Sunday, July 28, 2013

The EU Sanctions Against Israel - How to Lose influence & Credibility

On the week that Israel has agreed to release hundreds of Palestinian terrorists from its prisons  - people with much Jewish blood on their hands - as a one sided gesture, merely to bribe the Palestinians to come to the table for talks that benefit Palestinians more than Israelis (and which are almost certain to be doomed to failure), the EU seems to think that now is the time when Israel needs pressuring and that this is the time for economic sanctions. Did the great and wise heads of the EU ever wonder why, if the Palestinians want a state so badly, if they long for freedom and for Israel to withdraw to  the 1949 armistice line (which is what is meant by pre-67 borders), if they waste a great deal of time and energy going to the UN to get some kind of meaningless demi / semi statehood in order to pressure Israel...if they are that keen for this to work, why do the need to be bribed to come to the table, and even then very reluctantly?

In any case, the EU has issued its sanctions and the immediate result is...the Palestinians are being hurt - not the healthy growing Israeli economy, which makes the collapsing European Union look like economic morons  - but the Palestinian people, where the EU is engaged in a multitude of projects, that without Israel's support, cannot continue. Well guess what - a thoroughly and justifiably pissed off Israel is disinclined to continue that support making the EU's humanitarian efforts almost impossible. It is normative practice before any state issues sanctions, to consider the imopact, not only on the target of the punishment, but other effects such as minority impacts and economic damage to the enacter of the sanctions. it is clear the EU did not consider these issues at all.

Further more, a European Union, desperate for sources of energy, has just placed sanctions on the only democracy in the Middle East - a state that has recently become a major oil & gas producer - potentially the 1/3 largest in the Middle East according to some estimates -  with the ability to find customers anywhere it wants, but an inclination to sell to Cyprus, Greece, Italy & Spain...all EU members with collapsed economies. More than likely, their contract  negotiations for that non Arab supply of Mid East oil & gas is not with Israel, the  willing exporter, but a sullen and angry Israel.

Moreover, morally, for the EU to look at the complex, volatile situation in this region and believe that the place it should direct punishment  - for that is what sanctions amount to - exclusively against Israel, is absurd and impossible to fathom. Every Mid East state enacts racist anti Palestinian laws; 100,000s dead in Syria, Lebanon a fractured racist society virtually run by terrorists; Egypt shooting protesters in large numbers as democracy fails there after just a few months; Saudi Arabia which has laws suppressing women's rights that England was ahead of 150 years ago.... I could go on...but from this violent, racist, oppressive region, with 330,000,000 people living without rights, it has chosen Israel - the only free country in this region - for sanctions - please someone explain how there is an iota of justification for this move or any possibility for this to forward the cause of the Palestinians.

So Israel is angered, EU efforts to aid Palestinian development have suffered a major set back, EU's ability to in anyway act as brokers in the Israeli Arab negotiations have virtually gone, Palestinians themselves are often employed by these israeli firms (so their jobs are endangered as the PA has said) and Israel's willingness to share its incredible technological and academic  achievements with Europe have almost certainly become more expensive for the Europeans. Their banks collapsing, their currency hanging on by a thread and now with this stupid move, their credibility in international diplomacy in tatters - who, if anyone, is running the EU - what a joke! 

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