The Bush-Obama line on Palestine: forget ’67

The election of President Barack Obama brought great hope that his administration could be the one to bring about a settlement to the Israeli/Palestinian conflict. But Obama has largely followed the Bush administration’s pro-Israel slant. New documents released by WikiLeaks and Al Jazeera shed further light on the continuation of the Bush administration’s disastrous policy on Israel/Palestine.

As part of its ongoing release of secret State Department cables, WikiLeaks yesterday released documents concerning Brazil. One 2005 document, written from the U.S. embassy in Brazil, centers on a first-time gathering in Brazil between Arab and South American leaders. The U.S. was worried about language concerning Israel/Palestine in the final document that came out of the summit:

Despite repeated Brazilian promises over many months that the Summit Declaration would not contain language inimical to Middle East peace efforts, the final text contains problematic paragraphs that existed in earlier declaration drafts. In addition to the demand that Israel withdraw to its June 4, 1967 frontiers, the declaration also calls on Israel to comply with the International Court of Justice July 2004 decision on dismantling the security wall.

The reference to the 1967 borders and the International Court of Justice decision as “problematic” is unsurprising, given that the Bush administration showed the utmost contempt for international law. This cable further confirms the Bush administration’s double-dealings when it came to the borders of a future Palestinian state: while the Bush administration backed the 2003 Road Map that called for a halt to Israeli settlement building, a secret letter to the Israeli government contradicts that plan:

In a key sentence in Bush’s 2004 letter, the president stated, “In light of new realities on the ground, including already existing major Israeli populations centers, it is unrealistic to expect that the outcome of final status negotiations will be a full and complete return to the armistice lines of 1949.”

Contempt for international law, and support for Israel’s insistence that negotiations not be based on the 1967 borders, has continued into the Obama administration. Despite President Obama’s pledge in 2009 to push for a “viable, independent Palestinian state with contiguous territory that ends the occupation that began in 1967,” documents published by Al Jazeera as part of the “Palestine Papers” tell a different story. Ali Abunimah, writing in Al Jazeera, analyzes:

The next day [after Obama's 2009 UN speech] during a meeting at the US Mission to the United Nations in New York, Erekat refused an American request to adopt Obama’s speech as the terms of reference for negotiations. Erekat asked Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs David Hale why the Obama administration would not explicitly state that the intended outcome of negotiations would be a Palestinian state on the 1967 borders with a third party security role and a staged Israeli withdrawal. Hale responded, “You ask why? How would it help you if we state something so specific and then not be able to deliver?” according to Palestinian minutes of the meeting.

At the same meeting, which Mitchell himself later joined, Erekat challenged the US envoy on how Obama could publicly endorse Israel as a “Jewish state” but not commit to the 1967 borders. Mitchell, according to the minutes, told Erekat “You can’t negotiate detailed ToRs [terms of reference for the negotiations]” so the Palestinians might as well be “positive” and proceed directly to negotiations. Erekat viewed Mitchell’s position as a US abandonment of the Road Map.

On 2 October 2009 Mitchell met with Erekat at the State Department and again attempted to persuade the Palestinian team to return to negotiations. Despite Erekat’s entreaties that the US should stand by its earlier positions, Mitchell responded, “If you think Obama will force the option you’ve described, you are seriously misreading him. I am begging you to take this opportunity.”

Erekat replied, according to the minutes, “All I ask is to say two states on 67 border with agreed modifications. This protects me against Israeli greed and land grab – it allows Israel to keep some realities on the ground” (a reference to Palestinian willingness to allow Israel to annex some West Bank settlements as part of minor land swaps). Erekat argued that this position had been explicitly endorsed by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice under the Bush administration.

“Again I tell you that President Obama does not accept prior decisions by Bush. Don’t use this because it can hurt you. Countries are bound by agreements – not discussions or statements,” Mitchell reportedly said.

The US envoy was firm that if the government of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu did not agree to language in the terms of reference the US would not try to force it. Yet Mitchell continued to pressure the Palestinian side to adopt formulas the Palestinians feared would give Israel leeway to annex large parts of the occupied West Bank without providing any compensation.

At a critical 21 October 2009 meeting, Mitchell read out proposed language for terms of reference:

“The US believes that through good faith negotiations the parties can mutually agree on an outcome that achieves both the Palestinian goal of an independent and viable state encompassing all the territory occupied in 1967 or its equivalent in value, and the Israeli goal of secure and recognized borders that reflect subsequent developments and meets Israeli security requirements.”

Erekat’s response was blunt: “So no Road Map?” The implication of the words “or equivalent in value” is that the US would only commit to Palestinians receiving a specific amount of territory — 6258 square kilometers, or the equivalent area of the West Bank and Gaza Strip — but not to any specific borders.

Alex Kane blogs on Israel/Palestine at alexbkane.wordpress.com, where this post originally appeared.  Follow him on Twitter @alexbkane.

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{ 59 comments... read them below or add one }

  1. lysias says:

    If a return to the 1967 borders is unrealistic and impossible, doesn’t that mean that the only solution that does not do injustice to the Palestinians is a one-state one?

  2. hophmi says:

    That’s because a literal return to the 1967 borders is not international law. UNSC 242 is, and that is not what it calls for.

    Why do you insist on being more Palestinian than the Palestinians are?

    • Avi says:

      That’s because a literal return to the 1967 borders is not international law. UNSC 242 is, and that is not what it calls for.

      That’s patently false. You’ve made that assertion more than 5 times now and every time your lies were disproved. But, you refuse to accept reality, instead you create your own. And international law includes UN resolutions

      Why do you insist on being more Palestinian than the Palestinians are?

      Why do you insist on being more Israeli than Israelis themselves?

      • hophmi says:

        “That’s patently false. You’ve made that assertion more than 5 times now and every time your lies were disproved. But, you refuse to accept reality, instead you create your own. And international law includes UN resolutions”

        It is NOT false. The language was specifically negotiated by the United States so that UNSC 242 would not mean a literal return to the 1967 borders. International does include UN resolutions. But the most important ones are the binding ones, and the only binding one relevant today in UNSC 242, which calls for a negotiated solution and a withdrawal from “territories.” This has been interpreted to mean minor border adjustments such as the ones proposed, and that is not a partisan analysis. Even Norman Finkelstein’s book, Beyond Chutzpah, admits that much on page 290.

