Why can't (or won't) Israel stop building settlements in the west bank?

Universally this is acknowledged to be the MAJOR sticking point in any arrangement for a lasting future peace with the Palestians. Yet the government of Israel continues to defy international public opinion.

Your thoughts?


PALESTINIANS! not Palestians -- I mistyped

4 Answers

  • 9 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    Israel has justified its civilian settlements by stating that a temporary use of land and buildings for various purposes is permissible under a plea of military necessity and because the settlements fulfill security needs. In 1967, Theodor Meron, legal counsel to the Israeli Foreign Ministry stated in a legal opinion to Adi Yafeh, the Political Secretary of the Prime Minister, "My conclusion is that civilian settlement in the administered territories contravenes the explicit provisions of the Fourth Geneva Convention." The legal opinion, forwarded to Prime Minister Levi Eshkol, was not made public at the time, and the Labor cabinet progressively sanctioned settlements anyway; this action paved the way for future settlement growth. In 2007, Judge Meron stated that "I believe that I would have given the same opinion today."

    International intergovernmental organizations such as the Conference of the High Contracting Parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention, every major organ of the United Nations, the European Union, and Canada, have declared that the settlements are a violation of international law.

    A review of Israel's country report conducted by the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination stated "The status of the settlements was clearly inconsistent with Article 3 of the Convention, which, as noted in the Committee's General Recommendation XIX, prohibited all forms of racial segregation in all countries. There is a consensus among publicists that the prohibition of racial discrimination, irrespective of territories, is an imperative norm of international law." Non-governmental organizations (e.g. Amnesty International, and Human Rights Watch) have also characterized the settlements as a violation of international law. In 1978, the Legal Adviser of the Department of State to the United States Congress concluded that "the establishment of the civilian settlements in those territories is inconsistent with international law."

    Many other legal authorities also consider the building of Israeli settlements in the West Bank, East Jerusalem, and the Golan Heights to be illegal under international law, although Israel disputes this.

    Nevertheless, Israel considers its settlement policy to be consistent with international law, including the Fourth Geneva Convention, while recognizing that some of the settlements have been constructed illegally on privately owned land. The Israel Supreme Court has ruled that the power of the Civil Administration and the Military Commander in the occupied territories is limited by the entrenched customary rules of public international law as codified in the Hague Regulations and Geneva Convention IV. In 1998 the Israeli Minister of Foreign Affairs produced "The International Criminal Court Background Paper."

    It concludes "International law has long recognised that there are crimes of such severity they should be considered "international crimes." Such crimes have been established in treaties such as the Genocide Convention and the Geneva Conventions. .... The following are Israel's primary issues of concern (i.e. with the rules of the ICC): - The inclusion of settlement activity as a "war crime" is a cynical attempt to abuse the Court for political ends. The implication that the transfer of civilian population to occupied territories can be classified as a crime equal in gravity to attacks on civilian population centres or mass murder is preposterous and has no basis in international law.

    The Anti-Defamation League and some legal scholars agree with the Israeli position.

    Under Israeli law, West Bank settlements must meet specific criteria to be legal; Approximately 100 unauthorized small communities that do not meet these criteria have been built and are called illegal outposts. some of the settlements have been constructed illegally on privately owned land.

    Source(s): Wikipedia
  • 9 years ago

    For a few reasons.

    1. Trust. Israel only ended up with the land after winning it in a war that Jordan started. Jordan than said they don't want it back, leaving it in legal limbo. Israel offered to trade it all for peace. No takers.

    When Egypt finally asked if the land for peace deal was an option many years later, Israel said yes and traded the Sinai for peace.

    When the PLO (now the PA) asked if the deal was still open, Israel withdrew from most of the West Bank and Gaza and turned it all over to the PLO/PA for the promise of peace. They also dismantled settlements and forcibly removed the settlers.

    The result was MORE Arab terrorist attacks against Israel not less.

    The result was MORE PA incitement of its population to attack and destroy Israel and to kill Jews not less.

    If the consequence of doing something is more attacks against you, why do it?

    If Israelis believed freezing the settlements would lead to more peace and not less they would do it.

    In fact, many see it as the opposite. They believe that building settlements is the only thing that puts any pressure on Arabs to seek peace now rather than later or never. If the possible consequences of attacking Israel are:

    A) you win and destroy Israel

    B) you lose and nothing bad happens

    simple motivation theory suggests, the attacks will continue and probably increase.

    I hear many posters talk about how Israel is building buildings that can be removed or given to someone else and that Israeli citizens are moving into neighborhoods from which they can moved and that this is killing the peace process.

    But, while these are easily reversible, the PA and Hamas and other Arabs are targeting civilians for death and killing them. That cannot be undone. I don't get it.

    2. The larger issue is also frustrating to many Israelis.

    Are any Israeli settlements built on Arab land, probably.

    But they are the exception rather than the rule.

    There were many Jews living in the West Bank and Gaza and Jews were the majority of Jerusalem residents for over a thousand years.

    Arabs ethnically cleansed Jews from all these areas when Jordan seized the land in 1948.

    Most "settlements" are Jews living on land that is either Jewish owned private property or is state owned (it was owned by Jordan, before that Britain, before that 2 Ottoman Empires). So, almost no Arab private property affected.

    So, Arabs invade, ethnically cleanse Jews out.

    Arabs attack again, lose control of the ethnically cleansed land.

    Arabs complain that because they want it to remain ethnically cleansed of Jews, it is an affront to have any Jews live there.

    Meanwhile, Israel allowed Arabs to stay and 20% of all Israeli citizens and elected MKs are Arab.

  • scheff
    Lv 4
    3 years ago

    The evil plans of thoroughly destroying the Palestinians of ever returning to their community lands is now an open secret. The Israelis will provoke the unique inhabitants to react and then use that as an excuse to slaughter,expel or enslave the few that are left. The 2500 greater housing contraptions being set up interior the west financial organisation Testify to the Lies of the Israeli lawsuits of being afraid that their existence is threatened. " you are able to seek till you tire , you will no longer locate no larger liars , they have been mendacity because of the fact the 1st gentle of historic previous."

  • Anonymous
    9 years ago

    so many want to know that question.if you find out please let me know.there is plenty of room,so i don't get it.

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