Palestinians to submit bid for full UN membership on Sept. 23.

Israel/Palestine
on 81 Comments

AP

RAMALLAH, West Bank—The top Palestinian diplomat says the Palestinians will submit a bid for full membership at the U.N. Security Council on Sept.. 23.

Riad al-Malki’s told reporters on Thursday in the West Bank capital of Ramallah that the bid would be submitted next Friday.

His remarks appear to end the speculation over whether the Palestinians would risk a threatened U.S. veto of their statehood bid.

Game on.

About Annie Robbins

Annie Robbins is Editor at Large for Mondoweiss, a mother, a human rights activist and a ceramic artist. She lives in the SF bay area. Follow her on Twitter @anniefofani

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81 Responses

  1. seafoid
    September 15, 2011, 9:15 am

    Two things will be revealed to the world on 23 September

    1. Israel’s bad faith over 20 years of talks.
    2. The protocols of the elders of AIPAC and their poisonous influence on US politics.

    • Chu
      September 15, 2011, 10:09 am

      I wonder how the US media, with their notes from AIPAC & their many sub-organizations, will attempt to sugar-coat this issue? This is going to
      be another opportunity for Americans to weight the value of the special relationship.
      And to mention, the Republican debates will be gushing over Israel’s rights, and Ron Paul will provide his alternate wisdom from the pack.

      • Kathleen
        September 15, 2011, 10:29 am

        They will try to be silent or spin in Israel’s favor. Period

      • seafoid
        September 15, 2011, 11:38 am

        The US is like Josef Fritzl in the run up to the day his secret about the daughter in the basement was revealed to the world.

        Certain things can’t be spun positively.

      • lysias
        September 15, 2011, 11:54 am

        If there is a serious international reaction to the U.S. veto, that will be hard for the U.S. media to conceal.

      • seafoid
        September 15, 2011, 12:11 pm

        It’s going to be an open goal for Erdogan.

      • Chu
        September 15, 2011, 12:21 pm

        I agree, Lysias. This illustrates how a global leader, once held in high regard, is showing further signs of blight. Susan Rice could not even explain why she was vetoing the Israeli settlements in Feb 2011. I can’t imagine what’s the reason she’ll have this time.

        “The US stood alone among the 15 members of the security council in failing to condemn the resumption of settlement building that has caused a serious rift between the Israeli government and the Palestinian authority and derailed attempts to kick-start the peace process. The Palestinians have made clear that they will not return to the negotiating table until Israel suspends settlement building in East Jerusalem and the West Bank.

        The decision placed the US in a controversial position at a time when it is already struggling to define its strategy in a tumultuous Middle East.

        The 14 member countries backing the Arab-drafted resolution included Britain and France.
        The US ambassador to the UN, Susan Rice, said the decision to use the veto power – open to the five permanent members of the UN, of which the US is one – “should not be misunderstood to mean we support settlement activity”.
        She said Washington’s view was that the Israeli settlements lacked legitimacy, but added: “Unfortunately, this draft resolution risks hardening the positions of both sides and could encourage the parties to stay out of negotiations.””

        link to guardian.co.uk

      • seafoid
        September 15, 2011, 12:28 pm

        An oil embargo from Saudi would be the icing on the cake.
        The US economy is in no position to manage oil at $200 a barrel. Obama’s reelection would be dead in the water. It would clear the way for Ron Paul !

        It would also close the circle that started in 1973 and went on to the Egyptian deal in 1979 when Israel promised to respect the palestinian right to a state but of course ignored it.-

      • Donald
        September 15, 2011, 12:41 pm

        “They will try to be silent or spin in Israel’s favor. Period”

        They won’t be silent. The pro-Israel side is already in hysterics. The NYT has been covering it, but with their usual spin. Not even they can cover up the fact that Netanyahu is extreme and in fact they condemn him more than the Palestinians, but they always put some blame on the Palestinians. If the blame for the current situation really were 50/50 they’d put all the blame on the Palestinians.

        What’s interesting about the mainstream reporting that I’ve seen (mainly in the NYT) is that they are fairly honest about why the Palestinian bid for recognition would be such a disaster in the eyes of the US, Israel, and the NYT editors. It’s because first, the US Congress and Israel will likely cut aid to the PA, which might lead to instability and so maybe other factions like Hamas might see an opportunity here. And second and maybe more frightening to them, is the possibility that the Palestinians might bring charges against Israel in the ICC. That’s not the way the world is supposed to work. War crimes charges are only supposed to be brought against America’s enemies.

        They also say that recognition won’t lead to negotiations, but that means that Israel and the US only want the Palestinians to negotiate from a position of weakness and if that isn’t the case then Israel won’t negotiate.

      • hophmi
        September 15, 2011, 1:46 pm

        “the possibility that the Palestinians might bring charges against Israel in the ICC.”

        Yes, and I’d say that’s probably the biggest threat to Israel. Of course, Israel has the ability to ask the Court to investigate crimes committed by Palestinians on its territory on an ad-hoc basis.

        It seems possible that non-member state status would give the Palestinians the ability to sign the Rome Statute.

        I don’t really see any of this as likely. The Americans have just as much reason to be afraid. You be sure that the ICC will not last long if it starts investigating Americans; the day that happens, Congress will pull UN funding.

      • Woody Tanaka
        September 15, 2011, 2:15 pm

        “You be sure that the ICC will not last long if it starts investigating Americans; the day that happens, Congress will pull UN funding.”

        And so what if they do? Do you honestly believe that the rest of the world will fold up their tents and go home if the US does that?? Frankly, I’d just as soon the UN move out of the US, refuse its money and give the US the status of Peru or Thailand, rather than let petulant maniacs in congress hold the world hostage to their inanities.

