Come hell or high water, President Obama is determined to create a Palestinian state during his watch. He has been doing his utmost to attack and pressure Prime Minister Netanyahu to support the two-state solution which Netanyahu did in part in his Bar Ilan speech and to freeze construction which he did for ten months ending September 26/10. To no avail. Because of the backlash Obama experienced last summer from Jewish leaders, he was forced to start a charm offensive in the lead up to the Nov 2nd mid-terms. Now, all bets are off. His determination to create a Palestinian state, which he supported long before his political career started, will be intensified now.
At the moment Netanyahu is refusing to formally extend the freeze but he is withholding approval of construction for the most part. He demanded that the PA recognize Israel as a Jewish state as the price for extending the freeze. Abbas categorically rejected doing so and still refuses to negotiate without a formal freeze extension.
The PA is threatening to ask the United Nations to declare all Israeli communities east of the 1949 armistice lines, illegal and to demand the expulsion of Israelis living in them. It is also threatening to ask the Security Council to recognize the state of Palestine with pre ’67 borders. It is testing the waters to see how many states will recognize it under these conditions. The problem will be that there is no basis for recognition. And thus it will have no legitimacy.
Just this week, Netanyahu told a Likud faction that that the issue of the freeze “is not being discussed.” and that a unilateral declaration of statehood by the PA would “exact a price from both sides” and would not promote a solution to the conflict.
Either of these resolutions will not have teeth in them but they will increase the deligitimation and demonization that Israel is presently being subjected to.
The Jerusalem Centre for Public affairs published a paper on International Recognition of a
Unilaterally Declared Palestinian State: Legal and Policy Dilemmas by Tal Becker. He writes “The Palestinian entity does not become a state under international law merely by a unilateral declaration to that effect. To be eligible for recognition it must satisfy specific legal criteria. Indeed, under international law, the recognition of an entity which clearly fails to meet these criteria constitutes an unlawful and invalid act.”
These criteria include,
“- Is There an Effective and Independent Government?
- Does the Palestinian Entity Possess a Defined Territory?
- Does the Palestinian Entity have the Capacity to Freely Engage in Foreign Relations?
- Is There Effective and Independent Control Over a Permanent Population?
- Unilateral Palestinian Attempts to Acquire the Attributes of Statehood”