On Veterans Day, the day set aside to honor the valiant soldiers who fought for freedom, liberty, and integrity, I started my first day researching and reporting on anti-Israel rhetoric at the United Nations. Talk about irony. I passed through the guarded gates, swiped my freshly printed ID card, and walked out to the courtyard to enter the main building. I was apprehensive to sit in on a meeting for the first time and did not know what to expect. Walking into the conference room I kept to myself and did not disclose to anyone that I was Jewish, or even more, Israeli. I glanced around the room to see the different countries that were to be represented. Amongst all the lit up blue signs placed around the tables one country caught my eye and my heart sank — Israel.
I started having memories of the first time I really learned about the the United Nations in depth with the former Ambassador to the United States and Deputy Foreign Minister of Israel, Danny Ayalon, who was a guest teacher at my school, and still serves as a constant mentor. Ambassador Ayalon, founded his own company called, The Truth About Israel, a not-for-profit social media channel to educate and train people about the true facts of Israel in today’s world via short videos, debates, and lectures. One video that greatly breaks down the foundations of the U.N. and how it discriminatorily acts toward Israel is The Truth About the U.N.
Before the meeting started I decided to brush up on my UN facts. I dimmed my screen to the lowest brightness possible, put in my earphones, and watched the five minute clip while the room settled down. After fifteen minutes of anticipation the assembly started. At that moment I was grateful that I did not go through with my idea to decorate my laptop with Israeli stickers and quotes like I had intended to do a few days prior — I don’t think the representative from the United Arab Emirates sitting next to me would have liked my decoration choice.
The meeting went on for three hours.
I won’t bother to quote every word that was said (unless you would like that, in which case I have it verbatim) and every country that deliriously denounced Israel calling it a violent “occupying force” or “apartheid state.” I thought I knew what to expect because of all the previous education I had gotten regarding all the hostility towards Israel at the U.N., but there really is a world of difference between passively hearing the blatant lies about Israel from outsides sources and actually hearing it with your own ears. I could not believe that I was sitting in a room filled with adults who were able to come together so hypocritically, at a body that was initially fashioned to represent righteousness and peace, only to criticize the sole democracy in the Middle East devoted to just those noble concepts they so visibly did not comprehend.
Many countries who spoke were the typical ones you would assume would be backwards enough to state such untruthful libels. I cannot begin to tell you how loudly I wanted to yell when the delegates of Iran and Syria were able to proudly stand up and declare Israel a violator of human rights. I’m sorry Mr. Iranian delegate, when was the last time you were honest with the world about what you really have been doing with your enriched uranium and nuclear facilities? Syria, what is your justification for Assad’s ruthless civil war that has killed thousands of his own people?
Talk about “human rights”. Sit down.
After the first half of the meeting passed there was no need for me to continue writing so much because there obviously was a pattern with each country that spoke and issued falsehoods and vilifications of Israel. Here’s a quote for you by none other than the newly established Mission of Palestine:
“People under Israel are enduring a human rights crisis and every right is infringed on with injustice. This reality shows a continued failure of a credible process to resolve the conflict”.
You call yourself Palestinian and say that people under Israel are not treated properly, but Palestinians are not under Israeli control. Maybe you are confused between Israeli Arabs who want to live under Israeli control and have access to full rights and freedoms and Palestinians who willingly rejected Israel and elected the abusive Hamas party to govern them in Gaza. Are you plagued with selective amnesia that made you forget that time thousands of Israelis withdrew from their homes in Gaza in the summer of 2005, gave their land over to the “Palestinians” in the hopes of peace, and Mahmoud Abbas, the leader who is responsible for your oppression and maltreatment, was chosen to represent you? Do you forget the Oslo Accords and Camp David Summit amongst many other Israeli attempts to promote peace with you?
As for the claim that Israel has rejected a resolution to the conflict, open Google and search,” United Nations Partition Plan for Palestine”. You will find that while Israel was in the process of working toward their independence from the British Mandate they made it a priority to think about the fate of those Palestinians living in Israel and accepted the U.N. resolution for a two state solution on November 29 1947. The organization we were sitting together at in 2015 was that same body that offered that two state solution to the Israelis and Palestinians, 68 years beforehand, and was rejected by the your people Miss Palestinian delegate. How could you come back to the U.N. and assert that Israel does not want peace when that is exactly what they voted for at the U.N. more than six decades ago? This is staunch testimony to Israel’s willpower and unbendable determination towards peace, even if it means dividing and sharing its land.
