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Posts tagged ‘Palestinian people’

Kerry’s MidEast Peace Plan Will Destroy Israel Piece By Piece.


Secretary of State, John Kerry is reportedly making offers, promises and guarantees in the Middle East. Media reports indicate that “Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has reportedly shot down a proposal by US Secretary of State John Kerry to maintain Israeli presence in the Jordan Valley for ten years following the signing of an Israeli-Palestinian peace accord.” Kerry, is reportedly promising the Palestinians the Jordan valley, and “invisible” Israeli presence at the border crossings between the West Bank and Jordan. John Kerry offered and promised what? Does Kerry own the Jordan Valley?

In November, John Kerry visited Israel and pressured Israel, and encouraged the Arabs to commit violence on Israel asking, “I mean, does Israel want a third intifada?” Tantamount to encouraging Israel to negotiate with a gun to their head, Kerry said Israel’s “isolation” would be their own fault if a peace deal with the Palestinians falls through. Kerry further warned the Israelis that “the alternative to getting back to the talks is the potential of chaos,” and continued, “There will be an increasing campaign of delegitimization of Israel [that] has been taking place in an international basis.”

Given the Obama Administrations track record in the Middle East, Israel (and the Palestinians) would be better off without Kerry’s visits to the region. John Kerry should spend less time pressuring Israel, the sole democracy in the Middle East. Kerry’s focus on the Middle East can be working to catch the people in Libya (around the corner from Israel), where the Ambassador was lynched. Since Kerry claims to have stopped Iran so skillfully, after that he can focus on Egypt which is in chaos after America chased out Mubarak who was previously a staunch American ally. Just around the corner, Kerry can visit Syria, where Assad, Syria’s dictator remains in power thanks to Putin’s protection. In Syria, over 100,000 people have been slaughtered in the last two years, including more than 5,000 children under the age of 16. There are hundreds of thousands dead already in the Middle East thanks to this administrations’ horrid foreign policies.

While America wrongly shows restraint with dictators, they must understand Israel lives in a very dangerous neighborhood and has life or death concerns when it comes to adapting these policies. The Obama Administration wrongly accuses and blames Israel rather than the terrorists who work to destroy Israel piece by piece, in false pursuit peace. They seek to destroy Israel piece by piece – from the “West Bank” to Jordan Valley to Eastern Jerusalem.

Ze’ev Jabotinsky, a Zionist visionary who is the spiritual father of the Likud Party (the ruling party of the state of Israel, headed by Benjamin Netanyahu) wrote many years ago of the need to stand up against people those who don’t have the best interests of the Jewish people at heart: “Instead of excessive apology and instead of turning our backs to the accusers — as there is nothing to apologize for, and nobody to apologize to — it is long overdue to respond to all current and future accusations, reproaches, suspicions, slanders and denunciations by simply folding our arms and loudly, clearly, coldly and calmly answer, ‘Go to Hell!’

“Who are we, to make excuses to them; who are they to interrogate us? What is the purpose of this mock trial over the entire people where the sentence is known in advance? Our habit of constantly and zealously answering to any rabble has already done us a lot of harm and will do much more. The situation that has been created as a result, tragically confirms a well known saying: ‘Qui s’excuse s’accuse’ (He who apologizes condemns himself).

“We think that our constant readiness to undergo a search without hesitation and to turn out our pockets will eventually convince mankind of our nobility; look what gentlemen we are — we do not have anything to hide! This is a terrible mistake. The real gentlemen are the people that will not allow anyone for any reason to search their apartments, their pockets or their souls. Only a person under surveillance is ready for a search at every moment. This is the only inevitable conclusion from our maniacal reaction to every reproach, to accept responsibility as a people for every action of a Jew, and to make excuses in front of everybody.

“I consider this system to be false at its very root. We are hated not because we are blamed for everything, but we are blamed for everything because we are not loved. We do not have to apologize for anything. We are a people as all other peoples; we do not have any intentions to be better than the rest. We do not have to account to anybody; we are not to sit for anybody’s examination and nobody is old enough to call on us to answer. We came before them. We are what we are, we are good for ourselves, we will not change and we do not want to. We are hated not because we are blamed for everything, but we are blamed for everything because we are not loved. We do not have to apologize for anything.”

