Palestinian Irredentism and the Anti-Israel Double Standard

Edward Bernard Glick
The international legal justification for the re-establishment of Jewish sovereignty in the Middle East lies in a 1922 document issued by the League of Nations, the precursor organization of the United Nations. It gave Great Britain a mandate to govern Palestine, which the Turks had ruled for centuries, recognized "the historical connection of the Jewish people with Palestine, and [favored] the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people."

The Arabs rejected that document then and, except for Egypt and Jordan, they reject it now. They have done what defeated peoples have often done: gone to war to try to undo what the League of Nations had done, and to undo the outcomes of what the League of Nations had done.

It has always been an axiom of war that the winners win and the losers lose. Being on the losing side, as Turkey was in 1914, has usually led to negative consequences. 

That's what happened when the Persians conquered the Babylonians, when the Greeks conquered the Persians, when the Romans conquered the Greeks, and when the Barbarians conquered the Romans. That's how Japan ceased to control Korea and Manchuria after the Second World War. That's how lands once part of Germany came to be  parts of Russia and Poland. That's how the indigenous peoples of North and South America, of Siberia, and of Australia and New Zealand came to be ruled by Europeans. And that's how Islam - which Muslims proudly call the Religion of the Sword - spread from the bottom of Arabia to faraway Indonesia and India in a very short time.

Today Turkey occupies Northern Cyprus, Britain occupies Gibraltar and the Falkland Islands, Spain occupies the Southern Sahara, French-speaking Quebec is still part of Canada, Tibet is still part of China, and Siberia is still part of Russia. Neither the Cypriots, Spaniards, Argentinians, Moroccans, French, or Siberians have the will or ability to regain these territories by force. 

While the Palestinians have the will to drive the Israelis out of Israel, they do not have the ability to do so. Not counting their efforts when the British were in Palestine (from 1917 to 1947), they have warred with Israel six times. The Israelis label these wars the War of Independence (1948-1949), the Sinai War (1956), the Six-Day War (1967), the War of Attrition (1969-1970),the Yom Kippur War (1973), the First Lebanon War (1982-1985), and the Second Lebanon War (2006). Except for the Second Lebanon War, the outcome of which may be considered inconclusive, the others ended in stunning Israeli victories.

The Palestinians and most of the rest of the world have chosen to ignore this military history. They have chosen to ignore the ancient axioms of war and to reject the notion that Israel has the right to enjoy advantages from its successful military history. Instead, they have decreed that Israel can never be allowed to win and that the Palestinians can never be allowed to lose.

This is patently ridiculous. If the Palestinians want to crush the Israelis and expel their sovereign state from the Middle East, they will have to do it not on the wobbly field of public opinion, but on the only field that really matters in the region: the field of battle.

The international legal justification for the re-establishment of Jewish sovereignty in the Middle East lies in a 1922 document issued by the League of Nations, the precursor organization of the United Nations. It gave Great Britain a mandate to govern Palestine, which the Turks had ruled for centuries, recognized "the historical connection of the Jewish people with Palestine, and [favored] the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people."

The Arabs rejected that document then and, except for Egypt and Jordan, they reject it now. They have done what defeated peoples have often done: gone to war to try to undo what the League of Nations had done, and to undo the outcomes of what the League of Nations had done.

It has always been an axiom of war that the winners win and the losers lose. Being on the losing side, as Turkey was in 1914, has usually led to negative consequences. 

That's what happened when the Persians conquered the Babylonians, when the Greeks conquered the Persians, when the Romans conquered the Greeks, and when the Barbarians conquered the Romans. That's how Japan ceased to control Korea and Manchuria after the Second World War. That's how lands once part of Germany came to be  parts of Russia and Poland. That's how the indigenous peoples of North and South America, of Siberia, and of Australia and New Zealand came to be ruled by Europeans. And that's how Islam - which Muslims proudly call the Religion of the Sword - spread from the bottom of Arabia to faraway Indonesia and India in a very short time.

Today Turkey occupies Northern Cyprus, Britain occupies Gibraltar and the Falkland Islands, Spain occupies the Southern Sahara, French-speaking Quebec is still part of Canada, Tibet is still part of China, and Siberia is still part of Russia. Neither the Cypriots, Spaniards, Argentinians, Moroccans, French, or Siberians have the will or ability to regain these territories by force. 

While the Palestinians have the will to drive the Israelis out of Israel, they do not have the ability to do so. Not counting their efforts when the British were in Palestine (from 1917 to 1947), they have warred with Israel six times. The Israelis label these wars the War of Independence (1948-1949), the Sinai War (1956), the Six-Day War (1967), the War of Attrition (1969-1970),the Yom Kippur War (1973), the First Lebanon War (1982-1985), and the Second Lebanon War (2006). Except for the Second Lebanon War, the outcome of which may be considered inconclusive, the others ended in stunning Israeli victories.

The Palestinians and most of the rest of the world have chosen to ignore this military history. They have chosen to ignore the ancient axioms of war and to reject the notion that Israel has the right to enjoy advantages from its successful military history. Instead, they have decreed that Israel can never be allowed to win and that the Palestinians can never be allowed to lose.

This is patently ridiculous. If the Palestinians want to crush the Israelis and expel their sovereign state from the Middle East, they will have to do it not on the wobbly field of public opinion, but on the only field that really matters in the region: the field of battle.