        “Why do you insist on being more Israeli than Israelis themselves?”

        This is the American and the Israeli position on the issue of withdrawal from territories captured in 1967. Nobody, including the Palestinians, holds the position that the way to peace is to ethnically cleanse 500,000 people from places that are contiguous with pre-1967 Israel and can easily be swapped for other land.

        • sherbrsi says:

          Nobody, including the Palestinians,

          I didn’t know that the Palestinians approved of this, and you have made this claim several times. I would like to see some proof.

          holds the position that the way to peace is to ethnically cleanse 500,000 people from places that are contiguous with pre-1967 Israel and can easily be swapped for other land.

          What nonsense! If withdrawing illegal settlers is “ethnic cleansing,” then how do you define their placement in the Palestinian territories?

        • Avi says:

          International law, much like case law in the United States, is constantly amended to incorporate such decisions.

          And, 242 called for a withdrawal from territories occupied. Why quote out of context?

          Finally,

          The language was specifically negotiated by the United States so that UNSC 242 would not mean a literal return to the 1967 borders.

          That sentence is funny in the sense that you admit that the United States does Israel’s bidding time and again.

        • Woody Tanaka says:

          “The language was specifically negotiated by the United States so that UNSC 242 would not mean a literal return to the 1967 borders. International does include UN resolutions. But the most important ones are the binding ones, and the only binding one relevant today in UNSC 242, which calls for a negotiated solution and a withdrawal from ‘territories.’”

          Pure baloney. While there is an ambiguity in the English version which is being exploited by the Israelis (who had no intention of abiding by this any more than they ever abide by any other international law), the missing “the” in the English version, on which Israel’s lawyers (meaning both Uncle Sucker and it’s actual lawyers) stake their argument, is present in the French version of the resolution (the French version being equally authentic and authoritative). Further, members of the Security Counsel were clear that the intention what that Israel leave all the territories, and the Israeli view goes against the introductory language which specifically emphasizes that that it could acquire territory through war, a position which would be negated if the Israeli view prevailed.

          So, at most, there is a contrived ambiguity which Israel is using as cover for its continued blatent criminal activity.

        • Citizen says:

          Woody, you are correct. The Americans and Israelis must have connived to leave out that key “the” so that “some” could be implied, leaving nothing nailed down; resulting in peace processing by heavy power imbalance.

        • talknic says:

          ‘the’ and/or ‘all’

          Neither make an iota of difference to the meaning. ‘No dogs in the park’ means ‘no dogs in the park’

          The debate over these words was in all likelihood to delay the passing of the resolution.

        • talknic says:

          hophmi February 7, 2011 at 4:55 pm

          ” It is NOT false.”

          It is as false as anything else spouted by the Hasbarbarians link to wp.me

          “The language was specifically negotiated by the United States so that UNSC 242 would not mean a literal return to the 1967 borders.”

          Because there is no such thing as a 1967 border.

          “International does include UN resolutions. But the most important ones are the binding ones, and the only binding one relevant today in UNSC 242, which calls for a negotiated solution and a withdrawal from “territories.”.”

          A) UNSC Res 242 does not contain the word ‘negotiate’

          B) All UNSC Resolutions are binding. You’re confusing having action taken against ‘ under CChapter VII . READ Chapter VI. It is binding on all UN Members to find a pacific solution.

          This has been interpreted to mean minor border adjustments such as the ones proposed, and that is not a partisan analysis.”

          It is a partisan analysis. The words “minor border adjustments ” do not appear in UNSC Res 242. A resolution only means what it says, no more, no less. You cannot add words to it or subtract words from it.

          “This is the American and the Israeli position on the issue of withdrawal from territories captured in 1967.”

          No it ain’t… It’s the Israeli position. the US position ois ambiguous via abstaining. The US position on Chapter VII is less ambiguous and shows a fear of Zionist repercussions

          “Nobody, including the Palestinians, holds the position that the way to peace is to ethnically cleanse 500,000 people….”

          Having ones citizens get out of territories they have no right to be in is NOT ethnic cleansing.

          … from places that are contiguous with pre-1967 Israel…”

          Israel has never legally annexed any territory to it’s actual declared and acknowledged boundaries.

          link to wp.me – On May 14th 1948 Israel’s borders were defined.
          On May 22 1948 and June 15th 1949 the Israeli Government confirmed it’s borders in correspondence to the UNSC!

          May 15, 1948 link to avalon.law.yale.edu

          May 22, 1948 link to unispal.un.org

          June 15, 1949 link to mfa.gov.il

          62 years of bullsh*te about Israel’s borders is enough.

          May 15, 1948 Letter From the Agent of the Provisional Government of Israel to the President of the United States,
          “MY DEAR MR. PRESIDENT: I have the honor to notify you that the state of Israel has been proclaimed as an independent republic within frontiers approved by the General Assembly of the United Nations in its Resolution of November 29, 1947, and that a provisional government has been charged to assume the rights and duties of government for preserving law and order within the boundaries of Israel, for defending the state against external aggression, and for discharging the obligations of Israel to the other nations of the world in accordance with international law. The Act of Independence will become effective at one minute after six o’clock on the evening of 14 May 1948, Washington time.” Also available as PDF from the Truman Library

          May 22, 1948 The reply of the Provisional Government of Israel (S/766) to the questions addressed to the “Jewish authorities in Palestine” was transmitted by the acting representative of Israel at the United Nations on May 22.

          Question (a): Over which areas of Palestine do you actually exercise control at present over the entire area of the Jewish State as defined in the Resolution of the General Assembly of the 29th November, 1947?
          “In addition, the Provisional Government exercises control over the city of Jaffa; Northwestern Galilee, including Acre, Zib, Base, and the Jewish settlements up to the Lebanese frontier; a strip of territory alongside the road from Hilda to Jerusalem; almost all of new Jerusalem; and of the Jewish quarter within the walls of the Old City of Jerusalem. The above areas, outside the territory of the State of Israel, are under the control of the military authorities of the State of Israel, who are strictly adhering to international regulations in this regard. The Southern Negev is uninhabited desert over which no effective authority has ever existed.”

