For Once Its Not the Jews' Fault!

99 years ago, a very important document was written in the United-Kingdom by foreign Secretary Lord Arthur James Balfour to the leader of the Jewish community Baron Walter Rothschild. It has become known in history as the "Balfour Declaration." The text of that letter reads as follows "I have much pleasure in conveying to you, on behalf of His Majesty's Government, the following declaration of sympathy with Jewish Zionist aspirations which has been submitted to, and approved by, the Cabinet. "His Majesty's Government view with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, and will use their best endeavours to facilitate the achievement of this object, it being clearly understood that nothing shall be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine, or the rights and political status enjoyed by Jews in any other country." I should be grateful if you would bring this declaration to the knowledge of the Zionist Federation."

The Balfour Declaration is a document that has been foundational in the world's recognition of Israel's right for self-determination within the boundaries of her own historical and biblical land of Eretz Yisrael. It was followed by another important agreement including the original Balfour Declaration, known as the San Remo Resolution, where the Mandate for Palestine was drawn together (land boundaries were decided four years later.) As a result of the San Remo Resolution being drafted, Great Britain ended-up being responsible for the drawing of the Mandate and land boundaries for Palestine. This became latter known as the "British Mandate for Palestine." Fast forward to 1947 and the United Nations voted in favor of Resolution 181 and the partitioning of Palestine between Jews and Arabs. On May 14, 1948, under the leadership of David Ben Gurion, one day before the end of the British Mandate, Israel became a modern nation. Within hours five neighboring Arab countries declared war on the newborn Jewish state. One way or another, this war has been going on for seventy-seven years.

Just days ago, in a move that we could see as being both creative and ludicrous, Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas decided to sue Great Britain for the Balfour Declaration.  Abbas asked his foreign minister, Riyad al-Malki to help with the lawsuit. According to the Palestinians, it is the Balfour Declaration that set in motion all the bloodshed seen in the Middle East in the last eight decades. In fact, Abbas insists that the Balfour Declaration paved the way to the rebirth of Israel, and thus Great Britain is to be held responsible for ALL ISRAELI CRIMES committed against Palestinians since.

This would be a very bold move to make, even if we were dealing with to people groups fighting for territory. Britain might have been involved in initiating the agreement, but whatever took place after the United Nations voted for the partitioning of the region, even if it was connected to the Balfour Declaration, remains the responsibility of Israel and her Arab neighbors. Dan Margalit of Israel Hayom says "But the Balfour Declaration didn't exist in a vacuum. The world supported it. Even King Faisal of Iraq, whose family originated in Saudi Arabia, reached an agreement with Weizmann on the terms. The declaration was approved in 1920 by an international conference that met in San Remo after World War I. The approval of the mandate by the Council of the League of Nations in 1922 gave the Balfour Declaration international validity, almost like the 1947 U.N. resolution to establish a Jewish state in part of the land of Israel. 

But here is a bigger problem; Palestinians didn't exist in 1917 (Balfour), 1920 (San Remo), 1924 (San Remo Land boundaries), 1947 (UN partition vote) and 1948 (Israel's Declaration of Independence.) As a matter of fact, Palestinians didn't come onto the scene as a "people" until the mid 1960s. So in essence, Abbas is retroactively inserting the Palestinians into history to justify the injustice he is claiming took place in 1917 and subsequent years. It is akin to quoting Abraham Lincoln saying: "Don't believe everything you read on the Internet", except that the latter statement is funny because it was made tongue-in-cheek. Abbas is dead serious about the Palestinians going way back in history.

The original Palestinian was invented, forcibly placed in Israel as a "displaced refugee" and further coerced into staying through several generations, born within the refugee camps and/or territories. Palestine went from a geographical area to a political agenda aimed at the complete destruction of Israel and the Jewish people. It took about fifty years to get where we are today. The current acceptance of the Palestinian narrative has become the new normal and is used as the foundation to historically justify a lawsuit against Britain for the Balfour Declaration. That justification doesn't rest on factual history but this will not stop the PA from proceeding with the suit.

So what is next, a law suit against Italy for the San Remo Resolution of 1920? What about suing the United Nations for allowing Israel to become a modern nation in 1947/48? I suppose the Palestinians could even go as far as suing themselves for signing the Oslo Accords in 1993! Taken to an extreme, they could sue God Himself for giving the Land of Canaan to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and their descendants (Genesis 12:7, 13:15, 15:18-21, 35:9.) After all, it looks like God started it all! Ironically, for once the Jews are not being blamed and I'll take that as a small victory.

