Photo: Reuters
'What pushes European countries to make a move which has absolutely no logic?'
Photo: Reuters
Noah Klieger

Is 'Palestine' Europe's only problem?

Op-ed: Even Abbas and his people know there will be no Palestinian state without Israel's consent. So why are European countries rushing to recognize a nonexistent state?

The lower house of the French Parliament has voted in favor of recognizing a state called Palestine. The same resolution will undoubtedly be adopted in a few days by the upper house as well, making the decision official – yet non-binding as far as the government is concerned.



Sweden was the first European state to make the odd decision to recognize a state that doesn’t actually exist. Spain and Britain are expected to follow in its footsteps in the near future.


With all my willingness to understand these decisions – which are anyway devoid of meaning – I just can't comprehend what pushes European countries to make a move which has absolutely no logic or benefit for that inexistent Palestine. Don't the governments of those countries have their own problems which required immediate attention?


Take French President François Hollande, for example. The man who broke the unpopularity record in his country must have more important things to do than, as he stated in recent days, work vigorously for two years to bring about peace between Israel and the Palestinians – and that is why it is important for France to recognize the Palestinian state.


It's very strange that he's prepared to recognize a state which doesn’t even exist. The fact that more than 10% of France's citizens are Muslim cannot serve as an excuse either, as it is hard to know whether they will all vote for Hollande's party in the next elections.


It's also very strange that the Spanish government believes it should recognize Palestine while fighting an all-out war against the Catalans' independence ambitions. An independent Catalonia? Heaven forbid. And what about the fact that most of the region's residents are in favor of separating from Madrid? It's easier to recognize Palestine, a move which most Spaniards couldn’t care less about, than take care of the real domestic problems, including the shaky economic situation.


In Britain, David Cameron's government put a lot of effort and work in fighting the Scottish people's independence ambitions. It succeeded, but London knows very well that this is only a temporary victory and that the Scots will come back shortly and demand another referendum about separating from Britain.


But alongside the effort to thwart the Scottish people's ambitions, the London parliament did not forget Palestine. Independence for the Scots? Heaven forbid. But for Palestine, no problem. Why Britain has a very high percentage of Muslim residents as well.


These acts of recognition are useless. Do they mean that there is indeed a Palestinian state? Absolutely not. They contain a PR trick, but no essence. Even Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas and his people understand very well that all the decisions and declarations will not advance their ambitions.


Without Israel's consent, there will never be a Palestinian state. They will be able to get one only through an agreement with us. Because when it comes to this issue, the small Israel equals the huge bloc of dozens of Arab and Muslim states and their supporters wherever they are.


If they wish to fulfill their ambitions, the Palestinians had better realize that as soon as possible.


פרסום ראשון: 12.07.14, 09:34
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