          June 15, 1949 Israel-s position on its frontiers VOLUMES 1-2: 1947-1974
          “As for the frontier between the State of Israel and the area west of the Jordan which is not included in Israel…”

          Laws and Customs of War on Land (Hague IV); October 18, 1907 Art. 42 SECTION III
          “Territory is considered occupied when it is actually placed under the authority of the hostile army. The occupation extends only to the territory where such authority has been established and can be exercised. “

          “.. and can easily be swapped for other land.”

          Other than illegally acquired Palestinian land, what ‘other land’ is Israel willing to swap for Palestinian land?

        • Shingo says:

          Very good point talknic,

          With or without “the”, there are going to be occupied territories to withdraw from so long as Israel is occupying some territory.

        • Citizen says:

          “Withdrawel from the settlements” means precisely the same as “withdrawel from settlements?”

          “Withdrawel of dogs from the park” means precisely the same as “withdrawel of the dogs from the park?” The latter is directed at any dogs in the park. The former may be viewed as begging the question, which dogs? Talmudic, yes. Of course that talmudic tactic or line of reasoning is misleading if not downright malignantly devious in light of the full expressed context–not to mention “the” is in the French version. No argument there. So what’s new?

        • Woody Tanaka says:

          “The former may be viewed as begging the question, which dogs?”

          Which is why the fact that the article is included in the French version is key. If the English and French are deemed to be coequal in effect, and there is two possible readings in English and only one in the French, then the French reading MUST prevail, or elese they will not be co-equal in effect. This is not a case of a CONFLICT between the two (as would be the case if the English said “some” and the French said “the.”)

          One must imagine that this conversation would be rather obtuse to speakers of languages, like Russian, with no articles…

        • hophmi says:

          “Further, members of the Security Counsel were clear that the intention what that Israel leave all the territories, and the Israeli view goes against the introductory language which specifically emphasizes that that it could acquire territory through war, a position which would be negated if the Israeli view prevailed. ”

          I’ve heard the French version nonsense before. I presented sources, including one from your side, showing that the entire point of negotiating the language was the one I made; the negotiators knew a literal withdrawal was not happening and was unrealistic and dangerous.

          It’s really very simple; if a complete withdrawal was what they meant, the resolution would have said, “withdrawal to the June 4, 1967 lines, a line the Arabs have used over and over again.” It does not say that, because that is not what it means.

          It also says:

          “Termination of all claims or states of belligerency and respect for and acknowledgement of the sovereignty, territorial integrity and political independence of every State in the area and their right to live in peace within secure and recognized boundaries free from threats or acts of force . . . ”

          That part nobody around here mentions because it suggests that calling for a one-state solution/end to Israel violates the letter and spirit of international law.

        • Avi says:

          It’s French nonsense? French is one of the 6 official languages of the UN and is therefore as binding as any other language. That Israel insists on playing semantics is nothing new. And finally, quit talking about matters you know nothing about with such authority. Whatever happened to your San Remo shtick, anyway?

        • Woody Tanaka says:

          “I’ve heard the French version nonsense before.”

          It’s not nonsese. Do you deny that the French contains the article? That the French is equally authentic with the English? That the reading which you wish to impose on the language is untenable based on the French?

          “I presented sources, including one from your side,”

          Norm Finkelstein is hardly a source as to the legal effect of the resolution.

          “showing that the entire point of negotiating the language was the one I made; the negotiators knew a literal withdrawal was not happening and was unrealistic and dangerous.”

          However, the intent of the negotiators is irrelevant if that which was passed does not reflect that intent. The negotiators cannot create a Secuirty Council resolution; only the Security Council can, and the only way that the Security Council, as a body, can act, is through the approval of resolutions. And, in this case, the resolution was clear.

          “It’s really very simple; if a complete withdrawal was what they meant, the resolution would have said, ‘withdrawal to the June 4, 1967 lines, a line the Arabs have used over and over again.’ It does not say that, because that is not what it means.”

          There are an infinate number of things it “could have said.” It also didn’t say “withdrawal from any territories which Israel doesn’t want to continue to occupy.” So what? The only relevant fact is the language which is contained in the resoluiton.

          And the resolution’s language clearly states, “Retrait des forces armées israéliennes des territories occupés lors du récent conflit.” This simply cannot be read to mean “some of the territories” or anything less than a full withdrawal.

        • Woody Tanaka says:

          “That part nobody around here mentions because it suggests that calling for a one-state solution/end to Israel violates the letter and spirit of international law.”

          What are you talking about? The provision you quoted has to do with external relations between states. I am an advocate of a one-state solution which provides full security and absolute equality to all of the people from the Jordan to the Med because it Isrealis have been unable to establish any good faith basis to believe that they will return to the Palestinains what they have stolen so that the Palestinians can form a true state of their own. There is no conflict between these positions.

        • Sumud says:

          You don’t have a clue hophmi.

          The French text (including the definitive) carries equal weight to the English text and in both cases the preamble of 242 exists to frame it’s contents, and is completely unambiguous:

          Emphasizing the inadmissibility of the acquisition of territory by war…

        • Shmuel says:

          Definite articles aside, 242 did not address the issue of settlement – which is illegal, regardless of the precise amount of withdrawal that might eventually satisfy the parameters of the UN resolution, and necessarily runs counter to the spirit of the resolution. To suggest that 242 in any way authorises Israeli settlement and construction in the OT is simply ridiculous and demonstrates that the entire argument over the “the” is little more than a dishonest ploy on the part of Israeli apologists.

          At the time the resolution was passed, Israel had no intention of withdrawing from any of “the territories” or “territories” it had occupied – some very ineffectual noises by Levi Eshkol and a couple of impassioned speeches in Knesset (most notably by Mapam member and former ghetto fighter Chaike Grossman) notwithstanding. A settlement project, specifically designed to preclude any significant withdrawal, was subsequently launched and perpetuated even after Madrid, Oslo, etc. And so it continues to this day. Israel has trashed 242 a thousand times over, whether there’s a “the” there or not.

