Why UN anti-settlement resolution won’t make a difference

Al Monitor| Akiva Eldar: Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his aides have been claiming that President Barack Obama is an Israel basher. In order to prove this, they argued that not since Jimmy Carter occupied the Oval Office has the United States lent a hand to such an anti-Israel move as Resolution 2334 adopted Dec. 23 by the UN Security Council condemning the West Bank settlements. They’re referring to Resolution 465 of March 1980 determining that Israeli construction across the Green Line that delineated its borders until 1967 constitutes a violation of international law. According to Netanyahu, Carter, the sponsor of the Camp David agreement and peace treaty with Egypt, is nothing short of a supporter of the Hamas terror organization. American Friends of Peace Now looked into it and found that since June 1967, the United States voted 69 times in the UN Security Council against Israel’s position on the Israeli-Arab conflict, including on the annexation of east Jerusalem and the Golan Heights. All US presidents, except Obama, did so more than once.

Right-wing officials have been regurgitating ad nauseam the claim that the United Nations is persecuting the settlements while displaying helplessness vis-a-vis other bloody conflicts around the world. “At a time when the Security Council does nothing to stop the slaughter of half a million people in Syria, it disgracefully gangs up on the one true democracy in the Middle East, Israel, and calls the Western Wall ‘occupied territory,’” Netanyahu said. Several days earlier, Israel’s UN Ambassador Danny Danon said that over the past decade “the UN passed 223 resolutions condemning Israel, with only eight resolutions condemning the Syrian regime as it massacred its citizens.” The fact is that the 223 resolutions relating to Israel were as insignificant as the eight against Syria.

As regards the Israeli occupation, the UN and other international organizations have for years been stumbling between sterile debates and hollow declarations. Israel, meanwhile, has been acting in accordance with a policy that its first Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion described as “it doesn’t matter what the non-Jews say, what matters is what the Jews will do.”

The International Court of Justice in The Hague ruled in 1971 that countries cannot ignore a Security Council resolution declaring a certain situation illegal. So what. The European Community declared in 1980 in Venice that Israeli settlements were illegal. So what. In an opinion issued this past July the Quartet for Mideast Peace (the United States, Russia, the UN and the European Union) called on Israel to stop construction in the settlements and its gradual takeover of the West Bank’s Area C (under Israeli control). So what. Security Council Resolution 1515 initiated by President George W. Bush in 2003 adopted the “Road Map” to Mideast peace that included a total ban on Israeli construction in the occupied territories. So what.

Read More Here