      • annie
        September 15, 2011, 2:22 pm

        Do you honestly believe that the rest of the world will fold up their tents and go home if the US does that?? Frankly, I’d just as soon the UN move out of the US

        me too.

      • lysias
        September 15, 2011, 2:22 pm

        It’s going to be an open goal for Erdogan.

        And an own goal for Israel and the U.S.

      • lysias
        September 15, 2011, 2:30 pm

        The League of Nations was housed in Geneva. Its old headquarters building, the Palace of Nations, is still there in Geneva, currently housing the UN Office at Geneva. It would be an appropriate place to move the UN to.

        If the U.S. withdraws from the UN, it will be following in the footsteps of Nazi Germany, Fascist Italy, and militarist Japan, all of which withdrew from the League of Nations in the 1930′s.

      • Pamela Olson
        September 15, 2011, 3:03 pm

        AMEN to Woody Tanaka. The world doesn’t have enough leaders — just people who hear a single threat from a bully and cringe away. This power would melt if enough people stopped believing in it.

      • Hostage
        September 16, 2011, 1:09 am

        Yes, and I’d say that’s probably the biggest threat to Israel. Of course, Israel has the ability to ask the Court to investigate crimes committed by Palestinians on its territory on an ad-hoc basis.

        Israel can only accept the jurisdiction of the Court for all crimes committed on its territory under Article 12(3), just like the Palestinians and the other self-referrals. It would require a Security Council resolution to refer a specific situation the Court. The Prosecutor always has the option of following the evidence available from open sources wherever it leads.

      • pabelmont
        September 15, 2011, 11:53 am

        US MSM will
        [1] say that negotiations are the only way to go for Palestine
        [2] ignore that Israel was formed by terror (against British and Palestinians) and by war and ethnic cleansing
        [3] ignore illegality of settlements
        [4] ignore possible illegality of occupation (after so many years) where the proof of intent to acquire land by warfare is manifest
        [5] maybe call the Palestinians terrorists
        [6] ignore Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and Egypt as having a voice
        [7] and do all this on page 9.

        IMHO.

      • Chu
        September 15, 2011, 12:12 pm

        All these items listed pave the way toward the US losing it’s former global leadership during the last half century. They’re not playing a smart game any longer; taking marching orders from Tel-Aviv is not going to offer much in return. Might is not always right. It pays to be diplomatic once in a while, especially when a great majority of nations oppose the occupation.

      • annie
        September 15, 2011, 12:34 pm

        wait no longer chu, it’s doesn’t look like they are sugar coating it. 18 minutes ago the latimes released Israelis, Palestinians headed toward U.N. showdown

        Reporting from Ramallah, West Bank—
        Rebuffing international pressure to soften their positions and return to the negotiating table, Israelis and Palestinians announced separately Thursday that they were moving forward with an expected diplomatic battle next week at the United Nations.

        ……

        The announcements were the latest signs that a last-minute push by the Obama administration and European Union to forge a compromise had faltered.

        …….

        But their efforts have been unable thus far to break through the deadlock that has stalled the latest round of peace talks for two years. Palestinians say they will only return to talks if Israel agrees to temporarily halt settlement construction in the West Bank and Jerusalem and to base border negotiations on the 1967 lines with mutually agreed territory swaps. Though the U.S. has endorsed both steps, Israel has rejected them.

      • annie
        September 15, 2011, 1:16 pm

        here’s time magazine weighing in

        Palestinian Official: Bid for U.N. Recognition Will “Salvage the Peace Process”

        Slowly and possibly surely, the Palestinian approach to the United Nations endgame is emerging. And it sizes up as a relatively moderate strategy, one that suggests holding back on any attempt to charge Israel in newly available international courts as long as Israel stops expanding its settlements on Palestinian territory.

      • Chu
        September 15, 2011, 1:57 pm

        Let’s hope the PA stays firm, now that they have neighbors who are backing them. For Israel, it seems they aim to become the number one pariah state of the world.

      • Hostage
        September 16, 2011, 1:21 am

        a relatively moderate strategy, one that suggests holding back on any attempt to charge Israel in newly available international courts as long as Israel stops expanding its settlements on Palestinian territory.

        The ICC really doesn’t work that way. They have already torpedoed several political deals involving amnesty. See the discussions of the various cases here: link to humanrightsdoctorate.blogspot.com

        Palestinian’s can’t really speak on behalf of the Prosecutor or the Court. Israel or Palestine could conduct credible trials of their own, but a whitewash would only trigger the Court’s jurisdiction.

    • Scott Mohn
      September 16, 2011, 11:59 am

      UN INITIATIVE: As the Palestinian Statehood initiative at the UN has evolved it has become a symbol of more than Statehood for a single people. It now stands for a broader proposition that transcends any single people or nation. It stands for the proposition that: ” We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed….” Compared to this now timeless proposition and the Universal aspirations it reflects, the office of chief executive in any single nation is a mere temporary, minor ministerial post.

  2. timhaughton
    September 15, 2011, 9:22 am

    If you’re gonna go for statehood, might as well humiliate the US by forcing them to veto their own policies…again…

  3. seafoid
    September 15, 2011, 9:34 am

    Some lovely comments here

    link to haaretz.com

    So many decent people around the world support the rights of the Palestinians. So many Mentsches.

  4. hophmi
    September 15, 2011, 9:54 am

    It will backfire, in my view. The Palestinians can pretend all they want that they can get what they want without the United States. They are not living in the real world, and this is yet another bad idea will cost them money, lives, and political capital.

    Perhaps the Israelis should support this effort. After all, the next Hamas attack would be the attack of a national government, and Israel’s case for self-defense, already strong, would be stronger still, because the attack would come from an enemy state.

