Yesterday, there was a lot of media attention on President Trump’s comment referring to the Manchester terror attack as the act of “evil losers.” This was a breath of fresh air coming from an American president. The problem is that he made those comments from Bethlehem, Israel, where he met with the ultimate evil losers – the PLO leadership – and fell into the trap of his predecessors, promoting a phantom peace process built upon the willful blindness of Mahmoud Abbas and the Islamic supremacist ideology he represents. Trump will never succeed in combatting Islamic supremacism where his predecessors failed until he understands that the Palestinians are the epicenter of jihad and serve as the catalysts of Islamic supremacism.
Israel as the canary in the coal mine
Terrorism is not the problem; it’s a tactic of the problem. The problem is Islamic supremacism rooted in the practice of Sharia-based Islam, which is fueled by a political ideology determined to dominate and subjugate the West by force or through subversion. On the 50th anniversary of Israel’s liberation of Judea, Samaria, and Jerusalem from this ideology, it’s important to reflect on why the Israelis were the first western victims of this ideology, how they are the canary in the coal mine, and how we will never successfully combat the problem unless we take off the blinders on the Palestinians and what they represent.
The truth about the “Middle East conflict”
After WWI, when the Allied powers were first forming nation-states in the Middle East, they earmarked modern-day Syria, Iraq, and Saudi Arabia as Arab Muslim states. Modern-day Lebanon was to be a Christian state, and the “Palestine Mandate” – which included modern-day Israel and Jordan — was to be used for a Jewish state. However, due to tremendous Arab pressure and the desire of the British to choose the path of least resistance, they established in 1922 all of the land to the east of the Jordan River as the Emirate of Transjordan, essentially excluding 77 percent of the original Mandate of Palestine from the Jewish state. It became a full-fledged Arab state in 1946, just two years before the creation of modern-day Israel. Lebanon was soon gobbled up by the same Islamists, beginning a slow bleed of the Christians living there in the ensuing decades.
To this day, the only binding resolution of international law that has never been countermanded is this 1922 Mandate for Palestine. The territory under the Palestine Mandate, along with Iraq, was given to Britain as a temporary trustee, based on the resolution between the four principal Allied Powers in April 1920 at the San Remo Conference in Italy, which was signed by 51 nations.
The legality of the 1922 Mandate was affirmed that same year by the U.S. Congress in H.J. Res. 360 and signed by President Warren Harding.
Once the League of Nations was disbanded and the United Nations took its place, the member states agreed to maintain all agreements and not “alter in any manner the rights whatsoever of any states or any peoples or the terms of existing international instruments to which Members of the United Nations may respectively be parties” (Article 80, UN Charter). The Mandate for Palestine adopted by the League of Nations was the last legally binding document. In Article 5 of the mandate, it explicitly states, “The Mandatory shall be responsible for seeing that no Palestine territory shall be ceded or leased to, or in any way placed under the control of the Government of any foreign Power.”
Accordingly, to this very day, all Jewish settlements in Judea and Samaria are legal, while all unauthorized Arab settlements are illegal.
A history lesson: It’s not about land; it’s about jihad
The binding agreement from the League of Nations never came to fruition because the Islamic supremacist ideology of the local Muslim leaders wouldn’t allow Jews to live in peace and establish a state in the remaining 23 percent of the mandate, land that is 1/640th the size of modern-day Muslim lands.
Throughout the ’20s and ’30s, local Arabs and their surrounding neighbors fomented a violent jihad against the Jews living in their nascent homeland. The riots were incited by Grand Mufti Hajj Amin al-Hussein, a close ally of Hitler who was eventually expelled from the region and fled to Germany. After much turmoil and Arab rioting, in 1947, the UN recommended a plan via non-binding Resolution 181 to partition off most of the land to the west of the Jordan River for a new Arab state and a tiny swath of non-contiguous land, mainly along the Mediterranean coast, for a Jewish state. Those borders were indefensible, and the crafters of the plan knew it. That was the point.
Yet Israeli leaders were willing to accept it. Their Arab neighbors, though, were not willing to accept anything short of annihilating the Jewish presence in the region. By rejecting this recommendation, which was non-binding to begin with, the Arabs permanently lost any legal or moral grounds for demanding another state west of the Jordan River.
