Have all the nations of the world officially turned against Israel? Have we reached a Global and Prophetic turning point? In the afternoon of December 23, 2016 at the United Nations, the Security council passed UN Resolution 2334 and released the following statement:
The Security Council reaffirmed this afternoon that Israel’s establishment of settlements in Palestinian territory occupied since 1967, including East Jerusalem, had no legal validity, constituting a flagrant violation under international law and a major obstacle to the vision of two States living side-by-side in peace and security, within internationally recognized borders.
Fourteen delegations favored the resolution with one lone abstention, the United States. Without a veto vote the resolution passed. The meeting began at 1:01 p.m. and ended at 1:44 p.m. What will be the effect of this dramatic event? That’s what I am here to discus today.
UN Resolution 2334
What is actually in the resolution? Instead of cutting out snippets I felt this was important enough to read the entire Resolution, which is rather brief.
“Guided by the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations, and reaffirming, inter alia, the inadmissibility of the acquisition of territory by force,
“Reaffirming the obligation of Israel, the occupying Power, to abide scrupulously by its legal obligations and responsibilities under the Fourth Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, of 12 August 1949, and recalling the advisory opinion rendered on 9 July 2004 by the International Court of Justice,
“Condemning all measures aimed at altering the demographic composition, character and status of the Palestinian Territory occupied since 1967, including East Jerusalem, including, inter alia, the construction and expansion of settlements, transfer of Israeli settlers, confiscation of land, demolition of homes and displacement of Palestinian civilians, in violation of international humanitarian law and relevant resolutions,
“Expressing grave concern that continuing Israeli settlement activities are dangerously imperilling the viability of the two-State solution based on the 1967 lines,
“Recalling the obligation under the Quartet Roadmap, endorsed by its resolution 1515 (2003), for a freeze by Israel of all settlement activity, including “natural growth”, and the dismantlement of all settlement outposts erected since March 2001,
“Recalling also the obligation under the Quartet roadmap for the Palestinian Authority Security Forces to maintain effective operations aimed at confronting all those engaged in terror and dismantling terrorist capabilities, including the confiscation of illegal weapons,
“Condemning all acts of violence against civilians, including acts of terror, as well as all acts of provocation, incitement and destruction,
“Reiterating its vision of a region where two democratic States, Israel and Palestine, live side by side in peace within secure and recognized borders,
“Stressing that the status quo is not sustainable and that significant steps, consistent with the transition contemplated by prior agreements, are urgently needed in order to (i) stabilize the situation and to reverse negative trends on the ground, which are steadily eroding the two-State solution and entrenching a one-State reality, and (ii) to create the conditions for successful final status negotiations and for advancing the two-State solution through those negotiations and on the ground,
“1. Reaffirms that the establishment by Israel of settlements in the Palestinian territory occupied since 1967, including East Jerusalem, has no legal validity and constitutes a flagrant violation under international law and a major obstacle to the achievement of the two-State solution and a just, lasting and comprehensive peace;
“2. Reiterates its demand that Israel immediately and completely cease all settlement activities in the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem, and that it fully respect all of its legal obligations in this regard;
“3. Underlines that it will not recognize any changes to the 4 June 1967 lines, including with regard to Jerusalem, other than those agreed by the parties through negotiations;
“4. Stresses that the cessation of all Israeli settlement activities is essential for salvaging the two-State solution, and calls for affirmative steps to be taken immediately to reverse the negative trends on the ground that are imperilling the two-State solution;
“5. Calls upon all States, bearing in mind paragraph 1 of this resolution, to distinguish, in their relevant dealings, between the territory of the State of Israel and the territories occupied since 1967;
“6. Calls for immediate steps to prevent all acts of violence against civilians, including acts of terror, as well as all acts of provocation and destruction, calls for accountability in this regard, and calls for compliance with obligations under international law for the strengthening of ongoing efforts to combat terrorism, including through existing security coordination, and to clearly condemn all acts of terrorism;
“7. Calls upon both parties to act on the basis of international law, including international humanitarian law, and their previous agreements and obligations, to observe calm and restraint, and to refrain from provocative actions, incitement and inflammatory rhetoric, with the aim, inter alia, of de-escalating the situation on the ground, rebuilding trust and confidence, demonstrating through policies and actions a genuine commitment to the two-State solution, and creating the conditions necessary for promoting peace;
“8. Calls upon all parties to continue, in the interest of the promotion of peace and security, to exert collective efforts to launch credible negotiations on all final status issues in the Middle East peace process and within the time frame specified by the Quartet in its statement of 21 September 2010;
“9. Urges in this regard the intensification and acceleration of international and regional diplomatic efforts and support aimed at achieving, without delay a comprehensive, just and lasting peace in the Middle East on the basis of the relevant United Nations resolutions, the Madrid terms of reference, including the principle of land for peace, the Arab Peace Initiative and the Quartet Roadmap and an end to the Israeli occupation that began in 1967; and underscores in this regard the importance of the ongoing efforts to advance the Arab Peace Initiative, the initiative of France for the convening of an international peace conference, the recent efforts of the Quartet, as well as the efforts of Egypt and the Russian Federation;
“10. Confirms its determination to support the parties throughout the negotiations and in the implementation of an agreement;
“11. Reaffirms its determination to examine practical ways and means to secure the full implementation of its relevant resolutions;
“12. Requests the Secretary-General to report to the Council every three months on the implementation of the provisions of the present resolution;
“13. Decides to remain seized of the matter.”