The UN Obsession with Israel!

When the League of Nations (founded in 1920 after WWI) was replaced by the United Nations in 1945, the world was hopeful that the new organization would succeed in averting another world war–a feat that the League of Nations clearly failed at. The UN prides itself in promoting international cooperation and world peace. It even won the Nobel peace prize in 2001 (but so did Yasir Arafat in 1994.) The UN current Secretary is Ban Ki-moon (since 2007.) In the first article of the UN charter, we can read their purpose for existing:
1. To maintain international peace and security, to take effective collective measures for the prevention and removal of threats to the peace, and for the suppression of acts of aggression or other breaches of the peace, and to bring about by peaceful means, and in conformity with the principles of justice and international law, adjustment or settlement of international disputes or situations which might lead to a breach of the peace;
2. To develop friendly relations among nations based on respect for the principle of equal rights and self-determination of peoples, and to take other appropriate measures to strengthen universal peace;
3. To achieve international co-operation in solving international problems of an economic, social, cultural, or humanitarian character, and in promoting and encouraging respect for human rights and for fundamental freedoms for all without distinction as to race, sex, language, or religion; and
4. To be a centre for harmonizing the actions of nations in the attainment of these common ends.

There is no doubt in my mind that the original crafting of the UN charter took a lot of careful efforts from its founding members to assure that the world organization would be equipped to function properly. As a result, we have seen many decisions made by the UN that definitely helped make the world a better place. One of these decisions was the 1947 vote for the partitioning of British Mandate Palestine, that led to May 14, 1948 and the re-birth of Israel as a modern nation (33 for, 10 against, 10 abstentions.)

But 1948 is nearly 70 years ago and since then, the United Nations have been less than friendly to Israel. As a matter of fact, for many years, there have been more resolutions passed against the Jewish state than the rest of the world combined (and here). For instance, in 2015, the UN adopted 23 resolutions, three against Iran, Syria and Korea and twenty against Israel. There are no indication that it will slow down in 2016. It is also very hard to forget the 16 years that it took the United Nations to revoke their 1975 resolution claiming that "Zionism is Racism." And even if they did revoke it, the organizing of the Durban I (2001), II (2009) and III (2011) conferences against racism have shown that the target was once again almost exclusively Israel.

The United Nations' obsession with demonizing Israel is obvious to any unbiased observer. Just days ago, the unbelievable claim was made by the UN that Israel was the number one country violating women's human rights. The UN ignored Hamas, Sudan, Saudi Arabia, Iran, ISIS, Syria to name just a few of the countries were animals are treated better than women. Yet it found Israel guilty of human rights violation against Palestinian women. Is it me or whatever comes out of the UN is officially believed as fact by a world population that certainly doesn't care to check for accuracy as much as it cares for stigmatizing and ostracizing Israel?

To add insult to injury, the UN decides to praise and promote violence, lies and murders. How do you explain the UN funded tree planting by Palestinians to honor the memory of terrorists? How sick is it to promote death and make murderers into martyrs while accusing the victims of human rights violation?

This makes it very difficult for anyone who is seeking truth and fairness to not accuse the UN of antisemitism. It is a fact that a large number of UN members are Arab/Muslim nations who are against Israel and are weighing in at every chance they have to vote against the only Middle East democracy. In the meantime, Israel treats Palestinians in their hospitals, gives jobs to Palestinians and even has two Arab parties as a part of the Knesset. This is looking more and more like there is nothing Israel can do to be in good standing with the world in general and the United Nations in particular.

Even if all Jews would die today and Israel as a whole would become Palestine, antisemitism would continue to exist in the hearts of men. You read me right, no Israel and no Jews do not guarantee no antisemitism, it only guarantees no Israel and no Jews, something that God will never allow (Jeremiah 31:35-37). But if the UN could continue trying to play god...well, that's a different story! Those nations are united indeed, but they are united against Israel and as a result, against God (Psalm 83:5.)

Nothing like a Third Intifada to regain the World's Empathy!

On Wednesday September 30th, Palestinian Authority leader, Mahmoud Abbas delivered his annual speech to the United Nations General Assembly. It had been advertised for weeks as a "bombshell." Apparently, Mr. Abbas wanted to stir the pot ahead of his yearly opportunity to lambaste Israel in front of a global audience at the UN.