        • talknic says:

          hophmi February 8, 2011 at 9:49 am

          “I presented sources, including one from your side, showing that the entire point of negotiating the language was the one I made; the negotiators knew a literal withdrawal was not happening and was unrealistic and dangerous.”

          Only the actual wording of the final draft is the final draft.

          A) It was unrealistic to consider ARMISTICE LINES as being borders.

          B) UNSC Res 242 was to foster peace between the ‘states’ involved in the ’67 conflict. It is CONFIRMED in the Egypt/Israeli pace Agreement. Read it. Especially the reference to UNSC Res 242.

          “It also says:

          “Termination of all claims or states of belligerency and respect for and acknowledgement of the sovereignty, territorial integrity and political independence of every State in the area and their right to live in peace within secure and recognized boundaries free from threats or acts of force . . . ”

          That part nobody around here mentions because it suggests that calling for a one-state solution/end to Israel violates the letter and spirit of international law”

          The acquisition of territory by war violates the letter and spirit of International law.

          UNSC Res 242 is a finely crafted document that means exactly what it says. No more, no less.

          In order to have it say what you’d like it to say, you have to rely on comments made before and/or after. ONLY the actual words of the resolution are relevant.

          The Hasbara relies on people not reading carefully. It relies on A) mis-interpreting the Resolution, B) mis-interpreting and OMITTING what was said by the folk who drafted it link to wp.me

          Read it carefully link to wp.me It’s beautiful in it’s simplicity, that only an idiot or an Israeli propagandist can distort.

        • hophmi says:

          “It’s not nonsese. Do you deny that the French contains the article? That the French is equally authentic with the English? That the reading which you wish to impose on the language is untenable based on the French?”

          Do you deny that the Americans and the British say otherwise, and that most people refer to the English version, and not the French, and that the record shows that the English version is the way it is for a reason?

          “Norm Finkelstein is hardly a source as to the legal effect of the resolution.”

          So Norm Finkelstein is not credible to you?

          “However, the intent of the negotiators is irrelevant if that which was passed does not reflect that intent. ”

          It does reflect the intent of the drafters. That is why the definite article is missing.

          “And, in this case, the resolution was clear. ”

          Yes, I agree. The word “the” was clearly left out.

          “The only relevant fact is the language which is contained in the resoluiton. ”

          Exactly. And the resolution says “territories”, not “the territories.”

          You can point to the French version all you like. The version the rest of the world refers to is the English one, and the record is clear as to why the word “the” was omitted.

          “The provision you quoted has to do with external relations between states.”

          Huh? The provision I quoted says “Termination of all claims or states of belligerency and respect for and acknowledgement of the sovereignty, territorial integrity and political independence of every State in the area ”

          What the heck do you think this is referring to? On the planet Earth, this refers to the parties to the conflict, ie, interstatial relations. The one-state solution does not respect the sovereignty or political independence of the State of Israel.

          Sumud: “The French text (including the definitive) carries equal weight to the English text and in both cases the preamble of 242 exists to frame it’s contents, and is completely unambiguous:”

          Well, it’s apparently not unambiguous to the people who actually negotiated the resolution. And as I pointed out, the negotiators and drafters clearly did not assume a literal withdrawal.

          Shmuel: “Definite articles aside, 242 did not address the issue of settlement – which is illegal, regardless of the precise amount of withdrawal that might eventually satisfy the parameters of the UN resolution, and necessarily runs counter to the spirit of the resolution.”

          This is a valid point. 242 does not address settlement, and I have not argued that it does.

          talknic: “The acquisition of territory by war violates the letter and spirit of International law.”

          Yeah, I’m sure it does, though it was pretty much how the entire West was won, if you know what I mean.

          “ONLY the actual words of the resolution are relevant.”

          And I say exactly. The actual wording does not include the word “the.” The intent of the framers is relevant in cases of textual ambiguity. And the intent is pretty clear.

          As far as your piece on 242: None of what Lord Caradon said conflicts with what I said. In fact, most of it is in the Finkelstein cite I gave you.

          The international community reads 242 as calling for a negotiated settlement. The resolution itself calls for the SG to
          “designate a Special Representative to proceed to the Middle East to establish and maintain contacts with the States concerned in order to promote agreement and assist efforts to achieve a peaceful and accepted settlement in accordance with the provisions and principles in this resolution”

          That means negotiation.

        • Shmuel says:

          This is a valid point. 242 does not address settlement, and I have not argued that it does.

          As a result of settlement however, the entire issue has become moot, because Israel has not respected the letter or the spirit of 242 (and has no intention of doing so) with or without the definite article.

        • Chaos4700 says:

          Yet again, the Zionists have hijacked the discussion and made this about semantics. And even then, it doesn’t even make sense.

          You don’t get to “negotiate” adherence to international law, hophmi.

        • hophmi says:

          “Yet again, the Zionists have hijacked the discussion and made this about semantics. And even then, it doesn’t even make sense.”

          Boo-hoo. Semantics are important, particularly when your side misinterprets them.

        • hophmi says:

          “As a result of settlement however, the entire issue has become moot, because Israel has not respected the letter or the spirit of 242 (and has no intention of doing so) with or without the definite article.”

          I disagree. There’s been plenty of disrespect on both sides of 242, starting with the three no’s.

        • Shmuel says:

          There’s been plenty of disrespect on both sides of 242, starting with the three no’s.

          The “three nos” didn’t prejudice any future settlement. They were simply cancelled as easily as they were adopted. Not so the settlements. There is an important difference between saying that one will not comply with a UN resolution and physically precluding that possibility at a future date (“facts on the ground”).

          It’s all about pizza.

        • Woody Tanaka says:

          “Do you deny that the Americans and the British say otherwise”

          Irrelevant. They can say whatever they like; they aren’t the Security Council, nor can they speak for the Security Council. They speak only for themselves. The only thing that matters is the text of the resolution, which clearly refers to “des territories.”

          “and that most people refer to the English version, and not the French,”

          Irrelevant. The resolution is equally authoritative in its French portion and its English. If there are two possible readings based on the English version and only one in the French, then the French reading MUST be the correct one, otherwise you would be saying that the French is not, in fact, authentic and authoritative, which would be nonsense.

