The Palestinians are going back to the United Nations in a new bid for statehood. But this year, the diplomatic drama appears to be a case of “once more, but with less feeling.”
Apparently, all it took was a speech.
A Palestinian living in France has written a song that has arguably become the anthem for the upcoming Palestinians bid for statehood in the United Nations later on this week, according to a Ma’an report.
Thanks for participating in our conversation. Read on to find out how Hussein Ibish and Yossi Klein Halevi responded to questions from Forward and Guardian readers.
The Palestinians’ United Nations statehood ploy has drawn an array of responses around the world, from enthusiasm in Turkey to anxiety to Washington and panic in Jerusalem. And one prominent Israeli center-left politician, Isaac Herzog, proposes a counter-intuitive Israeli gambit of voting for the statehood bid—under certain conditions (as I’ll explain below).
As we get closer to September 20 and the opening of the UN’s General Assembly, all the various voices of the American Jewish universe are beginning to state their opinion about whether the Palestinian push for UN recognition is a wise or foolish step. We’ve actually got an editorial, stating our own position, which will be on line shortly.
This is a bit complicated, but it’s very important, so try and keep up. We’ll take questions afterward. Israel faces a grave diplomatic crisis this fall. The Palestinians are planning to demand recognition from the United Nations General Assembly as a sovereign state within the 1949 armistice line or Green Line, on the territory governed by the Israeli military since 1967. If this happens, there will be an internationally recognized border separating the sovereign territory of Israel from the sovereign territory of a neighboring state to be known as Palestine. Israel on this side, Palestine over there.
A Palestinian unilateral declaration of statehood, which could occur as soon as September, is rapidly becoming a source of profound Israeli anxiety. Israel clearly fears a situation in which, following a United Nations General Assembly resolution recognizing a Palestinian state, it would find itself accused daily of violating the rights of a fellow U.N. member every time it acts in self-defense. If that happens, Israel could face severe diplomatic and legal consequences, and be tarred as an international pariah.