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Have Israel's UN Roots Become Weeds?

Have Israel's UN Roots Become Weeds?

Aerial view of midtown Manhattan and the United Nations in New York City, 2007. (Stan Honda/AFP/Getty Images)

Jason Langsner By Saturday, 24 December 2016 06:34 PM EST Current | Bio | Archive

The United Nations Security Council on December 23, 2016, passed an anti-Israel resolution one day after it was originally planned to be voted on. The Obama Administration did not veto the resolution that called for Israel to “immediately and completely cease all settlement activities in the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem.”

This was not the Hanukkah or Christmas gift that the Jewish and Christian citizens of Israel asked for.

This unilateral step by the Obama Administration falls far from the position of our Congress. Two months ago, 88 members of the U.S. Senate signed a letter to President Obama that said, “Even well-intentioned initiatives at the United Nations risk locking the parties into positions that will make it more difficult to return to the negotiation table and make the compromises necessary for peace.”

Beyond the 88 U.S. Senators that signed the letter, three didn’t sign it because the language wasn’t pro-Israel enough. That is over 90 percent of the U.S. Senate that did not want the Obama Administration to change American foreign policy towards Israel less than one month before he leaves office.

President-elect Donald Trump additionally does not support this resolution and his choice for U.S. Ambassador to Israel has a far different approach to Israel's challenges.

This resolution is a far cry from the original roots of how the modern Jewish Democratic State of Israel was born.

In 1947 the United Nations General Assembly approved Resolution 181, which called for the creation of a Jewish State and an Arab state in the then-British controlled Palestinian Mandate of Eretz Israel (“The Land of Israel”). The vote passed on November 29 with 33 votes in favor, 13 votes against the proposal, 10 nations abstaining, and a single country voting absent.

The Jews of Eretz Israel accepted the proposal. The Arabs did not.

The 1947 U.N. Partition Plan would have given Israel 56 percent of the land and would have encompassed approximately 80 percent of the Jewish inhabitants of the land – although the 56 percent number is a bit inflated as a large portion of the land was in the barren Negev desert. The proposal also did not include Jerusalem as a part of the Jewish land. But the Jewish community accepted the plan and many danced in the streets as the Zionist dream of a return to our historic homeland was nearly realized based on the Jewish people’s pure will. Because as Theodor Herzl, the father of modern Zionism, famously said, “if you will it, it is no dream.”

Although the concept of a Palestinian identity wouldn’t be created for another 20 years via the Palestinian Liberation Organization’s establishment, a two-state solution could have been realized then if only the Arabs accepted the partition plan.

On the last day of the British Mandate, May 14, 1948, the Jewish community of Eretz Israel declared its independence in Tel Aviv. Two days prior in the city, the Minhelet HaAm ("People's Administration") had a split vote with six votes in favor of independence and four opposed. Three of the administration members couldn’t attend as two couldn’t leave the besieged Jerusalem and one was in the United States.

Fast forward back to today and the anti-Israel bias that poisons the United Nations.

Outgoing U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon further said that this bias “in many cases, rather than helping the Palestinian cause…has hampered the ability of the UN to fulfill its role effectively.”

"The secretary-general admitted the clear truth — the UN’s hypocrisy towards Israel has broken records over the past decade. During this time the UN passed 223 resolutions condemning Israel while only eight resolutions condemning the Syrian regime as it has massacred its citizens over the past six years," said Israel's Permanent Representative to the UN, Danny Danon.

The unbreakable friendship between the United States and Israel will endure beyond this UN Security Council Resolution. And it will not solve any of Israel's security challenges. It is purely a political maneuver that will cause a migraine to those who seek a negotiated peace between the Israeli and Palestinian people.

Jason Langsner is an active member of the American Jewish professional community. Langsner formerly ran the digital strategy for B'nai B'rith International, the Global Voice of the Jewish Community, and participated in the Israel Diplomatic Fellowship program at the Embassy of Israel in Washington, D.C. He has been featured in The Times of Israel, The Jerusalem Post, Haaretz, the Israel Video Network, Washington Jewish Week,, and other publications. For more of his reports, Go Here Now.

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The unbreakable friendship between the United States and Israel will endure beyond this UN Security Council Resolution. And it will not solve any of Israel's security challenges.
israel, united nations security council
Saturday, 24 December 2016 06:34 PM
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