          The key is the fact that the English, even with the absent article, does not preclude a reading that would comport with the French, calling for withdraw from all territories. Since the single French interpretation comports with one of the two English interpretations, then that singe French interpretation must be correct, if the equality in authority of the two languages is to be preserved.

          “and that the record shows that the English version is the way it is for a reason?”

          Irrelevant. The only thing which is relevant is the text as a whole, which must include the French as it is authoritative. It is not a translation; it is an indispensible part of the resolution.

          “So Norm Finkelstein is not credible to you?”

          On this specific issue, no.

          “It does reflect the intent of the drafters. That is why the definite article is missing.”

          The intent of the drafters is irrelevant, because the drafters are not the Secuirty Council, and it is only the decision of the Council, spoken through the final resolution, that matters. This is especially so, as the resolution as a whole does not reflect that supposed intent that Israel can keep whatever it wants.

          And the definite article is not missing in the resolution; it clearly states, “des territories.” So the intent of the Security Council was not to eliminate the definite article, as it is included in the resolution.

          “Yes, I agree. The word ‘the’ was clearly left out.”

          The word “des” was clearly included. And, again, you can’t simply discard the French language portion of the resolution because you don’t like it. It is part of the resolution even if you don’t want it to be there, and is no less authentic than the English reading.

          “Exactly. And the resolution says ‘territories’, not ‘the territories.’”

          False. The Resolution unequivocally states, “des territories.”

          “You can point to the French version all you like. The version the rest of the world refers to is the English one, and the record is clear as to why the word ‘the’ was omitted.”

          Hyperbole aside (as I’m sure Francophones don’t “refer[] to the English one”), the resolution is written in French and in English, and both are authoritative. Those who refer to the English as if it is the resolution, and the French a mere translation, are morons.

          Since both are authoritative, neither can be discarded and neither takes precedence over the other. So the interpretation which comports with both languages is, by logic and necessity, the only correct one, because otherwise you would be discarding one or the other portion of the resolution.

          And if your story about why the word was omitted reflected the Security Council’s intent (as opposed to certain people’s intent), then the resolution would not have included the term “des territories.” The fact that it does not merely shows that while certain persons attempted to limit the resolution, the Security Counsel, itself, did not.

          “What the heck do you think this is referring to? On the planet Earth, this refers to the parties to the conflict, ie, interstatial relations. The one-state solution does not respect the sovereignty or political independence of the State of Israel.”

          Until such time as Israel has evidenced an intent to permit a real, fully sovereign and legitimate Palestinian state to exist, the one-state solution has nothing to do with interstitial relations. Because without such intent, we are merely talking about turning a de facto single state into a de jury single state.

        • Woody Tanaka says:

          “‘…to achieve a peaceful and accepted settlement in accordance with the provisions and principles in this resolution’

          That means negotiation.”

          Yes, negotiations with the end of enacting “the provisions and principles of the resolution,” which included the requirment that Israel withdraw from “des territories”.

        • eljay says:

          >> (i) Withdrawal of Israel armed forces from territories occupied in the recent conflict

          That statement – withdraw forces from territories occupied in the recent conflict – could not be any more clear to the average person “on the planet Earth”, but Zio-supremacists sure do love their word games.

          “Withdraw gang members from rooms occupied in the recent home invasion”. Gosh, I don’t know what that means! It doesn’t say how many gang members I have to withdraw, or which rooms I have to withdraw them from. Until someone can “negotiate” what “get out of the house you invaded” actually means, I’m clearly entitled to keep all my gang members in all the rooms occupied in the recent home invasion.

          What a bunch of jokers.

        • talknic says:

          hophmi February 8, 2011 at 12:40 pm

          ” I disagree.”

          Of course. You must. Otherwise it all falls apart…

          “There’s been plenty of disrespect on both sides of 242, starting with the three no’s.

          Incorrect. The three no’s are IN KEEPING WITH UNSC Res 242

          “The Arab Heads of State have agreed to unite their political efforts at the international and diplomatic level to eliminate the effects of the aggression and to ensure the withdrawal of the aggressive Israeli forces from the Arab lands which have been occupied since the aggression of June 5. This will be done within the framework of the main principles by which the Arab States abide, namely, no peace with Israel, no recognition of Israel, no negotiations with it, and insistence on the rights of the Palestinian people in their own country.”

          Israel has withdrawn from Sovereign Egyptian territory. There is a Peace Agreement with Egypt. A Peace agreement with Jordan.

          Israel has not withdrawn from Syrian Sovereign territory. There is no Peace Agreement. Same Lebanon. Same Palestine.

          Understand? Or does it have to be nailed to your thick Hasbara head?

          “There’s been plenty of disrespect on both sides of 242″

          On one side actually….

        • hophmi says:

          “Incorrect. The three no’s are IN KEEPING WITH UNSC Res 242″

          And up is down, and left is right.

          Your interpretations are WHACKO. The only thing that unifies them are that they are all from the school of Arabist apologetics. Understand? Or do you need your meds?

        • talknic says:

          hophmi February 8, 2011 at 12:16 pm

          // “The provision you quoted has to do with external relations between states.”//

          ” Huh? The provision I quoted says “Termination of all claims or states of belligerency and respect for and acknowledgement of the sovereignty, territorial integrity and political independence of every State in the area

          What the heck do you think this is referring to? ”

          The STATES. Like it says.

          ” Well, it’s apparently not unambiguous to the people who actually negotiated the resolution. And as I pointed out, the negotiators and drafters clearly did not assume a literal withdrawal.”

          …to the ’67 borders’. Because there is no such thing as the ’67 borders. Israel’s borders have never actually changed.

          // “The acquisition of territory by war violates the letter and spirit of International law.”//

          “Yeah, I’m sure it does, though it was pretty much how the entire West was won, if you know what I mean.”

          Uh huh. I wonder why it was in the resolution for fun perhaps?

          The reason there has been a law against the acquisition of territory by war since at least the1800′s (See the legal annexation of Texas) is because of the past injustices. Just as there are many conventions.

          The irony of your denialist propaganda puke, is that much of the UN Charter, Human Rights Convention, GC’s et al, is based on the atrocities visited on our Jewish fellows by the Nazis.