The "bombshell" that Mr. Abbas dropped was thethreat to cancel the Oslo Accords between Israel and the Palestinian Authority. It was a threat, not an actual move. It was a threat with very few details, characterized by vagueness:
"Thus, we declare that as long as Israel refuses to commit to the agreements signed with us, which render us an authority without real powers, and as long as Israel refuses to cease settlement activities and to release of the fourth group of Palestinian prisoners in accordance with our agreements, they leave us no choice but to insist that we will not remain the only ones committed to the implementation of these agreements, while Israel continuously violates them. We, therefore, declare that we cannot continue to be bound by these agreements and that Israel must assume all of its responsibilities as an occupying power, because the status quo cannot continue and the decisions of the Palestinian Central Council last March are specific and binding."

It looked like Mr. Abbas was grasping for straws. But you can always count on the bias of our liberal media to stir the pot further as many of them bought Mr. Abbas toothless threat, hook, line and sinker.
Most of the international press responded to it as if it was an official reneging of the agreements, their headlines spoke tons:
• Sun Herald: Abbas says Palestinians no longer bound by pacts with Israel
• Associated Press: Palestinian leader declares he is no longer bound by agreements signed with Israel.
The New York TimesMahmoud Abbas, at U.N., Says Palestinians Are No Longer Bound by Oslo Accords.

Frankly, I believe that Mahmoud Abbas was pouting at the UN General Assembly. If it was not for the fact that later on the UN raised the Palestinian flag along with the Vatican flag for the first time ever –booth entities have official observer status–Abbas would have had a temper tantrum.

There is no question that Mr. Abbas' latest threat can still be considered a repudiation of peace, even if it is an empty threat because it clearly shows his heart. But He is tired of playing second fiddle to other Middle East terror virtuosos. The Palestinian struggle has been losing momentum in recent weeks, being replaced in the news by other crisis  that deserve our attention. The following list is a brief overview of what has kept Abbas out of his cherished international limelight.

• ISIS continues to spread throughout the region, terrorizing Christian, Jews and Muslims alike as they indiscriminately behead those in their way of a caliphate.
• Iran is rapidly becoming a nuclear threat to the entire region. By the way, if they bomb Israel, will the nuclear holocaust stop short of leveling out Gaza and the West Bank? Of course not! Iran is also a threat to the Palestinian Authority, even if they ignore it.
• Syria's civil war and its recent Russian incursion, including some military actions is definitely further destabilizing the region.

Mr. Abbas's had the chutzpah to propose the annulment of the Oslo Accords, pointing the finger at Israel. It is akin to having Hitler make the statement that he would not dialogue with the Jewish community because of their crimes against the Germans. Ludicrous of course. The only difference is that 75 years ago, it would never fly but today, most of the world chooses to side with the Palestinians. Mr. Abbas knows it and he is banking on it to further his agenda.

He also knows that if he wants to retain his credibility within the Palestinian circles, he must make the news again, and in a bigger way. We have seen some rock throwing activity from the Temple mount in recent weeks as well as physical harassment in the old city against Jews on their way to the Western Wall for Holy Days prayers. Mr. Abbas probably thinks that now would be the ideal time for a third intifada (uprising).

Mr Abbas is pouting because to a certain extent the world isn't really paying attention to him as much as he would like it. But cancelling the Oslo Accords would also force the Palestinian Authority to dismantle and would eradicate all the credibility–as undeserved as it may be– that they have built over the years. He cannot afford to make that move.

A third Intifada on the other hand, would provide Mr. Abbas with the fuel he needs to revive his campaign of Jew-hatred. Even though in direct contradiction with real facts and the truth, Palestinian victimization and Israel's demonization would most certainly draw the attention of a world audience so enamored with tolerance and social justice. Not to mention that he is even losing popularity within his own people. The very people sick of Abbas' failures who are also pushing for another armed intifada.

The next few weeks will tell us if Israel will soon be faced with another Palestinian uprising. With ISIS pushing from the north, the Gaza Strip and the Sinai Peninsula; Iran putting the final touch to its nuclear arsenal and Russia coming to Assad's rescue in Syria, that is a very full plate for Benjamin Netanyahu.

A third Intifada would complicate things for Israel but we must not forget that even if the world finds favor with Mahmoud Abbas, God holds Israel in the palm of his hand. Regardless of the many people in Israel who do not believe in God, that does mean that God doesn't believe in Israel.

Thus says the LordWho gives the sun for light by day And the fixed order of the moon and the stars for light by night, Who stirs up the sea so that its waves roar; The Lord of hosts is His name: “If this fixed order departs From before Me,” declares the Lord“Then the offspring of Israel also will cease From being a nation before Me forever.  (Jeremiah 31:35-37)

The Relentless Pressure of Palestinian Opportunism!

