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Old 11-13-2012, 09:54 PM  
Direckshun Direckshun is offline
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November 29: The UN will vote to recognize Palestine as a "state."

Currently, Palestine is a non-member observer entity in the UN.

The Palestinians have pressed forth to introduce a measure to upgrade them in the UN's eyes to a non-member observer state.

While being upgraded from non-member observer entity to non-member observer state doesn't sound like much, it does provide Palestine an opportunity to actually contribute and perform within the UN.

Most damning, of course, is that it would tell Israel and the United States that their treatment of Palestine is tantamount to suppression of what should be a legitimate, free country. An act bordering on apartheid, which the ICC (run by the UN, which could soon include Palestine) as "inhuman acts committed for the purpose of establishing and maintaining domination by one racial group of persons over any other racial group of persons and systematically oppressing them." I don't regard that as a possibility.

But essentially, this has the ability to be a game changer in favor of two-state negotiations in favor of the Palestinian people, as opposed to the Likud/GOP alliance, which does not want any such two-state solution. All the facts on the ground right now favor Israel, as they expand their land, take more of the Palestinian land, and pretend with each passing year that the '67 borders with agreed-upon land swaps is some crime against Israel's humanity.

The only real arrow in Palestine's quiver is international opinion. And this particular vote in the UN cannot be unilaterally shot down by the United States, so it is sure to be voted on, and sure to be passed by roughly 75% of the UN.

As such, the United States and Israel are, understandably, freaking the **** out. The US is threatening to withdraw funding for much of the UN. Israel is threatening to discard the Oslo Accord, which allowed Palestine self-governance. This could potentially mean apartheid in everything but name.

So things are going to get really, really fascinating.

I ultimately think that Israel and the US' bark is worse than their bite. Obama prides himself on effective diplomacy which cannot happen if he's going to war with the UN. Israel's Netanyahu is far less concerned with international opinion, but doesn't want Israel to end up on the wrong side of the distinction between internationally frowned-upon to internationally despised. Though he may be heading that way anyway.

http://www.businessweek.com/news/201...rver-state-bid

Palestinians Defy Obama With UN ‘Observer State’ Bid
By Flavia Krause-Jackson
on November 08, 2012

Palestinians defied newly re-elected U.S. President Barack Obama by pushing ahead with a second statehood bid at the United Nations that will raise their profile at the world body and highlight the stagnation of the Mideast peace process.

The Palestinian Authority yesterday circulated a resolution to put the Palestine Liberation Organization on a par with the Holy See, according to a draft that will be put to a vote in the UN’s 193-member General Assembly, where the initiative has enough support to pass and the U.S. lacks veto power.

The latest steps by the Palestinians present Obama with his first foreign-policy challenge three days after he won a second term. A year ago, the Palestinians abandoned an attempt to be recognized as a full member state through the Security Council after Obama indicated the U.S. would use its veto there.

The PLO, which currently is an observer “entity,” is seeking a nonmember “observer state status,” according to the draft obtained by Bloomberg News.

By resurrecting the statehood issue in the General Assembly, the Palestinian leadership is trying to force the White House to pay attention to a moribund Palestinian-Israeli peace process that has dropped off the list of foreign-policy priorities for Obama.

In doing so, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas is jeopardizing relations with Obama, as well as about $500 million in U.S. economic and security aid that members of Congress have threatened to cut if Palestinians proceed at the UN.

Issue Fades

The Palestinians have seen their cause fall into relative obscurity internationally since formal peace talks with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government were frozen two years ago.

Peace talks stumbled over the issue of Jewish settlements in the West Bank, which Israel captured from Jordan in the 1967 Six-Day War. Abbas said he wouldn’t return to negotiations unless Israel froze all settlement construction in the West Bank and east Jerusalem. Netanyahu has refused to renew a 10-month freeze on construction that expired in 2010.

Abbas will present the resolution in person in New York, according to a UN official speaking on condition of anonymity. A vote is expected to take place by the end of the month, the official said.

Still, the move isn’t without risks.

When the Palestinian Authority was accepted last year into the UN cultural agency UNESCO, best known for its designation of “world heritage” sites, the U.S. response was to cut off funding that provides almost a quarter of the agency’s budget.