After all the countries had their fair of lies to share they kindly let Israel make a statement, which started as follows:
“Today’s meeting offers yet another window into the “theater of the absurd”. This committee has chosen to devote its valuable time to a one-sided report that distorts the truth and ignores the reality on the ground. Unfortunately, the report of the Special Committee under consideration today does not seek to advance human rights or promote Palestinian development. Nor does it bring us a single step closer to a lasting peace. Instead, it further propagates a biased narrative of the conflict and advances a clear political agenda aimed at discrediting Israel. The Government of Israel is ready to work with all those who are committed to enhancing the security, co-existence and welfare for all peoples in the region, and seeks to identify the opportunities within the challenges in a changing and profoundly volatile Middle East. Israel’s message in this regard is clear – we want to achieve a lasting peace that would end the conflict once and for all. Israel supports and seeks to promote the vision of two states for two peoples.”
The delegate continued talking about Israel’s efforts, along with the U.N.’s assistance, to service all those living under the power of Hamas in deplorable conditions and help reconstruct Gaza. The representative continued to say that although Israel is willing to help out, “The rehabilitation of Gaza must go hand-in-hand with the demilitarization of Hamas and its proxies, and with the return of the Palestinian Authority to effective governance in Gaza”.
When was the last time a State helped an adjoining State who constantly threatens its security and existence daily? When was the last time a country helped another one rebuild, knowing very well that once it is stable enough it may continue to terrorize them? It sure as hell does not happen anywhere else but with Israel, because Israel is a true partner for peace.
No other country in the world has been scrutinized over its territory like Israel has. Imagine if tomorrow Mexico decides that California is actually their land and is an illegal occupied United States territory – how long would that conflict last? Imagine if Mexico starts bombarding missiles into Southern California – how much time would the President wait until he acts in defense of his country? Israel is 22,145 km2 while the Arab world is a whopping 12,061,226 km2. The area of the State of Israel fits 545 times into the Arab World’s area, which is roughly 0.18% of their lands, with a population that is 46 times smaller than the population of the Arab countries. Clearly there is undeniable evidence of Israel’s microscopic size compared to its neighbors yet Israel is still willing, as it was then, to divide its small land for the sake of tranquility. So what is preventing the peace process from proceeding?
This past Tuesday, an interview between PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas and Israel’s Channel 10 reporter Raviv Drucker was aired, where Abbas admitted for the first time that he rejected Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert’s peace offering in 2008. Drucker said, “In the map that Olmert presented you, Israel would annex 6.3 percent [of Judea/Samaria] and compensate the Palestinians with 5.8 percent [taken from pre-1967 Israel]. What did you propose in return?” Abbas replied, “I did not agree … I rejected it out of hand.” Even though Abbas constantly has said he is open and willing to follow through with a two-state solution in reality he turned down Olmert’s peace deal and has been lying about it. Seems like nothing has changed since 1947.
As I sat in that committee meeting the solution for harmony within the region was clear to me. If there will ever be concrete hope of moving towards an agreement between the two States this newly formed “Palestinian Mission” at the U.N. must not lie or reject our offers, but rather come to an agreement with Israel to make concessions towards peace as Israel has done in 1947, 1967, 1991, 1993, 2000, 2005, and every other set of talks and treaties that have been proposed and will continue to be drafted.
Additionally, other countries of the world, who do not live amongst stabbings, shootings, rockets and attacks, must be truthful about who the real human violators are in the Middle East, because it undoubtedly is not Israel. In the past 7 weeks both Israelis and Palestinians have been injured and killed and it is time for this to stop. I am not oblivious to the fact that there is pain on both sides and that any death is tragic, but there is zero justification for the terror attacks carried out against innocent Israelis by Palestinians. Israel values every single human life and has had enough since day one of this reign of terror – the only question is, Abbas have you?