Palestinian Authority spokeswoman Hanan Ashrawi has confirmed that in spite of numerous behind the scenes warnings, the PLO has submitted its final draft resolution to the UN General Assembly requesting an upgrade of Palestine's UN status to an "observer state."
The resolution, according to my sources also delineates 'Palestine' as all of Gaza plus all of Judea and Samaria (AKA the West Bank), including half of Jerusalem as its capitol.
Efforts from other nations like the U.S. to urge amendments or to head this off in favor of negotiations failed miserably.
The PA's unelected dictator Mahmoud Abbas is scheduled to address the General Assembly in New York tomorrow, November 29th.You can expect a bravura performance of bombast and outright falsehood similar to his last appearance. It will go over well, and there's no doubt that the votes are there to pass it. You could probably get a majority vote in the UN General Assembly that Jews have horns on the heads.
Needless to say, this abrogates two treaties the Palestinian Authority signed, the Oslo Accords and the Road Map, but the PA has already stated on many occasions that as far as their concerned, Oslo served its purpose and they're no longer bound to it. They got land, and Israel got worthless paper.
The big plus for the PLO when they get observer status will be the ability to sue Israel in the International Criminal Court (ICC) for 'war crimes'. Israel, like the U.S., does not recognize the jurisdiction of the ICC but a guilty verdict in that particular kangaroo court would be recognized by some European countries, so the idea is to demonize and delegitimize Israel further.
In case you were wondering, that's the end game behind the PA digging up Arafat's rotting, AIDS-ridden corpse and having PA-paid pathologists report that he might have been poisoned. The PA has already said that if they have 'evidence' of this, they will sue Israel in the ICC.
Britain, which has never been particularly friendly to Israel will probably vote in favor of the resolution and France, whose socialist government owes its election largely to Muslim votes has already said it definitely will.
Germany has said it will not, and Canada is not only sending its foreign minister John Baird to vote against the resolution in person, but Canadian PM Stephan Harper took the principled step of personally informing Mahmoud Abbas that if the Palestinians proceeded with this attempt to hijack the peace process, Canada would cease funding the PA and might even break diplomatic relations entirely, as they did with Iran earlier.
There are also reports that members of the Obama Administration consider this a slap at President Obama and have also threatened to cut funding, but I'll believe that when I see it.
Even more interesting will be Israel's reaction.
The majority of Israelis have known for some time that Abbas was not actually interested in negotiating anything in a serious way. The Hamas unity deal convinced most of the die hards, and Abbas going to the UN in this fashion is going to convince all but the most delusional.
The sensible thing, something Israel should have done decades ago, is to mark out its own borders and annex the land in Judea and Samaria in areas B and C along the lines Israel chooses including the Jordan Valley. This would put the vast majority of those people calling themselves Palestinians within the boundaries of the new 'Palestine', in Area A.
It should also trigger an official Israeli announcement that the Oslo era is over, along with any notion of occupation.'Palestine' is now free to follow its own destiny, with an end to all security co-operation,work permits for Palestinian citizens, tax remittances, and trade relations which will now be renegotiated from scratch.
But then Abbas, after all, has nothing personally to lose. He's on the way out like the rest of the Fatah Old Guard, with their Jordanian passports in hand and comfortable retirement ahead in the Emirates or Europe with the money they stole.
The Palestinian Authority itself is broke and unable to pay its vastly inflated government payroll, and any private foreign investment is severely limited because virtually every iota of economic activity there involves a monopoly headed by a well connected Fatah member with his hand out. Twenty years after Oslo, and in spite of the PA receiving more per capita foreign aid than any developing nation in history, there are still plenty of people living in refugee camps, while Abbas and the rest of the Fatah junta have become millionaires.
At this point, the PA's donors in the EU and America have their own fiscal problems and can no longer really afford the luxury of supporting the PA the way they used to.
It looks like the world's most successful international con game may be reaching its end.
The remaining portion of 'Palestine' will likely be annexed and folded back into Jordan once Hamas takes over and the Muslim Brotherhood boots King Abdullah out.