Sunday, September 25, 2011

Spain Recognizes Israel as Jewish State

In what is seen as a shocking turnaround, Spain -- traditionally considered one of the most pro-Palestinian EU states -- has announced that it recognizes Israel "as the embodiment of the project to create a homeland for the Jewish people." In accordance with this, Spain also asserted that the Palestinian refugee problem should be resolved in a way that does not threaten Israel's Jewish demographic character.

This comes in the midst of an aggressive push by the Palestinian Authority for statehood recognition at the UN. One of the reasons the UN bid bothers me is that the UN -- being institutionally biased -- is a forum in which Palestinians don't have to concede anything to be given everything they want. It is an end-run around negotiations, because a considerable portion of the UN membership body doesn't think Israel has rights in the first place. It's effectively cost-free for Palestine, as it garners a huge (albeit symbolic) victory in exchange for nothing on their end.

But Spain's action suggests that some of the more prominent states supporting Palestinian statehood are going to tell the PA what it needs to hear -- that is, that a final status agreement is going to include concessions that respect Jewish and Israeli rights too. In others words, if the PA is going to press the issue, every issue has to be pressed -- including those Palestinians would like not to think about.

1 comment:

iPost2u said...

Good article. It is very important that Spain has recognized Israel as a Jewish state.