The European Union issued a warning to Israel this weekend in response to the government’s decision not to renew the mandate of the Temporary International Presence in Hebron (TIPH).
The TIPH is a group of EU-funded observers who have periodically found themselves “straying” outside their mandated area of observation in the Palestinian Authority-controlled sections of Hebron, and causing trouble for Jewish residents of the holy city.
The EU contends the TIPH foreign observers have “played an important role in preventing violence between Palestinians and Israeli settlers in Hebron” and that Israel’s termination of the group’s presence “risks further deteriorating the already fragile situation on the ground.”
One might think the EU is concerned about the violence perpetrated against the Israeli residents of the city and in the surrounding area, who have been the target of vicious terrorist attacks perpetrated by Palestinian Authority terrorists residing in Hebron and its nearby suburbs, but alas! that is not so.
No, the EU statement warns Israel of its “obligations under international law to protect the Palestinian people in Hebron, as well as in other parts of the occupied Palestinian territory.”
It’s not clear how many injuries and deaths in Hebron have been perpetrated by local Jewish residents, and the TIPH has yet to produce a document that can clarify the matter. Israel has, sadly, done so: a young Arab family in Samaria was indeed murdered in July 2015, although the Israeli government spared no expense, time or political risk in bringing the perpetrators to justice. The surviving child was rushed to an Israeli hospital, where he received ongoing top-tier care.
This compares with the endless trail of tears perpetrated by Palestinian Authority terrorists who create widows, widowers and orphans in the State of Israel and then receive generous financial monthly rewards from the Palestinian Authority government for doing so, plus the bonus of public adulation.
And yet, the European Union continues to pressure Israel into resuming “a meaningful process towards a negotiated two-state solution, the only realistic and viable way to fulfil the legitimate aspirations of both parties.”
It is long past due time to put this childish fairy tale concocted by a silly, naive Western mentality to rest.
The Palestinian Authority NEVER held the “aspiration” – legitimate or otherwise – of a “two-state solution” to its conflict with Israel. The only so-called “solution” to this conflict that has ever been trumpeted in Arabic from the podiums of Ramallah, never mind Gaza City, is that which was demanded by the Arab masters of the region in 1948: the total annihilation of the State of Israel.
To this day, it is the one still cherished by the extremists and those who have the most to lose by making peace; the potentates and despots who have sucked the PA administration coffers dry and who are desperate to maintain the status quo at all costs.
For now, there are many more of those populating the Palestinian Authority government than not, and it is these officials who are so desperate to keep foreign intermediaries in Hebron, rather than sit together with Israelis at the table directly, once and for all, to negotiate a final status agreement that would end the conflict for both sides. No Temporary International Presence in Hebron will help cure the endless evasion of that responsibility by Ramallah politicians. It’s time to force the “neighbors” to truly talk to their neighbors, or to live with the consequences of their actions.