Mandate for Palestine - July 24, 1922

Mandate for Palestine - July 24, 1922
Jordan is 77% of former Palestine - Israel, the West Bank (Judea and Samaria) and Gaza comprise 23%.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Why the Peace Talks Are Making Jordan Panic

[Published 25 February 2014]

ALGEMEINER - Jerold Auerbach

King Abdullah of Jordan is displaying discernible signs of panic over the future of his kingdom. Dismissing any notion that it might become an “alternative homeland” for Palestinians, he recently declared to high Jordanian officials:
“Jordan is Jordan and Palestine is Palestine and nothing but that, not in the past or the future.”
According to Arutz Sheva (February 24), the Jordanian state news agency Petra reported that in a meeting with his parliamentary leaders the king warned of
“talk about the so-called alternative homeland” for Palestinians. “This, God willing, will be the last time we talk about this subject.”

There is, apparently, increasing apprehension in Amman lest Secretary of State Kerry’s proposed framework agreement between Israel and the Palestinian Authority might implicate Jordan. The king is worried that Jordan would be required to accept even more West Bank Palestinians than it already has (now comprising a majority of the population). He is hopeful that any peace agreement will include the transfer of Palestinians from Jordan to the new Palestinian state.

The first indication of concern was back in 2007 with the revocation of Jordanian citizenship of thousands of Palestinians, who were declared to be “stateless refugees.” (Imagine the international outcry if Israel acted similarly toward its own Palestinian citizens.) Further revealing of their precarious status in the Hashemite kingdom, some 340,000 Palestinians are still confined in Jordanian refugee camps.

The king has reason to be worried lest Jordan might become the State of Palestine. History reveals why. Back in 1920, when the League of Nations Mandate to govern Palestine was bestowed upon Great Britain, it cited “the historical connection of the Jewish people with Palestine and the legitimacy of grounds for reconstituting their national home in that country.” Jews were granted the right of settlement throughout “Palestine,” comprising the land east and west of the Jordan River.

Great Britain, however, retained the right to “postpone” or “withhold” Jewish settlement east of the Jordan. Two years later, with the creation of Transjordan by the British to reward Prince Abdullah of Arabia for his wartime cooperation, Jewish settlement was restricted to the land – all of it – west of the Jordan. That right has never been rescinded. It includes Hebron no less than Tel Aviv.

So it is that Jordanian Palestinians are already at home, east of the Jordan River, which comprises two-thirds of Mandatory Palestine. Surely the resistance of Hashemite monarchs, backed by Bedouin tribes, should not be permitted by the international community to impede Palestinian statehood within the borders of their own national home according to international law.

You can read the full article here:

Monday, February 24, 2014

Should Jordan be Palestine?

[Published 23 February 2013]

The Jerusalem Post - Daniel Tauber

If you’ve heard former MK Aryeh Eldad speak in the past few years (before recent Knesset elections, at least), you probably heard him say something like this:

“The vast majority of Jordan is Palestinian. In fear of an uprising, the King of Jordan has his private airplane running 24 hours a day, seven days a week to whisk him away in case of a revolt. He should declare that Jordan is the Palestinian national homeland or seek asylum in London.”

Such language (there was also a petition and a pamphlet) is only the most recent incarnation of a push for “Jordan is Palestine,” a slogan many on the Right still adhere to.

In a lengthy 1988 article on the topic for Commentary (rejecting “Jordan is Palestine”), Middle East scholar Daniel Pipes and international affairs expert Adam Garfinkle documented many proponents of the theory, even practical Israeli plans for potentially realizing it, and Pipes continues to update the article on his website with quotations of relevant personalities who maintain the opinion.

As Eldad has explained, the goal of making Jordan into Palestine is to lessen pressure on Israel to implement the “two-state solution.

” Once Jordan becomes Palestine, the “the Palestinians [would] lose their orphan status as a people without a state” and “their international demands will become much weaker.”

The two-state solution would become meaningless as there would already be a Palestinian state, and there would therefore be much less of an argument for Israel to withdraw from Judea and Samaria, something Jordan-is-Palestine proponents rightly fear would lead to grave danger for Israel.

If only it were that simple.

Please read the full article here

Alternative Palestinian homeland in Jordan "unacceptable": presidency

[Published 25 February 2014]


RAMALLAH, Feb. 24 (Xinhua) -- Jordan is not an adequate alternative homeland for the Palestinians, the Palestinian presidency said on Monday, according to the state-run Wafa news agency.

