UNSC Resolution 2334 affirmed that that Israel’s establishment of settlements in Palestinian territory occupied since 1967, including East Jerusalem, had no legal validity, constituting a flagrant violation under international law and a major obstacle to the vision of two States living side-by-side in peace and security, within internationally recognised borders. It demanded ‘that Israel immediately and completely cease all settlement activities in the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem’, said that it would not recognise ‘any changes to the 1967 lines, including with regard to Jerusalem, other than those agreed by the parties through negotiations’ and said that the settlements were ‘imperilling the two state solution.’
This means that Israel should withdraw from all territories it has occupied in Judea and Samaria (the West Bank) since 1967, including the Old City of Jerusalem and the suburbs surrounding Jerusalem. It should return to what have been described as the ‘suicide borders’, nine miles wide at its narrowest point between the hills of Samaria and the Mediterranean Sea. There is no obligation on the Palestinians to recognise Israel as a Jewish State and commit to permanent peace with Israel. Israel has made it clear that under no circumstances will it agree to such a proposal and considers the resolution an extremely hostile one.
The resolution was proposed by four non permanent members of the Security Council, Malaysia, New Zealand, Senegal and Venezuela. Britain voted for the motion, while the United States broke with its usual practice of vetoing anti Israel resolutions and abstained. Mr Netanyahu accused the Obama Administration of masterminding the resolution: “From the information that we have, we have no doubt that the Obama administration initiated it, stood behind it, coordinated on the wording and demanded that it be passed,” Netanyahu said in a statement. “This is, of course, in complete contradiction of the traditional American policy that was committed to not trying to dictate terms for a permanent agreement, like any issue related to them in the Security Council, and, of course, the explicit commitment of President Obama himself, in 2011, to refrain from such steps.”
David Keyes, spokesman for the Prime Minister’s Office, said that Israel had “ironclad information” that the US had worked with the Palestinians on the resolution. This was confirmed by news from Egypt that US Secretary of State John Kerry met with senior Palestinian officials the week before the resolution was passed to help draft the wording. John Kerry also flew into Wellington, New Zealand, for two days of talks with Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully on November 12 and 13 to help him formulate the Anti Israel motion. The day after agreeing to this a 6.5 earthquake shook New Zealand (and Wellington in particular), the most serious earthquake to hit New Zealand causing extensive damage to communications and property, which shows what God thought of it.
This act is seen as Obama’s revenge on Netanyahu for not playing ball with his plan for setting up a Palestinian state and giving him the legacy of being the President who brought peace to the Middle East. It is also timed to put a UN Security Council resolution in place before Donald Trump takes over as US President. Trump has resolved to take a different line on Israel and is supportive of Israel’s claim to Jerusalem and the settlements in Judea and Samaria.
After the UN resolution John Kerry gave an hour long speech, putting the blame for the failure of the ‘two state solution’ on Israel’s settlement policy and barely mentioning Palestinian terrorism against Israel. His speech suggested parameters for an Israeli-Palestinian deal, that should be approved at the Paris Peace conference on January 15th. This conference, convened by the French, will be attended by representatives of world powers engaged in the Middle East conflict, without Israel or the Palestinian Authority being present. Israel fears its conclusion could then be put to a vote at the Security Council before Trump takes office on January 20th.
The Palestinian Authority (PA) see this as is a major victory in their campaign to internationalise the conflict and condemn Israel at International organisations, isolating it and depicting it as a country that rejects peace with the Arabs. PA President Abbas has said, ‘This proves that the world rejects Israeli settlements as illegal, and acknowledges they were established on our occupied land, including east Jerusalem.” They also see it as meaning they can forget about negotiating with Israel and just pressure the international community to force Israel to surrender to their demands. If not Israel will be isolated in the international community and depicted as a country that rejects peace with its Arab neighbours. They are also seeking to exploit the UNSC resolution to promote boycotts, divestment and sanctions against Israel. PA Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki said that because of the resolution, “It will now be possible to impose a boycott on the settlements, and even employ legal sanctions against companies that work with them.”
One of Abbas’s close associates, Mohamed Shtayyeh, hinted that the UNSC resolution should be regarded as a green light not only to boycott Israel, but also to use violence against it. He said that this is the time to “bolster the popular resistance” against Israel. “Popular resistance” is code for throwing stones and petrol bombs and carrying out stabbing and car-ramming attacks against Israelis. He also said, “Israel used to say that Jerusalem is its united capital, and that the 1967 borders are not the final borders, thereby claiming ownership of Palestinian territories, but now the world has determined otherwise.” He then called on the European Union to view and adopt the French initiative as a “continental effort,” and said that doing so would demonstrate that only multilateral negotiations can succeed — rather than the failed bilateral ones the US has promoted over the years. This follows the Palestinian narrative that Jews have no historical, religious or emotional attachment to Jerusalem, or any other part of Israel. Sheikh Ekrimah Sabri, a leading Palestinian Islamic cleric and preacher at the Al-Aqsa Mosque, was quick to declare that the Western Wall, the holiest Jewish site in Jerusalem, belongs only to Muslims. He referred to it by its Islamic name, ‘The Al-Buraq Wall’ part of the Al-Aqsa Mosque which Muslims cannot give up.”