          “The actual wording does not include the word “the.” “

          How does it alter the meaning? Fact is, it doesn’t. Read UNSC Res 1860. Territories occupied and never un-occupied are still occupied.

          ” As far as your piece on 242: None of what Lord Caradon said conflicts with what I said. “

          Get your guide dog some glasses and have it read for you again.

          The international community reads 242 as calling for a negotiated settlement”

          The International Community are not the States required to do what it says. It does not say ‘negotiated settlement’ and it does not mention Palestine. Israel’s occupation of Palestine is covered by UN Charter Chapter XI.

          “The resolution itself calls for the SG to
          “designate a Special Representative to proceed to the Middle East to establish and maintain contacts with the States concerned in order to promote agreement and assist efforts to achieve a peaceful and accepted settlement in accordance with the provisions and principles in this resolution”

          That means negotiation”

          ‘negotiation’ does not appear in the provisions and principles of the resolution.

          You keep adding things to suit the justification of Israeli intransigence…

          Read the Egypt/Israeli Peace Agreement, especially the references to UNSC Res 242. Peace Agreements with the STATES in the conflict was the aim of the resolution.

        • talknic says:

          hophmi February 8, 2011 at 12:38 pm

          “Boo-hoo. Semantics are important, particularly when your side misinterprets them”

          Drop the charade. Only dimwit propagandists for Israel’s vile behaviour believe a dimwit propagandist for Israel’s vile behaviour.

        • hophmi says:

          “The International Community are not the States required to do what it says. It does not say ‘negotiated settlement’ and it does not mention Palestine. Israel’s occupation of Palestine is covered by UN Charter Chapter XI.”

          It also does not say “the.”

          “Peace Agreements with the STATES in the conflict was the aim of the resolution.”

          And how does one arrive at “Peace Agreements?”

        • Woody Tanaka says:

          “It also does not say ‘the.’”

          It doesn’t have to; it says, “des.”

        • talknic says:

          hophmi February 8, 2011 at 2:26 pm

          “And up is down, and left is right,”

          Uh huh. Point out the word ‘negotiate’ in UNSC Res 242

          “Your interpretations are WHACKO. “

          Uh huh. Citing the exact wording of a resolution is WHAKO, but inserting words that do not appear in it is sane…

          “The only thing that unifies them are that they are all from the school of Arabist apologetics.”

          Strange, I use no thing from Arabist apologists. This instance is simply a verbatim quote of the whole article, rather than usual dim wit cherry pickings of a Hasbara propagandist.

        • talknic says:

          hophmi February 8, 2011 at 3:12 pm

          “It also does not say “the.””

          Explain what difference ‘the’ makes…

          //“Peace Agreements with the STATES in the conflict was the aim of the resolution.”//

          “And how does one arrive at “Peace Agreements?”

          By simply agreeing to live in peace according to the law. Which is precisely the situation between the STATES with which Israel has Peace Agreements. The LAW says Israel cannot acquire their territory by war. Israel AGREED first to withdraw as required by law and then withdrew BEFORE peaceful relations resumed, as AGREED in the PEACE AGREEMENTS. One does not negotiate the law, one agrees to abide by it and then makes provision to carry it out.

          Tell me, what was negotiated between Israel and Egypt.

    • seafoid says:

      hophmi

      I look forward to watching Israel collapse with you right here on Mondoweiss. It will come sooner that I used to think Apartheid is just not going to fly in the Middle East that is emerging. You got plenty of chances since 1967 and fluffed them all.

      • hophmi says:

        “I look forward to watching Israel collapse with you right here on Mondoweiss. It will come sooner that I used to think Apartheid is just not going to fly in the Middle East that is emerging. You got plenty of chances since 1967 and fluffed them all.”

        You’ll have to wait until hell freezes over, chief.

        • Avi says:

          What are you worried about? You’ve got a good safety net living among the goys whom you loath. Alas, it’s Israeli Zionists who are your real “people”. Aren’t they?

        • seafoid says:

          Apartheid isn’t going to get 20 years, habibi. And YESHA is going to take everything down with it.

          5.5 million Jews and 5.5 million Palestinians live in Erez Israel. Only the Jews have full rights.
          Israel needs to redress this situation quickly before it is too late. Because the neighbours are not going to accept apartheid as a long term solution.

          never again for anyone

        • bijou says:

          Amen to that habibi!

        • talknic says:

          hophmi February 7, 2011 at 4:56 pm

          ENJOY….

          link to wp.me What will happen if the Palestinians Declare Sovereign Independence by the ’67 armistice lines?

          link to wp.me Could a peace agreement lead to an Israeli civil war? What are the implications were it to happen?

          link to wp.me Negotiations between the State of Israel and the Palestinians. What are they really about?

          link to talknic.wordpress.com

        • hophmi says:

          @talknic
          Are your dire predictions and garden variety propaganda are supposed to scare me or something? We have a guy on our side who makes arcane legal arguments about the conflict too. Nobody reads him either.

          People have been making dire predictions about this for a long time, and propagandists have been making similar arguments for a long time.

          The reality is:

          1. No one is stepping in to help the Palestinians gain sovereignty over anything. The international community recognizes the Green Line as Israel’s boundary. That’s not going to change, whether Uruguay, Zimbabwe, Argentina, or some other unimportant state recognizes a Palestinian state, and in fact, by recognizing that state based on the 1967 lines, they are only confirming this. The Palestinians know that there are two entities that matter: one is the EU and the other is the US. And the EU is a distant second.

          2. There isn’t going to be a civil war in Israel. The vast majority of the settlers are secular people who will leave willingly, and the crazy ones are not enough to take on the IDF.

          3. A negotiated solution includes the renunciations of territorial and belligerency claims by the entire Arab world. The Palestinians are a part of that.

        • talknic says:

          hophmi February 8, 2011 at 12:29 pm

          “Are your dire predictions and garden variety propaganda are supposed to scare me or something?”

          A) I don’t do propaganda. Every source has provenance and is cited verbatim. Unlike your own inane twaddle.

