Israel’s endless efforts for peace throughout history have been consistently met with rejection and “blood-curdling violence” from “antisemitic” Palestinian leaders who value “personal power over the good of their people,” according to Palestinian human rights activist Bassem Eid, who accuses “Palestinian demagogues” of favoring “endless strife” and the complete destruction of the Jewish community over peace, calling for the ousting of Palestinian leaders.
In a Newsweek essay published Sunday, titled “My Fellow Palestinians: It’s Time to Get Rid of Our Leaders and Accept Israel’s Offers for Peace,” Jerusalem-based Palestinian peace advocate Bassem Eid asserts that Israel has historically offered peace and compromise, but Palestinian leaders prioritize power over peace, rejecting these offers.
“Israel has consistently made genuine efforts toward peace, only to be met with rejection, treachery, and blood-curdling violence by the Palestinian side. This pattern of refusal has been the real obstacle to peace.”
Read my latest in @Newsweek: https://t.co/ZqGbjeH8lx
— Bassem Eid (@realbassemeid) January 28, 2024
“It is Israel—and the Zionist Jewish community preceding independence—that consistently offered compromise, dialogue, and a two-state solution,” he writes, continuing, “And it is Palestinian demagogues valuing personal power over the good of their people who have rejected these openhanded offers—in favor of endless strife and the desire that the Jewish community be completely destroyed.”
“It is the Palestinian Arab nationalist movement that has betrayed the Palestinian people and consistently opposed peace,” he adds.
Unfortunately, Eid contends, the views of the “antisemitic Palestinian political heads” frequently overshadow those of ordinary Palestinians who desire peace, as he highlights a recent rally by Gazans blaming the Hamas terrorist organization for their current situation.
Displaced Gaza Residents Hold Anti-Hamas Rallies, Hold Posters Calling to Release the Hostages, Chant: The People Want to End the War! “We Want to Go Back Home!” #Hamas #Gaza pic.twitter.com/liSXhzi9B0
— MEMRI (@MEMRIReports) January 24, 2024
“But it’s not just Hamas,” he notes. “Palestinian leadership has sold out its people since the beginning of the last century—even as the Jews tried again and again to offer us a state.”
Palestine Mandate (1922)
Eid, who served as the director of the Palestinian Human Rights Monitoring Group, points to the Palestine Mandate for a Jewish National Home more than a century ago, which was vastly reduced by Britain’s creation of Jordan, followed by Arab attacks on Jewish communities.
In 1922, the League of Nations unanimously voted to establish the Palestine Mandate as a Jewish National Home with a map depicting not only Israel, the West Bank, and Gaza, but also what is now Jordan, which the British instead set up as a separate Arab monarchy, cutting off more than 75 percent of the original land grant.
Did you know that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is not a territorial conflict? In 1922, #Britain gave away 77% of the British Mandate For #Palestine to create Arab #Jordan. Yet to this day, the Palestinians have not sought any land from Jordan. pic.twitter.com/ReuLeZt9VB
— Eretz Israel (@EretzIsrael) April 13, 2023
Though the vision was “drastically diminished by the creation of Jordan,” the Jewish community at the time “saw it as an opportunity for coexistence,” he explains.
“The response? A series of Arab attacks terrorizing Jews in Palestine in the 1920s and 30s, which, right under the eyes of British rule, destroyed ancient Jewish communities in places like Hebron,” he notes.
Palestine Royal Commission (1937)
He then calls attention to the Jewish acceptance of yet another partition proposal roughly 15 years later, which was met with Arab rejection and refusal of peaceful coexistence.
On 7th July, 1937
The British Empire recommends the Peel commission. A peace deal between Arab and Israel. Israel desperate as Jews were trying to flee the Nazis and the Holocaust, accepted just 20%. Arab World rejected. Arab leadership would just support Hitler. pic.twitter.com/jGDSEdOkSr
— Eretz Israel (@EretzIsrael) July 8, 2023
“When the British Peel Commission proposed a partition of Palestine in 1937, the Jewish leadership, in a spirit of compromise, accepted it, despite the small size of the proposed Jewish state,” he writes.
“But in what would become a recurring theme, this gesture of peace was met with outright rejection from the Arab community,” he adds, noting that the insistence was not just a refusal of terms, but a “refusal even to entertain the possibility of peaceful coexistence by Palestinian leaders like Haj Amin el-Husseini, who went on to serve as a Nazi collaborator in World War II, recruiting Balkan Muslims for the S.S.”
This is the Mufti of Jerusalem, Palestinian leader, Haj Amin al-Husseini, meeting with Adolf Hitler in Germany while the Holocaust was raging. They developed a partnership between the Arabs of Palestine and the Nazis.
When will Palestinians apologize for supporting Hitler? pic.twitter.com/EJZzBonZvs
— Uri Pilichowski (@RationalSettler) April 29, 2022
UN Special Committee on Palestine (1947)
Eid then refers to the United Nations vote for separate Jewish and Arab states a decade later, which was again met with Jewish acceptance, Arab rejection, and the subsequent invasion by Arab armies.
“When the United Nations General Assembly voted to divide the Mandate into Jewish and Arab states in 1947, the Jewish community joyously accepted their proposal,” he writes. “Yet tragically, the Palestinian Arab leadership again rejected even a small Jewish state in the territory.”