"Jordan is Jordan and Palestine is Palestine, nothing but that, " Nabil Abu Rdeneh, a spokesman for Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas was quoted as saying.

Abu Rdeneh's comments came after King Abdullah II of Jordan on Sunday said the idea that his country could be an alternative home for the Palestinians "illusive."

The alternative homeland is a popular idea among some Israelis who suggest that Jordan be used as a homeland for the Palestinians. The idea has recently raised a wide-ranging debate in Jordan.

The idea has always been opposed by both Jordanian and Palestinian governments, which agree that peace can only be made according to a two-state solution, with East Jerusalem as the capital of the future Palestinian state, the official added.

Jordan, a main player in the current U.S.-brokered peace talks, which resumed last July, has embraced some two million Palestinian refugees. The idea of the alternative homeland deprives them of the right to return to their original homes.

Jordan won’t be Palestine, king says

[Published 24 February 2014]


Jordan’s King Abdullah II lashed out on Sunday against domestic opponents arguing for Jordan to become the “alternative homeland” for the Palestinians.

“Jordan is Jordan and Palestine is Palestine, and nothing else, not in the past or the future,” Abdullah reportedly said, according to the official Jordanian news agency Petra.

Abdullah made the comments in a meeting with senior government officials, including Prime Minister Abdullah Ensour, Senate President Abdelraouf al-Rawabdeh, House of Representatives Speaker Atef Tarawneh, senior members of the judiciary and others.

“We know how this issue has been surfacing [for the past] 15 years, or even more,” Abdullah said, and called talk of turning Jordan into a Palestinian state “sedition.”

“There are more important issues to focus on, especially with regards to political and economic reform,” Abdullah insisted, and issued a warning to those advocating a change in the identity of the state: “We know this group, and if this issue is repeated next year, we will declare who they are by name.”

Read more:

Jordan won’t be Palestine, king says | The Times of Israel

King Abdullah: Jordan is Jordan, and Palestine is Palestine

[Published 24 February 2014]


Jordan’s King Abdullah II rejected on Sunday the notion that his country was an "alternative homeland" for Palestinian Arabs, the state news agency Petra reports.

“Jordan is Jordan and Palestine is Palestine and nothing but that, not the in the past or the future," King Abdullah was quoted as having said in a meeting with the Prime Minister, the President of the Senate and the Speaker of the Lower House.

"We know how this issue has been surfacing since 15 years, or even more, where things start in the spring by the same group, who tense the Jordanian society, and by the summer, people feel scared; a thing that makes me reassure them by a speech or a press interview, but this year, unfortunately, the talk about the so-called alternative homeland stated early," he said.

“There are more important issues to focus on, especially with regards to political and economic reform. What we should do is to work as a team until we work out our internal issues," added the King.

"This, God's willing, will be the last time we talk about this subject, and I have said it more than once, but what is required now is everyone's support in this issue," he noted, according to Petra.

There have been many calls on Jordan to accept the so-called “Palestinian refugees”, considering that the areas liberated by Israel during the 1967 Six Day War were under Jordanian control.

The Hashemite Kingdom, however, has rejected these calls.

King Abdullah’s latest remarks come amid growing concern in Jordan over U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry’s proposed framework agreement and what will be its effect on Jordan.

Read the full article

Alternative homeland for Palestinians 'illusion': Jordan King

[published 24 February 2014]

AUTHOR: Ibrahim Qobaylat

AMMAN - King Abdullah II of Jordan on Sunday described as "illusion" talk about an "alternative homeland" for the Palestinians.

"Jordan is Jordan and Palestine is Palestine and nothing but that, not the in the past or the future," he said during a meeting with a host of officials, including Prime Minister Abdullah Ensour, according to a statement issued by the Jordanian Royal Court.

US-brokered peace talks between the two sides had resumed last July after a three-year hiatus.

Last month, US Secretary of State John Kerry presented both sides with a proposed framework for an eventual peace agreement that addresses "final status issues" – namely, borders, security, the fate of Palestinian refugees and the status of Jerusalem.

The proposed framework has raised worries in Jordan about reaching a Palestinian-Israeli deal at the expense of Jordan.

King Abdullah said Jordan is familiar with all the details of the US-sponsored peace negotiations between the Palestinians and Israel.
"We will not accept anything that tampers with the future of our people and our homeland," he said.

Palestinian-Israeli talks hit a snag following the self-proclaimed Jewish state`s recent announcement that it had planned to build a host of new Jewish-only settlements in the occupied West Bank.

