"The Palestinian people and their leadership will pass through very difficult times after the Palestinian approach to the United Nations through the Security Council,"
- Mahmoud Abbas, President of the Palestinian National Authority.
I'd like to preface this piece by making a general statement that I think that Palestine as a nation has the full right to Self-Determination. I would suggest that any people group wishing to form their own nation provided they do so in a peaceable manner, have a perfectly reasonable right to their Sovereignty.
Except Palestine is different.
Mahmoud Abbas is the current Chairman of the PLO (Palestine Liberation Organisation). The PLO itself was founded in 1964 when Syrian and Palestinian fedayeen basically called for a rematch of the 1948 Arab–Israeli War, basically in which the Arab states basically rejected Israels right to exist. The PLO itself was considered a Terrorist Organisation until 1991 by the UN.
Mahmoud Abbas as the President of the Palestinian National Authority is also leader of the political party which holds government, Fatah. Fatah has as it's stated goals:
Article 12: Complete liberation of Palestine, and eradication of Zionist economic, political, military and cultural existence.
Article 13: Establishing an independent democratic state with complete sovereignty on all Palestinian lands, and Jerusalem is its capital city, and protecting the citizens' legal and equal rights without any racial or religious discrimination.
I wonder if that's before or after the total eradication of Zionist existence though.
On the other side of the political divide in Palestine is Hamas. Hamas is a sort of offshoot of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood and was formed in 1987 during the First Intifada. Hamas is an openly violent organisation and frequently claims responsibility for terrorist attacks on Israel.
Hamas has within its charter:
On the Destruction of Israel:
"Israel will exist and will continue to exist until Islam will
obliterate it, just as it obliterated others before it." (Preamble)
Rejection of a Negotiated Peace Settlement:
"Peace initiatives, and so-called peaceful solutions and international conferences are in contradiction to the principles of the Islamic Resistance Movement... Those conferences are no more than a means to appoint the infidels as arbitrators in the lands of Islam... There is no solution for the Palestinian problem except by Jihad. Initiatives, proposals and international conferences are but a waste of time, an exercise in futility." (Article 13)
Taken together it means that both sides of the political divide in Palestine are committed to the eradication and destruction of the Israelli state if not also its people. Going back to my initial caveat that I think that people groups have a full right to Sovereignty provided they do so in a peaceable manner, I very much fail to see how granting Palestine recognition by the UN is going to make the process any more peaceful.
When both both sides of politics are ultimately committed to the wholesale destruction of certain people, I really question why the world should even allow them to exist, let alone grant them international recognition.
I can see parallels with Sinn Féin and the IRA. History has more or less proven that Sinn Féin was more successful at the ballot box than they ever were with the Armalite.
I also think of the world's newest nation South Sudan. South Sudan was formed following some truly bloody fighting and hideous violence; after which a referendum was held for independence. Although the President Salva Kiir Mayardit was the former head of the Sudan People's Liberation Movement which in effect caused the bloodshed, in his innaurgual address as the new President he said:
"We have been maimed, enslaved and treated worse than a refugee in our own country. We will forgive but we will not forget."
That last remark that they will forgive is most noteworthy. I just don't think that there is room for forgiveness within Fatah or Hamas.
As much as I think Rick Perry (current Governor of Texas and hopeful Presidential Candidate for 2012) is a wignnut, I fear that he may be right:
"The Obama policy of moral equivalency, which gives equal standing to the grievances of Israelis and Palestinians, including the orchestrators of terrorism, is a dangerous insult."
Does the recognition of Palestine help to legitimise a government and parliament of terrorists? I think that the people of Palestine should be able to form their own Sovereign nation should they choose to do so, but I'd very much like to see it happen without the involvement of Fatah or Hamas.