We are approaching the time of the year when the United Nations meet in New York at the end of September. This year, the General Assembly will meet from Sept 28-Oct 6. As in previous years, the Palestinian Authority will do anything in their power to push for recognition by the United Nations. Considering the plethora of resolutions against Israel–being accused of crimes against humanity towards the Palestinians–the vote should be a no brainer, right?

While it hasn't happened yet, international recognition of Palestine is closer than ever before. Palestinian opportunism has a lot to do with that. But why are we closer in 2015 than we were in 2014? For this we have to review how much has happened since the last United Nations General Assembly of September 2014. Palestine currently holds a seat at the UN with a "non-member permanent observer" status.

Sweden was the first Western European country to officially recognize the State of Palestine in October of 2014. They joined the only two other EU countries that already had made that move; Malta and Cyprus. It is interesting to note that Sweden's move took place only a few months after the end of the 2014 Gaza War, at a time that common sense should have dictated the opposite. Sweden has long been know for its near all inclusive tolerance of immigrants. This has of course not alleviated the current danger of extreme Islamism in the country.

There are currently 136 countries that have recognized Palestine, but each attempt at a UN vote has been vetoed by the United States. Today, only the United States, Canada, Mexico, Australia, New Zealand and most of Europe are still resisting recognizing Palestine, although most of them would follow the United States if they chose to vote yes at the UN.

On April 1, 2015 (no joke here), the Palestinian Authority became an official member of the International Criminal Court (ICC) in La Hague, Netherlands. They [The Palestinian Authority] expect the ICC to investigate Israeli war crimes during the 2014 Gaza War. If the ICC does its job ethically, this is a move that could eventually backfire for the PA.

Of course, the Vatican also made the news as they joined Sweden when a treaty was signed between the Palestinian Authority and the Vatican in June of 2015 leading the Holy See to officially recognized Palestine. The treaty took fifteen years and three popes to be ratified, but it is now official. So much so that the current pope used the expression "angel of peace" in a conversation about Mahmoud Abbas.

Additionally, France has been working very hard for a while, preparing a draft for a UN resolution to be passed this coming September. The same France whose Prime Minister Manuel Valls said after the January 2015 terrorist attack that "France without Jews is not France", seems very interested in throwing Israel under the bus. If one was to look at the level of anti-Semitism in France alone, the push for the recognition of Palestine would come as no surprise.

So now, the PA is again on the threshold of pushing for a United Nation recognition. Yet, in their neverending opportunism, they have come-up with one more ploy to force the UN into compliance. This one involves the raising and flying of two flags. This seems so insignificant, yet I think it is devious at best.

Around the time of the United Nation Assembly, Pope Francis is scheduled to make his first visit to America. There are only two "entities" that have the status of a "non-member permanent observer" at the UN; the Vatican and the Palestinian Authority. The latter has chosen to make a clear statement by requesting that both flags be raised and flown at the time of the pope's visit. I doubt that the pairing of the flags have anything to do with respect for the pope or Catholicism. Instead, the Palestinian Authority decided to "piggy back" on the pope's visit to make it very difficult to say no to one and yes to the other or even worse, no to both and offend the pontiff. It would appear that yes to both is the only outcome possible. Time will tell.

This might not appear to be a major political move, yet it is just one more small step towards a (not so) forced recognition of the Palestinian State by the world. Frankly the more dangerous aspect of this year's attempt at recognition is the French push. It includes a proposal for a divided Jerusalem capital and Israel boundaries going back to pre-1967. If Mr. Obama chooses to back France on their proposed resolution, most if not all of the rest of the non-supporting countries would change sides. This would give instant validation to a group of people run mostly by terrorists and funded by anti-Semitic, anti-American states like Iran. Not to mention the fact that it would squish Israel further into the current Middle East vise– its aim being the complete eradication of the Jewish State.

We are only a few weeks away and there is still time to pray for a reversal of the Iran deal as well as again, a veto on the Palestinian State recognition by the UN. In the meantime, I cannot help but remember God's promise that He would punish all those who go after Israel. America might not be in the Bible by name but it is clearly in the Bible by deeds. Punishment awaits those who turn their back on Israel (Genesis 12:3, Joel 3:2, Zechariah 12:9).

I will gather all the nations And bring them down to the valley of Jehoshaphat. Then I will enter into judgment with them there On behalf of My people and My inheritance, Israel, Whom they have scattered among the nations; And they have divided up My land (Joel 3:2)