In 1948, the neighboring countries launched what Arab League Secretary General Azzam Pasha referred to as “a war of extermination” against the Jews. After over a year of fighting, God’s providence allowed a ragtag group of Jewish militia forces to fight off the forces of the Arab Legion, allowing them to gain more breathing room in the South and Galilee. Israel now grew to 6.7 percent of the original proposal and 30 percent of the 1922 Mandate.
While Jordan remained in control of Judea and Samaria, and Egypt conquered the Gaza Strip, the Arab communities in those areas – many of whom had recently immigrated to those territories – never established a unique Arab “Palestinian” state or expressed a desire to do so. Those territories always remained under the control of Jordan and Egypt. Meanwhile, no nation recognized Jordan’s occupation of Judea and Samaria and its renaming those territories as the “West Bank” (of Jordan) because it was completely illegal. The Jordanians and Egyptians also expelled all the Jews who had lived there for generations.
This was important in setting the stage for the next major war in 1967, in which Jordan and Egypt lost those territories to Israel in yet another war of aggression. Once again, Jordan, Egypt, and Syria sought to destroy Israel and wipe out every Jew in the land. But in a matter of six days, God performed one of the greatest miracles in the modern era, and the collective Arab armies were kicked out of the entire area. Egypt lost the Gaza Strip and the Sinai Peninsula, Syria lost the Golan Heights, and Jordan lost “the West Bank.”
Beginning in the ’70s, after another failed attempt to destroy Israel in the Yom Kippur War, the jihadists switched tactics. Rather than try to destroy Israel with conventional forces from neighboring countries, the promoted Yasser Arafat and the PLO began to foment this myth of a distinct Arab “Palestinian” entity entitled to statehood west of the Jordan River – outside the original “Palestinian” state of Jordan (comprising 77 percent of the Palestine Mandate). Thanks to leftist policies in Israel and beginning with President Clinton, we began recognizing Arafat, the modern-day architect of jihad, as a “man of peace.” It took 10 years for our government to finally realize that this monster wasn’t a man of peace. Yet over a decade later, we still recognize his deputy, Abbas as a “man of peace.”
This illusion is what is driving the push for Israel to surrender the remainder of Judea and Samaria after it has already ceded well over 90 percent of the lands it won in defensive wars – from Sinai and Gaza to south Lebanon.
The Palestinians are not the solution to peace; they are the catalysts of war
Abbas leads an army of hate, a civilization built on the very ideology we claim to be fighting. Even “conservative” western leaders continue to get sucked into this willful blindness of somehow isolating the Palestinian jihad from the global jihad and explaining it away as the consequence of a local land dispute. In reality, the Palestinians are the trailblazers of modern jihad. From suicide bombings with shrapnel to vehicular attacks and random stabbings, they have propagated the tools of jihad now replicated around the world. In fact, suicide bombing is probably the only characteristic distinguishing jihadists who call themselves Palestinian from their Egyptian, Syrian, and Jordanian brethren. That is their only contribution to society.
How can we fight jihad in the West while spending our entire diplomatic capital on creating a state for the trailblazers of that jihad? How can we reward jihadists for their supremacist ideology? When the president talks about making “a deal,” that means creating a Jew-free state in Judea (the irony!), where Jews must be uprooted from their homes and their cemeteries disinterred (this was done during the Gaza pullout). At the same time, Arabs would still be allowed to live in the remaining microscopic Israel. In fact, the reason there are demographic issues in the so-called West Bank in the first place is because every time Arabs illegally occupied it, they killed or expelled all the Jews. Yet when Jews liberated it, they didn’t return the favor. Thus they had to start from zero every time. Why should we reward the evil supremacist ideology by allowing them to achieve the fruits of their supremacism?
President Trump is definitely in a better place than the past president when it comes to identifying the evil losers. But until he turns to Abbas and the PLO leadership and calls them evil losers, he will continue promoting willful blindness towards the actual evil we are fighting. It’s not too late for him to abandon the mistakes of the first few months and finally stick a fork in the PLO jihad. That would drain the ultimate swamp championed and idolized by the worst elements of the American and global political establishment.
If the Manchester attacker was Palestinian and the victims Israeli, the terrorist's family would receive a stipend from Mahmoud Abbas. pic.twitter.com/gmTqzYwZwY— Benjamin Netanyahu (@netanyahu) May 23, 2017
Daniel Horowitz is a senior editor of Conservative Review. Follow him on Twitter @RMConservative.