A Noble Pursuit … A Sustainable Peace!
By: Abraham A. van Kempen, Editor
If I may call a spade a spade and call me an egomaniac if you’d like, my 10 Point Peace Initiative is more than a Noble Pursuit. It is worthy of a Nobel Peace Prize. Don’t take my word for it. Read it! You might agree. You’re welcome to disagree as well. Better yet, what are your ideas? Forgive my candor combined with slivers of humor. I know I’m skating on thin ice. Get ready to review the original, the one and only ‘Abraham Accords,’ the real McCoy.
Background! It was 11.00 PM. “Are you coming or not,” my wife summoned right when I was entering into the outer limits with one of those aha experiences.
“Just wait … I’ll be there soon …” and I started to bang away on the typewriter. The first draft took only 20 minutes. At 11.30 PM, I landed in bed. It’s the truth. Now, some people declared me crazy, “you’re out of your mind.” Others, said, “WOW!!!”
Read it! Tell me what you think. But first …
My response to the article, ‘Arab, European states call Israel and Palestine to restart talks,’ published recently by Al Jazeera, is: “Not again!” How many times have we gone on this merry-go-around? In the past, those in command of the peace talks dare not take off at full throttle—the results: one deadlock after the other. Oslo, Ottawa, Shepherdstown, The Wye Plantation, Annapolis, Geneva, Madrid, Nicosia, Washington, D.C., London, Bonn, and Vienna have succeeded in producing stalemates often ending in standoffs with one foot in the stirrup, the other in the sand; and, recently, Bahrain.
The European Union could integrate the Arab Peace Initiative with my proposed Abraham Accords to help the people of Israel-Palestine form what Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. coined, a ‘Beloved Community.’ They had been in each other’s back yards for millennia, some physically, most spiritually.
Any peace accord, minus full reconciliation, including restitution, will inevitably collapse. The wounds will only temporarily be soothed, letting the disease stealthily spread and eventually erupt and explode again (Chapter 5: Abraham – A Life without Borders; Sub-chapter: The EU Compliment – Toward a Beloved Community; Page: 138; Kindle Locations 2761-2766).
The EU-Complement to the Arab Peace Initiative outlined below can make a sustainable difference. “We cannot give up on the search to end this conflict,” says President Obama to me in a letter dated 16 August 2016. President Obama also asserted: “To move forward both parties must face hard choices and make difficult decisions. Only they can accomplish the compromises necessary … to live side-by-side in peace and security” (Chapter 5: Abraham – A Life without Borders; Sub-chapter: The EU Compliment – Toward a Beloved Community; Page: 138; Kindle Locations 2766-2769).
The Abraham Accords
- Apologize to the people of Israel and the people of Palestine. As one who is more European than most, born as a British national and a Dutch national, I will take the initiative: “I’m sorry what we have done to the Jews. I am sorry for what we have done to the Palestinians. I speak volumes in silence.”
- Measure the State of Palestine and the State of Israel by one standard with fairness and equitability.
- Recognize Israel and Palestine and treat both equally as de-facto NATO ‘affiliates’ so that neither may ever attack, invade, and occupy the other. Frankly, Israel already embraces de-facto NATO status. Iran will never directly attack Israel, despite the rhetoric and spin and fears perpetrated by Israel. Iran heeds NATO, not Israel.
- Propose borderless boundaries or virtual borders to facilitate freedom of movement and the right of passage for EVERYONE. Yes, with a BENELUX-type structure (Belgium, Netherlands, and Luxembourg), one may freely cross the many Divides in the Region. Citizens of one zone or de-facto state may freely work, travel, and live in the other. I.e., Jewish settlements situated in Palestine and vice-versa –, but remain citizens in their zones. So, Israel remains Israel. Palestine remains Palestine. Jerusalem remains Jerusalem, but everyone in the region may live and work where they please but vote only in their own country. This is nothing new. Is Europe a single federation or a union of individual nations? Both! Am I proposing a one-state solution or a two-state solution? Depending on the eye of the beholder, it could be either or both; and, it could gradually evolve into a one-state democracy.