    Nevertheless, the US does not like to be embarrassed. If you think it angered the President when the Israelis announced new housing in East Jerusalem during Biden’s visit, you ain’t seen nothing yet. Embarrassing the United States on the world stage will not help the Palestinian people. And no, the Administration will not blame Netanyahu for this one, because the PA has repeatedly refused to negotiate.

    The Palestinians are hitching their wagon to the Arab star. That’s not too smart.

    • irishmoses
      September 15, 2011, 12:08 pm

      Hophni: “The Palestinians are hitching their wagon to the Arab star. That’s not too smart.”

      Well, Hophni, I suppose they could hitch their wagon to blazing glory of that very bright Israeli shooting star which is about to be extinguished in the earth’s atmosphere. Nah, the Palestinians picked the right star to hitch up with. That Arab star you are so dismissive of Hophni is the morning star of the Arab Spring. It is the star of hope. Unlike shooting stars, it will be with us for a very long time.

      The real question is what star will my country hitch itself to. Sadly, my vain hope aside, I know the answer.

      • seafoid
        September 15, 2011, 12:45 pm

        That Star of David never did anything for the palestinians.
        All that tikkun olam stuff was a lie.

    • lysias
      September 15, 2011, 12:11 pm

      Exactly what penalties has the U.S. imposed on Israel for embarrassing it?

    • justicewillprevail
      September 15, 2011, 12:24 pm

      Ha ha, hoppy. You actually believe that Palestine is ‘embarrassing’ the US? Cute, but funny. I think you will find there is only one state causing the embarrassment, and that is of course the Congress paymaster, Israel, always stamping its little bully foot and demanding its hired hands denounce anything to do with Palestine. Whatever the declaration achieves, one very positive thing about it is the worldwide coverage of the Palestinian plight, and israel’s refusal to do anything other than choke them. Every year, especially after its own brutality, israel is exposed, and the relentlessly peddled myths seen as empty and vainglorious propaganda. Opposing a simple statement of what the US/Israel junta in Palestine pretend to want- a separate state – only exposes their hollow claims and excuses even more. And threatening defenceless people only makes it worse. Any civil Israeli would have no problem with Palestine copying Israel’s own declaration, unless of course they believe they have rights, and the Palestinians none except what Israel chooses to allow, which is as good as none. Here is Israel’s chance to help a Palestinian state come into being, and begin the long process of peace and justice. Will it take it, while the world watches? Or will it choose more violence and aggression, its only known modus operandi? The answer is already clear.

      • hophmi
        September 15, 2011, 12:31 pm

        “You actually believe that Palestine is ‘embarrassing’ the US? Cute, but funny.”

        Yeah, I do. But you don’t have to take my word for it. The Obama administration’s mad diplomacy aimed at avoiding use of the promised veto and Congress’s threat to cut funding speaks for itself.

        “Whatever the declaration achieves, one very positive thing about it is the worldwide coverage of the Palestinian plight,”

        LOL. The Palestinians have no problem getting worldwide coverage.

        “Opposing a simple statement of what the US/Israel junta in Palestine pretend to want- a separate state – only exposes their hollow claims and excuses even more.”

        Maybe it does, maybe it doesn’t. It’s too bad for the Palestinians that some people don’t take what they say at face value.

        “Here is Israel’s chance to help a Palestinian state come into being, and begin the long process of peace and justice. ”

        Or Palestine’s chance to take the first step toward destroying the Israeli state. Not everyone sees it exactly the Palestinians’ way, like you do.

      • Donald
        September 15, 2011, 12:47 pm

        “Yeah, I do. But you don’t have to take my word for it. The Obama administration’s mad diplomacy aimed at avoiding use of the promised veto and Congress’s threat to cut funding speaks for itself. ”

        You two aren’t really disagreeing. The Palestinians are embarrassing the US by forcing the Obama Administration into the position where it has to reveal its utter weakness in the face of Israel and the Lobby. Obama apparently can’t afford to anger the Israel Lobby with the economy in the rotten state that it’s in. He’s facing a tough election even if the Republicans nominate a total nutcase, or that’s how it looks now. So he will do what the Israelis want and veto this and he will look like Israel’s lapdog, which is what he has been.

        So yes, both sides will humilate him. You might be right that he will take it out on the Palestinians. Obama punches down, not up. He ridicules people to his left and has spent three years trying to placate the right.

      • Chu
        September 15, 2011, 12:58 pm

        Great reply Justice, and noted that Hophmi’s reply reeks of wily desperation.
        This show of Israel can’t go on forever. If they are sincere about peace, they need to show the world their sincere objectives. Even if they have all the guns and firepower, that doesn’t help them on the diplomatic front of this slow & simmering occupation.

      • hophmi
        September 15, 2011, 3:53 pm

        “Great reply Justice, and noted that Hophmi’s reply reeks of wily desperation.”

        One can never underestimate the chasm between what I say, and what you wish I meant.

        I’m not desperate. I think the Palestinians have a lot to lose and very little to gain from what amounts to a publicity stunt on a world stage where the primary emotion felt by most toward the conflict is cynicism, not outrage in the Palestinians’ favor. It’s clear that BDS proponents, who want to flood Israel with refugees and oppose the two-state solution, are scared shitless by UDI because they know it basically supports everything they hate – the two-state formula, the Palestinian Authority, and Israeli existence.

        I’m not worried. These things have happened before, and Israel has weathered every one of these international campaigns.

      • seafoid
        September 15, 2011, 5:38 pm

        The Israelis made a big mistake after the fall of the Soviet Union by going into a peace process. What did they expect would be at the end of a peace process? A Torquay hotel bedroom? Herds of wildebeest charging majestically across the savannah ?

