Monday, September 19, 2011

Opening a Dangerous Door

This week, Palestine will be seeking official recognition from the United Nations as a state. On both sides of the debate, passions run hot. On the Left, we have people screaming about how Israel has oppressed the Palestinians, stolen their land, and committed all sorts of war crimes against them. On the Right, we have people screaming about Israel being attacked repeatedly by Palestinian terrorists with no regard for peace whatsoever.

Let me say for the sake of absolute clarity that I stand with Israel. For some, that will disqualify and discredit everything else I will say in this blog piece. For others, I will be speaking the gospel truth. Regardless of which side of the debate you're on, I ask for your indulgence as I express my thoughts on Palestinian statehood.

On the surface, it sounds like a good idea. Give the Palestinians (who have had as rough a go of it in some cases as Israel has as far as acceptance by other countries) a place to call their own, and let them stand or fall on their merits. Not as bad as it sounds, is it? For any Palestinian who wants statehood for the sake of finally having a country to call home, I say we roll out the welcome mat and allow them to join the UN as a state.

Where things get messy is when you consider other Palestinians who have ulterior motives. Let's not forget Palestinian terrorists have been launching missiles into Israel and then hiding behind women and children as human shields. These are not the types of people we would want as neighbors, right? Yet, these are a sizable portion of Israel's neighbors right now. Giving this group of Palestinians statehood is legitimizing their activities while giving them a base of operations by which to attack Israel and its allies.

So, which Palestine is pushing for statehood from the UN? We don't know. What we do know is the UN's long history of being anti-Israel, as well as the number of UN countries who would relish yet another ally in their rhetorical (and, in some cases, actual) battle against Israel. The United States has typically had Israel's back, but in recent years it's becoming more evident we're moving in a new direction, one that would leave Israel all but friendless in the world.

Because there is so much uncertainty on the part of the Palestinians, I cannot in good conscience say Palestinian statehood is a step in the right direction. It may be someday, but only once the Palestinians who want statehood for the sake of identity and not terrorism stand up and take control of their situation. As it stands, I just don't see it yet, and time is running short.

Given the Obama Administration's worldview, I feel their support of a Palestinian state being created is all but certain. They may not be able to say it in full yet, but their actions betray their true feelings on the matter. I wish I could say the Administration has given careful consideration to the implications of what I believe they are about to do, but I can't. Their support of the "Arab Spring" where more radical elements of Islam have overrun radical, yet manageable, leaders leaves me with little hope, but a full knowledge change is inevitable.

If Palestinian statehood is recognized, it's a door that can't be closed without a lot of effort and courage. With so many questions as to the heart of those pushing for statehood, I'm not sure we should be in a rush to open the door just yet.

Yet, America's hand is on the doorknob and just about ready to turn.

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