The Palestinian Issue – The Crux of the Arab-Israeli Conflict?

Straight From The Jerusalem Cloakroom #205, August 10, 2007

US policy-makers have contended that the establishment of a Palestinian State would resolve the Palestinian issue, which is – supposedly – the crux of the Arab-Israeli conflict.  Really?


1.  The 1948/9 War was conducted, by the Arab countries at the expense of Palestinian aspirations, in order to occupy the strategic sliver along the Mediterranean.  Egypt conquered the Gaza Strip, prohibiting Palestinian national activities, expelling Palestinian leadership. Iraq occupied Samaria, transferring it to Jordan, which occupied Judea, annexing both Judea & Samaria to the Hashemite Kingdom, and coining the term “West Bank.” Syria occupied and annexed the Hama area in the Golan Heights. The Arab League outlawed a provisional Palestinian government.


2.  The 1956 (Sinai) War was triggered by Egyptian-sponsored Palestinian terrorism (intended to assert Egyptian control of the Negev), by the Egyptian-French-British conflict over the Suez Canal and by Egyptian support of anti-French elements in North Africa.


3.  The 1967 (Six Day) War erupted in response to Egypt’s blockade of Israel’s southern (oil and commerce) waterway, Egypt’s violation of the Sinai demilitarization, the Egypt-Syria-Jordan Military Pact, aimed at Israel’s destruction, Syrian shelling of Israeli communities below the Golan Heights and Jordanian shelling of Jerusalem.

Israel’s 1967 control of Gaza ended a nightly curfew in Gaza, which was imposed by Egypt, in order to prevent Palestinian national activity.


4.  The 1969-70 War of attrition along the Suez Canal took place irrespective of the Palestinian issue.


5.  The 1973 War (the most recent Arab-Israel war) was initiated by Egypt, Syria, Jordan and Iraq, independent of the Palestinian issue.


6.  The 1982 PLO-Israel War in Lebanon (pre-empting a grand scale PLO assault on northern Israel) was not transformed into an Arab-Israeli war.  The Arab League delayed its emergency session for 2.5 months until the PLO was expelled from BeirutArabs shed much rhetoric - not blood - for Palestinians!


7.  The 1987-1992 First Intifada was not transformed into an Arab-Israeli war. No Arab military-financial support; only rhetoric.


8.  The 1994-2007 Oslo-triggered Palestinian terrorism has not been transformed into an Arab-Israeli war. US and W. Europe financial aid to the PA has exceeded Arab aid!


9.  The Arab-Israeli conflict was not triggered by the Palestinian issue.  The Palestinian issue has not been the “crown Jewel” of the Arabs.  A Palestinian State would undermine vital US interests: exacerbating global terrorism, dooming the Hashemite and Persian Gulf moderate regimes, promoting radical regimes, providing a Mediterranean platform to Iran, Russia and China and intensifying oppression of Palestinian Christians.