        Once they went into the peace process they generated global expectations about peace. They also got a lot of economic benefits they pocketed with nothing given in return.

        But you can’t string a woman along for 20 years promising you’ll marry her and never doing it.

        It is the same with peace processes.

        When they did get talking they wouldn’t propose or accept anything.

        Fri 23 Sept is richly deserved. It will show Israel for what it really is- a shitty little country of 5.5 million people with no friends. The only goyim in Galut who like them are the shills in Congress who are paid to like them .

      • Shingo
        September 15, 2011, 6:00 pm

        What exactly have the Pakestinyans got to lose Hop? Israel has taken everything from them already.

        There’s nothing they have left to lose.

      • southernobserver
        September 15, 2011, 6:41 pm

        Dear Hophmi,
        Unfortunately, you are right, at least in practical terms, as much as a reasonable and ethical person might hope otherwise. I have two questions though.

        First why are Israel’s representatives going mental? This seems to suggest that they are not sanguine.

        Second, even if the UN gains the Palestinians nothing, what do they get from “negotiating”? We already know from the Palestianian Papers that previous Istratine governments offered the Palestinians less than they have now as an oppressed minority. We also know that the current prime minister considers the previous team to have been insanely generous.

        Less than nothing vs nothing. I would have said that UN was therefore the least bad option, but I await clarification.

      • Hostage
        September 16, 2011, 1:42 am

        It’s clear that BDS proponents, who want to flood Israel with refugees and oppose the two-state solution, are scared shitless by UDI because they know it basically supports everything they hate – the two-state formula, the Palestinian Authority, and Israeli existence.

        The Palestinians already declared their state in 1988 and there won’t be another UDI. The recognition of the State of Palestine by the UN doesn’t effect the final status issues on the Quartet Road Map or UN General Assembly resolution 194 (III) in the slightest way. The Palestinians are simply holding Obama’s feet to the fire on promises that were already made, but not kept.

  5. Chu
    September 15, 2011, 10:02 am

    Netanyahu is making his way to discuss the statehood bid. But his problem is global credibility. Not only did he spit in the Eye of the US president last year, but now he asks for their help in enabling the occupation. He fails to understand what diplomatic means.

    “Netanyahu said that the General Assembly is not “the place where Israel generally gets reasonable hearing,” but it was nonetheless important to present Israel’s position. ”
    “The focus of last-minute diplomatic fury, according to the official, was to prevent a “one-sided anti-Israeli resolution from being adopted by the UN.””

    link to jpost.com

    And There’s a credibility problem with Netanyahu’s government the majority of the world is witness to. He believes he will be able to persuade the world that Israel is doing all it can at peace negotiations. The a growing human factor that he seems unaware of in the greater world, and taking obama out to the woodshed everytime he flies in from Tel-Aviv has exposed our supposed tight bond.

    • Chu
      September 15, 2011, 10:13 am

      oops, forgot to edit:
      And There’s a credibility problem with Netanyahu’s government the majority of the world is witness to. He believes he will be able to persuade the world that Israel is doing all it can at peace negotiations. The a growing human factor that he seems unaware of in the greater world, and taking obama out to the woodshed everytime he flies in from Tel-Aviv has exposed our supposed tight bond.

    • Walid
      September 15, 2011, 10:38 am

      It still don’t understand why the Palestinians would apply to the Security Council when they have been told to their faces that it’s going to be vetoed. Why not go straight to the General Assembly where they’d be rewarded with a lesser prize? There has to be some pulling of the wool over the eyes behind this move destined to fail and as usual it will surely not be in the best interest of the Palestinians. Netanyahu’s plea to the GA on the same day should signal what is to be expected from all of this.

      • Chu
        September 15, 2011, 11:25 am

        I don’t know. Perhaps they do this to show the world that the US continues to oppose Palestinian statehood for no credible reason, other than allowing Israel to continue it’s land theft and occupation.

        This SC vote would again illustrate to the world that the US does not recognize justice, and is incapable of handling this conflict after another decade of Palestinian misery.

      • Sumud
        September 15, 2011, 12:40 pm

        As Hostage outlined a few days ago, procedural matters require only a yes vote from 9 members of the SC (and admitting a state is procedural, rather that peace and security related) and a veto might not be an option since to veto an application such as this is to deny self-determination.

        That’s a very rough paraphrase Walid!

      • lysias
        September 15, 2011, 3:37 pm

        Who gets to decide whether only a simple majority is needed here? The International Court of Justice?

      • Hostage
        September 16, 2011, 1:52 am

        It still don’t understand why the Palestinians would apply to the Security Council when they have been told to their faces that it’s going to be vetoed.

        Because the US always says that and it hasn’t followed through on a number of occasions. Muskie abstained after saying some polite election-year words about a “draft” resolution on moving embassies out of Jerusalem being null and void. The US nonetheless cited it after it was adopted, and twisted arms along with the other P5 members until all of the embassies were moved.

    • irishmoses
      September 15, 2011, 12:14 pm

      I love this. Maybe President Obama can come to the UN and speak in support of Mr. Netanyahu just prior to vetoing Palestinian self determination, freedom and statehood. What an impressive combination that would be. Every shoe in the house would be flying toward the podium.

      This train wreck is getting better and better. I just hope the poor Palestinians don’t cave under all the pressure from the US and the Quartet. Hopefully, the Turks, Saudis and Egyptians can stiffen them up knowing they have the Palestinians’ back.

