Among the parting gifts left to the free world by Barack Obama was a concerted effort to undermine the only democracy in the Middle East. The move by Obama suddenly abandoned 40 years of U.S. diplomatic protection of Israel by allowing U.N. Resolution 2334 to condemn settlements and commerce by Israel in the West Bank. In the wake of that move, the U.N. will now try to put a legal face on its never-ending disdain for the Jewish people.
As with so many other actions by Barack Obama over the years, his “gotcha” seems inexplicable outside of an understanding of how leftists of his stripe view Israel and her claim to her homeland. In addition, most of the U.N. membership and all but two member nations of the Security Council view Israel as a thorn in their flesh if not an international pariah. As far as they are concerned, history, Israel’s covenantal (theological) claims and contractual obligations be cursed. If that sounds extreme, take a look at how the Israeli/Palestinian situation developed and notice the documented Arab behavior.
Israel’s modern occupation of the Holy Land really began throughout the 1800’s. Various small groups began to immigrate to the ancient Holy Land while it was still under control of the Ottoman Empire. The first large wave of immigrants to Palestine began in 1881. By the time of the first world Zionist Congress in 1889, approximately 50,000 Jews lived in Palestine.
The legal birth of modern Israel was formulated at the end of World War I by the League of Nations. As a part of the breakup of the defeated Ottoman Empire, Great Britain was given supervision over what is now Israel, the Gaza Strip, the Golan Heights, the “West Bank” and Jordan. The League’s “Mandate for Palestine” was finalized in 1922. Through provisions activated under Article 25 of the Mandate, the Arabs were given 77% of the mandated area (what is now Jordan) and the Jews willingly accepted the remaining 23% – everything from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea. In other words, all of the above areas minus Jordan were given to Israel.
For the Arabs, 77% was never enough. The fact is, as verified by declassified documents from the mandate period (1920-1948), Arab leadership initiated first blood almost immediately against the Jewish people, much of the time in complete opposition to the wishes of Muslims who lived peaceably with Jews in the area. In the late 1940’s for example, the district commander for the Muslim’s mufti complained that he found the Muslim populace indifferent and even hostile to his call to arms.
The situation came to a head in 1947 after ten years of terror attacks by Arabs and revenge attacks by Jews. The U.N. made one last effort at compromise through Resolution 181. R181 gave the Arabs another 45% of the Jews’ remaining 23% territory and made Israel’s remaining 17% of the original mandate an indefensible patchwork of thirds. Even with those gains, Arab protagonists rejected the effort outright as the Jews tried to accept it. Muslim commander Fawzi Qawuqji vowed to “drive all Jews into the sea”.
Such was the backdrop of Israel’s 1948 War of Independence. In the resulting armistice, Israel agreed to interim borders (keyword “interim”) that left the administration of the unallocated West Bank and East Jerusalem to Jordan. Predictably, almost immediately, Jordan began outright violations of the treaty.
Since 1949 the pattern has never changed. In the 1967 and 1973 wars, Arab states were pushed back, cease-fires were reached, but hostilities continued. Terrorist attacks and shellings from so-called “Palestinians” have rarely abated and Israel continues to respond in kind – repeatedly relinquishing land gained after defensive operations. The only legal treaties signed by Israel and all other involved parties were the 1922 two-state partition, the treaty with Egypt in 1979 and the treaty with Jordan in 1994.
In 2013, the only other legal action came from a court of appeals in Versailles, France and was massively important but has been completely ignored by the United Nations. The decision was the result of a lawsuit by the PLO against the Jerusalem Light Rail. The court obliterated Palestinian claims to the West Bank and held Israel as the only legal resident and administrator. It was a clarification of existing international legal reality.
Now comes U.N. Resolution 2334 claiming the authority to make Israel’s presence and commerce in the West Bank and East Jerusalem illegal. The problem is that the Security Council has no such authority. No U.N. resolution has the authority to create national borders without treaties between the involved parties and that is exactly the practical outcome of R2334. In addition, R2334 is non-binding (per Chap VI of the U.N. charter) and, per its own text and in spite of its soaring rhetoric about international law, bases its claims solely on its own past resolutions.
In the end, the actions of Barack Obama and the Security Council proves only one thing. It showcases the visceral hatred for everything Jewish that exists in the ideologies of socialism and “progressivism”. For Israel’s sake as well as America’s, President Trump must do everything in his power to right R2334’s grievous wrongs.