Hamas and Islamic Jihad, the two groups that seek the elimination of Israel, are also celebrating. The two Gaza-based groups see the resolution as another step toward achieving their goal of replacing Israel with an Islamic empire. Leaders and spokesmen of Hamas and Islamic Jihad were among the first Palestinians to heap praise on the UNSC members who voted in favour of the resolution. They are also openly stating that the resolution authorises them to step up the “resistance” against Israel in order to “liberate all of Palestine.” When Hamas talks about “resistance,” it means launching suicide bombings and rockets against Israel.
As far as Hamas is concerned the whole of Israel is an illegal settlement and their ultimate plan is to use any territory which Israel withdraws from as a base from which to attack and destroy Israel. Although for tactical reasons the PLO, which is the power behind the Palestinian Authority, does not say publicly that this is their view, there is plenty of evidence to say that it remains their goal also. This is why Netanyahu has insisted that any peace settlement between Israel and the Palestinians involves the Palestinians recognising Israel as a ‘Jewish State’ and therefore accepting its right to exist in peace and security with its neighbours. The Palestinian Authority has consistently refused to do this.
Thus, the UNSC resolution already has had several consequences, none of which will enhance peace between Israelis and Palestinians. Apart from giving a green light to Palestinian groups that wish to destroy Israel, the resolution has prompted Abbas and the Palestinian Authority to toughen their stance, and appear to be more radical than the radicals. Far from moving the region toward peace, the resolution has encouraged the Palestinians to move forward in two parallel paths — one toward a diplomatic confrontation with Israel in the international arena, and the other in increased terror attacks against its people. This is the harmful legacy of the Obama Administration.
So Israel sees this as a resolution that is a trigger, intentional or not, for renewed bloodshed. The Palestinians will see it as a demand that Israel hands over all territory taken in 1967, including the Old City of Jerusalem and the suburbs around Jerusalem, all Israeli towns built in the area of Judea and Samaria since 1967. They will be under no requirement to promise to a permanent peace with Israel. No Palestinian negotiator can demand less than the U.N. has already given the Palestinians. However no Israeli can give away Israel’s holiest sites or uproot the hundreds of thousands of settlers who dwell east of an armistice line that was never meant or expected to be a border. Some on the right wing of Israeli politics are saying that they should ignore the UN and go ahead and annex the territories where there are Jewish settlements. Naftali Bennett, a minister in Israel’s government has said, ‘It’s time to move from withdrawals to sovereignty. The conclusion is to stop marching down the suicidal path to a Palestinian state and apply the law of Israel in Maaleh Adumim, the Jordan Valley, Ofra and all of Area C as soon as possible.’ Such a move could well set off a war with the surrounding nations against Israel, as Muslim nations seek to restore Jerusalem to Muslim rule by force.
All of this means that the world has taken a giant step towards the end time biblical scenario. It ties in with the prophecy of Zechariah: ‘Behold, I will make Jerusalem a cup of drunkenness to all the surrounding peoples, when they lay siege against Judah and Jerusalem. And it shall happen in that day that I will make Jerusalem a very heavy stone for all peoples; all who would heave it away will surely be cut in pieces, though all nations of the earth are gathered against it.’ Zechariah 12.3. This means that there is a time coming when the status of Jerusalem is going to be a matter of concern to all nations (the UN) and that those who come against it are going to suffer as a result. The prophecy of Joel 3.1-2 tells of a time when the nations of the world will ‘divide My land,’ leading to a world war over Jerusalem: ‘For behold, in those days and at that time, when I bring back the captives of Judah and Jerusalem, I will also gather all nations, and bring them down to the Valley of Jehoshaphat; and I will enter into judgment with them there on account of My people, My heritage Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations; They have also divided up My land.’
By supporting this motion nations are placing themselves under God’s judgement and will suffer for it. Israel too will enter a time of tribulation, but God will save them out of it as we read in Jeremiah 30. The Orthodox Jewish website ‘Breaking Israel News’ carries an article linking this to Ezekiel 38-9 in a talk circulating widely on the Internet by Eli Soble who asserts that this UN decision is “a sign of redemption, a sign that Moshiach (Messiah) is close” that the nations are trying to take Jerusalem and Israel away from the Jewish people. “The great Jewish prophecy of Gog and Magog is…the last great barrier before we reach redemption, and it’s appearing, it’s materialising, right before our eyes,” Soble announced. He mentioned a recent news article in Reuters about the upcoming Middle East peace conference scheduled for January 15 in France. Reuters stated that France will call together “some 70 countries” in Paris to discuss the situation in Israel. Soble explained that the Torah considers the phrase “70 nations” to symbolise all the nations of the world, even if the actual number exceeds 70. www.breakingisraelnews.com/81280
From the Christian point of view this is yet another sign of the soon coming of Yeshua the Messiah, who said, ‘When you see these things begin to happen, look up and lift up your heads, because your redemption draws near.’ Luke 21.28. As the armies gather around Jerusalem He will return in power and glory, to stand on the Mount of Olives, bring an end to the war and set up His Messianic kingdom, ruling from Jerusalem. See Isaiah 2.1-4, Zechariah 14, Revelation 19-20.