          B) Scare? No educate. Quite impossible I know. Arguing against you however, gives the opportunity to post material OTHER folk might consider. (the enjoyment factor in watching you and your kind spout arrogant twaddle is a plus)

          “We have a guy on our side who makes arcane legal arguments about the conflict too. Nobody reads him either.

          A) You went, you read B) ‘our side’ ? I’m only interested in MY homeland state adhering to it’s OWN undertakings. You’re not. tch tch

          “People have been making dire predictions about this for a long time, and propagandists have been making similar arguments for a long time”

          A) Propaganda is false. B) I don’t do false, they’re possibilities, based in the Law verbatim and on the atrocious behaviour of the ghastly people you support.

          “The reality is: 1. No one is stepping in to help the Palestinians gain sovereignty over anything.”

          You’ve not read the growing list of countries pledging recognition for a Palestinian state? Or the growing list willing to boycott Israel? The shrinking list of allies?

          The international community recognizes the Green Line as Israel’s boundary”

          Name one and show it’s actual recognition.

          It’s an ARMISTICE LINE. Armistice lines are not borders except where they follow borders. Read Eugene V. Rostow and Lord Caradon AND Stephen M. Schwebel care fully.

          Legal annexation requires a referendum of the citizens of the territory being annexed. Has done for at least 150 years under Customary International Law. When did Israel legally annex ANY territory?
          PUT UP….

          ” That’s not going to change, whether Uruguay, Zimbabwe, Argentina, or some other unimportant state..”

          Arrogance 101..the sign of a fool. UN Member states are equal.

          “.. in fact, by recognizing that state based on the 1967 lines, they are only confirming this”

          Problem oh arrogant one, the ACTUAL extent of Israeli sovereignty are the same as the day they were declared.

          “The Palestinians know that there are two entities that matter: one is the EU and the other is the US. And the EU is a distant second”

          Sorry to have to inform you of this, but when it comes to statehood, the UNSC has no say. It can only recommend EXISTING states to the General Assembly for acceptance into the UN. Statehood is recognized by the International Community of States, not the UN. When the majority of the International Community of States recognize an entity as Independent, it becomes irrevocable. Same as when a majority ratify a Convention, it passes into Customary International Law.

          There isn’t going to be a civil war in Israel. The vast majority of the settlers are secular people who will leave willingly, and the crazy ones are not enough to take on the IDF”

          We’re not talking about a few ghastly settlers as in Gaza. Israel only has a right to territories ” within frontiers approved by the General Assembly of the United Nations in its Resolution of November 29, 1947″ We’re talking about a million or more people who have either wittingly or un-wittingly been living outside of Israel.

          “A negotiated solution includes the renunciations of territorial and belligerency claims by the entire Arab world. The Palestinians are a part of that”

          The Palestinians have no legal obligation to negotiate ANYTHING.

          Israel should count it’s blessings that they are willing to forgo their full legal and legitimate rights in order that there be peace. Consecutive Israeli Governments have given NO THING, made NO concessions towards peace with the Palestinians.

          The internet has changed the game plan. Israel’s bullsh*t is being revealed for what it is. BULLSH*T!

        • hophmi says:

          “A) I don’t do propaganda. Every source has provenance and is cited verbatim. Unlike your own inane twaddle.”

          My inane twaddle is a position of the international community.

          “B) Scare? No educate. Quite impossible I know. Arguing against you however, gives the opportunity to post material OTHER folk might consider. (the enjoyment factor in watching you and your kind spout arrogant twaddle is a plus)”

          Whatever floats your boat.

          “A) Propaganda is false. B) I don’t do false, they’re possibilities, based in the Law verbatim and on the atrocious behaviour of the ghastly people you support. ”

          They’re possibilities. I understand now. Like, if electricity had never come to England, everything might run on steam. Possibility. Still irrelevant to the matter at hand.

          “You’ve not read the growing list of countries pledging recognition for a Palestinian state? Or the growing list willing to boycott Israel? The shrinking list of allies? ”

          Yeah, I’ve read of the countries offering recognition. It doesn’t mean that much. It’s rhetoric. There is no list of countries willing to boycott Israel that I know of. People, yes. Countries, no.

          “Arrogance 101..the sign of a fool. UN Member states are equal.”

          HAHAHAHAHA! UN Member states are not equal. There are five with veto in the Security Council, where real power lies. And one who has military power and prestige that exceeds everyone else’s. Naivete 101: the sign of a fool.

          “Problem oh arrogant one, the ACTUAL extent of Israeli sovereignty are the same as the day they were declared.”

          Whatever makes you happy. Here’s the CIA Factbook:

          link to cia.gov

          Perhaps you can interpret the geographic coordinates for us and tell us what they mean in your language.

          “We’re talking about a million or more people who have either wittingly or un-wittingly been living outside of Israel.”

          And on the planet Earth, we’re talking about maybe a couple tens of thousands that will be removed in the context of a peace agreement, not some weird opinion based on UN 181. The Palestinians aren’t getting that back, chief. Maybe in your game of Stratego, but not in the real world.

          “The Palestinians have no legal obligation to negotiate ANYTHING. ”

          Hey, good for them. Let’s see where that position gets them.

          “The internet has changed the game plan.”

          I’ll look forward to the first peaceful Palestinian facebook protest against their West Bank leadership. Knowing the Palestinians, they’ll start revolting now, against someone good, like Salam Fayyad.

          You are not convincing in the least, talknic.

        • talknic says:

          hophmi February 8, 2011 at 2:20 pm

          The CIA fact book is wrong on a number of issues, example link to media.npr.org

          National Geographic is not a legal source and the US is not ‘the rest of the world’

          Try to counter the evidence from the Israeli Government 1948 1949. UNSC Resolutions from 1949 to UNSC Res 1860 2009.

          Show a legal annexation document…

          Go ahead…

    • talknic says:

      hophmi

      “That’s because a literal return to the 1967 borders is not international law”

      Indeed it is not. It cannot apply to some fabled borders.

      A) What are the actual 1967 borders? B) Whose borders were altered in 1967 C) Can you show the obligatory referendum of the Palestinian citizens in the territory Israel attempted to annex. D) Can you show the legal annexation of territories OCCUPIED by Israel by 1949/50?

