Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s reported “Let some Jewish settlers remain in Palestine” statement has made Mahmoud Abbas look like fool, Naftali Bennett look like a right-wing nut, and the media look almost as ignorant as they are – and all of this with one sentence.
“Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will insist that Jewish settlers in the West Bank have a right to remain under Palestinian rule in any future peace deal, a government official was quoted as saying on Sunday,” Reuters told millions of readers around the world.
The very thought of the Palestinian Authority as an independent country inside Israel’s current borders, let alone hinting that Jews living in Judea and Samaria can fulfill their Zionist dream by living in a Palestinian state, was TNT for Naftali Bennett, chairman of the Jewish Home party and arguably one of the most positive images in Israeli politics.
Part of Bennett’s success is that while he is gung-ho on Jews in Judea and Samaria, he is a resident of Ra’anana, part of metropolitan Tel Aviv. Moreover, he is not from the “think in the box” folks of Yesha, otherwise known as the Council of Jewish Communities in Judea and Samaria, which once upon a time included the word “Gaza” in its moniker.
Yesha miserably failed nationalists during the years of Oslo, when it raised the Israeli flag over Beit El as the capital of the country, with Tel Aviv, Haifa and Be’er Sheva being considered settlements that deserve a few crumbs to keep them in Greater Israel, the term nationalists try to use to counter the dreaded “Occupied Territories.”
Bennett blew it Sunday night.
He sounded like one of the Yesha blowhards from years ago when he angrily responded, “”Whoever imagines that Jews in the land of Israel can live under Palestinian rule undermines our living in Tel Aviv.”
Saeb Erekat, the senior Palestinian Authority negotiator who has quit or has threatened to quit the position more times than U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has visited Israel, also rejected Netanyahu’s idea. “Anyone who says he wants to keep settlers in the Palestinian state is actually saying that he doesn’t want a Palestinian state,” Erekat said.
“No settler will be allowed to stay in the Palestinian state, not even a single one, because settlements are illegal and the presence of the settlers on the occupied lands is illegal,” he added.
And the Associated Press, in its continuing ineptly objective ignorance of trying to explain the Middle East to the world, declared for history, “Some Israeli political commentators suggested the leak [Netanyahu’s reported statement] was aimed at heading off settler opposition to a framework deal, or as guidelines for a final peace agreement that U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has been trying to formulate.”
Boy, are they ever off the track!
Netanyahu should take off for a well-deserved vacation and enjoy his political checkmate. During one election campaign, Netanyahu once played chess with Natan Sharansky, an accomplished chess master. Former Soviet Union dissidents have to be great at chess. That is one of the ways they survived Siberia and came out sane.
Netanyahu won a stalemate, an amazing achievement.
For all of Mahmoud Abba’s brilliant political maneuvering around the world to win universal support to screw the Jews, he is no match for Netanyahu.
The Prime Minister already has cornered Abbas pitifully by goading him to recognize Israel as a Jewish State. The theory is that once the Palestinian Authority does so, it has no chance of flooding Israel with 5 million foreign Arabs under the lie of the “right of return,” a bastardization of the Israeli term that should go down as one of the greatest Double Speaks since George Orwell’s” 1984.”