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March 06, 2014

Fact Check: Netanyahu Did Not Invent Expectation of Recognition of Jewish State

Last time The New York Times published an Op-Ed by Ali Jarbawi, the author's overzealous attack on Israel put the newspaper in the unwelcome position of having to correct a factual error. (No, The Times admitted in a Feb. 5 correction, Ariel Sharon did not actually enter the al Aqsa mosque.)

It’s a shame the newspaper had to publish a correction, but one might expect that the editors have learned from the mistake — “fool me twice,�? the saying goes — and now more carefully check Jarbawi’s facts.

Any such expectations were dashed today, when The Times published a new Op-Ed by Jarbawi. Speaking of the Israeli expectation that Palestinian negotiating partners will accept the principle of two states for two peoples — the Palestinian and the Jewish peoples — Jarbawi, a former Palestinian Authority official, stated:

This demand did not exist in past talks; in fact, it didn’t exist until the thought occurred to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, most likely because he was looking for a way to sabotage the peace process, which he could then blame on the Palestinians while continuing to usurp our land.

But this simply isn’t true. As Tablet Magazine recently pointed out, the expectation that Palestinians would reciprocate Israeli recognition of a Palestinian state by recognizing a Jewish state is hardly new:

In fact, according to the Palestine Papers — a massive trove of leaked documents published by Al Jazeera, which record a decade of Israeli-Palestinian negotiations–the demand was broached by none other than Tzipi Livni…in 2007.

Representing Israel’s liberal Kadima-led coalition in Annapolis prior to Netanyahu’s election in 2009, Livni raised the subject of Israel’s Jewish character with the Palestinian negotiating team. ...

...the Palestine Papers are in the public domain, and available to any reporters seeking to fact-check whether Netanyahu was the first to ask that the Palestinians recognize Israel as the nation-state of the Jewish people, just as Israel will recognize Palestine as the nation-state of the Palestinian people.

But the chain reaches even further back than 2007.

Read the entire Tablet piece here.

As to Jarbawi’s list of reasons why Palestinians shouldn't be expected to acknowledge the national rights of the other party to the conflict — basically non-issues such as the question of what will happen to the citizenship of Israeli Arabs if Palestinians accept the legitimacy of the Jewish state (the short answer: nothing will happen) — we’ve already discussed that here.

Posted by GI at March 6, 2014 05:21 PM


Read UNGA resolution 181 - It states "Jewish States" 30 times!

Posted by: Michael W. at March 6, 2014 06:47 PM

Ali Jarbawi should get some facts correct.
First, there was never in history any state called Palestine governed by Palestinians.
2nd, he leaves out the fact it was the 5 Arab armies who attacked Israel in 48. In the words of Palestinian leader Haj Amin Al Husseini after the Arabs attacked Israel. Husseini said, I declare a holy war, my muslim brothers! Murder the Jews! Murder them all!

Then Jarbawi is talking about not recognizing Israel as a Jewish state cause of the rights of the Palestinians in Israel.
This is pretty laughable, considering as Camera documented.
Abbas declared, “I would not agree to having Jews among the NATO forces [that might secure a peace agreement], or that there will live among us even a single Israeli on Palestinian land.�?

That kind of hatred and bigotry…? THAT is an obstacle to peace. Yet… Where’s the coverage?

Posted by: Lisa Epstein at March 9, 2014 12:06 AM

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