      In FACT: link to wp.me – Israel’s borders have not legally changed since the day they were declared May 14th 1948 and came into effect May 15th 1948. They were further confirmed by the Israeli Government in statements to the UNSC on May 22nd 1948 and again on June 15th 1949.

      Israel has not legally annexed ANY territory link to wp.me

      Customary International Law (since the 1800′s – see the legal annexation of Texas by the USA, especially referendum) binds a sovereign to it’s ACTUAL declared and/or acknowledged boundaries, which might include legally annexed territories, if there are any LEGALLY annexed territories.

      “UNSC 242 is, and that is not what it calls for”

      UNSC Res 242 is not International Law. All Law is in force until it is repealed

      UNSC Resolutions are only pertinent to the parties and issues it addresses. Once a UNSC Resolution is fulfilled, it becomes redundant and the treaties arising from it take it’s place.

      Meanwhile, the laws on which a UNSC Resolution is based, remain in force.

      UNSC Res 242 did not call for frontiers/boundaries/borders to be negotiated or altered in any way – link to wp.me – Read it CARE FULLY! It was a resolution to encourage peace between hostile UN Member ‘states’ in 1967.

      The UN/UNSC cannot pass resolutions for or against non-Members, they can only address how UN Members may act towards non-members.

      For example: Although Israel voluntarily undertook to adhere to the principles of the UN Charter as of the moment the Declaration for the Establishment of the State of Israel came into effect (“at one minute after six o’clock on the evening of 14 May 1948, Washington time”) , there are no UNSC Resolution directly addressing Israel until it became a UN Member State, 11th May 1949.

      Then read the peace agreements between Israel/Egypt – link to wp.me – It tells us peace agreements between the hostile ‘states’ was the purpose of UNSC Res242. It also tells us Israel must withdraw BEFORE peaceful relations are undertaken.

      UNSC Res 242 will only be fully complied with when there are peace agreements with Lebanon and Syria and a “just settlement of the refugee problem” created “in the recent conflict” aka ’67

      UNSC Res 242 left Israel as the occupying power over territories not belonging to any of the Independent States in the region. All the Independent States in the region already had declared and Internationally acknowledged boundaries which, by default, defined what did not belong to those states (incl what did not belong to Israel) Aka PALESTINE. Israel has obligations under the UN Charter Chapt XI

      • hophmi says:

        “UNSC Res 242 is not International Law.”

        It most certainly is. It is Chapter 7 UNSC resolution, and is binding.

        “UNSC Res 242 did not call for frontiers/boundaries/borders to be negotiated or altered in any way”

        No, it discussed a settlement between the parties. I’ll leave you to interpret this in some weird way.

        • talknic says:

          hophmi February 8, 2011 at 12:37 pm

          // “UNSC Res 242 is not International Law.”//

          “It most certainly is. It is Chapter 7 UNSC resolution, and is binding”.

          International Law stands until it is repealed. It applies to the behaviour of all States until it is repealed, whether there is a conflict or not, the law is still in force.

          A UNSC Resolution is based in law but only applies until has been fulfilled. UNSC Res 242 does not refer to anyone but the parties to the conflict.

          //“UNSC Res 242 did not call for frontiers/boundaries/borders to be negotiated or altered in any way”//

          “No, it discussed a settlement between the parties. I’ll leave you to interpret this in some weird way”

          The parties were all States. It was to end hostilities between States. The States all had already declared and acknowledged boundaries by 1948. The Israeli Government acknowledged it’s own territorial extent (boundaries) in statements to the International Community of States on May 15th 1948 and again in statements to the UNSC May 22nd 1948 and June 15th 1949

          UNSC Res 242 3. Requests the Secretary General to designate a Special Representative to proceed to the Middle East to establish and maintain contacts with the States concerned in order to promote agreement and assist efforts to achieve a peaceful and accepted settlement in accordance with the provisions and principles in this resolution;

          It left Israel as the Occupying Power. UNSC Res 1860 (of 2009)
          Recalling all of its relevant resolutions, including resolutions 242 (1967), 338 (1973), 1397 (2002), 1515 (2003) and 1850 (2008),
          Stressing that the Gaza Strip constitutes an integral part of the territory occupied in 1967 and will be a part of the Palestinian state”

  3. talknic says:

    In respect to UNSC Res 242

    The Israeli Declaration says Israel “..will be based on freedom, justice and peace as envisaged by the prophets of Israel;” added to which there is the Hasbara notion that Palestine was/isn’t a state.

    It seems Israel is operating under the theocratic notion contained in Deuteronomy 20 :15 … reflected in the wording Israel approved of in UNSC Res 242 which called for an end to hostilities between states, leaving Israel as the Occupying Power over Palestinian territories.

    When Palestine becomes a State in Israel’s eyes, it will no longer be able to usurp, according to the prophets of Israel.

    To date Israel has had “..respect for and acknowledgement of the sovereignty , territorial integrity and political independence of every State in the area and their right to live in peace within secure and recognized boundaries free from threats or acts of force” to Egypt and Jordan, (alas not yet to Lebanon and Syria), and absolutely no respect for Palestine what so ever.

  4. Avi says:

    talkinc,

    A new tactic of late seems to be the imposition of definitions by Zionist trolls. If they state that 2+2=5, then it must be. Don’t argue. There’s no need to argue because only THEY know the truth and the truth is that 2+2=5. If you say 4 then you are a liar and a propagandist.

    • tree says:

      If you say 4 then you are a liar and a propagandist.

      …and an anti-Semtic hater.

    • hophmi says:

      “If they state that 2+2=5, then it must be. Don’t argue. There’s no need to argue because only THEY know the truth and the truth is that 2+2=5. If you say 4 then you are a liar and a propagandist.”

      This one says Israel is not a recognized State within the 1967 borders and I’m saying 2+2 is 5?

    • talknic says:

      Hi Avi.

      Yes, I know.

      It’s fun pushing them to the point where they pop and spit the dummy or reveal themselves

      Check out the times between posts and hophmi’s responses.

      He, she or it has professional typing skills & speed, down pat arguments.. a pro.

      They’re all the same. Stones for honing an argument that can be sent to one’s Govt rep or folk who do have a position of effect :-)