by Gerald A. Honigman
Things ain’t going too well In Mesopotamia these days.
Despite the surge in American troops and so forth, the reality is that if America withdrew even a year from now, the fourteen hundred year old divide between Sunni and Shi’a Arabs would still yield the bloody results we are seeing daily right now. Short of either another Saddam-like Sunni or Shi’a version of that other post-World War I’s artificial state’s absolute ruler, Marshal Tito, emerging, “Iraq” will likely come apart at its religio-ethnic seams as did Yugoslavia.
Worse still, the one people (not perfect themselves, but still the most deserving) who most merit American support will be the folks we’ll probably again abandon to their Arab tormentors--the Kurds…some thirty million of whom still remain stateless and whom the American State Department and its oil-addicted kin make every excuse under the sun to keep as perpetual victims to their Arab and other regional oppressors.
The very week President George W. Bush announced plans for a major summit a few months down the road to reinvigorate his dream of the creation of a “contiguous” Palestinian Arab State (the Arabs‘ # 22--and second, not first, one in “Palestine“), reports surfaced of renewed atrocities and ethnic cleansing of Kurds in Arab Syria--the state where Kurdish kids are forced to sing songs praising their “Arab“ identities in schools. Four decades ago, Ismet Cheriff Vanly wrote The Syrian Mein Kampf Against The Kurds (Amsterdam 1968)--so such things have been going on for quite some time. Yet, how many people know of this? And why aren’t they reading about the case for Kurdistan in the news the way they are the cause for yet another Arab terror state set up in Israel‘s backyard?
The vast majority of Kurds are not involved in and do not support terror and just want to be able to rule their own lives and not be subjugated (or worse) as Arabs are able to do in many other states which they have come to rule.
Why are thirty million Kurds doomed by the world’s power brokers to statelessness and perpetual victimization (keep in mind that Kurds were promised independence in Mesopotamia/Iraq after World War I) while Mr. Bush presses Israel to allow for the creation of either a Hamas or Fatah Arab terror state?
Recall that it took Saddam’s gassings and such in Arab Iraq to even bring any attention at all to the plight of the Kurds.
But that was yesterday’s news...
Today, the plans of the Arabs’ legal representative, Bush family and petrodollar good buddy, James Baker, are again setting the stage for shafting America’s Kurdish friends in the area…friends who are now seeing through Baker’s and the State Department’s intentions and are acting sometimes in ways to also distance themselves from America. A shame…It should not have come to this.
Sunni Arab states control much of the world’s oil. Kurds should have the right to do likewise with oil which sits in land which they have lived in millennia before any Arab or Turk arrived there.
While I fully supported America’s overthrow of Saddam, the predicament we now face should have surprised no one…just ask the British who had a long history there after World War I.
If America’s honorable desire for a highly autonomous, federated Iraq falls apart (as it likely will…too many ancient, powerful forces and factors working against it), we should cut our losses and support the one true success story we have already helped to create…a free and independent Kurdistan, complete with American bases, in a region where the latter are becoming less and less welcome. Arabs and others routinely flee the violence in the areas they control for the Kurdish north.
And this brings me to the real topic of this piece…
With a less than probable favorable long term outcome facing us in Iraq--i.e. Iran’s ayatollahs have begun the countdown to the creation of their sister Islamic Republic to the west and may actually be considering reuniting it within Iran’s ancient borders (Bahrain was also targeted so the other day)--Bush would like to leave office with a “success” he can point to in that region. Think of the last days of Bill Clinton’s presidency and similar pressures on Israel to give away the store for promises of Arab “good behavior” at Camp David and Taba.
Israel is now, once again, under enormous pressure to play along with this dangerous game.
It has agreed to release Arab prisoners to Fatah’s Abbas that should have never been taken alive in the first place…wannabes who “just” maimed instead of murdered innocent Israeli children and mothers, and so forth. Additionally, Israel has agreed to grant amnesty to others of the same ilk if they simply pledged to be good. As The Jerusalem Post’s Caroline Glick has pointed out, the Arabs are laughing their behinds off at this.
But funny it’s not…especially when one considers that Israel’s alleged “best friend,” America, has been relentlessly pressuring it to act in this suicidal way.
Israel must muster the backbone to refuse to attend such a summit at this time.
Prime Minister Olmert and his even worse Condi Rice derriere-kisser, Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni, must get the boot by the Israeli public before Israel attends such a meeting.
When such things as the “contiguity ” of that proposed additional Arab state are brought up at such a summit, Israel must have leaders who will insist that Israel’s own contiguity (as just one example, how does one link Gaza with Judea and Samaria without dissecting Israel itself ?) must not suffer to create this.
The desires of Arab state # 22 must not take precedence over the security of the Jews’ sole, tiny, resurrected nation.
Before agreeing to attend any such meeting, Israel must have leaders who will insist upon the meaningful territorial compromises it is entitled to under the provisions of post-‘67 War U.N. Security Council Resolution 242. The latter called for the creation of secure and recognized borders to replace Israel’s former 1949, 9-mile wide armistice line existence. President Reagan, Secretary of State George Shultz, and others supported this right, as did all of 242’s international architects such as Britain’s Lord Caradon and America’s Eugene Rostow. At one time Mr. Bush seemed to understand this as well, commenting that some Texan driveways were bigger than Israel’s width. While Israel’s goal will not be to rule over millions of additional Arabs, any territorial compromise worth the paper it’s written on will see some Arabs living within the sole Jewish State’s new, real borders the same way scores of millions of non-Arab Kurds, Berbers, Copts, Jews, Armenians, Assyrians, black Africans, and so forth live in so-called “Arab States.” If they don’t like this, they may move to the new, second Arab state in Palestine.