- Implement restitution. Construct an EU-type Marshall Plan, guaranteed by the European Union. Banks would trip over each other to stand first in line to lend money to a creditworthy Israel and Palestine. Sovereign bank guaranties will collateralize grants. Such secured financial instruments will enable the Israelis and the Palestinians to recompense the other, proportionate to the degrees of harm done and losses incurred. No one should get away, taking something for nothing. Nor should we, Europeans, sweep our culpability under the rug. We have created the conflict. We are the culprits. Europe owes it to the Israelis and the Palestinians to sweeten the Arab Peace Initiative with many hundreds of billions of euros in loan guarantees and grants. Don’t worry about producing Weimar-type hyperinflation. Economies coming out of the ashes cannot be overheated because ash does not burn. Today, Europe can flush cash into Israel - Palestine for micro and macro development to generate jobs, jobs, jobs. Of course, Europe will profit too. All goods and services must be purchased from or through Europe.
- Hang Netanyahu like Sadam? No! Let’s move forward and go beyond a justice based on tit for tat, despite what Netanyahu did to the Palestinians that Sadam did to the Kurds. As a response to ‘a tooth for a tooth, an eye for an eye,’ one could choose to give a tooth or give an eye if needed and warranted. Why not reach the pinnacle of becoming the light of the world, each committing to becoming an instrument of blessing, and Give the Gifts that God has Given Us?
- Invoke an Act of Reconciliationsimilar to the one in South Africa under the tenets ‘live, let live’ rather than ‘kill, get killed’; and, ‘forgive to forget,’ a fundamental economic principle, a precious lesson in life.
- Encourage the people in the Region to vote for tentative (perhaps for five years) demilitarization of the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) and the ‘Palestinian Defense Forces (PDF)’ as a condition to enable NATO to guarantee security with heavily equipped NATO troops for all Israelis and all Palestinians, costs to be proportionately defrayed among the Israelis and Palestinians derived from new-found revenues as a result of the new capital infused by Europe. From the beginning, the IDF and the ‘PDF’ have been destabilizing factors. Their aims, portrayed as Divinely inspired, depicted with the best intentions, have often been counterproductive for the region's greater good and the world.
- Petition the Arab League and the European Union, and The Holy See to consider investing an estimated EU 100+ million to finance the work of thousands of Peace Corps Professionals to help the people of Israel Palestine believe in their self-esteem and worthiness and goodness of the other.
- And, tenth, for now, LEAVE THE HOLY SITES IN THE HOLY CITY ALONE! Until things cool down, entrust them tentatively to something like a United Nations-mandated Trust. The Holy sites in the Holy City belong to everyone because those who have faith in Abraham's God also believe that God is the God of Adam and Eve, the God of all humanity. West Jerusalem becomes the capital of Israel. East Jerusalem becomes the capital of Palestine with no borders to separate either. Why? God views Jerusalem as the same, and, perhaps someday, all of Jerusalem becomes the capital city of a democratic Israel – Palestine.
In short, Israel can and will win its war precisely how Germany has won its war: by freeing itself from the chains of ethnocentric nationalism.
Let’s start fresh and anew. All the King’s men can’t put Humpty Dumpty back together again. To paraphrase President Barack H. Obama, critiquing the longstanding American policy on Cuba, “if a policy hasn’t worked for 66 years, isn’t it time to change?” Europe, in conjunction with the full strength of the Arab League, is now ready and motivated to combine resources to help end a conflict it has started (Chapter 5: Abraham – A Life without Borders; Sub-chapter: Change, not Chains Must Be the Goal; Page: 140; Kindle Locations 2811-2814).
With Every Good Wish to You,I am,
Abraham A. van Kempen
*‘Christian Zionism … Enraptured Around a Golden Cal" (2nd Edition)
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