      • eee
        September 15, 2011, 3:55 pm

        Irishmoses,

        People like you never learn. Each time the Palestinians trusted the Arabs they were screwed big time. The were hosed by Nasser (the bright star of Arab nationalism), they are being hosed by Assad, they were screwed big time in Black September by Jordan and the Arab League. In 1982 they were again screwed by the Arabs and sent to exile in Tunis. They were sent packing out of Kuwait. They were screwed even by Hezbollah that didn’t shoot ONE rocket at Israel during Cast Lead.

        The Arabs and Turks talk the talk, but never walk the walk. What can they deliver now to the Palestinians? Nothing. What good will the Arab spring do for the Palestinians? Will any Arab country go to war for them? No. The Egyptians have not even opened the Gaza border. Will the Arabs send the Palestinians money if the US doesn’t? No. So when you say that the “Turks, Saudis and Egyptians” have their back, you are talking nonsense.

      • southernobserver
        September 15, 2011, 6:46 pm

        Again, there is an element of truth here.

        However, again, I guess that the Palestinians also know this. Still, but they have been offered a deal that offers less than nothing, enshrining them in an open air prisons for ever, possibly this is still the less bad option?

      • irishmoses
        September 15, 2011, 9:10 pm

        eee,
        Both the Turks and the Saudis have made very strong statements of support for the Palestinians UN vote. The Turks are conducting a campaign and the Saudis are threatening to end their special relationship with the US if it uses it’s veto. I have great hope that times are a changing. We shall see eee, we shall see.

      • eee
        September 16, 2011, 12:30 am

        And who will the Saudis sell the oil to? And who will protect them from the Iranians? The Saudis need the Americans more than the Americans need the Saudis. Let the Saudis do the easiest thing first. Let them fill the gap after the US Congress stops funding for the PA. Don’t hold your breath.

      • Hostage
        September 16, 2011, 2:01 am

        People like you never learn. Each time the Palestinians trusted the Arabs they were screwed big time.

        The Palestinians have nothing to loose from the US or the Arabs. They are already being short-changed by the donors. So, why not go for statehood at the UN? They can always throw the keys to the PA in Netanyahu’s face and let him fund the occupation without their help if they don’t achieve their goals.

      • annie
        September 16, 2011, 2:18 am

        Let them fill the gap after the US Congress stops funding for the PA. Don’t hold your breath.

        you think it will be a severe problem for them? you don’t think they have the power of wherewithal to jack up oil prices?

      • Taxi
        September 16, 2011, 10:42 am

        “And who will the Saudis sell the oil to? ”

        Try China mister oil man.

        The Saudis are more worried about their trillions of assets in America being confiscated than they are about selling their oil.

      • eee
        September 16, 2011, 11:30 am

        Annie,

        Most of the Saudi wealth is in the ground. They want to sell their oil for many years to come. If they jack up prices, they create huge incentives to find alternatives and that will risk their future sales. Plus, they take the chance of pushing the West into a recession thus even hurting sales short term.

        Taxi,
        The Saudis are worried about waking up and finding themselves with billions of barrels of useless goo because of alternative energy sources.

      • eee
        September 16, 2011, 11:32 am

        Hostage,

        Of course the Palestinians have something to lose. Don’t the Palestinians in the West Bank have much to lose relative to those in Gaza?

      • Taxi
        September 16, 2011, 11:40 am

        LOL eee, exactly WHAT “alternative energy sources” you referring to pray tell. The cuckoo-clock bird is better informed on the global oil industry than you are.

        Just admit it’s not your fortay and move along now.

      • Hostage
        September 16, 2011, 2:19 pm

        Of course the Palestinians have something to lose. Don’t the Palestinians in the West Bank have much to lose relative to those in Gaza?

        No. You still shoot old men who are sound asleep in their beds; announce plans to illegally displace thousands of Bedouins; build thousands of new units in the settlements; destroy water supplies; and threaten violent reprisals if they pursue non-violent means to obtain their freedom or a judicial remedy.

  6. eljay
    September 15, 2011, 10:14 am

    >> Perhaps the Israelis should support this effort.

    Yes, it should. It should accept Palestinian statehood and work sincerely to help Palestine become a viable state. Not out of any love for the Palestinians, but because it would be the very smartest thing to do. I don’t understand how, after decades of f*cking the Palestinians over, Israel can’t see that more of the same won’t work and that, in all likelihood, sincere humility, contrition and resolve to do right by the Palestinians cannot help but vastly improve relations.

    >> After all, the next Hamas attack would be the attack of a national government, and Israel’s case for self-defense, already strong, would be stronger still, because the attack would come from an enemy state.

    I agree. And if the Palestinians do achieve statehood, they’d better be damned smart about how they proceed. If Israel does what I described in my first paragraph, above, and the Palestinians continue with their violence, they will lose my (meaningless, in the ultimate scheme of things) support.

    • Donald
      September 15, 2011, 12:52 pm

      “If Israel does what I described in my first paragraph, above, and the Palestinians continue with their violence, they will lose my (meaningless, in the ultimate scheme of things) support.”

      For myself, I don’t feel like supporting the violence of either side though genuine self defense against armed people trying to kill innocents is legitimate. However, that’s not the kind of violence one normally sees in this conflict.

      If the Israelis elected Shmuel to be their Prime Minister and Hamas responded with rocket fire, I would say that Hamas was the main obstacle to peace at that stage. This doesn’t seem likely to happen.

      • eljay
        September 15, 2011, 1:12 pm

        >> For myself, I don’t feel like supporting the violence of either side though genuine self defense against armed people trying to kill innocents is legitimate.

        I agree. My humble point was merely that IF Israel is acting in good faith and doing what it can to help the new Palestinian state – actions which would also be of benefit to Israel – the Palestinians must not respond with what would be, in such a situation, unprovoked violence.