As Esquire magazine noted some months ago about Kerry’s trips to Israel, “There is nothing he could be doing that would be a bigger waste of his time, including windsurfing.” Leave Israel alone. As Benjamin Netanyahu said: ‘If the Arabs put down their weapons today, there would be no more violence. If the Jews put down their weapons today, there would be no more Israel.”

Ronn Torossian is a New York based Public Relations executive and author.

© 2013 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

 

By Ronn Torossian

Poll: Israelis, Palestinians Back Two-State Deal.


RAMALLAH, West Bank — A poll suggests a majority of Israelis and Palestinians supports the establishment of a Palestinian state alongside Israel, but remains suspicious of the other side.

The survey was released Wednesday, hours before Secretary of State John Kerry‘s return to the region. Kerry is trying to forge agreement on the outlines of a peace deal, but gaps remain.

In the poll, 63 percent of 601 Israelis and 53 percent of 1,270 Palestinians surveyed said they back a two-state solution. Support dropped to 54 percent and 46 percent, respectively, when respondents were asked about specifics of a two-state deal.

The Israeli poll, by an Israeli university, had an error margin of 4.5 percentage points. The Palestinian survey, by a West Bank think tank, had an error margin of 3 percentage points.

© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Source: Newsmax.com

Israeli Ministers Endorse Legislation to Annex Part of West Bank.


JERUSALEM — A panel of Israeli Cabinet ministers endorsed proposed legislation on Sunday to annex an area of the occupied West Bank likely to be the eastern border of a future Palestinian state.

The move, pushed by far-right members of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu‘s Likud party, could weigh on troubled U.S.-brokered peace negotiations several days before another visit to the region by Secretary of State John Kerry.

But centrist Justice Minister Tzipi Livni, who also heads Israel’s negotiations with the Palestinians, immediately challenged the motion, and said she would use her powers to block the legislation from being voted on in the Israeli Knesset, or parliament.

Peace talks have shown few signs of progress since Kerry oversaw their renewal in July after a three-year deadlock.

The target is to reach an agreement by April towards achieving a “two-state solution” in which Israel and a new Palestinian state would co-exist side by side.

The Jordan Valley region of the West Bank which Israel captured in a 1967 war and Palestinians seek as part of their future state, has been a focus of recent disagreement. Palestinians reject Israel’s demand to maintain a security presence there.

Kerry said in Washington earlier this month that the need to resolve the dispute over the Jordan Valley was “a critical threading of a needle that has to happen in order to achieve an agreement.” He said he was coordinating with Jordan as well.

The Israeli proposal to incorporate the Jordan Valley within its borders, endorsed by the Cabinet’s legislative committee, was the first Israeli step in years to annex any territory captured in 1967.

Shortly after that war, in a move not recognized internationally, Israel annexed east Jerusalem and added some adjoining West Bank land to the city, which it regards as its capital.

The last time Israel annexed any land captured in the 1967 war was in 1981 when it applied its law to Syria’s Golan Heights, a strategic plateau that lies to the north.

The proposed legislation came up two days before Israel said it would free 26 Palestinian prisoners, the third of four groups of prisoners being released as an agreed confidence-building measure since peace negotiations resumed.

The prisoners had been jailed for deadly violence committed before a 1993 Israeli-Palestinian interim peace accord.

Also expected to weigh on Kerry’s visit this week is an Israeli plan to build 1,400 homes in Jewish settlements, which Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat said would “destroy the peace process” and could be met with retaliation.

© 2013 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.
Source: Newsmax.com

Kerry Returns to Middle East Next Week for Peace Talks.


Secretary of State John Kerry will return to the Middle East next week to continue prodding Israel and Palestinians to forge a long-elusive peace deal.

The State Department said Kerry is to leave on New Year’s Day for Israel and the Palestinian territories, where he will discuss ongoing negotiations with leaders from both sides.

The parties relaunched direct talks over the summer with the goal of forging an accord within nine months.

The target date expires at the end of April, and there has been little if any tangible sign of progress so far.

© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Source: Newsmax.com

Jonathan Feldstein: Jesus Was a Palestinian? Really?.