The U.S. has said that American law would require similar cutoffs for any UN agency that grants the Palestinians the same status as member states.

International Criminal Court

The upgrade may open the door for Palestinians to join other UN agencies, including the International Criminal Court, where they could ask for Israel to be tried for war crimes.

“Israel’s main worry is the ICC,” Palestinian chief negotiator Saeb Erakat said in an Oct. 24 interview. “They don’t want me to have a sword on their neck.”

The initiative could also jeopardize international aid that accounts for about 14 percent of the Palestinians’ gross domestic product and invite retaliatory measures from Israel.

As for the U.S., the administration’s position hasn’t wavered. The U.S. ambassador to the UN, Susan Rice, has said repeatedly that “unilateral actions,” such as the upgrade of the Palestinians’ UN status, would only derail efforts to restart direct peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians.
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Old 11-19-2012, 08:58 PM   #271
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Originally Posted by Direckshun View Post
It's a sticky, thorny issue that people get unnecessarily emotional about.

I get it. Israel is so culturally significant to this country, and Palestine is so prominent in a culture that seems to fundamentally reject our culture. The natural inclination for us Americans is to auto-halo Israel, and auto-devil-horn Palestine. That's natural. Add into that the Likud's super-tight bond with the American conservative movement, and it's not hard to see how the board interprets the events in Israel the way it does.

It's understandable. But that doesn't make it correct. So I take pains to express the nuance here: that Israel is not blameless, that the Palestinians are not blameless. That Hamas has nobody's best interests in mind but their own, as they have no problem killing Palestinians to further their interests. That the Likud wants, above all, a Greater Israel. That the Israelis are scared for their safety and the Palestinians are scared for their culture.

This is an escalation that happens when both sides play to the worst of their bases. And it's leading the Middle East on an irreversible path of deadly solutions instead of smart solutions.

And it leads to threads like these.

Thanks for the kinds words.
Why do you think Likud wants a Greater Israel? Why haven't they annexed the territories? Why did Sharon leave Gaza?
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Old 11-19-2012, 09:02 PM   #272
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What would good faith look like to you?
It would have looked like Fatah accepting the help of Israel and the West to crack down on militants in the West Bank and Gaza. It would look like the palestinian population not voting for Hamas over Fatah. It would look like an end to rocket attacks and other violence.
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Old 11-19-2012, 09:14 PM   #273
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Originally Posted by patteeu View Post
Arab states of the region who would rather use them instead of help them
there never has been and never will be "help" other than thousands of rockets...

..it's never been about helping ""them".....Amno nailed it on the first page.

it's not a coinkydink that this liitle parcel of land COMPLETELY surrounded by Islam is portrayed as a victim by Defleckshun...it's just self-aggrandizing propaganda.
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Old 11-19-2012, 10:42 PM   #274
Direckshun Direckshun is offline
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I think the problem is that you place equal blame on Israel and Hamas, when in reality the blame is much more balanced to the side of Hamas.
I don't know if that's true. I have no idea how you even measure the volume of blame.

There's plenty of blame to go around. Whoever has more is not important to me, as they both have tons.
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Old 11-19-2012, 10:44 PM   #275
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Originally Posted by mnchiefsguy View Post
They could stop lobbing rockets into Israel for starters...that has been going on almost non stop for how long now?
They've done that before. They'll probably do it again once a truce is negotiated in Egypt.

Hell, if that's all it takes...
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Old 11-19-2012, 10:47 PM   #276
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Originally Posted by patteeu View Post
Why do you think Likud wants a Greater Israel?
Because more land is awesome.

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Originally Posted by patteeu View Post
Why haven't they annexed the territories? Why did Sharon leave Gaza?
They're annexing territories now through settlements. Eventually they will swallow all of Palestine.

Israel doesn't have the political capital, globally, to overtake all of Palestine right now. The only thing holding back Israel's ambition is the complete dearth of international backing for it.
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Old 11-19-2012, 10:48 PM   #277
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Originally Posted by patteeu View Post
It would have looked like Fatah accepting the help of Israel and the West to crack down on militants in the West Bank and Gaza. It would look like the palestinian population not voting for Hamas over Fatah. It would look like an end to rocket attacks and other violence.
Of all of these things, the only thing that's possible is the last item on your list, since that's the only one that doesn't require time travel.