        Whether or not Israel is capable of doing its part is another matter entirely.

      • Richard Witty
        September 16, 2011, 3:05 am

        Good points.

        Israel should get on the positive side of this, and work to create a good neighbor to good neighbor relationship.

        You agree with my plane metaphor, that Israel and some others are try to stop a plane in flight.

    • Hostage
      September 16, 2011, 2:13 am

      After all, the next Hamas attack would be the attack of a national government, and Israel’s case for self-defense, already strong, would be stronger still, because the attack would come from an enemy state.

      Bullshit. The Israeli Knesset already recognized Gaza as an “enemy entity” and treats it just like an enemy state. See the cable on that subject: Yadlin said Israel would be “happy” if Hamas took over Gaza because the IDF could then deal with Gaza as a hostile state.
      link to wikileaks.ch

      The majority of UN Member states recognized the State of Palestine long before the Hamas list of candidates were ever elected. In any event, Article 2 of the UN Charter doesn’t care about the juridical status of the source of aggression.

      I’ve pointed out dozens of times that our own State Department has a webpage which explains that blockades have historically resulted in belligerent recognition of statehood, because they are “a weapon of war between sovereign states.” link to future.state.gov

  7. seafoid
    September 15, 2011, 10:25 am

    The Israelis never saw this coming.
    They were worried about losing Europe at Herzliya

    link to herzliyaconference.org.pdf

    That was the river.
    This is the sea.

    • Taxi
      September 15, 2011, 12:50 pm

      That was the river
      This is the sea:

      “Now if you’re feelin’ weary
      If you’ve been alone too long
      Maybe you’ve been suffering from
      A few too many
      Plans that have gone wrong
      And you’re trying to remember
      How fine your life used to be
      Running around banging your drum
      Like it’s 1973
      Well that was the river
      This is the sea!
      Wooo!”
      (The Waterboys/This Is The Sea)

      • seafoid
        September 15, 2011, 4:00 pm

        Another good one for Israel at this moment of imperial overreach

        You were there at the turnstiles
        with the wind at your heels
        You stretched for the stars
        and you know how it feels
        To reach too high
        too far
        Too soon

        and for the settlers

        Anyone can lose it all
        Anyone can lose it all
        If you don’t heed your warnings call
        Anyone can lose it all

        Anyone can make a mess
        Anyone can make a mess
        Just take so much and make it less
        Anyone can make a mess

      • Taxi
        September 15, 2011, 5:06 pm

        Seafoid my friend you forgot this one for the tel aviv Rothchild Protestors:

  8. gingershot
    September 15, 2011, 10:44 am

    Forcing the US to Veto the Palestinian state at the UN Sec Co is an important step in further uncovering and exposing the Israeli Lobby in the US to worldwide approbation and derision.

    Mearsheimer and Chas Freeman both have been eloquent on this point – the US must be fully discredited and removed from any control over Palestine’s fate – ‘forcing’ the US Vetoat the UN is a crucial part of making the US irrelevant and forging a means where Palestine can protect itself from Israel long-term, by means of the ICC, UN, the EU, and other international agencies

    The Palestinians must buck the attempts by the US and some of their US supporters in the EU (Germany and France amongst others) to try to intimidate the Palestinians into not forcing the US vote (and to just avoid the Sec Co and go straight to the General Assembly).

    It’s worth the EU being twisted up and not speaking as a unified voice, it’s worth the Palestinians losing a couple of votes there – who cares ? – the long term strategic gains are far larger

    Since the US is threatening and continuing to threaten – the US Veto must be forced – it’s very important.

    The US Veto will make it a object of ridicule around the world – and thereby more fully expose the Israeli Lobby in the US.

    The US veto is needed to further invalidate the US and make the Israeli Lobby all that more irrelevant and impotent.

    And that is very important as Palestine is fighting the tagteam of both Israel and her Israeli Lobby in the US as it seeks to end Israeli Apartheid.

  9. Richard Witty
    September 15, 2011, 11:01 am

    The best path is for the Palestinian petition to stimulate negotiation, that will be needed inevitably, as US, European, Israeli, Arab leaders have articulated.

    The declaration is problematic and can spin out for everybody, and every institution.

    In spite of the problems, the problems are associated with not proceeding more than they are with proceeding. That Palestinian Authority has declared that its intention is to stimulate negotiation, and not to press maximalist demands by its sovereignty, is a very good sign.

    The petition is within the scope of a responsible moderate push, especially with the intention to negotiate subsequently.

    There are large flanks though. Large militant flanks (norms even) in both Palestinian and Israeli society that are untenable. There is the pro-Palestinian flank that wants confrontation, upheaval rather than an orderly transition that leaves Israel standing and healthy. And, there is the pro-Israeli flank that regards the status quo as liveable (for them obviously).

    They each seek to disrupt the constructive.

  10. Kathleen
    September 15, 2011, 11:02 am

    “Game on”

    NPR stories covering the Palestinian bid

    Pressure on…
    link to npr.org
    “KELEMAN: Palestinians say going to the U.N. will give them a stronger hand should negotiations ever resume. But Ambassador Rice told a breakfast organized by the Christian Science Monitor that the Palestinian move is a, quote, “dangerous diversion” with real-world consequences.

    RICE: This is not, you know, one day of hoo-ha and celebration in the General Assembly or the Security Council, and then everybody goes home.

    KELEMAN: Leading members of Congress accuse the Palestinians of trying to delegitimize Israel. Lawmakers are threatening to cut U.S. aid to Palestinians and stop funding U.N. agencies that upgrade the status of Palestinians. A top Palestinian official, Hanan Ashrawi, says that is cause for concern.