Jesus
The Palestinian Authority has attempted to spread the deceit that Jesus was a Palestinian. (The Jesus Film)

Just in time for Christmas, the world was treated this week to the latest offense from the “Palestinians” with the declaration by Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas that Jesus was a “Palestinian.” Abbas’ offensive Christmas greeting called Jesus “a Palestinian messenger who would become a guiding light for millions around the world,” and suggested Israel was to blame for the exodus of Christians from the Holy Land.

With a reference to Luke 23:34, Israel’s foreign ministry spokesman noted, “He should have read the gospel before uttering such offensive nonsense, but we will forgive him because he doesn’t know what he’s doing,” adding that Abbas’ remarks are an “outrageous rewriting of Christian history.”

I’m no theologian and, as an Orthodox Jew, certainly no expert in Christianity or the gospel. However, I know a dangerous and offensive ambush on both Judaism and Christianity when I see it, and when those called “Palestinians” today erase and rewrite whole sections of Scripture that are the foundation of Judaism and Christianity, it must be called for what it is: a dangerous lie that is a hybrid between Palestinian nationalism and the ultimate Islamic replacement theology.

There are many, many examples of this, but one of the best is when “Palestinians” say (often) that there was never a temple on the Temple Mount, the focal point of biblical Jerusalem whose central architectural landmark was destroyed, rebuilt, destroyed again in the year 70 and replaced by two mosques hundreds of years later, as if to spread the dominance of Islam over Jerusalem as an Islamic city, which is never even mentioned in the Quran. Of course, any Jew or Christian knows that the Temple was a reality, and the denial of its very existence also denies those of us who share so much in common—literally, the foundation of our respective faiths.

This is one egregious example, but one doesn’t have to look to hard to find plenty more, the same way one doesn’t have to dig too deep in Jerusalem to find archeological remains, evidence of the reality we know from the Bible.

Of course, denying the underpinnings of Judaism and Christianity are no problem in “Palestinian” society, but stating the inconvenient truth that Islam is the main threat to both, particularly to Christians living among Muslims and the primary cause for the Christian exodus, would be a PC no-no. For instance, Abbas also mentioned Palestinians “trapped under siege” in Gaza, “who are prevented from worshipping in Bethlehem,” conveniently overlooking that it’s his good friends from Hamas who control Gaza and who make life for Christians there a living hell. The same is true among Christians in Lebanon, Syria, Egypt, Iran, and the list goes on.

Why do I care? Why write this? It’s simple. Israel is the birthplace of both Judaism and Christianity. Jews and Christians have a common bond that’s based biblically and has never been more important. True, thousands of years of history from Jesus’ time until the last century have displayed a less enlightened, less kind and certainly not a gentle approach by what’s loosely referred to as “the church” to Jewish neighbors and Judaism as a whole.

But the awakening in the last century of Christians who understand the biblical injunction to bless Israel and who know that Israel’s rebirth is fulfillment of prophesy, period, needs to be met with open arms by Jews and reciprocated. So when a Palestinian leader refers to Jesus as a Palestinian, it’s an affront to the foundation of Christianity, making one want to imagine Jesus dying not on a Roman cross but with a suicide belt packed with explosives at a 2,000-year-old Jerusalem café, and must be challenged at every turn.

Why refer to “Palestinians” in quotes? The name Palestine in modern use initiated with the League of Nations and the British. Native residents of what’s Israel today were referred to as “Palestinian,” but the term was used by the British to refer to Jews. My father, for instance, born in Haifa, was a “Palestinian.” Only decades after Israeli independence when Jews (and what’s grown into about 1.5 million Arabs) became Israeli, did the term Palestinian morph to refer to Arabs.

There is ample historical documentation to prove that while there were indigenous Arabs in Israel as well, Arab migration to Israel exploded as the land flourished with Jews returning from exile and corresponding economic opportunities, drawing many whose origins are still unmistakable by their names as being from Egypt or Syria and that are still evident today. But while Jews returned en mass, fulfilling prophesy, there was always an unbreakable and majority of Jews in the land.

So while there is legitimate evidence to show that many of today’s “Palestinians” are, in fact, not indigenous to Israel and that “Palestinian” nationalism was born more as a way to delegitimize and destroy Israel, I, for one, understand that there is a reality on the ground that must be dealt with today, and I am all for coexistence and peace, if the latter is even possible.