Palestinian negotiators insist that Israeli settlement construction must stop before a comprehensive final-status agreement can be reached.

Sunday, February 23, 2014
Copyright © 2014 Anadolu Agency

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Palestine - Kerry Oblivious To Demise Of Palestinian Authority

[Published 23 February 2014]

US Secretary of State John Kerry and the US State Department continue to cling to the illusion that the Palestinian Authority still exists – despite PLO insistence that it does not following this Decree on 3 January 2013:

Decree No. 1 for the year 2013

On the use of the name of the State of Palestine and its emblem on letterheads, seals and related official documents
President of the State of Palestine

Chairman of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization

Based on the Statute of the Palestine Liberation Organization

And after reviewing the Fundamental Law of 2003, as amended

Based on the Resolution of the General Assembly of the United Nations No. GA 11317, deciding to upgrade the status of Palestine to the status of observer state in the United Nations Organization.

Based on the recommendations of the Palestinian Committee in charge of the steps to be taken in this regard, and based on the powers vested in us, and in conformity with the public interest,

We decided the following:

Article (1)
Official documents, seals, signs and letterheads of the Palestinian National Authority official and national institutions shall be amended by replacing the name ‘Palestinian National Authority’ whenever it appears by the name ‘State of Palestine’ and by adopting the emblem of the State of Palestine. The relevant authorities shall be in charge of monitoring the implementation of this Decree, taking into account the requirements of use.

Article (2)
Official documents, seals, signs and letterheads in the embassies of the State of Palestine and its missions abroad shall be amended by keeping the name ‘State of Palestine’ and emblem only and the name of ‘mission’ afterwards. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs shall be in charge of implementing these amendments. Dealing with States who do not recognize the State of Palestine shall also be taken into consideration.

Article (3)
No amendment shall be made to the name and emblem in official documents, seals, letterheads and signs of the institutions of the Palestine Liberation Organization.

Article (4)
All competent authorities, each in their respective area, shall implement the provisions of this Decree starting from its date. This Decree shall be notified to those it may concern and shall be published in the Official Gazette.

Mahmoud Abbas
President of the State of Palestine
Chairman of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization
– Translated from Maan News.

Kerry and the State Department’s inability to appreciate this major change in PLO policy became very apparent following Kerry’s visit to Paris last week to meet “President of the State of Palestine” and “Chairman of the Executive Committee of the PLO”

The State Department web site described Kerry’s visit in these terms:

“In Paris, Secretary Kerry will meet with Palestinian Authority President Abbas to discuss the ongoing negotiations between the Palestinians and Israelis.” State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said in Abu Dhabi – where Kerry was meeting United Arab Emirate officials:
“Secretary Kerry will meet with Palestinian Authority President Abbas in Paris, France on Wednesday to discuss the ongoing negotiations between the Palestinians and Israelis,”

Lebanon’s Daily Star – obviously embarrassed to report such Kerry and State Department nonsense – went so far as to deliberately hide Psaki’s reference to the Palestinian Authority:

“State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki confirmed the meeting, saying they would “discuss the ongoing negotiations between the Palestinians and Israelis”.

Wily long time PLO negotiator – Saeb Erekat – was however prepared to let Kerry wander along his path of blissful ignorance with these amazing remarks reported in Xinhua:

“A Palestinian official warned on Monday that the failure of the current Palestinian-Israeli peace talks will lead to the collapse of the Palestinian National Authority (PNA).
“The failure of negotiations means that things will go back to zero point,” chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erikat told the official Voice of Palestine radio.
“This may lead Israel to reoccupy the Palestinian territories and thus the PNA will collapse,” he said, adding that the PNA will approach the international organizations including the International Criminal Court (ICC) to sue the state of Israel if the talks do not succeed.
It is the first time a Palestinian official warns of a possible collapse of the PNA if the US-backed negotiations fail.”

Marie Harf – Deputy State Department Spokesman – in her daily press briefing on 19 February –still thought Kerry was meeting with the Palestinian Authority Chairman – the party to negotiations with Israel under the Oslo Accords and the Bush Roadmap:

“Today, Secretary Kerry is in Paris, where he has had meetings with French Foreign Minister Fabius and Jordanian Foreign Minister Judeh. Later tonight, he’s scheduled to meet with Palestinian Authority President Abbas.”

Kerry’s Public Schedule maintained the fiction for 20 February:
“2:00 p.m. LOCAL Secretary Kerry meets with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, in Paris, France.”

