Published by The Freeman Center
The Maccabean Online
Political Analysis and Commentary
With a petition for Palestinian statehood presented before the United Nations last week, the issue of the disputed right to the land of Israel seems to many to be on the verge of an historic, if unsatisfying and controversial, resolution. But Dr. Arieh Eldad, a Member of Knesset and chairman of the Jewish nationalist Hatikva party, insists that the root of the issue is not territorial, and thus any peace plan based on the concept of dividing the land is destined for failure.
In his pamphlet titled simply “Jordan is Palestine,” Eldad writes
Recently Eldad – also chief medical officer and senior commander of the Israel Defense Forces Medical Corps and a Brigadier-General in the IDF (Reserves) – expressed his iconoclastic opinions in a speech at Temple Ner Maarav in Encino, northwest of Los Angeles. Also entitled “Jordan is Palestine,” his presentation put forth what he calls the “simple truth” that the Jews, and not the Arabs, have an historic right to the land of Israel. “I’m all for ending the occupation,” he said. “We must end the occupation. Of course, I’m referring to the Muslim occupation of the land of Israel, starting in the seventh century.”
So yes, there is certainly a territorial component to the problem, Eldad acknowledges. But, he explained, falling back on a medical analogy that reflects his profession, “We have misdiagnosed the conflict. It is a religious war. It’s a clash of ideologies. It’s not a territorial conflict.”
Eldad gives an example of this clash of ideologies in a FrontPage Magazine contribution entitled “A Story of How Deep the Palestinians Have Sunk into the Moral Abyss.” A surgeon specializing in the treatment of burn victims, Eldad was instrumental in establishing the Israeli National Skin Bank in Jerusalem, the largest skin bank in the world, which stores skin for everyday needs as well as for wartime or mass casualty situations. He relates the true story of a Palestinian woman given medical attention there after her own family burned her for some transgression of “honor”:
In his presentation last week he offered another example of the religious root of the conflict. Many thousands of Palestinian teachers, he said, work in the education system of UNRWA (the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian Refugees), and the only thing [the students] learn is to hate the United States, to hate Israel. If you open a math book of the fourth grade of a Palestinian school, you learn that “if a shahid, a martyr, on a bus can kill fifteen Jews, how many Jews can be killed by three martyrs on a train?”
This is the kind of mathematics they learn in school.
There are four major elements of his plan: 1) recognition of Jordan as a Palestinian country; 2) the closure of UNRWA and the creation of a plan for the settlement of Arab refugees in Jordan, under the auspices of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), which has a track record of successfully resettling tens of millions of refugees around the world; 3) Israeli and international guarantees of a continued Hashemite rule in Jordan, and 4) the application of Israeli law in Judea and Samaria.
In addition to offering these recommendations, Eldad also pulled no punches last week when offering his opinion of Israel’s Benjamin Netanyahu. Eldad says that after Netanyahu’s humiliating treatment at the hands of Obama earlier this year, in which the President simply left the Prime Minister to mull over his demands while Obama abandoned him for dinner, Netanyahu exhibited exactly the same characteristics as a soldier afflicted with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. Eldad decried Netanyahu’s willingness to bend under “extreme pressure” from the White House; he challenged him to answer the unilateral Palestinian declaration of statehood with unilateral annexation of Judea and Samaria.
This is typical of Eldad’s bold, politically incorrect assertions. A year ago he called for the assassination of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, comparing him to Hitler. And unlike other politicians, Eldad does not sugarcoat the future. Because the Israeli-Arab conflict is religious and not territorial, he claims, there will not be peace in the Middle East. “I don’t promise peace. I promise containment of the conflict.”
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Article printed from FrontPage Magazine: http://frontpagemag.com
URL to article: http://frontpagemag.com/2011/