Israel must thus come to such a meeting with demands of its own and must be proactive instead of reactive.
So far, Olmert and Co. have simply caved in to one demand after another in the American State Department (with Bush approval ) Arafatian Fatah good cop vs. Hamas bad cop games. Every atrocity committed against Jews by Hamas was either winked at or collaborated with by Fatah. And the latter has as much or more Jewish blood on its hands as the former. Despite all the denials, for example, it turns out that Black September (airplane hijackings, Munich Olympics’ massacre, murderers of Americans, etc.) was, in fact, simply part of Arafat and his lieutenant, Mahmud Abbas’, Fatah. And America, in fact, collaborated with this manure to build up Arafat’s “good name.”
Massive amounts of American military aid and such have already fallen to Hamas. It’s likely that more will go this route as well…not that it really makes much difference to Israel. And that brings up the next crucial issue…
The first thing any Israeli Prime Minister must insist upon at any such meeting is that the days of Arab hudnas--temporary ceasefires--are over. Period…
Any concrete concessions of territory, amnesty, and such must be accompanied by a full treaty of peace in return. This must include the real--not pretend--revision of the PLO Charter which calls for Israel’s destruction. Textbooks, maps, imams, and such which show no Israel or call for its destruction must be replaced by those which lay the groundwork for peace and mutual acceptance--not terror and murder.
If Fatah and Mahmoud Abbas are different than Hamas in something beyond merely their openly-admitted Trojan Horse and destruction-in-stages tactics for Israel’s demise, then it’s time that they put up or shut up. The time for allowing Arab excuses to continue murder and attempted murder of Jews has to come to a quick end. What other nation would demand less?
Israel must insist that any treaty of peace must come with recognized casus belli between the two nations. Certainly one of these must be that both nations will take responsibility for preventing aggression being launched against the other from their respective territories. Certainly America would not tolerate the murder of its citizens by folks based in Canada or Mexico. Imagine our response to repeated rocket and missile attacks. Would we settle for “we’re too weak (wink, wink) to stop it? How long would we or anyone put up with that manure?
If a state can’t control such things, it either has no right to statehood or no right to complain when the victim does all in its power to stop the terror and murder itself.
The Israeli leadership which attends such a summit must bring with them illustrations of what true peace can mean--for all parties concerned. Israel has been a good friend to many. But that leadership must also stand firm and insist that acts of war launched from the Arabs’ new state will be treated as such.
Despite the State Department’s all-too-frequent line, there is no “moral equivalency” between those who attack and those who defend.
No terror, no wall, no checkpoints, etc. and so forth.
While we’re at it, let's face some obvious, if politically incorrect, facts.
There really is no room in that miniscule space between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River for another state. But, if the world and President Bush insist that yet another Arab one indeed pop up there--in addition to the state Arabs already have east of the Jordan River on some 80% of the original 1920 Palestinian Mandate named Jordan--then its birth must cause Israel the least amount of risk as possible.
And there will be plenty of risk, regardless.
Given this, more than lip service is required to grant an extremely vulnerable Israel the security any other nation would demand. Yet that’s about all Arabs have really been asked to do up until now.
Speaking of which, Israel must tell the Arabs to forget about their demand to swamp Israel with millions of allegedly returning jihadi refugees.
More Jews fled “Arab ” countries than Arabs who fled in the opposite direction due to fighting Arabs started themselves.
Up until now, the pattern has been that the Holocaust-denying Abbas repeats some sweet talk (although he ran on an open platform for Israel‘s destruction--but by more “acceptable” means), and Jews are expected to say Amen!
Even when Abbas has condemned Arabs blowing up restaurants, buses and such, he repeatedly did so not because it was morally wrong, but only because it hurt the Arab cause. Regardless of what he really did or didn’t mean by such statements and behavior, his past history as Arafat’s close associate certainly is a cause for concern.
Until Abbas & Fatah announce clearly to the world that they fully recognize Israel’s right to exist in secure and recognized borders as a Jewish State, then Israel must treat them simply as Arafatians in suits.
All of these issues and more must be dealt with unabashedly by any Israeli leadership which agrees to attend any summit--regardless of when it actually occurs.
Bush would love to convene the summit soon for the reasons already reviewed and for the sake of Republicans running in upcoming elections at home. With the mess in Iraq, it would be nice to point to a "success."
But until Israel gets itself leaders who are once again non-apologetic in resisting suicidal demands America would most certainly never consent to itself, Israel must refuse to join the planned festivities where it, itself, will likely be offered up as the sacrificial lamb.
Again, recall, above, the Arabs laughing at Israel's latest concessions...
Israel must look its best friend in the eye and say that the issues spelled out above are basic and pertain to its minimal needs for survival...something that an America that is three thousand miles wide with a population of three hundred million should still certainly be able to understand. Thirty-four Israels fit into the territory of Bush's Texas.
If Israel agrees to attend this rushed summit with Olmert & Co. at the helm, it will simply turn into a gang-up-on-the-Jews exercise in fall foolishness that the Jews will certainly pay for in blood.