This picture, this picture and this picture on the State Department website – recording photo-ops with “Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas” – clearly indicate that Kerry is unaware that:
1. The Palestinian Authority no longer exists
2. The State of Palestine exists on the soil of Palestine
3. The Palestinian Arabs are no longer stateless or homeless
4. Negotiations under Oslo and the Roadmap have become meaningless

Kerry and the State Department will have a lot of explaining to do if his framework agreement fails to take these crucial PLO changes into account.

“Kerry cops caning” would make an excellent headline.

Is Jordan Palestine?

By Douglas Bloomfield

[Published 20 February 2014]

Jordanians are becoming a minority in their own country, outnumbered by refugees from the conflicts around them.

The latest are 600,000+ Syrians who have fled the war in their country that has become a humanitarian disaster, and 200,000 Iraqis who have seen renewed fighting erupt in their country as bombings are a daily occurrence in Baghdad and other cities.

An estimated half to two thirds of Jordan's population are Palestinians. Unlike other countries, Jordan has given them citizenship, although not full equality. The greatest threat to the Hashemite regime may come from them and their brethren across the Jordan River, not the Syrian or Iraqi borders.

West Bank Palestinians look to the day of confederation with the East Bank, preferably after they attain statehood on their own. An irredentist Palestinian state, especially if Hamas succeeds in its goal of supplanting Fatah, could pose a mortal threat to Jordan's future. Being landlocked and having minimal natural resources, Palestine may feel a need to expand, and to pursue that course along the path of least resistance, eastward. Confederation could be only a beginning.

Most Jordanians would rather see Palestinians leave their country to live in the new state of Palestine. Unlike many Palestinians and Greater Israel nationalists they reject any suggestion that Jordan is Palestine.

Read more about it in my Washington Watch column this week.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Palestine - Kerry confronts ghosts in state of confusion

[Published 16 February 2014 - Jerusalem Post]

The semantic circus that first created a people known as the Palestinians in 1964 - who now claim an entitlement to their own independent state in " the occupied Palestinian Territories" - reached absurd heights with the following bizarre news item this week:

"The Israeli authorities have blocked 70 patients from Gaza from entering Israel to receive medical treatment because their transfer documents were marked “State of Palestine,” officials told AFP on Wednesday.

Until recently, official stationery has used the term “Palestinian territories.”

But the logo was changed in mid-December, a year after the Palestinians won recognition as a UN observer state, despite fierce Israeli opposition."

This "War of the Letterheads" adds a new dimension to the conflict between Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO).

The "State of Palestine" was admitted as a member State of UNESCO on 31 October 2011 by a vote of 107/14 and as a non-observer State at the United Nations (UN) on 29 November 2012 by a vote of 138/9.

Those States voting in favor ignored the legal requirements of article 1 of the Montevideo Convention 1933 which declares:

"The state as a person of international law should possess the following qualifications:
(a) a permanent population;
(b) a defined territory;
(c) government; and
(d) capacity to enter into relations with the other states"

Those states dissenting or abstaining took the view that any State of Palestine to be created for the first time ever in recorded history could only arise as a result of negotiations conducted under the 1993 Oslo Accords, the 2003 Bush Roadmap and the 2007 Annapolis conference between the designated parties - Israel and the Palestinian Authority - ("the agreed negotiating framework").

John V Whitbeck - an international lawyer and adviser to the Palestinian team negotiating with Israel - had flagged the likelihood of this latest War of the Letterheads in an article written in the Cyprus Mail on January 13, 2013.

Whitbeck revealed that the Palestinian Authority “had been absorbed and replaced by the "State of Palestine” in a decree issued by Mahmoud Abbas on January 3, 2013 and signed by him acting in his capacities as president of the State of Palestine and chairman of the Executive Committee of the PLO.

Whitbeck’s confirmation of the demise of the "Palestinian Authority" with the newly declared "State of Palestine" should surely have signalled the end of further negotiations under the agreed negotiating framework - specifically designed to achieve the birth of that very state.

For the full article read:

Does Jordan Really Want an Independent Palestinian State?

The U.S.-brokered Israeli-Palestinian conflict negotiations have yet to yield any tangible results.

Recently, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu paid a surprise visit to Jordan’s King Abdullah to discuss these issues.

While Jordan officially supports a two-state solution, Jordan’s leaders have also quietly expressed serious concerns over the parameters of a future Palestinian state.

Does Jordan truly want an independent Palestinian state?

