I told President Obama when I was in Washington that if we could agree on the substance, then the terminology would not pose a problem.
And here is the substance that I now state clearly:
If we receive this guarantee regarding demilitarization and Israel’s security needs, and if the Palestinians recognize Israel as the State of the Jewish people, then we will be ready in a future peace agreement to reach a solution where a demilitarized Palestinian state exists alongside the Jewish state.
- Bibi Netanyahu
In defining his vision of Peace, Bibi introduced no new substance, just new terminology. He restated his vision of “autonomy-plus” but this time called it a “demilitarized Palestinian state”.
The question is, how important were his choice of words, and how should we respond to them?
Has Bibi placed us on the precipice of another slippery slope like Madrid, where no one remembers the incredible things Shamir said, but only that he went there?
Certainly Obama is satisfied that the taboo words were stated.
Was the entire speech merely a delivery system for these 2 little words (3 actually, but already we see the world and Obama are ignoring the word 'demilitarized')?
Will the US and the world now ignore the other 2966 words of the speech and exclusively focus on these two, without its basic prerequisites and fundamentals?
It would appear that the rest of the speech has been lost in the void.
It would appear that the world doesn’t even care to add the word “demilitarized” in front of it, and already consider it superfluous.
It then behooves us and the Israeli government to take certain concrete steps ourselves to anchor ourselves and not let the slide begin.
Bibi and the government must now be made to work to get all the EU countries, US Senators and Congressmen - and even Obama - to always add the word “demilitarized” in front of “Palestinian State”.
And Israel must openly and forcefully never accept hearing it from them without the prefix attached.
If unfortunately 'Palestinian State' is going to be added to the political lexicon, then the proper usage must be “demilitarized Palestinian state”, and nothing less.
And our Israeli representatives must be Chutzpadik, as only Israelis can be, even to the point of interrupting a foreign official in the middle of a joint statement if that key word is mislaid.
Nothing less will help block that slippery slide.
Wherever I am, my blog turns towards Eretz Yisrael טובה הארץ מאד מאד