Our Plan for Peace

Newspaper: Jewish Herald
posted on:
6 In sept 1977
Jewish Heritage - Anti-Semitism, Holocaust. Foreign Policy - Diplomacy, Israel-U.S. Relationship, UN. States - Germany, Soviet Union (Russia), Syria, USA. Government , Individuals - Jimmy Carter. Israeli-Palestinian Conflict - Palestinians, PLO. Peace , Peace Agreements
Begin focuses on actions of Israel's Arab neighbors to show that they do not want lasting peace with Israel. He starts by expressing that both United States and Israel want to increase the momentum towards the peace-making process. Then he shifts to a problem. He talks about how the PLO's charter includes Hiterlized philosophy. He quotes an article from the Palestinian National Convention. Begin understands that it says that Arabs can return to Palestine and there is not room for Jews. Additionally, the PLO denies the biblical relationship Jews have to the land. He talks about PLO's terrorism and ultimately says that although Israel does and won't give up on peace, it cannot have productive talks with an organization whose philosophy is "based on an Arabic 'Mein Kampf.'" Begin shifts to talk about Israel's participation in the Geneva Peace Conference. He concludes with mentioning what Israel will do if the PLO is allowed to participate in the Geneva Conference.
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"Our Plan for Peace"



WHEN I visited Washington in July at the invitation of President Carter, I took with me certain proposals on behalf of the Israel Government to increase the momentum towards peace in the Middle East.

I think it was a positive initiative and we will continue thinking again and again how to promote the momentum towards the peace-making process—because we have one ambition: to bring peace to our land, to our people, and to the region in which we live—and we do hope that peace will come.

This month, Middle East Foreign Ministers will visit New York, and the momentum will go on.  We hope that the peace conference in Geneva will be made possible with proper representation and we shall start serious negotiations between Israel and the Arab countries, our neighbours, about the conclusion and signing of peace treaties.


There is one problem which is of international significance and interest.  It is my duty to raise it.  In order to clarify our attitude I will use an allegorical story.  Let us assume that in a certain corner of the globe there is a country called Hunland, the land of the Hun, and the basic philosophy of its government is a book called "Mein Kampf".

What would we, the Jewish State, do?

Surely we would call upon all free nations to be watchful, to have no rapport with that Hunland because we all have had the experience and paid the price, because of a basic mistake made in the 1930's.

The Jewish people were not decimated then, because that term stems from an old custom in the Roman legions, that to pay for a breach of discipline every tenth legionnaire was executed.  Our people lost every third son or daughter.  It was tertiated.

It would mean eighteen million Britons wiped out or ninety million Russians or two hundred and eighty million Chinese or eighty million Americans.

We have had to live with such figures in our generation.  So we therefore would call upon all free nations, "Be watchful".

And then perhaps some would advise us "Don't take it seriously.  It is not as it is written in the book."

If that happens we would respectfully say to everyone in the world, "Gentlemen, forgive us, but we cannot accept that advice. We heard it forty years ago."

Nobody paid attention to what as written in that infamous book then—and every word of it was made a grim reality.

That is why we do not take the new Hunland and "Mein Kampf" lightly.  Let me read what the body known as "P.L.O." says in its "Mein Kampf":

"Palestine is the homeland of the Palestinian Arab people and an integral part of the great Arab homeland, and the people of Palestine is a part of the Arab nation."  No room for the Jew. "Jews who were living permanently in Palestine until the beginning of the Zionist invasion will be considered Palestinians."

That is Article 6 of the 1968 Palestinian National Convention.

In other words, Jews who lived permanently in our land, called by foreigners Palestine, until the Balfour Declaration of 1917, will be considered Palestinians.  All the others have to leave.  The numbers: Fifty or sixty thousand to be left—two million nine hundred and fifty thousand to go.  The establishment of Israel is null and void.  The Balfour Declaration, the Mandate document and what has been based upon them are considered null and void.

I remember San Remo—1922—Britain was given the mandate to make it possible to have a national home for the Jewish people to be reconstituted, reconstituted, and that re is the most characteristic part of that document.  You can only re-constitute a thing which existed.  As the preamble says, "Recognition having been given to the historical connection between the Jewish people and Palestine."


And now, after recognition by all the civilized nations of that historical connection, we hear that the claim of a historical and spitual [spiritual- JC] tie between Jews and Palestine is non-existent.

