It did not take very long for the Palestinian Authority to make its unequivocal rejection of a Jewish State crystal clear following the pomp and circumstance of resumed negotiations between it and Israel in Washington last week.
Dr Nabeel Shaath - a member of the Palestinian Negotiating Team, the Fatah Central Committee and the Palestinian Legislative Council - told a press conference in Ramallah on September 7:
The Palestinian National Authority will never recognise that Israel is the national state for Jewish people, as such recognition will directly threaten the Muslim and Christian Palestinians in Israel, and will prevent the Palestinian refugees who left their homes and towns decades ago, from the right to return.
Dr Shaath’s forthrightness and honesty is refreshing but clearly indicates that any further negotiations with the Palestinian Authority are a total waste of time.
The Palestinian Authority is apparently hell bent on challenging and confronting President Obama whose National Security Strategy released by the White House in May 2010 declared that the United States would seek two states that will live in peace and security:
… a Jewish state of Israel, with true security, acceptance, and rights for all Israelis and a viable, independent Palestine with contiguous territory that ends the occupation that began in 1967 and realises the potential of the Palestinian people.
President Obama had also previously made it clear that sentiments such as those expressed by Dr Shaath are completely unacceptable.
Speaking as a then Senator at a Foreign Policy Forum in Des Moines Iowa on December 18, 2007, the future President stated:
I think everyone knows what the basic outlines of an agreement would look like. It would mean that the Palestinians would have to reinterpret the notion of right of return in a way that would preserve Israel as a Jewish state. It might involve compensation and other concessions from the Israelis but ultimately Israel is not going to give up its state.
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in an address on April 29, 2010, had also made it perfectly clear that:
Since our first day in office, the Obama Administration has made the pursuit of peace and secure and recognised borders for Israel a priority because that is, we believe, the best way to safeguard Israel’s long-term future as a democratic Jewish state.
Dr Shaath’s statement also constitutes a rebuff to former President George W. Bush who assured Israel’s then Prime Minister Ariel Sharon in a letter dated April 14, 2004: “The United States is strongly committed to Israel's security and well-being as a Jewish state.”
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