Achieving Peace Through Israeli Victory

Achieving Peace Through Israeli Victory, by Daniel Pipes.

I would like to see an Israeli victory and a Palestinian defeat. …

Now, these words “victory” and “defeat” are not found in the modern American vocabulary. Rather, we hear of a “compromise,” “painful concessions,” “mediation,” and the like. But … peace processes don’t work.

If you look at history (and I’m a historian), what ends conflicts is one side giving up. Now, think about it. If you and I are in a struggle, it’s only going to end when one of us gives up, at which point it’s over. Until one of us gives up, the conflict can resume. … In World War I, the Germans lost, but didn’t give up, so they gave it another try, and in World War II, the Allies forced them to give up; and note how much they benefited by giving up. So, victory is defined as imposing one’s will on one’s enemy.

We need the Israelis to impose their will on their enemy, the Palestinians. The Palestinians need to accept the permanent existence of a Jewish state. The U.S. government should encourage the Israeli government to do everything within the bounds of the practical, the moral, and the legal to effect that victory. This doesn’t mean murdering people but taking steps to compel Palestinians to give up, to cry uncle, to say, “The jig is up. We can’t continue this. We need to coexist with our neighbor.” At that point, liberated from their foul, irredentist goal of eliminating their neighbor, Palestinians can begin to build their own polity, economy, society and culture.

Ironically, the Palestinians will win even more from their defeat than will the Israelis. Israelis won’t get blown up on the way to the pizzeria, but they basically a good life economically, legally, culturally, and so forth. The Palestinian live in oppression and poverty. They can only leave that once they give up the monstrous goal of eliminating their enemy. …

Audience Member: The Palestinian base of their position is totally rooted in the Islamic narrative of victory and superiority. Is there anything that we can help them hook into in the history of Islam that might be able to help this project along?

Daniel Pipes: Good question. There are several reasons why the Palestinians have maintained this illusion that they can still win. One very important one is the Islamic doctrine that whatever territory was once controlled by Muslims must return to Muslim rule. Well, in fact that’s not the case. If you look around the world, Spain, Sicily, the Balkans, and India are no longer under Muslim rule. They once were, and they provide a model for Muslims accepting that Israel, or what they call Palestine, is also no longer under their control.

hat-tip Stephen Neil