“The Jordanians want a solution that doesn’t undermine the domestic stability of the Hashemite kingdom. [One that] creates a relatively secure border and protects their interests in Jerusalem. The Israeli-Palestinian negotiations touch upon their national security,” Aaron David Miller—a former U.S. Mideast advisor and negotiator, and now a distinguished scholar at the Wilson Center think tank—told

To read the article in full:

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Palestine - Jordan Not Jumping For Joy

Jordan is becoming increasingly unhappy at the role US Secretary of State John Kerry might be planning for it in his eagerly anticipated framework agreement designed to end the 130 years old Jewish-Arab conflict.

The Jordan Times reported on 28 January:

Figures representing professional unions and political parties are planning to hold a national conference to "protect Jordan and Palestine and repulse Kerry's peace plan". And a number of lawmakers signed a memorandum to convene a special Lower House session to discuss Kerry's controversial proposals.

Jordan's main opposition group, the Muslim Brotherhood, issued a communiqué last week warning of an impending plan to liquidate the Palestinian cause, which, it said, threatens both Jordanians and Palestinians.

It said that the current regional situation will encourage the US and Israel to impose their conditions on the Palestinians and put pressure on Jordan.

One Islamist leader, Salem Al Falahat, told a local news website that while detailed information on Kerry's proposals is scarce, it is clear that current negotiations will not serve the interests of Palestinians or Jordanians.

Jordan's central role in bringing Kerry's push for peace to fruition arises from the following facts:

1.The Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) Charter claims that "Palestine, with the boundaries it had during the British Mandate, is an indivisible territorial unit."

2.Jordan and Israel are the two successor States to the British Mandate – Jordan exercising sovereignty in 78% of the territory covered by the Mandate - and Israel in a further 17%.

3. Stuck between them is the West Bank – 4% of the Mandate territory – which was:
(i) conquered and occupied by Transjordan in 1948 after having being called "Judea and Samaria" from biblical times until United Nations Resolution 181 (II) in 1947
(ii)then renamed "the West Bank" after being unified with Transjordan in 1950 to create a new territorial entity renamed "Jordan"

(iii) lost to Israel in the 1967 Six Day War.

Read the full article at:

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

"Palestine":History and Geography Can Unblock Deadlock

It is a pity the US State Department chooses to focus on the remarks of Israeli Ministers, such as the private aside of the Minister of Defence labelling US Secretary of State John Kerry as being delusional and messianic - rather than concentrating on PLO Chairman Abbas's very public remarks that go to the heart of the 130 years old Jewish-Arab conflict:

"Israel's problem is that the Palestinians know more than the Israelis about history and geography. We talk about what we know"

Is Abbas correct in his contention or has he become a victim of his own propaganda?

The answer depends on how one views Abbas's following statement to the United Nations on 26 September 2013:

"However, as representatives of the Palestinian people, we have long been aware of our responsibilities towards our people and had the necessary courage to accept a two-State solution: Palestine and Israel on the borders of 4 June 1967, establishing a Palestinian State on 22% of the land of 'historic Palestine'."

Are the 'West Bank' and Gaza in fact 22% of 'historic Palestine' or do they comprise only 5% of 'historic Palestine'?

Read the full article:

Jordan Says No to Kerry "Conspiracy"

Kerry has managed to escalate tensions not only between Israel and the Palestinians, but also between Jordanians and the Palestinians inside Jordan.

Kerry will now have to find a way to calm King Abdullah and his constituents before Jordan slips into civil war.

"Jordan is playing host [to Palestinians] and no agreement can pass without Jordan." — Fatin al-Baddad, Jordanian journalist.

To read the full article:

Fearful of becoming ‘Palestine,’ Jordan chimes in on peace talks

Jordanian Foreign Minister Nasser Judeh rejects ‘Jewish’ Israel and stresses Jordanian interests ahead of an expected framework deal

Jordan will not recognize Israel as a Jewish state, the Kingdom’s foreign minister declared, expressing a latent Hashemite fear of Jordan becoming the de-facto Palestinian state.

“Whoever thinks Jordan will become someone’s alternative state is delusional,” Nasser Judeh told members of parliament Sunday evening during an update session on the peace process and the recent visit of US Secretary of State John Kerry to Jordan.

“With regards to the rumors surrounding the Jewish state, Jordan’s consistent position — aligned in this regard with the Palestinian position — is that this formula and this proposal is unacceptable,” Judeh was quoted by the official Petra News Agency as saying. He was apparently referring to reports that Kerry’s framework proposal will provide for recognition of Israel as the Jewish state.

For the full story read: