Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s announcement that the United States would no longer view Israeli settlements as inconsistent with international law may have surprised many, but it should not have surprised the Palestinians. For nearly 30 years, the Palestinian leadership has had ample opportunity to strike a peace deal with Israel and resolve all lingering issues, settlements included. At every step they have rejected these opportunities in bad faith. It has now caught up to them.Palestinian rejectionism of the Jewish state, not the settlements, is the driving force of the prolonged Palestinian-Israeli conflict. Until recently, this fact was recognized on both sides of the aisle. One need only ask former president Bill Clinton, who perhaps worked harder than any other world leader to achieve a lasting peace between Israelis and Palestinians. No party worked harder to thwart his efforts, however, than the Palestinians themselves. Just before leaving office, president Clinton received a goodbye call from then-Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat. “You are a great man,” Arafat said. “I’m a colossal failure, and you made me one,” Clinton responded.Months before, the Palestinians rejected a comprehensive, two-state peace deal because it did not require Israel to open its borders to millions of Palestinian exiles in a so-called “right of return,” a cynical move intended to accomplish through demographics what Palestinians have failed to accomplish through violence: the end of Israel’s existence as a Jewish state. This rejection of Israel continues to this day.In 2016, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said “a Jewish state... I will not recognize it at all, and I will not accept it.” In August of last year, Abbas doubled down, claiming that the Palestinians, but not the Jews, are descended from the ancient inhabitants of Israel. He declared “every house you have built on our land – there is no escaping that they will disappear and will be in the garbage dump of history.”The only thing that belongs in the garbage dump of history is Palestinian hostility toward Jews and an approach to US foreign policy that enables this mentality. By taking steps to normalize longstanding Israeli communities beyond the Green Line, President Donald Trump has made clear to the Palestinians that history will move forward without them.Wars do not end through negotiations, but rather when one side gives up. It is not enough to declare Israel’s victory in its war for independence. The Palestinians must accept this defeat if they ultimately want to have a better future, one filled with hope and prosperity. Through both acts of violence and nonviolent means, Palestinians still believe they will one day be able to eliminate the Jewish state of Israel, establishing a state “from the river to the sea.” THIS GENOCIDAL objective must be rejected by the entire world, including those Palestinians who seek to better the lives of themselves and their children.Whether it be through Hamas’s overt acts of aggression against Israel in the form of thousands of rockets, or the Palestine Liberation Organization’s continuous incitement against Israelis, including a “pay-for-slay” program that rewards the families of terrorist war criminals, Palestinians have yet to fully internalize that they will not make Israel disappear with violence.The Palestinians are also waging a futile campaign to destroy Israel with nonviolent means. The Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement aims to defeat Israel through economic warfare. The campaign does not call for a Jewish and Palestinian state living side-by-side in peace, but rather it demands the same “right of return” that led to the collapse of the Clinton peace talks.Since the final months of the Clinton administration, it has been generally understood that the major settlement blocs would become part of Israel under any workable final status agreement. This was a bedrock principle of the Clinton Parameters, acknowledged by president George W. Bush in a famous letter to then-prime minister Ariel Sharon, and even implicitly endorsed by the Obama administration, which called for “mutually agreed land swaps.”But while the United States has continuously acknowledged that the major settlement blocs will eventually become part of Israel, the Palestinians still refuse to accept that a Jewish state under any formulation will endure. To this day, high-ranking Palestinian officials still consider Israel’s mere existence illegitimate.Until the Palestinians earnestly accept that Israel is here to stay, attempts to resolve the conflict will prove futile. Until they reform their educational system, which teaches children that killing Jews is an ideal, and until the program that gives pensions to families of terrorists who die in the name of jihad is ended, resolutions will never happen. By suggesting that Israeli settlements do not inherently violate international law, the United States has made clear to the Palestinians that not only will Israel endure, but territory the Palestinians desire for a future state may also become part of Israel the longer they remain intransigent.If the Palestinians want the Trump administration to change its approach to the conflict, they must change their approach first. As a strong supporter of Israel and a former member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, I want to help improve conditions for the Palestinian people while securing Israel’s safety. By recognizing Israel as a Jewish state and terminating all acts of violence and incitement, the Palestinians would do well in advancing their cause.The writer is the United States representative for South Carolina’s third congressional district.