A New Land-for-Peace Proposal
(IsraelNN.com) Since the first "land for peace" deal with Egypt in UN Resolution 242, the diplomatic goal of most peace proposals has included the concept of "land for peace." The idea behind the concept of "land for peace" is that Israel "took" land from Egypt, which, in exchange for getting that land "back", granted Israel peace.
Now every agreement with any Arab group has always included the idea of "land for peace." Why? Because the Arabs know that Israel has very little land to give. So if they keep insisting that we give them a pay off of land, not only will we have destroyed any defensive position we may now hold, we will also shrink measurably. This is a very good strategy for the Arabs and a very dangerous one for us.
Nonetheless, every Israeli government, and every American and European Union official, seems determined to accept the idea that peace must be predicated upon giving up land.
I don't think much will change with the new Obama administration. I expect that he is wedded to the idea of "land for peace" just like all of his predecessors. I know that, even before she has opened her mouth, the new Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will be studying up on Resolution z242, and expecting the same "miracle" between Israel and the "Palestinians."
I even expect that, for all his promises to the contrary, and all his speechmaking, and all his made-for-TV sound bites, the potentially former-future Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu will sit down with a dower face and a strong jaw on live TV and concede Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria and the Golan Heights to our enemies.
I am not a prophet, but I have seen the past; and the past is palpably present in the future of Israel and in both political landscapes - in Israel and in the US. Perhaps we can even read the future in yesterday's newspapers as the old actors return to the stage - Clinton, Bibi, Scowcroft. What is next? Will Yasser Arafat rise from the grave? It all seems way too familiar.
A few things are different, however. Now, we have negotiated at Oslo and gotten only an intifada in return. Ariel Sharon sold his soul for a false peace and now has only the sad existence of life support. We have given up Gaza and find rockets raining down on our heads, Hamas running rampant, formally employed and prosperous Israelis living in destitution in cramped caravans, and a government so corrupt that our lame-duck PM has to arrange his schedule around police interrogations.
Now, as we stand on the verge of a new election cycle in Israel and the dawning of a new administration in the US, it is time to suggest a new way to do things. This is why I am proposing a new "land for peace" initiative. Here's how it would work:
Whereas the idea of "land for peace" is a recognized diplomatic strategy for achieving accords between warring factions in the Middle East; and
Whereas there is a great and pressing need to achieve an end to the warfare between Israel and the people who refer to themselves as "Palestinians"; and
Whereas the belief that UN Resolution 242 provided a template for all future negotiations between Israel and her neighbors; and
Whereas UN Resolution 242 emphasizes "the inadmissibility of the acquisition of territory by war and the need to work for a just and lasting peace in which every State in the area can live in security"; and
Whereas the land of Israel was taken from the Jewish people by means of war by the Assyrian, Roman, Turkish, British and Arab peoples; and
Whereas any land that has been returned to Israel and inhabited has bloomed, prospered and grown; and
Whereas the Jewish people welcome those who come in friendship from every land, yet those from other lands do not welcome the Jews;
Therefore, we demand the complete withdrawal of all territorial rights from the Land of Israel (according to the borders that are now and always have been defined in every Bible in the world) by the following nations: Egypt, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Lebanon, Syria and Turkey.
In exchange for returning the land, Israel (and HaShem) will grant full peace to the region, as it has been promised in the Covenant of Abraham and reiterated in the Covenant of Jacob.
After all, if the countries of the world agree that the concept of land for peace works, then why not use it as it should be used? Why not give land back to those from whom it was taken and recognize that the Jewish people have a right to their ancestral land. After all, isn't the idea that ancestral land should be returned the underlying argument of "Palestinian" people?
Why don't we acknowledge that they are correct and insist upon the return of all land that was taken in war - i.e., our own land?
Why is "land for peace" always Israel giving land and the Arabs giving nothing (and especially not peace)? Why not a land-for-peace deal that gives Israel more and more land? After all, when Israel has more land, we get more peace. When Israel has less land, we get less peace. Therefore, any "land for peace" deal should reward Israel with more and more land.
This peace agreement is one that has already be ratified by the Highest Authority in existence, the Highest Court in the universe, and the Greatest Arbitrator of all. It is about time we give it a try. We have tried to make peace the UN's way, now lets try to make peace G-d's way.
Check out Michelle's blog at israeljewishnews.blogspot.com.