    HANAN ASHRAWI: Yeah, we are worried, but we are not as worried as we are about losing the rest of our land and about having Israel destroy the chances of peace by destroying the two-state solution, which is what it’s doing with American cover.

    KELEMAN: She says the U.S. failed to revive serious negotiations with a clear timeframe and goals. So, now the Palestinians are taking what Ashrawi describes as a legal, responsible path at the U.N. One option is to get a General Assembly vote to upgrade the Palestinian status from non-member entity to non-member state, much like the Vatican.

    ASHRAWI: If we get an upgrade in our status to a non-member state, that would, first of all, give us access to all U.N. institutions, organizations and agencies, including, of course, the judicial agencies for legal accountability. ”

    other NPR stories covering the Palestinians bid
    link to npr.org
    link to npr.org

  11. Kathleen
    September 15, 2011, 11:29 am

    Key statement above:

    Hanan Ashrawi: “including, of course, the judicial agencies for legal accountability. ”

    Joseph Massads take below

    link to english.aljazeera.net

    “The PA feels abandoned by the US which assigned it the role of collaborator with the Israeli occupation, and feels frozen in a “peace process” that does not seek an end goal. PA politicians opted for the UN vote to force the hand of the Americans and the Israelis, in the hope that a positive vote will grant the PA more political power and leverage to maximise its domination of the West Bank (but not East Jerusalem or Gaza, which neither Israel nor Hamas respectively are willing to concede to the PA). Were the UN to grant the PA its wish and admit it as a member state with observer status, then, the PA argues, it would be able to force Israel in international fora to cease its violations of the UN charter, the Geneva Conventions, and numerous international agreements. The PA could then challenge Israel internationally using legal instruments only available to member states to force it to grant it “independence”. What worries the Israelis most is that, were Palestine to become a member state, it would be able to legally challenge Israel.

    If the UN vote passes, the PLO will cease to represent the Palestinian people [EPA]

    This logic is faulty, though, because the Palestinians have not historically lacked legal instruments to challenge Israel. On the contrary, international instruments have been activated against Israel since 1948 by the UN’s numerous resolutions in the General Assembly as well as in the Security Council, not to mention the more recent use of the International Court of Justice in the case of the Apartheid Wall. The problem has never been the Palestinians’ ability or inability to marshal international law or legal instruments to their side. Instead, the problem is that the US blocks international law’s jurisdiction from being applied to Israel through its veto power. The US uses threats and protective measures to shield the recalcitrant pariah state from being brought to justice. It has already used its veto power in the UN Security Council 41 times in defense of Israel and against Palestinian rights. How this would change if the PA became a UN member state with observer status is not clear.

    True, the PA could bring more international legal pressure and sanctions to bear on Israel. It could have international bodies adjudicate Israel’s violations of the rights of the Palestinian state. The PA could even make the international mobility of Israeli politicians more perilous as “war criminals”. This would render Israel’s international relations more difficult, but how would this ultimately weaken an Israel that the US would shield completely from such effects as it has always done?

    Implications of the UN vote

    This presumed addition of power the Palestinians will gain to bring Israel to justice will actually be carried out at enormous cost to the Palestinian people. If the UN votes for the PA statehood status, this would have several immediate implications:.

    ———————————————————————
    UN chief: Palestine bid ‘understandable’
    Ban Ki-moon says he hopes for meaningful dialogue in the run-up to statehood bid.
    Ban Ki-moon, the United Nations secretary-general, has said that the Palestinian bid for recognition by the UN is understandable.

    As he prepares to open the 66th annual General Assembly on September 19, Ban told Al Jazeera that both sides must engage in dialogue, regardless of the outcome of the vote.

    Al Jazeera’s Kristen Saloomey spoke with Ban in New York City.
    link to english.aljazeera.net
    —————————
    Arab states ‘to back Palestine statehood bid’
    Arab countries to push for a fully fledged Palestinian state at the United Nations next week, Qatari PM says.
    link to english.aljazeera.net

    ——————————————-
    Israel abandoned

    link to english.aljazeera.net
    Thanks to Netanyahu’s arrogance and impunity, without an immediate change of course Israel is headed for disaster.
    MJ Rosenberg
    “Israel is in big trouble and it needs allies who will help it prevail over this sea of misfortunes. It doesn’t have those allies. The lobby cares not about Israel but about intimidating Congress to do its will and paying the mortgage on its eight story building overlooking the Capitol. Members of Congress just want the money to keep rolling in. And Obama shrinks at the very thought of offending some key donors.

    Accordingly, there is no one who is telling Israel, from a position of strength, that it needs to end the occupation.”

    • hophmi
      September 15, 2011, 11:58 am

      I think Mossad has it right, which is why it’s a dumb idea unless you think the UNGA has actual power.

      • lysias
        September 15, 2011, 12:06 pm

        If the vote will be meaningless, I guess that means it shouldn’t bother you, or Israel.

      • hophmi
        September 15, 2011, 12:18 pm

        It doesn’t bother me much. As Massad says, the Palestinians already have access to international legal institutions. The Security Council is not going to set up an ad-hoc Israel tribunal. The United States is not going to allow Israeli soldiers to be prosecuted, because they know it would set a precedent for American soldiers to be prosecuted. And Israel stands to benefit.

        The Palestinians mistake is to believe sentiment for them at the UN is more than skin-deep. In reality, the UN cannot really help the Palestinians.

        Israel is not exactly of one mind on this issue. Reut, a centre-left organization, actually views the move positively. Many Zionists simply see anything the UN does as hostile. The right opposes it for obvious reasons; they’re against a two-state solution. The centre opposes it because they don’t know what it means. The left-wing Zionists are split; some like the idea, some think it’s a bad idea for everyone involved and will make the two-state solution harder to achieve. To the extent that center and left Zionists can be made to see it as a positive step that helps the parties better define where they stand and helps bring them back to the table, they will be supportive. Right now, they don’t see it that way.

