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The Missing Link for Peace in the Middle East

While I support Israel's right to exist and it's right to defend itself against attacks from Hamas, Hezbollah and other terrorist organizations (even if it means mass civilian casualties in Gaza); I do not support Israel establishing nor defending new settlements in Palestinian territories in the West Bank Region.

The Palestine Liberation Organization claims the entire West Bank Region as a soverign territory... the State of Palestine. The PLO is recognized internationally as the official governing agency of the West Bank Region.

There can be no lasting peace in the Middle East without two issues being settled. Any State of Palestine must recognize the legitimacy of the State of Israel and vice versa. Lasting peace depends upon this: Gaza, the Golan Heights, Hezbollah are minor issues in comparison. These two governments must recognize the legitimacy and territorial rights of each other. This is the missing link that neither the press nor the protesters talk about.

This is where the United States has leverage. the Biden Administration should withhold all arms shipments and other aide to Israel until the Israeli settlements in the West Bank are evacuated and turned over to the PLO.

The war in Gaza is terrible. We should, of course, seek a cease fire. We should continue to support the delivery of humanitarian aid to its residents. But we must recognize that Israel has the right to protect its citizens from terrorist attacks that originate in a lawless, ungoverned, unclaimed territory like Gaza. The United Nations could stop the war by claiming soverignty over, ruling and defending Gaza... alas, it has chosen not to. Without action by the United Nations any cease-fire will be temporary.

The United States and the United Nations should be focusing their long-term peace efforts to encourage Israel to stop building, supporting, and defending Israeli settlements in the West Bank Region. We should support the territorial rights of both the the State of Israel and the State of Palestine.