Published On:03 November 2011
Posted by Indian Muslim Observer

Unesco vote on Palestine also shows the US is increasingly isolated on Israel

The Unesco vote granting full membership to Palestine isn't an event that will make much of an immediate difference on the ground, but in its symbolism, it is still historic. It also bolsters Palestine's bid for membership of other UN bodies as well as its bid for a legally-accepted place in the United Nations itself. India should, like it did in this vote, support that goal.

That bid for official recognition as a state is part of the new strategy launched by the Palestinians in the face of stalled diplomatic efforts to resolve the Palestine-Israel conflict. And the major reason for the lack of movement on that front is Israeli obduracy, immune even to US pressure, expanding settlements on the West Bank being a case in point. A 1990s law that requires the US to stop funding UN entities that admit Palestine as a member will now cut off US funds for Unesco.

This simultaneously weakens the credibility of American efforts to broker a deal between Israel and Palestine and enhances the role of European powers such as France, Austria and Norway, who voted in favour of the Palestinians at Unesco. This is yet another instance of Washington's inertia in altering its obsolete policy on Israel harming American interests, apart from providing fodder to extremist Islamist ideologies.

The Arab spring and the new wave of popular assertion it heralds in the region makes Israeli aggression and US acquiescence all the more untenable. Creation of a viable Palestinian state is the sole possible solution to this bitter dispute, arguably the biggest cause of friction between Muslim nations and the West.

Tricky issues do remain: the question of Jerusalem, the rights of Palestinian refugees in other countries, fractured leadership of the Palestinians. But Israeli hawkishness, its gobbling up more and more land, illegally, has effectively gridlocked negotiations that can provide a way out on these issues.

The Palestinian bid for UN recognition is a bold but desperate move by the Palestinian Authority against Israeli intransigence. The US may veto the bid, but the world should let the latter and Israel know they are becoming increasingly isolated on this issue.

(Courtesy: The Economic Times)

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Posted by Indian Muslim Observer on November 03, 2011. Filed under , , . You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Feel free to leave a response

By Indian Muslim Observer on November 03, 2011. Filed under , , . Follow any responses to the RSS 2.0. Leave a response

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