(Western conventional wisdom vs. Middle East reality)
Ambassador (ret.) Yoram Ettinger, “Second Thought: a US-Israel Initiative”
Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, reiterates his commitment to the establishment of a Palestinian state west of the Jordan River.
*According to Western conventional wisdom, the establishment of a Palestinian state west of the Jordan River would promote the cause of peace, stabilize the Middle East and advance Western interests.
*However – just like its policy toward Iran’s Ayatollahs – Western conventional wisdom overlooks the rogue intra-Arab Palestinian track record in Egypt, Syria, Jordan, Lebanon, and Kuwait, the despotic and corrupt nature of the Palestinian Authority and its abhorrent hate-education, and the impact of such a track record upon the rogue nature of the proposed Palestinian state. The West takes lightly the adverse impact of such a rogue state upon the Middle East, the survival of pro-Western Arab regimes (e.g., Jordan and the Arabian Peninsula entities) and vital Western interests.
*Contrary to Western conventional wisdom, Arabs are aware of the Palestinian track record – just as they are aware of the Ayatollahs’ track record – and are certain that the proposed Palestinian state would resemble the non-controllable, lawless and terroristic Syria, Iraq, Yemen and Libya much more than the moderate United Arab Emirates. Therefore, they have limited their support of Palestinians to a very positive talk, while conducting a lukewarm-to-negative walk.
*Contrary to Western conventional wisdom, Arabs have never flexed their military muscle (and hardly their financial and diplomatic muscle) on behalf of Palestinians. For example, no Arab-Israel war was ever launched on behalf of Palestinians, and no Palestinian war on Israel was ever assisted by Arab military.
*Contrary to Western conventional wisdom, Arabs have experienced the Palestinian trait of brutally-biting the (Arab) hand that feeds them: Egypt in the early 1950s, Syria in the 1960s, Jordan in 1968-1970, Lebanon in 1970-1982, Kuwait in 1990.
*Contrary to Western conventional wisdom, which considers the Palestinian issue as a primary/central concern in the Middle East, the Arab conduct reflects the conviction (notwithstanding the pro-Palestinian Arab rhetoric) that the Palestinian issue is not the crux of the Arab-Israeli conflict, neither a crown-jewel of Arab policy-making, nor a core cause of Middle East turbulence.
*Contrary to Western conventional wisdom and expectations, Egypt, Jordan, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Morocco and the Sudan did not precondition their peace treaties with Israel upon the establishment of a Palestinian state.
*Contrary to Western conventional wisdom, which assumes that the Palestinian issue is central to Arab policy-making, Israel-Arab peace accords have been based on primary Arab interests – such as the lethal threats of Iran’s Ayatollahs and the Muslim Brotherhood terrorism, the need to diversify their economies and Israel’s effective posture of deterrence – which do not include the Palestinian issue.
*Contrary to all Western peace proposals (other than the Abraham Accords), which failed due to their preoccupation with the Palestinian issue, the six successful Israel-Arab peace treaties bypassed the Palestinian issue, denied the Palestinians a veto power, and were preoccupied with primary Arab national security interests, not with the Palestinian issue.
*While Western conventional wisdom assumes that the Palestinians – as well as Iran’s Ayatollahs – are amenable to peaceful-coexistence, democracy and good faith negotiation, Arabs recognize Palestinians as a role-model of intra-Arab subversion, terrorism, betrayal and ingratitude.
*Contrary to Western conventional wisdom, Arabs accord much prominence to Palestinian collaboration with rogue, despotic anti-Western entities, such as Nazi Germany, the USSR and the Soviet Bloc, Iran’s Ayatollahs, Saddam Hussein, Asian, African, European and Latin American terror organizations, the Muslim Brotherhood terrorists, Cuba, Venezuela and North Korea.
*Western conventional wisdom expects Israel to embrace its worldview, and ignore Middle East reality, in general, and the Arab experience, in particular.
*Western conventional wisdom expects Israel to follow in the footsteps of the pro-Palestinian Arab talk, while taking lightly the Arab walk and Middle East reality.
*Western conventional wisdom urges Israel to ignore the 120-year-long anti-Jewish Palestinian terrorism, hate-education and mosque incitement, notwithstanding dramatic Israeli concessions (e.g., the 1993 Oslo Accord and the 2005 Gaza Disengagement, which were followed – as expected – by waves of terrorism and hate-education). While the West assumes that Palestinians are preoccupied with the size of the Jewish State, the Palestinian track record has documented that they are preoccupied with the uprooting of the Jewish State from “the abode of Islam.”
*Western conventional wisdom pressures Israel to sacrifice Middle East reality on the altar of wishful-thinking and oversimplification.
*Western policy in the Middle East – as reflected by Western policy toward Iran’s Ayatollahs and the Palestinian issue – has been systematically wrong. For example, providing a critical tailwind to the Ayatollahs’ rise to power in Iran; embracing Saddam Hussein until the 1990 invasion of Kuwait; heralding Arafat as a messenger of peace; toppling Gaddafi, which transformed Libya into a platform of anti-Western Islamic terrorism and civil wars; welcoming the volcanic eruption on the Arab Street as an “Arab Spring” and “Facebook Revolution,” etc..
*While Western governments accord Palestinian leaders Red Carpet receptions, Arabs welcome Palestinian leaders with Shabby Doormat receptions (if at all…).
*Will Western conventional wisdom adjust itself to the Middle East and Palestinian reality, or will it persist in its suspension of disbelief? Sustaining the Western suspension of disbelief will add fuel to the Middle East fire, intensify threats to pro-Western Arab regimes, and further undermine commercial and national security Western interests.