However, by claiming Jesus was a “Palestinian,” since everyone knows he was a Jew, what they have done is debunked the myth of a “Palestinian” people as the term is abused today. The latest “Palestinian” lie underscores the reality that if Jesus were a “Palestinian,” it is the indigenous Jews who have the rightful claim to Israel, going back to those lived in here in Jesus’ time, with its center in Jerusalem established by the Jewish King David 3,000 years ago, in the land God promised to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob long before that, and documented in the Bible.

But those who read and understand Scripture—and don’t try to erase and rewrite it—knew that already.

Source: CHARISMA MAGAZINE/ STANDING WITH ISRAEL.

JONATHAN FELDSTEIN

Jonathan Feldstein is the director of Heart to Heart, a unique virtual blood donation program to bless Israel and save lives in Israel. Born and educated in the U.S., Feldstein emigrated to Israel in 2004. He is married and the father of six. Throughout his life and career, he has been blessed by the calling to fellowship with Christian supporters of Israel and shares experiences of living as an Orthodox Jew in Israel. He writes a column for Charisma’s Standing With Israel. You can contact Jonathan atfirstpersonisrael@gmail.com.

Palestinians Urge US to Block New Israel Settlements.


JERUSALEM — A senior negotiator says the Palestinian president has appealed to the United States to block plans by Israel to announce new settlement construction.

Top Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat said President Mahmoud Abbas voiced his plea at a late-night meeting with senior U.S. officials Thursday in West Bank.

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Abbas “asked for U.S. intervention to stop the Israeli government from issuing new settlement decisions in order to save the peace process and the American efforts,” Erekat said Friday.

An Israeli official said the government is expected to announce new settlement construction next week.

Channel 2 TV reported the plan will include hundreds of new homes in the West Bank and east Jerusalem — captured territories claimed by the Palestinians.

© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Source: Newsmax.com

Israel Police Blame Palestinian Militants for Bus Blast Near Tel Aviv.


Image: Israel Police Blame Palestinian Militants for Bus Blast Near Tel Aviv

JERUSALEM — A pipe bomb believed to have been planted by Palestinian militants exploded on board a bus in central Israel just moments after it had been evacuated, police said, in the most serious attack inside Israel in more than a year.

The explosion came at a sensitive time in Mideast peace efforts. Israel and the Palestinians resumed talks last summer for the first time in nearly five years, and the U.S.-brokered negotiations have made little visible progress. The explosion threatened to further poison what has become a tense and negative atmosphere.

Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said there were no injuries in the blast, which took place in the Tel Aviv suburb of Bat Yam. The explosion blew windows out of the bus and charred the sides of the vehicle.

“Based on the findings at the scene by bomb disposal experts, it was a terrorist attack,” Rosenfeld said. “We’re continuing to search the area for suspects.”

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Rosenfeld said the nature of the target and the nature of the device led authorities to determine that militants, not criminals, were behind the bombing. He declined to elaborate, and there was no immediate claim of responsibility.

He said the bomb was discovered in a bag on the bus. The driver quickly ordered passengers to get off, and the bomb exploded shortly after as a bomb squad expert was inspecting it. The police sapper was not injured but was taken to a hospital to be evaluated.

It was the most serious attack inside Israel since a bomb explosion wounded more than 20 people in Tel Aviv in November 2012. At the time, Israel was involved in heavy fighting with Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip.

A decade ago, Israel experienced a rash of Palestinian suicide bombings on buses, in restaurants and in other public spaces. More than 3,000 Palestinians and 1,000 Israelis died in several years of fighting.

But tensions have subsided in recent years. The neighboring West Bank, however, has seen a recent uptick in Israeli-Palestinian violence, thought senior Israeli officials believe the various incidents there have not been connected to each other.

© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Source: Newsmax.com

Opinion: European Sanctions Against Israel Border on Criminal.


Anti-Semitism
Anti-Semitism continues to spread throughout Europe and the Middle East. (Reuters file photo)

Israel has been finding itself the focus of increasing boycotts recently, in what is reminiscent of the days before World War II and its anti-Semitic characteristics. But we cannot say the nations ganging up on us evoke associations of the Holocaust or we will find ourselves facing the banal accusation of “cheapening the Holocaust.”

