Monday, September 13, 2010

Reuters rationalizes Palestinian rejection of a Jewish state

In a story on the question of whether Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will extend the building moratorium in Judea and Samaria (the "West Bank") when it expires later this month, Reuters correspondent Jeffrey Heller quotes Netanyahu's observation that the Palestinians still refuse to recognize Israel as the nation-state of the Jewish people:
Speaking at the weekly meeting of his cabinet, Netanyahu focused in public remarks on his demand that Palestinians recognize Israel as the state of the Jewish people in any peace deal, a call Abbas has rejected. 
"Unfortunately I am not yet hearing from the Palestinians the sentence 'two states for two peoples'," Netanyahu said.
Recognition of Israel as a state for the Jewish people is of course, at the heart of the conflict between Israel and the Arabs as it was this very recognition by the United Nations with the Partition Plan for Palestine in 1947 followed by a declaration of independence by Israel the following year that led to the Arab invasion of Israel and decades of war since that time.  Israel's concern -- articulated many times -- is that with their rejection of "two states for two people", the Palestinian Arabs are setting the stage for an acquisition of their (Arab Muslim) state and then the flooding of Israel with millions of Arab "refugees" in an effort to erase Israel's Jewish character and achieve their often-stated irredentist goal of an Arab-dominated state from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea.  

Heller doesn't see fit to explain Israel's position -- but he does rationalize that of the Palestinian Arabs:
Palestinians have said they have already recognized the state of Israel in past declarations and in interim peace agreements that set the basis for establishing a state of their own in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.
"This recognition is done," Erekat said.
But explicit recognition of Israel as a Jewish state, Palestinian officials have said, could jeopardize the claims of Palestinian refugees, who fled or were forced to flee Arab-Israeli fighting, to a right of return to homes in what is now Israel.
This is called card stacking.  It's a form of propaganda.  And it's a violation of the Thomson Reuters Trust Principles and Handbook of Journalism.

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