Barbara Tuchman in her landmark work "The March of Folly" defined folly as the historical recurrence by political leaders to adopt policies and strategies contrary to their own interests and the failure to seize the opportunity to advance their nation's wellbeing, despite the availability of feasible and reasonable alternatives. What we have witnessed over the past few days at the United Nations is very much contrary to what we have been told to believe by the national media, liberal American Jews as articulated best by "Uncle" Tom Friedman in his latest column, and of course all of the political parties in Israel from Kadima and leftward. We were told and warned that Israel would suffer a resounding defeat in the UN in September, that Israel had never been more isolated internationally due to PM Netanyahu and the policies of his government, that Israel must change her current policies if she wants the support of President Obama and Western Europe. During the past few months, we were taught to belief that as usual the Jews were at fault. We were told that the Arabs of Judea and Samaria are entitled to demand a state of their own without negotiating or agreeing to make peace with Israel. We were told that the United Nations will recognize Palestine, a state comprising of Judea & Samaria, and the Gaza Strip, despite the two territories being ruled separately, by factions that have actually gone to war with each other in recent years, and which disagree about the most fundamental issue of all: who is the actual representative of the Arabs in these areas?
Everything was set for the big showdown in September. Muhammad Abbas, the unelected leader of the Palestinian Authority was ready to go in for the kill and finish off Israel, and claim victory for the Arabs of Judea and Samaria, but something went wrong. Despite all the warnings and premonitions by the Left and the media in Israel, nothing really happened. To understand what didn't happen let's examine recent history and we will discover that the Arab leaders of the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) and the Palestinian Authority (PA) have been offered a Palestinian State a number of times in the past but always rejected establishing it. This began with the rejection of the 1937 Peel Commission recommendations, this rejection continued with the 1947 Partition Plan by the UN, the Taba negotiations in 2000 ending with the 2nd Intifada, and finally the rejection of PM Olmerts 2008 plan to give back 97% of Judea and Samaria and agree to the establishment of an Arab State in these areas. What is common to all of these plans is the resounding NO that the Arabs always responded without exception. This No was not due to them getting a bad deal, but they knew that any agreement even one that gave them all of their demands would require of them to recognize Israel as the National Homeland of the Jewish People, and this is unacceptable to them even till today.
Ok, lets leave past history out of this and examine recent dramatic events over the past few days. President Obama began by rightfully earning the applause of Israel for his speech at the UN and the prospect of a veto of the Palestinian resolution in Security Council, to the utter astonish of Muhammed Abbas. This was followed by the mass walkout of Western nations out of the Durban III conference leaving North Korea, Iran and Saudi Arabia to be "shining" examples of human rights making a joke out of any anti-Israel resolutions passed, and finally the referral of the issue of the establishment of a Palestinian State to the Security Council which will be laid to rest in the coming weeks quietly without fanfare and eventually join the dustbin of history similar to all the other lost opportunities by Arab leaders.
As we assess and internalize these events of the past week, I wonder if the prophets of doom and the forbearers of disaster can appreciate the tectonic change that occurred this week in the world's lack of patience for the Arab tendency to posture and position rather than behave pragmatically and rationally. I anticipate that in the coming months and years, Israel's adherence to historical truth and honest public diplomacy will be rewarded by a sympathetic understanding by those nations who have had enough of those nations and organizations that are wasting everyone's time.
I will conclude with the item concerning the message that Muhammed Abbas decided upon by appointing a mother of 5 Arab terrorists to represent the Palestinian bid for statehood. It’s eminently fitting that the woman the Palestinian Authority chose to formally launch its statehood bid is a proud mother of five murderers, one of whom one is now dead while the other four are serving life sentences in Israel. After all, a woman who teaches her sons to murder Israelis even at the expense of their own welfare is the perfect emblem of a Palestinian state dedicated to destroying Israel even at the expense of its people’s welfare. The March of Folly has never been greater than this past week at the UN. Israel emerged unscathed and justified in her ability to defend her legitimate national needs. I for one am proud to be a member of the Jewish nation and a resident of Israel. Lets hope and pray that our leaders continue and stand up and resist the March of Folly.