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Demanding an ethnically cleansed state free of Jews

As Published in The Hill

Does the Obama administration subscribe to the idea that a hypothetical Palestinian state would require that it be ethnically cleansed of all Jews?

In September, Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu exposed the inconvenient truth that Palestinians insist that their “state” will have no Jews — not a single one. In response, a U.S. State Department spokesperson criticized Netanyahu’s remarks as “inappropriate and unhelpful” and chose to conflate them with the issue of what they believe to be illegal “settlements” in Judea/Samaria (a.k.a. the West Bank).

According to Netanyahu, “The Palestinian leadership actually demands a Palestinian state with one precondition: no Jews! There’s a phrase for that. It’s called ethnic cleansing... This demand is outrageous…. Even more outrageous is that the world doesn’t find this outrageous.”

Palestinian President Abbas has been clear about Palestinian intentions. In July 2013 he proclaimed, “In a final resolution, we would not see the presence of a single Israeli – civilian or soldier – on our lands.” Obviously, he didn’t mean Israeli Arabs; he meant Jews. Chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat declared in 2014, “No settler (Jew) will be permitted to stay in a Palestinian state, not one.”

The Obama administration never condemned these racist statements, but immediately criticized Netanyahu’s condemnation of them.

Palestinian anti-Semitism is so extreme that they cannot tolerate a single Jew setting foot in “their state.”

Arab hatred against Jews started well before the 1948 establishment of Israel. Jewish communities were under constant attack by Arabs intent on killing and terrorizing them. Post-1948, 850,000 Jews were expelled as refugees from neighboring Arab states where their families had lived for centuries.

The 1993 Oslo Accords gave the Palestinian Authority civilian control over 98 percent of the Palestinian population. Since then, Palestinians have used their media, mosques, schools and summer camps to reinforce Jew-hatred and declare that a Palestinian state in the West Bank and Jerusalem will be the first step in their jihad to obliterate Israel and expand their state “from the (Jordan) river to the (Mediterranean) sea.” Abbas, in his September UN speech, criticized Britain’s 1917 Balfour Declaration for giving “the land of Palestine to another people.”

As an indigenous people, Jewish rights to this land were recognized under international law at San Remo, the League of Nations’ Mandate for Palestine, and the U.N. Charter, Section 80 — long before the term "Palestinian" was ever invented to refer to a heterogeneous Arab population that started migrating to this territory during the latter years of the Ottoman Empire. A Palestinian state created by ethnically cleansing Jews from their ancestral lands would contravene the precepts of the 2007 U.N. Declaration on Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

Jewish habitation in Judea/Samaria, the Biblical cradle of Jewish civilization, has existed from antiquity to modern times – until, in 1949, Jordan conquered this area and ruthlessly expelled all Jews and obliterated all historical vestiges of Jewish presence. This territory was Jew-free for nineteen years — exactly what the Palestinians demand today.

Northwestern University Law Professor Eugene Kontorovich calls the demand for a Jew-free Palestine unprecedented, noting, “There is simply no support in international practice for the expulsion of settlers…. In the many situations involving settlers around the world — East Timor, Cambodia or the UN-mediated peace plan for Western Sahara and Cyprus — the international community has never supported expulsion, and consistently backed plans allowing the settlers to remain in a new state.”

At issue is the important right of Jews, as indigenous inhabitants, to reside in their ancient homeland. Imagine the uproar if, in a two-state solution, Israeli Arabs were forced to leave Israel.

It is sheer hypocrisy that the Palestinians demand a "right of return" of millions of Arabs to Israel (demographically destroying the Jewish state) while insisting that their future state would be cleansed of all Jews.

Obama came into office determined to put daylight between Israel and the United States. He demonstrated a reckless disregard for Israel’s security to pursue an Iranian nuclear deal on Iran’s terms. And now he may be preparing an attempt to force the creation of a Palestinian state on Palestinian terms. Is Obama prepared to betray Israel by supporting a policy of ethnic cleansing to create a Jew-free Palestinian state bent on Israel’s destruction?

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