Israel, despite law of conquest based on unprovoked war, returned Sinai peninsula to Egypt and left buffer zone in southern Lebanon but allegedly denies Palestinian!
Commentary And Analysis . . . The jury may no longer be out on whether it was grave strategic mistake in 1948 when the rump state of Palestine defied the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) on partition of the Biblical Holy Land and rejected Israel as Jewish state. Therein lies oft-repeated claims that Israel stole Palestinian land after series of wars from 1948 to 1967 between the Jewish state and neighbouring Arabic speaking states.
Israel Took Land
It’s true that under the law of conquest, after unprovoked war, Israel took Sinai peninsula and the Gaza Strip from Egypt, east Jerusalem and the West Bank from Jordan, the snowy Golan Heights from Syria and created buffer zone in southern Lebanon. Israel has since withdrawn from the buffer zone and the Gaza Strip. Egypt regained control of Sinai in return for recognising the Jewish state and suing for peace.
The question has been repeatedly raised on Egypt and other especially Arabic speaking states denying the Palestinian since 1948.
Briefly, nation-state being based on the rule of law, will support another nation-state. It’s about human rights, democracy, consent of the governed, legitimacy, sovereignty, national security, territorial integrity, and defensible borders under international law.
“Trouble makers” can be barred from entering.
If caught, they will be deported under international law to the airport or seaport or land border they came from and not necessarily deported where they hold citizenship.
If the airport, seaport or land border refuses their re-entry, they will be stranded at the airport, seaport or land border. This phenomenon has been explored in movies.
Ironically, unlike Arabic speaking nations, other countries especially in the West host considerable number of Palestinian.
Israel Bigger Since 1948
Israel now occupies 80 per cent of the Biblical Holy Land, the post-1948 Palestinian left with the remainder for 2nd rump state provided it recognises the Jewish state. In return, Israel can sponsor Palestine as full member of the United Nations. At present, based on 1948, Palestine has Observer Status in the UN General Assembly (UNGA). It has addressed the UNSC.
Israel retains control of the Golan Heights under international law on defensible borders. Borders, under international law, must be defensible. Otherwise, as seen in eastern Ukraine, the international community would be helpless. Ukraine must learn all about living with Russia, its giant next door neighbour. America, allegedly instigating Ukraine against Russia, was far away across two oceans, the Atlantic and Pacific. Ukraine cannot win the war and, in contradiction in terms, live with Russia.
Likewise, the 2nd rump state of Palestine can sue for peace with Israel or risk consequences. The IDF (Israeli Defense Forces), being killing machine if Israel was provoked, may not win the peace, but it won’t lose the war even if it doesn’t win every battle.
Partners For Peace
Israel keeps saying that it has no partners for peace in the Biblical Holy Land.
It’s true that after the last territorial election in 2005 (presidential)/2006 (legislative), the leaders in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank have not renewed the mandate.
There’s no democracy in Palestine. There’s no rule of law, no consent of the governed, no legitimacy and there has been loss of sovereignty. Small group in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, propped up by donations from few countries and taxes collected by Israel, wields absolute power in virtually republics of fear. There are no checks and balances, no transparency and no public accountability.
It’s the proverbial chicken and egg question before science discovered, not so long ago, that the egg came first.
It’s settled law that the sovereignty of a people must be restored before there can be legitimacy.
It’s the duty of the international community, under international law, to restore the sovereignty of a people.
It’s unlikely that we will ever see another coalition of the willing, as in Iraq in 2003, but this time in the Biblical Holy Land.
Israel has imposed military administration on the West Bank. The civilian administration was run by the Fatah dominated Palestine Authority (PA).
It’s not clear whether there are regular town council and village committee election in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. The latter has only 600K people. Excluding east Jerusalem, the West Bank has 2.7m people including 600K Jew in settlements. There are 200K Jew in east Jerusalem.
War In Gaza
The IDF, engaging in war in the Gaza Strip since 7 October, would probably not leave the territory again as in 2005. The IDF may maintain some sort of security presence without imposing military administration — critics call it occupation — as in the West Bank.
Saturday 7 October was the day that Hamas militants bulldozed through the double security border fencing and buffer zone around the Gaza Strip. They attacked the international music festival in the desert in southern Israel. An estimated 1,200 Israeli — two thirds being IDF regulars — and others were killed and 250 people from various countries taken hostage. Some 50 hostages, based on media reports, have since been released in exchange for 150 Palestinian held in Israel.
The new estimate sees 10K Palestinian in Israeli jail, up from 8K on 7 October. The number of Palestinian in Israeli jail reportedly has never dropped below 5K. Most of them may be political prisoners who have spent long years in jail probably unsupervised by the Supreme Court of Israel.
The government, albeit on paper, can do whatever it wants unless restrained by the court.
Struggle For Peace
The onus lies on Israel and Palestinian leaders. They can sue for peace in the Biblical Holy Land based on solution/s which will work on the ground.
It isn’t rocket science that dismantling Israel as Jewish state, for Old Free Palestine from the Mediterranean Sea to the Jordan River, will never be considered by the UNSC. The UNSC can’t be seen as going against itself and international law on 1948.
Again, it’s settled law that Israel based even on “proof” will not allow the return of Arabic speakers — probably all Muslim — who fled the Biblical Holy Land in 1948. If any claimant has ancestors buried in Israel, he or she can take up right of return in the Supreme Court of Israel.
It’s in north African and Middle Eastern history that Arabic speakers — Jew, Christian and Muslim — entered the Biblical Holy Land during the British Trans Jordan Palestine Mandate. The Supreme Court of Israel and UNSC may point at this history. It can declare that there’s no proof in law that the claimants for the right of return originated from Old Free Palestine. The UNSC can seek Advisory Opinion from the ICJ (International Court of Justice) at the Hague, Netherlands, on Israel’s law on right of return.
In law, Article 8 in Malaysia, there can be no discrimination save as provided by law, and if so there must be sunset clause with expiry date. In the rule of law, no one was above the law, all are equal before the law, and again, there can be no discrimination. Also, discretion isn’t law, and ceases existence if abuse of power can be proven. — NMH
Longtime Borneo watcher Joe Fernandez has been writing for many years on both sides of the Southeast Asia Sea. He should not be mistaken for a namesake formerly with the Daily Express in Kota Kinabalu. JF keeps a Blog under FernzTheGreat on the nature of human relationships.