Hamas will likely clamp down on its militant factions following whatever truce both sides strike in Cairo.
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Old 11-19-2012, 11:21 PM   #278
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I'd just like to take a moment to say that Gaza is an area that is somewhat shut off from the world through an Israeli blockade. It's not open. You have 1.5 million people living in pretty crunched room, suffering widespread malnutritian, and despite the wealth of a select few, almost everybody is in poverty and relies on humanitarian aid for survival.

The Palestinian people voted in Hamas democratically, largely at the time because Hamas provided them by far the most humanitarian aid domestically. But Israel then did it's best United States impression: once you give some brown people you've occupied the right to vote, those people will usually vote in folks who hate you -- surprise! So Israel puts up a blockade to exert its disapproval upon the Palestinian people. This incites an understandable feeling of hopelessness and utter fear in Palestinians, which futher entrenches groups like Hamas who have absolutely no shame in exacerbating fear to keep themselves in power, even if it means sacrificing the lives of lowly foot soldiers or civilians.

That's the basic law of humanity -- if you close people up, make them feel hopeless, then they will gravitate towards extreme solutions which generally take the form of assholes like Hamas.

Now, Hamas can be dealt with. They are run by highly intelligent people with Ph.Ds in stuff like economics. They've negotiated ceasefires and often held up their end of the deal, though they sometimes can't control a few of their militant factions. And these were the people Palestinians declared represented them.

If there is to be hope, you must deal with Hamas. Do your best. Take the Obama route, if you must, and offer compromised, fair deals, partially built on ideas your opponents have offered. When your opponent refuses over and over again to take them, they will get slaughtered in elections and replaced by people that will, empowering your position further.
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Old 11-19-2012, 11:25 PM   #279
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Originally Posted by Direckshun View Post
Because more land is awesome.



They're annexing territories now through settlements. Eventually they will swallow all of Palestine.

Israel doesn't have the political capital, globally, to overtake all of Palestine right now. The only thing holding back Israel's ambition is the complete dearth of international backing for it.
that's why settlement expansion is such a big deal to the palestinians...

that's the reason there are no negotiations taking place...
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Old 11-19-2012, 11:30 PM   #280
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Originally Posted by Direckshun View Post
I'd just like to take a moment to say that Gaza is an area that is somewhat shut off from the world through an Israeli blockade. It's not open. You have 1.5 million people living in pretty crunched room, suffering widespread malnutritian, and despite the wealth of a select few, almost everybody is in poverty and relies on humanitarian aid for survival.

The Palestinian people voted in Hamas democratically, largely at the time because Hamas provided them by far the most humanitarian aid domestically. But Israel then did it's best United States impression: once you give some brown people you've occupied the right to vote, those people will usually vote in folks who hate you -- surprise! So Israel puts up a blockade to exert its disapproval upon the Palestinian people. This incites an understandable feeling of hopelessness and utter fear in Palestinians, which futher entrenches groups like Hamas who have absolutely no shame in exacerbating fear to keep themselves in power, even if it means sacrificing the lives of lowly foot soldiers or civilians.

That's the basic law of humanity -- if you close people up, make them feel hopeless, then they will gravitate towards extreme solutions which generally take the form of assholes like Hamas.

Now, Hamas can be dealt with. They are run by highly intelligent people with Ph.Ds in stuff like economics. They've negotiated ceasefires and often held up their end of the deal, though they sometimes can't control a few of their militant factions. And these were the people Palestinians declared represented them.

If there is to be hope, you must deal with Hamas. Do your best. Take the Obama route, if you must, and offer compromised, fair deals, partially built on ideas your opponents have offered. When your opponent refuses over and over again to take them, they will get slaughtered in elections and replaced by people that will, empowering your position further.
i hadn't thought of defeating hamas in this way, it sounds like a really good idea though...

of course it has zero chance of happening as long as likud is in power...

still, it seems liike the best approach to getting rid of hamas that i've ever heard of...
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Old 11-20-2012, 12:23 AM   #281
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Originally Posted by Direckshun View Post
I'd just like to take a moment to say that Gaza is an area that is somewhat shut off from the world through an Israeli blockade. It's not open. You have 1.5 million people living in pretty crunched room, suffering widespread malnutritian, and despite the wealth of a select few, almost everybody is in poverty and relies on humanitarian aid for survival.