Those who would accuse us of doing so cynically say we are using our historic catastrophe to justify the wrongdoings we perpetrate against the Palestinians.

Winter is a good time to read some of Nathan Alterman’s poems. Just like in his poem about the little boy named Abram, news of the 70 nations armed with the hatchets of financial sanctions is multiplying. It seems that ever since Abram left his home in the old country, the nations have been restless, eager to bring him back there, to the house of death, so they may kill him in his sleep, just as they killed his family.

This burning hatred is not solely the nature of nations and individuals such as the European Union’s foreign policy chief, Catherine Ashton. It is also second nature to prominent individuals, such as Pink Floyd frontman Roger Waters, best known for “The Wall.”

Waters is unfazed by the horrors of the world: Millions of Syrian refugees are fleeing President Bashar Assad’s forces; thousands of people are butchered in Iraq, Afghanistan and Yemen; and millions of Africans die a myriad of strange deaths and drown by the dozens en route to Europe’s shores, while others are shot to death as they infiltrate the borders of social welfare states. But Waters is obsessed with only one thing—the Israel-Jewish “apartheid.”

It seems that Waters and his ilk are driven by a secret desire to see the Jews placed within the confinements of “The Wall”—but not the imaginary one that sprang to the feverish mind of a band whose psychological disorders were the soundtrack of our youth, but the one of the ghetto. This humanitarian used the image of a black pig with a red Star of David painted on it as part of his 2013 summer tour of Europe.

Waters and his ilk are unwilling to hear how the security fence saves Israeli lives from Palestinian terror, which is why it is imperative that Israel retain control of the Jordan Valley.

Those who hate us refuse to understand that Israel is the best possible example of a people united, regardless of the color of their skin, and that nothing can be further from us than apartheid.

For many, like this despicable man, the Palestinians and their claims are the hatchet with which they can realize their burning hatred for the Jews. None of them can be accused of loving the Palestinians, of course—they just hate us more.

The 70 nations refuse, for some reason, to accept that the refugees’ elders have died, and since one cannot inherit being a refugee, their children reside in Arab countries that deliberately deny them citizenship. Both these Arab nations and the international bodies care little for ending the conflict and much for perpetuating the current situation, as they would rather use the aid money given to them for their own benefit while ignoring the plight of true refugees.

The 70 nations ignore, for some reason, the fact that the Palestinians do not strive to end the conflict but to end the state of Israel. They ignore the uselessness of reaching a peace agreement with an illegitimate Palestinian leadership, heading a divided and terrorist people that claim land that is not theirs. They rally to the Palestinians’ side unilaterally, and their officials compare Israel to racist South Africa and describe its actions as crimes against humanity. These are pots calling the kettles black in an attempt to purge themselves and their parents of the crimes of the Holocaust.

The 70 nations ignore, for some reason, the fact that the land of Israel was our home at a time when most of them—the Palestinians included—lived in tents and caves. They seek to use the crime of sanctions, the new face of anti-Semitism, as their weapon of destruction. Just like in Alterman’s poem, “We are upon you with 70 decrees and 70 hatchets.” This is a belligerent attempt to force us back to that death house.

In our world, power is the only thing of significance. When the nations, including Iran, come to realize just “how great the strength of Avraham is,” they will relent, and that is word enough to the wise.

For the original article, visit israelhayom.com.

Source: CHARISMA MAGAZINE/ STANDING WITH ISRAEL.

REUVEN BERKO/FOR ISRAEL HAYOM

Kerry: Israeli-Palestinian Deal Possible by End of April.


TEL AVIV, Israel — Shrugging off gloomy predictions of failure, Secretary of State John Kerry said Friday that Israelis and Palestinians remained committed to peace talks and were on course to wrap up a full deal by April.

Speaking at the end of his second visit to the region in just a week, Kerry said the two sides were discussing a framework for a final-status accord to resolve the core issues at the heart of the decades-old conflict.

“Both parties remain committed to fulfilling their obligations to stay at the table and negotiate hard during the nine-month period that we set for that,” Kerry told reporters after separate talks with Palestinian and Israeli leaders.

“We’re not talking at this point about any shifts [in the schedule],” he said, dismissing bleak assessments from both sides on progress in the U.S.-brokered negotiations, which resumed in July after a three-year pause.