“They then invited the armies of seven neighboring Arab countries to invade and destroy the newborn Jewish state in what became Israel’s War of Independence,” he adds.
Oslo Accords (1993)
The human rights pioneer then addresses more recent Israeli-Palestinian peace initiatives, which were also met with Palestinian rejection and violence:
The trend continued with the Oslo Accords of 1993, in which Israeli leaders generously allowed a genocidal terrorist group called the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO), run by the mastermind mass murderer Yasser Arafat, to take control over most of the West Bank and Gaza Strip.
Camp David Summit (2000)
Describing the turn of the millennium as a “critical juncture,” Eid turns to the failed Camp David Summit, whereby “Israel extended an unprecedented offer of Palestinian statehood.”
“They were once again met with Palestinian leadership’s refusal—and the eruption of the bloody Second Intifada, a wave of suicide bombings that killed almost a thousand Israeli civilians,” he writes.
“The betrayal shattered any illusion of a commitment to a peaceful resolution from the Palestinian side,” he adds.
Annapolis Conference (2007–2008)
Nearly a decade later, Eid notes, yet another Israeli proposal for Palestinian statehood was rejected by Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, who maintains his extended presidency.
“Then came 2008, at the Annapolis Conference, where Israel once again reached out with a proposal for an independent Palestinian state,” he writes. “The refusal of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to accept this offer was not just disappointing; it was infuriating.”
“Today, Abbas, who came to power in 2004, is serving the nineteenth year of his four-year presidential term, having suspended both elections and the constitution in the Palestinian territories,” he adds.
Hamas-led Massacre (2023)
Eid then reaches the current conflict in Gaza, which began on October 7, 2023, after the “vile” Hamas terrorist group, which he refers to as “the ISIS of Palestine,” perpetrated the deadliest attack against Jewish people since the Nazi Holocaust.
The massacre saw the torture, rape, execution, immolation, and abduction of hundreds of Israeli civilians, as well as widespread Palestinian support for it.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW: Horror of the Hamas Terror Attack on Civilians at Kibbutz Be’eri in Israel
Joel B. Pollak / Breitbart News
He emphasizes how Hamas aims to eradicate the Jewish state, rejecting any peaceful coexistence and claiming all of Israel’s territory.
“The sworn objective of Hamas’s founding charter is not coexistence but the obliteration of Israel,” Eid writes.
Khaled Meshaal, former head of Hamas and still one of its most senior leaders, clarified just this month Hamas’s position on the idea of a two-state solution: “We reject this notion, because it means you would get a promise for a [Palestinian] state, yet you are required to recognize the legitimacy of the other state, which is the Zionist entity… We will not give up on our right to Palestine in its entirety, from the [Jordan] river to the [Mediterranean] sea.” He insisted on his belief that Oct. 7 only “enhanced this conviction.”
Eid concludes by noting that Israeli peace efforts have consistently been met with Palestinian rejection and violence.
“The history of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict regarding a two-state solution reveals a harsh reality: Israel has consistently made genuine efforts toward peace, only to be met with rejection, treachery, and blood-curdling violence by the Palestinian side,” he writes.
“This pattern of refusal, particularly epitomized by groups like Hamas, has been the real obstacle to peace,” he adds.
He concludes with a call to replace current Palestinian leadership in order to progress towards peace.
“It’s time to acknowledge this truth bluntly. Those who claim to desire peace must confront and challenge the rejectionist elements within Palestinian society, including Hamas,” he writes.
“We need to get rid of the Palestinian establishment who have ruled for 15 years without actually representing the Palestinian people,” he adds. “Only then can we hope to forge a path toward a peaceful, two-state future.”
Eid, who has focused on human rights violations of the Palestinian leadership, was even arrested by the Palestinian Authority (PA) after he began monitoring Palestinian abuses.
He has described the two-state solution as “something impossible,” asserted that “Israel is using its own rockets to protect its people, but Hamas is using its people to protect its rockets,” and lashed out at the progressive argument that Israel is committing genocide against the Palestinians.
“Everybody should have to remember that this is a war, which has been imposed on the Gazan people by Hamas, not by Israel,” he said of the current conflict.
ISRAEL FIGHTS TERROR: Is Israel’s Response to Hamas Legal and Justified?
The so-called two-state solution — which calls for the creation of a Palestinian state, ostensibly in the West Bank, Gaza Strip, and some eastern sections of Jerusalem, in exchange for the terror-supporting Palestinian Authority (PA) ending its conflict with Israel and living at peace with the Jewish state — has long proved to be an abject failure.
Despite the numerous proposals, every Israeli attempt to offer land concessions for a Palestinian state has been met with terror waves. After years of failed negotiations and Israel’s disastrous evacuation of the Gaza Strip in 2005, which resulted in Hamas’s takeover of that territory and repeated rocket attacks from there, a growing share of Israelis have grown more skeptical of a two-state solution, largely rejecting any withdrawal from the West Bank, according to a Pew Research Center survey which took place before October 7, 2023.
Since the October 7 massacre, Israelis — even more so — overwhelmingly no longer desire a two-state solution.