• What drives all those dogged ‘peace activists’, past and present, and especially those of the EU? | Photo: Pixabay

Peace as a Business Model

Wim Kortenoeven - 6 January 2022

The State of Israel was founded in 1948, but organised violence against the Jews in the region began as early as 1920 and is still continuing. During this past 100 years of recurring violence, the international community has made countless attempts to end the conflict. Not because there was so much sympathy for the Jews or the Arabs, but because political, economic, and sometimes even personal interests and/or anti-Semitic emotions were involved.

“Organised violence against the Jews in the region began as early as 1920 and is still continuing”

A characteristic of all these international peace initiatives is that they seek to reduce Jewish territorial rights in the Promised Land. This not only undermines Israel’s security but also its legitimacy under international law. In order to place this in the right context, we have to go back to the final declaration of the San Remo Conference of 25 April 1920. In it, the world powers of the time endorsed the Balfour Declaration of 1917 that recognised the right of the Jewish people to establish their homeland in the east of the Jordan River. However, under pressure from Arab violence in the Mandate area, the Jewish territorial rights confirmed to the Jewish people as early as 1921 were steadily reversed.

First, the Jewish right of establishment in ‘Transjordan’ was withdrawn. The area east of Jordan was then given to a Mecca- based ally of the British. In the decades that followed, Palestinian-Arab violence against the Jews and the British in the area escalated. This led to pragmatic British and internationally negotiated ‘peace proposals’ aimed at driving the Jews back into a yet-to-be-founded tiny and indefensible rump state in the coastal plain and Galilee. All proposals, however, were rejected by the Arabs and met with yet more violence. When the Jews declared independence in May 1948, they were also attacked by five neighbouring Arab states the following day. Miraculously, Israel managed to survive that and also gain territory. The same happened in the Arab war of aggression in 1967. It brought the Jews back to their cradle in Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria.

“The Arab war of aggression in 1967 brought the Jews back to their cradle in Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria”

The Legitimacy of Israel
It has been a consistent feature of internationally-sponsored peace initiatives that they expect only Israel to make territorial concessions. This was true after 1948/49, after 1967 and is still true today, even though the Jewish state was and is systematically threatened with total destruction by Hamas, Hezbollah, Mahmoud Abbas’ PLO and Iran, among others. In the process, the peacemakers often suggest that Israel is ‘the strongest party’ after all and can, therefore, ‘afford’ to give up strategic territory in exchange for (a paper) peace. And in the process, Israel’s legitimacy as a Jewish state is invariably undermined, a legitimacy that is based on more than 3,500 years of Jewish roots in the central part of the territory in question.

Zionism without Zion
Since 1921, the reduction of Jewish territorial rights ‘for the sake of peace’ or international interests has focused primarily on the cradle of Jewish civilisation: Jerusalem (Zion) and the regions of Judea and Samaria. It is precisely there that Jews are not allowed to settle. But a Zionism without Zion and without, for example, the graves of Israel’s patriarchs and mothers in Hebron, is of course, not Zionism. And a Jewish state without its historical territorial base is of course, not sustainable.

Anchors and Prophecy

Places like Jerusalem, Hebron, Silo and Shechem are the anchors of the Jewish claims to the Jewish homeland. And within those places are, respectively, the Temple Mount; the Machpelah; the place where the Tabernacle stood for 369 years; and the tomb of Joseph. The Jewish people can never – and will never – give up territorial claims to those and other places. For that would be the end of Judaism. After all, are not the prophecies, central to Judaism, that the Jewish people will return to these places and that they will not be driven out again? At this point, Jewish interests clash in an irreconcilable and even existential way with those of the rest of the world.

Antisemitism and Anti-Zionism
The EU, in particular, is adamantly and activistically opposed to Israel’s return to the cradle of Jewish civilisation. In that respect, it is downright macabre that European and also Dutch opponents of antisemitism are sometimes the worst enemies of Jewish rights in the Promised Land.

This also applied to the Swedish diplomat Folke Bernadotte, who personally negotiated with SS chief Heinrich Himmler in the final days of the Second World War about the release of thousands of Jews. This may have given him the ‘moral right’, four years later (after the genocidal Arab invasion of the newly founded Israel) as a UN peace negotiator to ‘condemn to death’ that very Israel. Bernadotte arrived in Israel after the Arabs had suffered huge defeats. But he demanded that the Jews vacate most of the territories they had miraculously conquered.

Bernadotte’s Partition Plan | Photo: ecg.org.il

Bernadotte Liquidated
Implementation of Bernadotte’s bizarre anti-Jewish ‘peace plan’ would have resulted in an indefensible Jewish mini- state in the coastal strip and Galilee. A state without Jerusalem, without the Negev, without its own port, without safe borders and without prospects of ever being able to accommodate the millions of Jewish exiles from the nations. What’s more, Bernadotte urged this little Jewish mini-state to offer access to the hundreds of thousands of Arabs who had left the area voluntarily or had fled the violence of the war started by the Arabs. Before he could submit his terrible plan to the UN, Bernadotte was liquidated by members of the Jewish Lehi militia. And with him, fortunately, his plan disappeared as well.

“The EU grossly violates the Oslo Accords to which it is a party and undermines Israel’s authority in the C areas in Judea and Samaria in every possible way”

The European Union
The world is in total disarray because of Corona, and imminent wars with, among others, China, North Korea and Iran. But the EU and most of its member states still seem more concerned about ‘solving the Middle East conflict’. They want to push through the two-state solution at all costs. The EU, which likes to invoke international law, thereby grossly violates the Oslo Accords to which it is a party. Under those accords, Israel has exclusive jurisdiction in the so-called C areas in Judea and Samaria. But the EU undermines Israel’s authority there in every possible way.

Ego and Ambition or Antisemitism?
What drives all those dogged ‘peace activists’, past and present, and especially those of the EU? What is their business model? Is it altruism? Is it Nobel Prizes? Is it ego and ambition? Is it fame and the promise of history?

Or is it antisemitism…? If antisemitism’s deepest aim is to make the Jewish people disappear, then, of course, anti-Semites would do well to try and destroy the very basis of Jewish identity: cutting the link between the Jews and the Land of Israel. But fortunately, Israel is not alone in fighting these colporteurs of a false peace.


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