The U.S. top diplomat wants the two camps to accept a so-called framework accord that will touch on all the main issues, such as security, the future of Jerusalem and the fate of refugees, and serve as a broad outline for the final deal.

Palestinians fear such a preliminary agreement could serve to delay once again their hopes of establishing an independent state in the West Bank, Gaza Strip and east Jerusalem — land the Israelis seized in the 1967 war.

Kerry said his talks over the past two days, played out against a backdrop of fierce winter snow storms, had focused on security, with retired U.S. General John Allen joining him for the discussions with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

GUARANTEES

Palestinian sources said Allen, a former commander of U.S. troops in Afghanistan, had drawn up plans to allow a continued Israeli military presence for the next 10 years in the Jordan Valley — along the eastern border of any new Palestinian state.

Israel says its troops have to remain there to prevent arms and militants from entering the West Bank and launching attacks. Abbas has rejected the idea, but said he would accept seeing U.S. troops deployed along the border.

“We are working on an approach that both guarantees Israel’s security and fully respects Palestinian sovereignty,” Kerry said, without giving further details.

Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat said after Kerry’s visit “we want to achieve a peace based on Israel’s withdrawal from lands occupied in 1967.”

“We won’t accept limiting Palestinian sovereignty over our land,” Erekat added, in comments to al Arabiya television.

Palestinians also question whether Israel will press ahead with the third tranche of a planned release of Palestinian prisoners.

Seen as a vital confidence-building measure, Israel has so far freed about half the 104 prisoners it had pledged to let out of its jails under a deal secured by Washington in July. Kerry said the third tranche would go ahead on Dec. 29.

Kerry has made nine visits to the region since taking office in February in a relentless campaign to gain momentum and bridge a vast gulf of mutual mistrust.

“We remain hopeful that we can achieve that final-status agreement. Why? Because we are absolutely confident . . . that for both sides, and the region at large, peace can bring enormous benefits,” Kerry said.

He left Israel later on Friday, bound for Vietnam and the Philippines.

© 2013 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.
Source: Newsmax.com

Netanyahu: Peace Talks, Iranian Threat Linked.


Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addressed the Saban Forum in Washington on Sunday via video conference and illustrated a clear link between the Iranian nuclear threat and the Israeli-Palestinian peace talks, saying that if Iran crossed the nuclear threshold, there would be no real chance for peace with the Palestinian Authority.

“Our best efforts to reach Palestinian-Israeli peace will come to nothing if Iran succeeds in building atomic bombs,” Netanyahu said. “A nuclear-armed Iran would give even greater backing to the radical and terrorist elements in the region. It would undermine the chances of arriving at a negotiated peace. I would say it would undermine those peace agreements that we have already reached with two of our neighbors.”

But speaking to Army Radio on Monday, U.S. Ambassador to Israel Dan Shapiro contradicted the prime minister, saying the two issues are unrelated.

Speaking in Hebrew, Shapiro said, “The issues of putting a stop to Iran’s nuclear program and that of the peace talks with the Palestinians are not connected. These issues are relevant to the security of Israel and the United States both, as well as for the security and stability of the entire Middle East, but they have no quid pro quo relationship.”

In his speech, Netanyahu expressed his gratitude to both U.S. President Barack Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry for their tireless efforts to promote a peace deal, saying, “The Middle East is going through unprecedented volatility, violence and instability. Out of all this uncertainty, one thing has become absolutely clear: The Israeli-Palestinian conflict is not the source of the region’s problems.

“This is not to say that peace with the Palestinians is not important. It’s vital—first and foremost for Israel and the Palestinians. Achieving a genuine and enduring peace between us is a strategic goal of the state of Israel and of my government. I’ve made hard decisions to further peace negotiations. I’m willing to make even harder decisions to achieve peace.”

Netanyahu continued, “I hope President Abbas also is willing to do so because peace can only be and must be a two-way street. I am ready for a historic compromise that ends the conflict between us once and for all. … Under successive governments, Israel has demonstrated the flexibility and the willingness to make painful concessions. … Six successive Israeli prime ministers, myself included, have been ready for a historic compromise with the Palestinians. … But it was never enough. Because all the Israeli proposals, all the Israeli concessions, were based on one premise: that the conflict would be over, that it would end and that there would be no further Palestinian national claims on the Jewish state.

