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In his reference to Arabs “whose families used to live on this land,” Vick is apparently justifying Arab-Palestinian intransigence, while subtly rejecting Israel’s historic claims to the land. He is, in essence, implying that Israelis are at fault in the conflict, since the land really belongs to the Arabs.
Israel delivered to Egypt “the last grain of sand” and all of the Sinai Peninsula as part of the March 1979 Camp David Peace Accord, in exchange for a “Cold Peace” it got from Egypt. That small fact was conveniently ignored by Vick. How many countries would trade their energy independence (Sinai oil wells) for a cold peace? That question was apparently not on Vick’s mind. It was not only with Egypt that Israel made concessions in their search for peace, it also ceded disputed land along the border with Jordan in 1994 in 1994, and it has offered to do the same with Syria in exchange for a genuine peace. From 1948 onward Israelis sought to make peace with all or any Arab State, and in the aftermath of the 1967 Six Day War, Israel invited the defeated Arabs to make peace with it in exchange for land it captured. The response was the famous Three No’s at the Khartoum Summit of late 1967, no to peace, no to negotiation, and no to recognition of Israel.
Vick chose – purposely? – to feature the hedonistic Israelis who are interested in money, pleasure, and leisure, and who choose to spend little time in pursuit of something as elusive as peace. This is not only a distortion of reality and truth; it reflects at best the insular world of a small Tel Aviv bohemian clique. For hundreds of thousands of Israeli mothers and fathers, wives and children, whose loved ones don the uniform of the Israel Defense Forces, and Border Police, and who are in constant danger from murderous Palestinian terrorists, no prayer and wish is greater than that of peace. It is expressed in popular songs, in synagogue prayers, in casual greetings, and in daily conversations. Somehow this was never mentioned in Vick’s article.
The obvious intent of Vick’s piece is to present Israelis as arrogant overlords who do not want to lose their possessions or share them with the “poor” and “injured” Palestinians who want their land back. Aside from the question of who has rights to the land (West Bank and Gaza), which is a separate issue, Abbas and the Palestinians have made impossible demands such as the aforementioned “Right of Return.” One should not forget that there were more Jewish refugees than displaced Palestinians – 850,000 Jews were booted out of their homes in Arab lands. The Jewish refugees were dealt with more humanely and were settled by Israel while the Palestinians refugees were deliberately kept in misery so as to help the Arabs score political and propaganda points against Israel. Peace talks focus on the concessions that Israel must make – as they recently did when Prime Minister Netanyahu ordered a freeze on all new construction in the Jewish settlements. What concessions have the Palestinians made? None…
The establishment media in the U.S. and the West, represented by such journalists as Karl Vick, hold Israel accountable for the lack of peace in the region despite the fact that historical facts dispute this. Cowardly journalists like Vick know that there is nothing to lose in smearing Israel, while presenting the truth about Palestinian and Islamist triumphalism might engender personal risk. It is therefore an easy job to paint the Palestinians as “victims” and Israelis as callous victimizers who – Do Not Care About Peace.
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