The Palestinian people voted in Hamas democratically, largely at the time because Hamas provided them by far the most humanitarian aid domestically. But Israel then did it's best United States impression: once you give some brown people you've occupied the right to vote, those people will usually vote in folks who hate you -- surprise! So Israel puts up a blockade to exert its disapproval upon the Palestinian people. This incites an understandable feeling of hopelessness and utter fear in Palestinians, which futher entrenches groups like Hamas who have absolutely no shame in exacerbating fear to keep themselves in power, even if it means sacrificing the lives of lowly foot soldiers or civilians.

That's the basic law of humanity -- if you close people up, make them feel hopeless, then they will gravitate towards extreme solutions which generally take the form of assholes like Hamas.

Now, Hamas can be dealt with. They are run by highly intelligent people with Ph.Ds in stuff like economics. They've negotiated ceasefires and often held up their end of the deal, though they sometimes can't control a few of their militant factions. And these were the people Palestinians declared represented them.

If there is to be hope, you must deal with Hamas. Do your best. Take the Obama route, if you must, and offer compromised, fair deals, partially built on ideas your opponents have offered. When your opponent refuses over and over again to take them, they will get slaughtered in elections and replaced by people that will, empowering your position further.
Hamas does not even try to control their militant factions. They shrug their shoulders and claim they have no control. If Hamas truly wanted to control these factions, they could, but they intentionally turn a blind eye to it.

You want to know why people think you are such a Hamas supporter? Posts like this, where you try to make Hamas look like a reasonable centrist group that has the best interest of its people at heart, instead of telling the truth, which is that Hamas has no interest in being reasonable, and they have no love for their fellow Palestinians, considering how easily they use them as human shields.
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Old 11-20-2012, 12:25 AM   #282
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i hadn't thought of defeating hamas in this way, it sounds like a really good idea though...

of course it has zero chance of happening as long as likud is in power...

still, it seems liike the best approach to getting rid of hamas that i've ever heard of...
Except that the opponent has refused peace over and over again, and I doubt Hamas will be losing any elections anytime soon.

If the Palestinian people want peace, they need to start showing it at the ballot box.
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Old 11-20-2012, 02:34 AM   #283
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Originally Posted by mnchiefsguy View Post
You want to know why people think you are such a Hamas supporter? Posts like this, where you try to make Hamas look like a reasonable centrist group that has the best interest of its people at heart, instead of telling the truth, which is that Hamas has no interest in being reasonable, and they have no love for their fellow Palestinians, considering how easily they use them as human shields.
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Hamas has nobody's best interests in mind but their own, as they have no problem killing Palestinians to further their interests.
Honestly, mnchiefsguy, if you're not even going to read my posts, I'm having trouble even mustering up the strength to reply.

Screw your head back on.
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Old 11-20-2012, 05:02 AM   #284
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Except that the opponent has refused peace over and over again, and I doubt Hamas will be losing any elections anytime soon.

If the Palestinian people want peace, they need to start showing it at the ballot box.
what is being suggested is a way to win at the ballot box and displace hamas...

if they refuse reasonable concrete offers to settle the dispute over and over again and continue to rely on armed "resistance", the citizens of gaza will vote them out soon enough...

we haven't seen hamas "refuse peace" that was reasonable and allowed the creation of a palestinian state with control over it's own resources and resolved issues like sharing jerusalem and freezing further israeli settlements on the west bank...

to refuse such a deal would cause hamas to lose the support of the ordinary gazan pretty quickly...

contrary to popular belief, most palestinians want to live in peace in a free state, without israeli occupation and without ruthless extremists running their lives...

if israel offers such a deal, it could lead to hamas losing power, which is what everybody except hamas wants, isn't it?
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Old 11-20-2012, 06:32 AM   #285
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if israel offers such a deal, it could lead to hamas losing power, which is what everybody except hamas wants, isn't it?
One hopes.

The Likud is primarily the province of Greater Israel philosophy, however.

I do believe they can be moved from that position, as I believe Hamas can as well.
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