Sunday, August 28, 2016

Palestinian Nationalism

Michael Lumish

{Also published at the Elder of Ziyon and Jews Down Under.}

PalflagAlmost everyone recognizes the "Palestinians" as a nation, but the main question is whether or not they will ever create a state?

The general idea among most westerners is that peace can only be achieved via the two-state solution (TSS). There are prominent voices that disagree, such as Caroline Glick and Martin Sherman, both of the Jerusalem Post - Sherman, it should be noted, is also a prominent contributor to Jews Down Under - but the general consensus among western governments, including, of course, the Obama Administration, is that the only viable solution is the creation of a Palestinian-Arab state to represent the "Palestinian" nation.

In a recent piece for the Gatestone Institute, Louis René Beres discusses the fact that Israel will only accept a Palestinian-Arab state on its borders if it is demilitarized. Anyone who thinks that such an Israeli requirement is unreasonable can simply go beat sand because there is no way that the Jews of the Middle East are going to live under the threat of a Palestinian-Arab army on their border.

However, he also points out that even if such a provision were agreed to by Abbas and his people it would never hold up. As an Emeritus Professor of International Law at Purdue University, he probably knows what he's talking about. The take-away is that under international law - whatever that is, exactly - there are all sorts of means and methods by which the Palestinian-Arabs could bypass anti-militarization provisions.

When, and if, the Palestinian-Arabs ever agree to a state for themselves it will not be demilitarized.

On the contrary, its primary function will be that of a big Arab club against the Jewish minority in the Middle East.

This being the case, it raises the question of why Jewish people are under any ethical or moral obligation to recognize "Palestinian" nationhood to begin with?

This is why more and more of us are putting the word "Palestinian" in quotation marks.

It is becoming increasingly difficult for Jewish people, and friends, to recognize an alleged nation that only came into existence within living memory for the specific purpose of undermining Jewish sovereignty on traditional Jewish land.

The "Palestinian" nation is distinct from the rest of the Arab world in only one significant way.

Its purpose is to kill Jews.

That's it and that is all.

Benedict Anderson, who was a highly regarded political scientist and historian at Cornell University (just recently deceased) suggested that nations are "imagined communities" i.e., social constructs.

If this is true - as in historically accurate - then there is no more obvious case than the Palestinian-Arabs.

The bottom line is that the Jewish people, anywhere in the world, are under no obligation to respect a people who came into existence "as a people" for the sole purpose of destroying the Jews.

In my view, this is what the Israeli government needs to tell the West in a direct and forthright manner.

Given Israeli intellectual clout, economic significance, and military strength, maybe it is time for Jerusalem to tell Washington D.C., Paris, and London to respect their Jewish neighbors and friends.

The truth is that because of Jewish talent, concentrated in Israel, we are developing friends throughout the rest of the world, including Africa and China and Japan (and the rest of south-east Asia) and even Russia and other countries.

"Palestinian Nationhood" is an Arafat legacy and an artificial construction from the long-dead Soviet regime.

Perhaps it's time to bury it.


  1. There is almost history or concept of Arab nationhood generally. There are no "Syrians", there are no "Iraqis, there are no "Libyans", "Yemenis", "Jordanians".

    These are more or less made up things, either in the wake of post colonial anarchy, or, as a result of their own internecine blood lust. At best, the Arab nations which have anything like a coherent sense of nationhood are those made up of sectarian monocultures, ethnic monocultures or they are imposed fascist monarchies from one family or clan that doesn't give a damn. Perhaps, PERHAPS one could make a case for Egypt or Algeria but they've already tried abandon their own nationhood by attempting to create pan Arabism (and failing). So to single out the 'palestinians' is absurd.

  2. Mike,
    My understanding of international law, and I am no expert, is that it consists of established norms of customs and treaties. So what is to prevent demilitarization as condition of independence based on treaty? My guess is the "Independence" part, i.e., independent states are entitled to a right of self-defense, therefore the best we could hope for is what Rabin was talking about, namely something less than a state, i.e., an autonomous region.
    I use "Palestinian" in quotes for a number of reasons including the big one you mentioned. Another one is that the genesis of the term historically has zip to do with an Arab nation, tribe, or clan, and is used to bring an unquestionable authenticity and indigenous status to the Arabs, when in fact its use or usurpation by the Arabs actually reveals the opposite to be the case.

  3. International law has a purpose, but is not the panacea that globalists propose.

    As for Arab nationalism, reference is made to Bernard Lewis's 1976 essay, "The Return of Islam," three years before Khomeini. When push comes to shove, it comes back to the common Muslim identity as a motivating and unifying factor in beliefs and actions.

    Those who advocate the Palestinian cause should at least provide a definition of exactly what a Palestinian is, as it's obvious what a Palestinian is not.

  4. Recognising "Palestine " and "Palestinians" was actually a huge strategic mistake given the "Palestinian " proclivity to take what they have and move on from there. There is no concept of compromise in the notion.
    An attempt to meet their demands halfway is seen as weakness. It makes things worse because they and their Western supporters delude themselves in to thinking that with one more push the state will collapse.
    I haven't used the word "Palestine "or "Palestinians " without scare quotes for many years.
    Why should I recognize "Palestine " when very clearly "Palestinians " do not.

  5. On my Facebook page I put up a post that points out that up until the formation of Israel, when someone used the term "Palestinians" they meant Jews.

  6. The best explanation of the real problem

    1. Now, this is an interesting idea.

      I always liked Mordechai Kedar.

    2. The emirates of course will be at perennial war with one another.

    3. geoffff, you bet.

      They've been feuding for centuries. As long as honor is involved, nothing is going to put an end to that.

  7. Until 1950 the Jerusalem Post was the "Palestine Post ".
    The " Palestine Symphony Orchestra " was formed in 1923 and made up entirely of Jews.

  8. Hey you guys,

    as far as International law goes, I have no faith in it because it often cannot be administratored and because it's almost entirely political.