Before I get into my own comments I’d also like to add the comments offered by Samantha Power, the United States ambassador to the United Nations.
The immediate adoption of a freeze on settlements could create confidence, adding that further settlement activities were not necessary for Israel’s security. President Ronald Reagan had said that in 1982, she recalled, noting that his words underscored her country’s commitment to a lasting peace between Israelis and Palestinians and highlighted its position that settlements undermined Israel’s security and eroded prospects for peace and stability.
She said that while her vote today was in line with her country’s bipartisan tradition, the vote itself had not been straightforward. Explaining that Israel had been treated differently from other States for as long as it had been a member of the United Nations, she pointed out that in the course of 2016, 18 resolutions had been adopted in the General Assembly and others in the Human Rights Council, all condemning Israel. Because of that bias, and some factors not included in the resolution, the United States had not voted in favour of the resolution, she said, explaining that her delegation would not have let it pass had it not addressed acts of terrorism and incitement to violence.
The issue of settlements was now putting a two-State solution at risk too, she continued. The number of settlers had increased dramatically, and legislation now before the Knesset would legalize most of their outposts. Emphasizing that one must make a choice between settlements and separation, she said her delegation had not supported the resolution because it was focused too narrowly on settlements.
She went on to stress that Palestinian leaders must recognize that incitement for violence eroded prospects for peace. There had been hundreds of attacks, but rather than being condemned, the attackers were upheld as heroes. Israel faced threats in a difficult neighbourhood, and the United States would not waver in its commitment to its security, she said, underlining that a two-State solution was the only path to peace for the people of Israel and Palestine. It was up to them to choose that path.
The UN resolution did not include any sanction or coercive measure and was adopted under the non-binding Chapter VI of the United Nations Charter. The resolution was sponsored by three members of the security council: Malaysia, Venezuela, and New Zealand. The resolution was voted in favor by four of the five permanent members, China, France, Russia, and the UK while the US abstained. All rotating members voted in favor of the resolution including: Bolivia, Egypt, Ethiopia, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, Senegal, Sweden, Ukraine, and Uruguay. It’s interesting to note that Israel has never been permitted a seat at the security council as a rotating member, but here is a partial list of some that have: Cuba 3x, Egypt 5x, Ethiopia 3x, Iran 1x, Iraq 2x, Jordan 3x, Kuwait 1x, Lebanon 2x, Pakistan 7x, Syria 3x, and Yemen 1x, just to name an infamous few. Do you sense any prejudice?
We could get in to a debate and cite many judicial opinions regarding occupation of territory by defensive means versus offensive aggression but that would be rather meaningless. The United Nations and the Security Council can and will make legal rulings as they see fit.
We could also debate the immoral and illegal savage killing of two thirds of the Jewish people in the holocaust. The attack by Syria, Egypt, and Jordan in 1948 shortly after the UN partition creating the Modern State of Israel, the 1967 Six Day War with Syria, Egypt, and Jordan, the 1973 Yom Kippur War with Syria, Egypt, and Iraq, scud missiles from Iraq in 1991, and countless missiles and rockets from Syria and the Gaza Strip, but who would listen? We could also debate the indefensible borders if Israel lost control of the Golan Heights or Judea and Samaria. Not to mention Israel’s recent withdrawal from the Gaza Strip under the watchful eye of President Bush and Condoleezza Rice and the ensuring and continuous reign of terror from there ever since. But again, who would listen?
