On Dec. 23, a one-sided, anti-Israel resolution (Resolution 2334) was brought to the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) for a vote. AIPAC is deeply disturbed that the Obama Administration did not exercise America’s veto—and instead abstained, allowing this destructive resolution to pass. This move came despite overwhelming bipartisan majorities of Congress urging the Administration to maintain its longstanding policy of vetoing such measures.
This resolution does not advance Israeli-Palestinian peace. In fact, it sends the exact opposite message and further encourages Palestinian leadership to continue to bypass direct, bilateral negotiations with Israel in favor of unilateral actions at international bodies. Furthermore, it also made the goal of peace more elusive by reinterpreting UNSC Resolution 242, providing the recalcitrant Palestinian leadership with further incentive not to make the tough compromises necessary for peace.
Over the past eight years, Israel has repeatedly tried to advance the negotiations process, including the imposition of a settlement moratorium and the release of imprisoned Palestinian terrorists—a step that was deeply difficult for the Israeli people. In response, the Palestinians made no significant gesture to advance the cause of peace. Yet, the intransigence of the Palestinian leadership is now being rewarded by the administration and others through destructive resolutions and counterproductive attempts to internationalize the conflict.
The UNSC is not the proper venue for resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Instead of allowing outside parties to irresponsibly set out their own terms, conditions or parameters for an agreement, the United States should pressure the Palestinian leadership to return without preconditions to the negotiating table with the Israelis—the appropriate venue to forge a lasting resolution of the conflict and achieve the objective of a two-state solution.
Congress has already pushed back against the destructive United Nations resolution. AIPAC applauds the House of Representatives for overwhelmingly adopting H. Res. 11, a bipartisan resolution approved on Jan. 5 that strongly objects to UNSC Resolution 2334 because it both undermines the prospects of productive, bilateral Israeli-Palestinian negotiations and one-sidedly criticizes Israel. The Senate is currently considering a similar measure (S. Res. 6), and we urge senators to join their colleagues in the House and adopt the resolution.
Ultimately, a just and lasting peace will only come about through these five principles:
Talks must be direct and bilateral.
A solution cannot be imposed on the parties.
Both sides must be willing to make key compromises.
Disagreements should be resolved privately.
The United States must support and work closely with Israel.
Moving forward, we also will urge the incoming administration to stand firm with Israel in the international community so as to mitigate negative fallout from this vote, and to ensure that no future resolutions of this nature are adopted.
Tags: Near East Report Near-East-Report