Weekly Commentary: World Will Reward Dropping Annexation With Pressure For
Dr. Aaron Lerner 22 May 2020
With pressure mounting on Israel to drop plans to apply Israeli law to those
areas identified in the Trump Map as being part of sovereign Israel under
any future deal with the Palestinians, it is appropriate to consider the
ramifications of bowing to this pressure
If Israel drops the move, those pressuring Israel will only be encouraged to
ramp up the pressure on the Jewish State to make more concessions.
It is even worse than that. Leaders in the Arab world who limited
themselves to vague comments regarding the consequences should Israel go
through applying Israeli law will find themselves drawn into joining the
chorus threatening sanctions unless Israel makes concessions. To be clear:
the Palestinians are correct when they complain that the Arab world only
pays lip service to their cause. But such a pronounced Israeli weakness to
pressure may set off a dynamic that transforms lip service to genuine active
What kind of concessions?
Take your pick:
On the population side, there are initiatives to allow various groups of
Arabs who have someone on their family tree who resided in Mandatory
Palestine for at least one day before 1948 (aka “Palestinian refugees”) to
move into Israel and/or areas within the Palestinian Authority.
The battle for territorial control features a multitude of programs to
create “Palestinian facts on the ground”, via unilateral development
programs on public lands in Area C and elsewhere as well as support for
squatters claiming to have lived somewhere for generations despite
historical aerial photographs documenting it was empty land until the
European Union and/or others bankrolled their move today.
Any and all expressions of Jewish ties to Jerusalem are a point of
contention. The Jewish presence at the Western Wall is only one of many
offenses to Palestinian sensibilities.
The Law of Return, which gives Jews the right to come and live in Israel and
gain Israeli citizenship, is one of a series of laws of the Jewish State
targeted by Israel’s enemies.
It would be bad enough to encourage pressure by bowing to pressure under
But circumstances today are anything but normal.
We face the prospects of finding ourselves after the American elections with
both a White House and Congress which could embrace many elements of the
program I have outlineds above.
And that is before even trying to predict the possible impact that COVID-19
may ultimately have on the functioning of our region and the world.
Concessions to pressure are inevitably rewarded with more pressure. Now,
more than ever, we can ill afford to blink.
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