israel. It can only be labeled what it is: an anti-Semitic ruling tacitly encouraged and endorsed by the current administration.
Israel has repeatedly shown a willingness to negotiate for a fair and lasting peace. The Arab people in the Middle East, not just those we refer to as Palestinians, need to put pressure on their leaders to work toward peace, not a continuing war. As Jefferson said, people get the government they deserve.
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