Eretz Israel is our unforgettable historic homeland...The Jews who will it shall achieve their State...And whatever we attempt there for our own benefit will redound mightily and beneficially to the good of all mankind. (Theodor Herzl, DerJudenstaat, 1896)

We offer peace and amity to all the neighbouring states and their peoples, and invite them to cooperate with the independent Jewish nation for the common good of all. The State of Israel is ready to contribute its full share to the peaceful progress and development of the Middle East.
(From Proclamation of the State of Israel, 5 Iyar 5708; 14 May 1948)

With a liberal democratic political system operating under the rule of law, a flourishing market economy producing technological innovation to the benefit of the wider world, and a population as educated and cultured as anywhere in Europe or North America, Israel is a normal Western country with a right to be treated as such in the community of nations.... For the global jihad, Israel may be the first objective. But it will not be the last. (Friends of Israel Initiative)

Tuesday, 17 February 2015

David Singer Assails The EU's Egregious & Duplicitous West Bank Blunder

Here is the latest article by Sydney lawyer and international affairs analyst David Singer.  It is entitled "European Union Causes Peace Process and Quartet Meltdown".

Writes David Singer:

Revelations that the European Union (EU) has been acting illegally in funding and facilitating the construction of more than 400 unauthorised buildings in areas in the West Bank (Judea and Samaria) under exclusive Israeli control signals the end of:
* negotiations between Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organisation under the 1993 Oslo Accords and the 2003 Bush Roadmap and
* the role of the Quartet - America, Russia, the United Nations and the European Union - as mediator in those negotiations
The Daily Mail in exposing the EU’s bizarre behaviour reported on 6 February that: 
“Official EU documentation reveals that the building project is intended to ‘pave the way for development and more authority of the PA over Area C (the Israeli area)’, which some experts say is an attempt to unilaterally affect facts on the ground. Locally, the villages are known as the ‘EU Settlements’, and can be found in 17 locations around the West Bank. They proudly fly the EU flag, and display hundreds of EU stickers and signs. Some also bear the logos of Oxfam and other NGOs, which have assisted in the projects.” 
The EU through its spokesman, Shadi Othman, attempted to justify such conduct by reiterating the EU’s unilateral opinion as to the final outcome of the currently stalled negotiations:
"We support the Palestinian presence in Area C. Palestinian presence should not be limited Areas A and B. Area C is part of the occupied Palestinian territory which eventually will be Palestinian land.”
Why Israel's approval was not first sought before the EU surreptitiously undertook such activity remains unexplained.

Representatives of the Quartet – Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov , United States Secretary of State John Kerry, European Union High Representative for Common Foreign and Security Policy Federica Mogherini and UN Deputy Secretary General Jan Eliasson (representing UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon)  met in Munich on February 8 – two days after the European Union's illegal actions were exposed – but no mention was made of the EU’s devious conduct nor was there any call for it to be immediately halted.

The remaining three Quartet members have by their silence clearly signalled they condone such illegal conduct by the EU and support its continuation.

Hypocritically, the Quartet Representatives declared: 
“Pending the resumption of negotiations, the Quartet called on both parties to refrain from actions that undermine trust or prejudge final status issues.” 
It is hard to conceive any action more likely to undermine trust or prejudge final status issues than the Quartet’s failure to condemn the EU’s own aberrant behaviour and call for an immediate halt to its illegal activities in the West Bank.

The Quartet Representatives repeated their mantra: 
“A sustainable peace requires the Palestinians' aspirations for statehood and sovereignty and those of Israelis for security to be fulfilled through negotiations based on the two-state solution.”
 The parameters under which those negotiations were being held between Israel and the PLO have now been well and truly consigned to the dustbin of history as a result of the EU’s disgraceful conduct – joining so many other failed proposals made since 1920 aimed at ending the Jewish-Arab conflict.

The Quartet has been found sadly wanting and is clearly out of tune – abandoning any sense of impartiality or propriety in aligning itself with one party to the dispute.

Israel's Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, has now directed that action be commenced to demolish these illegal EU structures.

The Quartet has been totally compromised the peace process and its intricate negotiating structure irretrievably ended.

Back to the drawing board for yet another new proposal...


  1. OT but good blog by a Palestinian in Times if Israel last week

  2. On its face, foreign financed and managed illegal construction ANYWHERE in ANY country is illegal. No less than if the EU decided to knock down buildings in Manhattan and build whatever they liked without a permitting process.

    1. Empress Trudy

      You have hit the nail precisely on the European Union's head.

      The European Union has acted illegally and should be ashamed of its conduct.

      Sticking its unwelcome nose into the internal affairs of another sovereign state is outrageous.

      In my opinion its actions have ended any hope of negotiations being resumed between Israel and the PLO.

      Israel can no longer trust the Quartet to have any further mediating role as well. The Quartet has become totally conflicted in failing to dress down the European Union for its covert building activities and in failing to demand that the European Union halt such activities forthwith.

  3. I notice, Daphne, that you use the phrase "Jewish-Arab conflict."

    Not Israel-Palestine conflict, nor Arab-Israel conflict, but Jewish-Arab conflict.

    I would agree that Jewish-Arab conflict is accurate, but would argue that "long Arab war against the Jews in the Middle East" is even more accurate, if not a little unwieldy.

    1. Mike L

      I use the term "Jewish-Arab conflict" because it is the correct description of the conflict between Jews and Arabs that has been ongoing since at least 1917 and still remains unresolved in 2015.

      There was no State of Israel until 1948 or any suggestion of "Palestinians" or a "palestinian people" until 1964.

      Referring to it as "the Israeli-Palestinian conflict" or the "Arab-Israel conflict" has been the work of Arab propagandists who want to deny and bury the critical events that took place between 1917-1948.

      These events include the following legal and historical events:

      1. The San Remo Conference 1920

      2. The Treaty of Sevres 1920

      3. The League of Nations Mandate for Palestine 1922

      4. The first Partition of Palestine 1923

      5. The Arab riots against the Jews in the 1920's culminating in the Hebron Massacre 1929

      5. The Peel Commission 1937

      6. The British White Paper 1939

      7. The demise of the League of Nations in 1945 and the creation of the United Nations which under article 80 p[reserved the right of the Jewish people to reconstitute the Jewish National Home in Palestine

      8. The UN Partition Plan 1947

      Your term is also correct but as you state it is a little unwieldy.

      There is no way that the conflict can be resolved unless these events form part of the narrative of both Jews and Arabs.

      Whilst the Arabs refuse to confront and acknowledge what occurred between 1947-1948 - any reconciliation between Jews and Arabs is doomed to failure.

  4. Good point, Mike. But this is David's post, not Daphne's

  5. Do we know at what level the decision to build was made? Another decision by a faceless bureaucrat?

    1. If it was a decision of a faceless bureaucrat - then the head of the European Union should order these structures be removed.

      I suspect the decision to erect these illegal structures was made at the highest level to create "facts on the ground" and establish an Arab presence in Area C where very few Arabs currently reside.

      Indeed some 96% of the total Arab population of the West Bank live in Area A and Area B.

      The EU is deliberately intent on changing that ratio and is apparently prepared to act illegally in wanting to do so.