“So the question shouldn’t be, why does Israel make this demand? The question should be, why do the Palestinians consistently refuse to accept it? After all, we recognize that in peace there will be a nation state for the Palestinian people. And surely we are entitled to expect them to do the same: to recognize the nation state of the Jewish people.

“We’ve only been around here for 4,000 years—well, a little less, 3,700 years. We have to have the Palestinians come to grips with the fact that there is going to be a Jewish state, a Jewish nation state here next to their state. It’s not too much to ask. It’s the minimal requirement for peace.”

As for a future peace deal, Netanyahu said, “I think that any kind of peace we’ll have is likely, initially at least, to be a cold peace. And it must withstand the forces of terrorism and the ravaging forces of radicalism and all the forces backed by Iran and others that will try to unravel the peace. And therefore any agreement that we make must enable us to protect the peace or conversely to protect Israel in case the peace unravels.”

‘Talk Has Consequences’

Speaking of the Iranian threat, Netanyahu said, “Just three days ago, Iran’s representative to the U.N. reiterated the regime’s refusal to even recognize Israel. … He said we were doomed to ‘failure and annihilation.’ So the Iranian regime’s pursuit of nuclear weapons makes these remarks more than a simple matter of ‘sticks and stones.’ People tend to discount rhetoric from rogue regimes … [but] talk has consequences, especially when the regime that makes these statements is actually building the capability to carry it out.”

“This same regime supplies its terrorist proxies, Hezbollah, Hamas and Islamic Jihad, with thousands of rockets. … This is a regime committed to our destruction,” Netanyahu warned.

“I believe there must be an unequivocal demand alongside the negotiations in Geneva for a change in Iranian policy. This must be part and parcel of the negotiations. In other words, I’m saying that what is required is not merely a shift and a diminution of Iran’s capability and elimination of its capability to produce nuclear weapons, but also a demand to change its genocidal policy. That is the minimal thing that the international community must do when it’s negotiating with Iran.

“I don’t think I can overstate—I don’t think any of us can overstate—the Iranian danger. So for the peace and security of the world, Iran must not be allowed to maintain the capability to produce nuclear weapons—not today and not tomorrow.”

The prime minister spoke of the importance of the Western-imposed sanctions on Iran, saying, “Steps must be taken to prevent further erosion of the sanctions. Because ultimately, the sanctions remain an essential element of the international effort to compel Iran to dismantle its nuclear military infrastructure: to take apart the centrifuges; to tear down the heavy-water reactor; to eliminate the current stockpiles of enriched uranium; to cease the development of ballistic missiles and the work on weaponization, which by the way the Geneva agreement does not address. None of these things that Iran insists it must have—none of them is necessary for a peaceful nuclear program.

“So while Israel is prepared to do what is necessary to defend itself, we share President Obama’s preference to see Iran’s nuclear weapons program end through diplomacy. But for diplomacy to succeed, it must be coupled with powerful sanctions and a credible military threat. Now let me repeat that: A diplomatic solution is better than a military option. But a military option is necessary for diplomacy to succeed, as are powerful sanctions.”

Israel-U.S. Ties Strong

The prime minister, whose speech concluded the Saban Forum, stressed that despite media reports, the U.S. and Israel enjoy a warm and close relationship.

“The special bond between Israel and the United States is a crucial anchor of stability” in a time of turmoil in the Middle East, Netanyahu said.

“I want to thank President Obama for his commitment to our strong alliance,” he continued. “He has repeatedly said that Israel must have the right to defend itself by itself against all threats. I think that’s a very important statement. It will follow us 360 degrees. And on President Obama’s watch, defense, security and intelligence cooperation between the United States and Israel—this cooperation has reached new heights.

“I want you to know that we can have different perspectives … [but] most of the time and on most things, if not the major things, we see eye to eye because we share common values, because we’re anchored in deeply democratic societies, because there is a special bond between the people of Israel and the people of the United States of America.

“Sometimes we differ because we have these different perspectives. But we always share our views honestly, sincerely and respectfully. That’s what good friends do, and that’s what we’ll continue to do.”

For the original article, visit israelhayom.com.

Source: CHARISMA MAGAZINE/ SPIRITLED WOMAN.

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