MKs told nobody knows what September will bring

Knesset FADC report on possible repercussions of PA statehood inconclusive; different defense experts give different assessments.

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August 4, 2011 02:19
1 minute read.
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Palestinian Flag 311. (photo credit: REUTERS)

The Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee met on Wednesday to discuss a report on the possible repercussions of a Palestinian declaration of statehood in the UN in September.

The report, which is due to be published next week, was compiled by committee adviser Barak Ben Tzur, as well as MK Yohanan Plesner (Kadima) who heads a subcommittee on the topic. Ben Tzur explained to the committee that the findings of the report were inconclusive, with different defense experts and professionals giving different assessments.

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“It seems like everyone bases his own idea on different theories, and believes that he is right,” Ben Tzur told the committee.

None of the experts expect a new intifada to break out, because the Palestinians have much to lose, given that their economy is growing.

However, Palestinians may try other methods of protest, such as mass demonstrations at the security barrier, and near settlements.

The Palestinian efforts may lead Israel to further diplomatic isolation, according to the report, and delegitimization efforts may grow stronger.

Even if the Palestinians do not become a UN member state in September, the UN may allow them to join committees and organizations, thus causing problems for Israel, the committee was told.

“An American veto [in the UN Security Council] will not solve everything,” Committee Chairman Shaul Mofaz (Kadima) said. “It looks like Israel does not have a clear strategy at the moment to deal with September’s challenges.”

He also criticized the different security agencies that were “meeting each other for the first time in this committee.”

“It looks like your level of coordination is weak,” Mofaz said.

Although MKs could influence the final report, only 12 committee members attended the meeting, nine of which were Kadima members.

“When I asked to invite experts that I recommend, I was given a negative answer,” MK Arye Eldad (National Union) said, “therefore I think this report’s conclusions were written long ago.”

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