web analytics
July 30, 2015 / 14 Av, 5775
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post


Home » InDepth » Op-Eds »

Israel, Twenty Years after Oslo

Studies show that large numbers of Europeans hold a demonic view of Israel.
anvil oslo

On September 13 it will be twenty years since the Oslo Agreements were signed.

Today’s political situation in the Middle East is far from the one perceived by Abba Eban when I interviewed him a few months later. He said at the time, “Never have Israelis and Arabs been meeting in so many ways in Washington, Tokyo, Moscow, Ottawa, Rome and our region. Militarily, the Arabs have been very unsuccessful against Israel. Now they want to be free of the traumas of defeat.”

Eban’s interview was one among 16 with prominent Israelis for my book Israel’s New Future, published in early 1994 and recently reissued. It dealt with both internal and external Israeli perspectives after Oslo.

However greatly Israel’s internal situation has changed, the present reality of the outside world is even more different from what it was 20 years ago.

Israel’s current position in the Middle East is more complex than it has been in a long time. For many decades, Israel’s relations were good or at least correct with one or more of the three powers dominating the area – Turkey, Iran and Egypt. This is no longer the case.

Relations with Iran, Israel’s ally under the Shah, have been abysmal since Ayatollah Khomeini came to power in 1979. Yet at the time of Oslo, there were no significant signs of the country’s leadership’s genocidal intentions.

In Egypt, hostility to Israel was increasingly evident during the rule of Egyptian President Morsi, who was overthrown two months ago. The situation under Egypt’s current government can best be described as puzzling.

Israel’s relations with previous Turkish governments were usually good. However, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has for years now aimed to weaken Turkish-Israeli relations.

Already in 2004 he falsely accused Israel of state terrorism. And Steven Merley, who specializes in the study of political extremism, uncovered details implicating the Turkish government in many aspects of the preparation of the 2010 Gaza flotilla.

Another important change since 1993 is that Israel’s standing in European public opinion has greatly eroded. Concessions made by Israel to the Palestinians in the aftermath of the Oslo Accords, as well as its unilateral withdrawal from Gaza in 2005, are long forgotten there.

Studies show that large numbers of Europeans hold a demonic view of Israel. They agree with the statement “Israel is carrying out a war of extermination against the Palestinians.”

In Norway, 38 percent of the adult population believes Israel behaves toward the Palestinians like the Nazis behaved toward the Jews.

In Israel’s New Future, political scientist Dan Segre was already saying – this was nearly two decades ago, remember – that Europe had a real problem with Israel:

“It wants from Israel a point of flash in territorial concessions without paying attention to the damage these may cause to the whole body as far as the defense capabilities of Israel are concerned.”

Segre added that Israel “has shown in the 45 years of its history how an undeveloped country can modernize, whereas many of the foreign European colonies are collapsing.”

Israel’s success, which contrasted so glaringly with Europe’s failures, was frustrating for many Europeans.

Already twenty years ago it was also clear that many of Israel’s political, military, cultural and economic experiences were precursors to what would later take place in the Western world. In other words, to a certain extent Israel was functioning as a “laboratory for the West.”

Looking back twenty years, a major issue unnoticed by the interviewees was that the manner in which the Palestinian Authority educated its children was a key indicator of the PA’s true intentions.

The inability of the prominent Israelis interviewed at the time to foresee the importance of this should be cause for deep concern regarding the accuracy of current “expert” forecasts on important issues.

Yet another decisive development since the book originally appeared is the ongoing incitement against Israel by Palestinian sources. While the PLO and Arafat were in exile they could not promote hate against Israel on the massive scale that both the Palestinian Authority and Hamas have done since. The Palestinians have gained many allies from this incitement.

To be sure, Israel received some benefits from the Oslo Accords, including diplomatic relations with more countries. In the long run however, the damage caused by the massive and ongoing Palestinian and Arab incitement may far exceed whatever benefits it gained from the agreements.

About the Author: Dr. Manfred Gerstenfeld’s recently published book, “The War of a Million Cuts,” analyzes how Israel and Jews are delegitimized, and how these attempts at delegitimization can be fought.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Israel, Twenty Years after Oslo”

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
Talks between Iran and the P5+1 were likely to be extended beyond Obama's self-imposed deadline.
The Iranian Nuclear Program and the Final Solution
Latest Indepth Stories
Talks between Iran and the P5+1 were likely to be extended beyond Obama's self-imposed deadline.

Names of the enablers of Iran’s Nuclear weapons will be added next to Hitler’s on the list of infamy

By most accounts, the one person with the political muscle to swing enough Democratic votes to override a veto is Sen. Schumer.

The next day, in a speech in New York to the Council on Foreign Relations, Mr. Kerry substantially upped the ante.

In Israel, the judiciary has established itself as superior to ALL other branches of the government.

The Fifteenth Day of the month of Av became a day of national rejoicing. The moment that had seemed hopeless became the moment of Redemption.

I think the melodies in our religious services have a haunting sound to them that just permeates your guts and gets into your soul. If you have any musical inclination, I think they inspire you to compose.

Cavalier analogies to the Holocaust are unacceptable, but Huckabee’s analogy was very appropriate.

Pollard was a Jewish-head-on-a-pike for all American Jews to see and to learn the explicit lesson.

If the Iran deal passes, Obama’s WH becomes world’s leading financier of terrorism against Americans

{Originally posted to the author’s website, FirstOne Through} Some passionate and eloquent liberals have bemoaned the state of inclusiveness among Jews today. Leon Wieseltier, editor of the New Republic penned an angry piece “J Street’s Rejection Is a Scandal” about the exclusion in 2014 of J Street from the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations. […]

Magnanimity by Moshe Dayan, allowing Muslim control of the Temple Mount, led to today’s situation.

It was modeled upon a similar fund that had been set up by Sephardic Jews in Venice. But Amsterdam’s Dotar was initially more ambitious in scope.

Rav Aharon Margalit is a bestselling author – his book, As Long As I Live, has been translated into four languages – and a standing-room only lecturer. Both religious and non-religious audiences flock to hear him. What makes him so extraordinary? Rav Margalit is a Chasidic Jew who experienced incredible challenges from a very young […]

J Street is the vanguard (Jewish face)in support of Obama’s Vienna Accords Nuclear Deal with Iran

More Articles from Dr. Manfred Gerstenfeld

Israeli exports to the EU will be affected by a further decline in the Euro. There would be significant consequences, as the EU is Israel’s largest market abroad.

Gerstenfeld-070315

What if years from now, IS were to control substantial territory? What world havoc would that wreak?

Prof. Wistrich, was THE foremost historian of anti-Semitism; committed spokesman & advocate of Jewry

A record number of hate crimes complaints in Malmö from 2010 through 2011 led to zero convictions

Moshe Kantor Pres. of European Jewish Congress: “Normative Jewish life in Europe is unsustainable.”

The West must be educated about the cruelty that has become endemic to much of the Muslim world.

Studies show that large numbers of Europeans hold a demonic view of Israel.

Now that several weeks have passed since President Obama’s visit to Israel, it is possible to get a better perspective on many of its aspects. Focus must not only be placed on what was said and done, but also on what was missing.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/opinions/israel-twenty-years-after-oslo/2013/09/13/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: