Jay Sekulow

The problem with the Israeli-Palestinian negotiations is that the world has conceded to the Palestinians the exact result they desire, rather than requiring the result to emerge from bilateral negotiations with the Israelis. Whether there is to exist a two-state solution - and what the borders and qualities of that sovereign and independent state ought to be - should be precisely the question that remains to be answered. Instead, the international community has signaled to the Palestinians that they are entitled to a state no matter what.

This sense of entitlement predates the UN General Assembly's Resolution 181 in 1947, which recommended partitioning the area then known as Palestine into a Jewish state and an Arab state - a proposal that the Palestine Arab Higher Committee rejected in favor of war after Israel declared independence in May of 1948. Although Israel sustained punishing losses over the ensuing eight months of fighting, it managed to expand its territory and solidify its existence.

Since then, the Arab and Palestinian communities continue to operate under the belief that aggression and terrorism are costless strategies, and that if these tactics fail to achieve better results, they can simply seek the original terms later.

The latest attempt at this extortionist strategy is the Palestinians' plan to seek statehood next month at the UN via a unilateral declaration of independence. The plan is fraught with problems, beginning with the fact that the UN is only capable of admitting members to the organization, not creating states.

Incidentally, contrary to what some argue, it was not the UN that created the state of Israel in 1947; Resolution 181 was never accepted by the Arab side. Instead, it was the stable government that Israel established, the defined territory that it controlled, and its eventual acceptance as a state capable of self-governance and foreign relations that solidified its existence as a sovereign nation.

While the UN does not create states, it can admit members if the Security Council recommends doing so and two-thirds of the General Assembly approves. As a permanent member of the Security Council, the U.S. will likely veto any resolution to admit a Palestinian state as a UN member, meaning the declaration will have no practical effect even at the UN.

Nonetheless, the ploy is illustrative of the Palestinians' systematic failure over the years to take the hard steps truly necessary for independent statehood and peace.


Jay Sekulow

Jay Sekulow is one of the foremost legal advocates in the area of constitutional law and religious liberties. As Chief Counsel of the American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ), Jay Sekulow regularly appears before the United States Supreme Court, and is one of the most sought after advocates for religious liberty. Jay Sekulow is also a highly followed broadcaster and respected commentator.

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