That murder organisation called "P.L.O." has turned the civilian population into the target of its attacks.  It aimed to destroy a people, to annihilate a people, to renew the unheard of wrong done to the Jewish People for centuries: homeless and defenceless—and turning them again into a defenceless and homeless people.

To learn from experience is the duty of a man who bears responsibility for the future of his nation.  And therefore our stand is clear: We want peace, we want to negotiate peace treaties, we submitted proposals, alternative proposals, we have looked, we shall look for any avenue to bring about such negotiations to conclude peace treaties.

But that organisation, the philosophy of which is based on an Arabic "Mein Kampf", is no partner whatsoever and never would be a partner for us to hold any talks.


The Government of Israel will be prepared, beginning October 10th, to participate in a new additional session of the Geneva Peace Conference.  It should be reconvened by the two co-chairmen on the basis of Paragraph III of United Nations Security Council Resolution 338, which stipulates: "The Security Council decides that immediately and concurrently with the ceasefire, negotiations start between the parties concerned under appropriate auspices aimed at the establishing of a just and durable peace in the Middle East."

Only accredited delegations of sovereign states will participate in the reconvened session of the Geneva Peace Conference; namely, representatives of Israel, Egypt, Syria, and Transjordan.  And if the suggestion is made that Lebanon participates, we will agree.


The participating states in the Geneva Peace Conference will present no prior conditions for taking part in the conference.

Similarly, there should be no prior commitments by either side.  Prior commitments will not be asked by either side.  Prior commitments will not be given by either side.  This is the basis for free negotiation.


At the public session of the reconvened Geneva Peace Conference, the representatives of the parties will make public statements.  When the public session comes to a conclusion, we suggest that the instrument for negotiations of peace treaties between Israel and the neighbouring countries be established.  They should be mixed commissions; one an Egyptian-Israeli commission; a Syrian-Israeli commission; and a Transjordanian-Israeli commission; and there may be a Lebanese-Israeli commission.

The chairmanship of these commissions will rotate between the Israeli emissary and the emissary of the neighbouring country.  In the framework of these three or four mixed commissions, peace treaties between the parties concerned will be negotiated and concluded.

Our concept is that he accepted way to bring about the termination of a state of war is through a peace treaty.  There are a few exceptions, admittedly.  For instance, Germany after the Second World War has not yet signed a peace treaty, for reasons which in themselves are exceptional.  There are two Germanys, with Russia, in Eastern Prussia, the Allied Armies on German soil, etcetera.  But this is an exception which proves the rule, because both after the First World War and after the Second World War, peace treaties were signed between the parties concerned.

The United States of America and her allies also signed peace treaties with Japan after the Second World War.  The Soviet Union signed a peace declaration with Japan in October 1956 in Moscow, which is declared by the signatories not to be a peace treaty.  And the Soviet Union promises in that document that when a peace treaty is signed between the two countries, it will return to Kuril Islands, Shikotan and Habomai to Japanese sovereignty.

But the first article even of that document is that the state of war between the two countries has come to an end.

The first article of any peace treaty is to the effect "The state of war has been terminated."  Then come the territorial and other clauses.  So when we say a peace treaty, we mean the termination of the state of war, the determination of permanent boundaries, diplomatic relations, the economic clauses, etcetera.  And when the three or the four mixed commissions work out the conditions and the details of those peace tries, another session of the Geneva Peace Conference will be reconvened, and the peace treaties so concluded will be signed by the parties concerned.

Such is the framework proposed by us for the peace-making process.  I believe it can be used.  I believe it can bring us nearer to real peace in the Middle East.

The Arab countries may insist on the participation, in addition to the state delegations, of the murder organisation called PLO.

Its design is to destroy our country and to destory [destroy- JC] our people, and it cannot be a partner to any negotiations with Israel.

If, therefore, the Arab countries make it impossible to reconvene a full-fledged additional new session of the Geneva Conference through insisting on the participation of the organisation called the PLO, then we must look for alternatives.  And we suggest two alternatives:


One alternative is that the good offices of the United States be used to bring about the establishment of the three or four mixed commissions through diplomatic contacts with the respective capitals.  That's one possibility, and it based on the method used in 1949 during the negotiations for the armistice in Rhodes Island.


The second alternative possibility is what is termed the proximity talks.  In other words, an Israeli delegation and an Arab delegation, and the United States delegation giving their good offices to bring the parties together.  We will be willing to adopt such a method as well.

Now it depends on the other side.

We want peace.  We yearn and pray for peace.  We want real peace based on security, without which peace becomes devoid of the real meaning.