What the United Nations or any country or international court says is meaningless when it comes to this tiny land mass in the Middle East. We know the nations will be aligned against Israel, this is why God will pour out his wrath upon them. The nation that will suffer from this resolution is not Israel, but all those nations who have not only persecuted her but turned their back on her as well.
Genesis 12:3 And I will bless those who bless you, And the one who curses you I will curse. And in you all the families of the earth will be blessed.” (NASB)
Unfortunately this, and most other versions, are gravely mistranslated. It is not the one who “curses” but the one who “slights” will be “cursed”.
Scripture also tells us God’s judgment will come and there will be no restraint:
Joel 3:1 “For behold, in those days and at that time, When I restore the fortunes of Judah and Jerusalem,
2 I will gather all the nations And bring them down to the valley of Jehoshaphat. Then I will enter into judgment with them there On behalf of My people and My inheritance, Israel, Whom they have scattered among the nations; And they have divided up My land. (NASB)
The nations that divide the land Of Israel, God’s land, will be judged. And concerning Jerusalem:
Zechariah 14:1 Behold, a day is coming for the LORD when the spoil taken from you will be divided among you.
2 For I will gather all the nations against Jerusalem to battle, and the city will be captured, the houses plundered, the women ravished and half of the city exiled, but the rest of the people will not be cut off from the city.
3 Then the LORD will go forth and fight against those nations, as when He fights on a day of battle.
Zechariah 12:2 “Behold, I am going to make Jerusalem a cup that causes reeling to all the peoples around; and when the siege is against Jerusalem, it will also be against Judah.
3 “It will come about in that day that I will make Jerusalem a heavy stone for all the peoples; all who lift it will be severely injured. And all the nations of the earth will be gathered against it….
8 “In that day the LORD will defend the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and the one who is feeble among them in that day will be like David, and the house of David will be like God, like the angel of the LORD before them.
9 “And in that day I will set about to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem. (NASB)
We know what the end result will be, but what will be the aftermath of this resolution?
Prime Minister Netanyahu has already issued an unprecedented rebuke of those nations that voted for the resolution. Israel has threatened to reduce funding of the UN.
The US congress has also threatened to curtail funding of the United Nations. The US currently funds 22% of the bloated budget which totals $5.6 billion, that makes the US share $1.2 billion per year. If we stopped payment for 10 years we could pay down over half of our debt.
The UK seems to be conflicted, first it voted for the resolution then it chastised Kerry for criticizing Israel’s democratically elected government and his obsession with the settlements and his oversimplification of animosity between Israel and its neighbors.
Then we have Trump taking office on January 2oth. He has already voiced strong opposition to the US non veto and John Kerry’s recent lecture and dressing down of the democratically elected government of Israel. Trump claims he will relocate the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, but so has nearly every other recent US president, only to decline do to “security concerns”. Republican senators have just introduced such a bill. And Trump’s section of David Friedman as ambassador to Israel. Friedman has set out a number of hardline positions on Israeli-Palestinian relations, including fervent opposition to the two-state solution and strong support for an undivided Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.
Interestingly a prime and oft touted location for the American Embassy in Jerusalem is the General Consulate property south of the Old City. It lies right on the Green Line, the 1967 or 1949 armistice line mentioned in the resolution, beyond which any Israeli is illegally present, according to the world. Jordan has already threatened this move as a “red line”.
Perhaps we have reached several turning points. Will the world stop pretending it actually cars about Israel? Will the US side with or against Israel? Will the UK finally become a true friend of Israel? Will Israel stop looking to world for legitimization?
Israel does not need the US, its the US that needs Israel. If the US turns on Israel God will turn on the US, if he has not already. Perhaps also Israel will turn from servitude of the nations and to Yehovah.
Jeremiah 24:6 ‘For I will set My eyes on them for good, and I will bring them again to this land; and I will build them up and not overthrow them, and I will plant them and not pluck them up.
7 ‘I will give them a heart to know Me, for I am the LORD; and they will be My people, and I will be their God, for they will return to Me with their whole heart. (NASB)
These are interesting times indeed. Nations are aligning and events are unfolding which will usher in the last of the last days. Keep watching with me and until next time God bless.