A Palestinian autumn in New York — what to expect at the U.N.

The Associated Press reports:

The Palestinians will ask the Security Council next week to accept them as a full member of the United Nations, the Palestinian foreign minister said Thursday, a move that would defy Washington’s threat to veto the statehood bid.

The remarks by Riad Malki came just ahead of the arrival in the West Bank of a senior U.S. diplomatic team that was in the region in a last-ditch effort to persuade the Palestinians to drop the UN bid. Although Mr. Malki did not close the door on compromise, his comments signalled the chances of breakthrough were slim.

With a diplomatic showdown looming, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced Thursday that he would travel to the UN next week to lead the opposition to the Palestinian initiative.

The emerging scenario would constitute a blow to U.S. diplomacy by forcing Washington to veto a proposal whose outcome – a Palestinian state – in principle is supported by most of the world, including the White House and many in Israel as well.

However, both the U.S. and Israel say a Palestinian state can be established only through negotiations.

It could also drag out the manoeuver at the United Nations for months.

The process would have to play out in the Security Council before the Palestinians turn to the General Assembly, where they are likely to find the needed majority for a lesser form of recognition as a “nonmember observer state.”

Mr. Malki said the Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, will personally submit the Palestinian request for membership to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon after addressing the General Assembly on the afternoon of Sept. 23. In the meantime, he said the Palestinians would listen to suggested alternatives.

Daniel Levy writes:

While neither the United States nor the Palestinians will emerge unscathed from a Security Council showdown, this course of action might actually be the easiest fix for preserving the status quo (undesirable as that is). The Palestinian leadership could rue the injustice of the world and indulge in its favored pastime of righteous indignation, but it would be spared the hard choices associated with going down the path of accumulating leverage and challenging Israel. The journey back to the golden cage of Palestinian Authority (PA) co-habitation with Israeli occupation is a shorter one from the Security Council than it is from the General Assembly.

Israel could much more easily brush off a Palestinian Security Council failure than a General Assembly success. One can imagine Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu berating Palestinian President Abbas but asserting that he is still ready for negotiations without conditions at any time — a tri-fecta of domestic political win, great PR message, and an easier path for continuing to work with the PA as if nothing had happened (remembering that the continued functioning of the PA and security cooperation are above all an Israeli interest). Israeli messaging might even encourage Congress to maintain its PA and especially PA security funding.

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3 thoughts on “A Palestinian autumn in New York — what to expect at the U.N.

  1. Ian Arbuckle

    “the U.S. and Israel say a Palestinian state can be established only through negotiations”


    Did the US negotiate its independence from their colonial rulers when it declared its independence from Britain, and if it could have, what terms would King George III have laid down?

    Did Israel negotiate its Statehood? Rather than the myth that the UN somehow conferred statehood on Israel it is important to understand that in fact not only did Israel not negotiate its statehood with Britain under the UK’s mandate conferred by the League of Nations, it didn’t even fulfil the primer “conditions” of statehood which where required by resolution 181 made by the UN, which confirmed the sovereign right of the “people” to self determination. And in fact the “partition” of Palestine was conditioned thereon.

    Israeli terrorist Yehoshua Zettler, who died on May 20, 2009 at the ripe old age of 91, lived as a hero, quoting from his obituary, he “was the former commander in Jerusalem of the Fighters for the Freedom of Israel, or Lehi (known to the British as the Stern Gang)”. He murdered the United Nations envoy Count Folke Bernadotte who was sent to establish a Palestine conciliation commission to define details including territorial delineation.

    Nathan Friedman-Yellin, a leaders of the organization that assassinated Bernadotte was quickly released from prison and then elected to the Israeli parliament. Other Stern Gang members became prominent leaders (e.g. Menachem Begin became Israeli Prime Minister).

    Well that is how Israel negotiates……
    I recommend anyone who has not read the article to read:
    The Myth of the U.N. Creation of Israel, by Jeremy R. Hammond, October 26, 2010, Foreign Policy Journal.

    By the way, Bernadotte, a Swede with family ties to the Swedish King, gained international recognition through his work as head of the Swedish Red Cross during World War II. Bernadotte used his position to negotiate with Heinrich Himmler and saved thousands of Jews from concentration camps. That is how the Zionists repaid him.

  2. Norman

    Setting the stage for. . . . . . . . . . . . . . ! One might consider the arrival of the Al Qeada individuals that were inserted into Libya by the NATO forces before and after Gaddafi fell. And what about all the weapons that were in those now empty ammo bunkers?

    All things considered, might there be a contingency plan, one that could be aimed at Israel? If the Palestinians achieve their goals # the U.N. and if the U.S. decides not to back Israel, regardless of why, though I would think that it would be to prevent Israel from incinerating the M.E. That’s where the Al Qeada and those missing weapons would come in to play.

    After all, Israeli leadership has disrespected the U.S. in a big, very big way, doesn’t show any remorse for its actions to anyone. They are a liability to the U.S. now, no matter what they or their American followers say. Could also be why the new C.I.A. Director is ex-general David Petraeus, who I presume is well aquainted with afore mentioned Al Qeada from Afghanistan/Pakistan. Food for thought.

  3. dickerson3870


    “For tis the sport to have the enginer Hoist with his owne petar” ~ Shakespeare, Hamlet, Act III, Scene iv

    PETARD – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Petard



    United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) resolution 377 A,[1] the “Uniting for Peace” resolution, states that in any cases where the Security Council, because of a lack of unanimity amongst its five permanent members, fails to act as required to maintain international peace and security, the General Assembly shall consider the matter immediately and may issue any recommendations it deems necessary in order to restore international peace and security. If not in session at the time the General Assembly may meet using the mechanism of the emergency special session.
    The Uniting for Peace resolution—also known as the “Acheson Plan”—was adopted 3 November 1950, after fourteen days of Assembly discussions, by a vote of 52 to 5 (Czechoslovakia, Poland, Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic, Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, Byelorussian Soviet Socialist Republic), with 2 abstentions (India and Argentina).[2]
    In it, the General Assembly:

    “Reaffirming the importance of the exercise by the Security Council of its primary responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security, and the duty of the permanent members to seek unanimity and to exercise restraint in the use of the veto,” …
    “Recognizing in particular that such failure does not deprive the General Assembly of its rights or relieve it of its responsibilities under the Charter in regard to the maintenance of international peace and security,” …
    “Resolves that if the Security Council, because of lack of unanimity of the permanent members, fails to exercise its primary responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security in any case where there appears to be a threat to the peace, breach of the peace, or act of aggression, the General Assembly shall consider the matter immediately with a view to making appropriate recommendations to Members for collective measures, including in the case of a breach of the peace or act of aggression the use of armed force when necessary, to maintain or restore international peace and security.”

    To facilitate prompt action by the General Assembly in the case of a dead-locked Security Council, the resolution created the mechanism of the “emergency special session”…
    The Uniting for Peace resolution was initiated by the United States,[7] and submitted by the “Joint Seven-Powers”[8] in October 1950, as a means of circumventing further Soviet vetoes during the course of the Korean War (25 June 1950 – 27 July 1953). It was adopted by 52 votes to 5,[9] with 2 abstentions.[10]…

    SOURCE – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_Nations_General_Assembly_Resolution_377
    ALSO SEE – http://www.pcusa.org/blogs/swords-plowshares/2011/8/24/united-nations-israel-and-palestine-palestine-unit/

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