      • Hostage
        September 16, 2011, 2:30 am

        It doesn’t bother me much. As Massad says, the Palestinians already have access to international legal institutions.

        They don’t have access to the International Criminal Court and you know that. Becoming a state party to the Rome Statute will allow them to do an end-run on the Security Council. The only way the US could block prosecutions there, is if all of the P5 + four other members of the Security Council agree. The odds of that happening are vanishingly slim.

    • lysias
      September 15, 2011, 12:08 pm

      This would render Israel’s international relations more difficult, but how would this ultimately weaken an Israel that the US would shield completely from such effects as it has always done?

      How long will the U.S. have the clout to shield Israel? Hasn’t it already lost that clout?

    • seafoid
      September 15, 2011, 5:18 pm

      ‘What worries the Israelis most is that, were Palestine to become a member state, it would be able to legally challenge Israel.”

      And sue the ass off Israel.
      Israel can’t afford reparations. So it’s on with the cruelty in the hope that it can all be swept under the carpet.

  12. lysias
    September 15, 2011, 11:55 am

    “Next Friday” meaning “Friday of next week”, i.e., a week after tomorrow.

  13. DBG
    September 15, 2011, 12:14 pm

    As long as their new status @ the UN leads to negotiations, I don’t have a problem with it.

  14. piotr
    September 15, 2011, 3:30 pm

    I guess the Palestinians exercise one lever that they have, namely, make USA look silly. I think one should inspect stupidity of talking points developed by Israeli think tanks and repeated, with remarkable lack of enthusiasm, by USA.

    For starters, going to UN is “unilateral”. Consider that. Searching for support of 140+ countries is “unilateral”. Does prefix “uni-” stand for “more than 100″?

    But of course, Israel has a chance to look super-silly. And petty, vengeful and outright dangerous if the government will proceed with assorted threats made recently. Or plainly silly if they will not. I hope that the resulting bruahahah will focus attention to how Israel occupies herself when it engages in occupation.

    Many defenders of Israel stress that in sheer cruelty of atrocities Israel is not in the premier league. But no one can match systematic and scientific approach to pointless and stupid harassment that Israel exhibits.

    As one Israeli commentator observed, “world is about to make a grave mistake”.

  15. dbroncos
    September 15, 2011, 9:42 pm

    This veto is different. Unlike recent US vetoes This one wont be cast to protect Israel from sanction or censure related to specific episodes of violence against the peoples of Palestine or Lebanon. This time, the Palestinians are petitioning for liberation and the US will be acting alone to deny it. Result: Israel’s critics will have more confidence to make their case, Israel’s apologists will become more absurd and desperate, and Uncle Sam will be more naked and laughable then ever.

    • DICKERSON3870
      September 15, 2011, 11:39 pm

      IN THE MATTER OF THE PALESTINIAN BID FOR FULL MEMBERSHIP IN THE UNITED NATIONS, THE U.S. MIGHT JUST BE HOIST BY ITS OWN RESOLUTION 377 PETARD, SO TO SPEAK.

      “For tis the sport to have the enginer Hoist with his owne petar” ~ Shakespeare, Hamlet, Act III, Scene iv

      PETARD – link to en.wikipedia.org

      IN 1950, THE U.S. MUSCLED RESOLUTION 377 A THROUGH THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY IN ORDER TO BYPASS THE SOVIET VETO IN THE SECURITY COUNCIL, AND GET UN TROOPS INVOLVED IN THE KOREAN CONFLICT.

      FROM WIKIPEDIA:

      United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) resolution 377 A,[1] the “Uniting for Peace” resolution, states that in any cases where the Security Council, because of a lack of unanimity amongst its five permanent members, fails to act as required to maintain international peace and security, the General Assembly shall consider the matter immediately and may issue any recommendations it deems necessary in order to restore international peace and security. If not in session at the time the General Assembly may meet using the mechanism of the emergency special session.
      The Uniting for Peace resolution—also known as the “Acheson Plan”—was adopted 3 November 1950, after fourteen days of Assembly discussions, by a vote of 52 to 5 (Czechoslovakia, Poland, Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic, Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, Byelorussian Soviet Socialist Republic), with 2 abstentions (India and Argentina).[2]
      In it, the General Assembly:
      “Reaffirming the importance of the exercise by the Security Council of its primary responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security, and the duty of the permanent members to seek unanimity and to exercise restraint in the use of the veto,” …
      “Recognizing in particular that such failure does not deprive the General Assembly of its rights or relieve it of its responsibilities under the Charter in regard to the maintenance of international peace and security,” …
      “Resolves that if the Security Council, because of lack of unanimity of the permanent members, fails to exercise its primary responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security in any case where there appears to be a threat to the peace, breach of the peace, or act of aggression, the General Assembly shall consider the matter immediately with a view to making appropriate recommendations to Members for collective measures, including in the case of a breach of the peace or act of aggression the use of armed force when necessary, to maintain or restore international peace and security.”

      To facilitate prompt action by the General Assembly in the case of a dead-locked Security Council, the resolution created the mechanism of the “emergency special session”…
      The Uniting for Peace resolution was initiated by the United States,[7] and submitted by the “Joint Seven-Powers”[8] in October 1950, as a means of circumventing further Soviet vetoes during the course of the Korean War (25 June 1950 – 27 July 1953). It was adopted by 52 votes to 5,[9] with 2 abstentions.[10]…

      SOURCE – link to en.wikipedia.org
      ALSO SEE – link to pcusa.org

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