The project through which the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) will be attempting next September to gain recognition and full membership in the United Nations (UN) for a Palestinian state on the occupied Palestinian territories based on the 1949 armistice lines – which are more commonly and erroneously referred to as the June 4, 1967 borders – is dead before it is born. The process to gain such recognition is clear: States are admitted to membership in the United Nations by decision of the General Assembly upon the recommendation of the Security Council. In other words, the UN does it in two separate steps: First, the Security Council must recommend such recognition by nine votes of its fifteen members, provided that none of the permanent members (i.e.China,Britain, France,Russia, and United States) votes against it. Second, the Security Council recommendation is then sent to the General Assembly for approval by a two-third majority vote.
The United States has declared, on more than one occasion, that it would not allow such recognition to pass through the Security Council. It views the effort as aiming to isolate the state of Israel, and that it would not support any such effort. Therefore, unless the United States changes its policy – which is highly unlikely – this whole project will be born dead.
The question remains: Since President Mahmoud Abbas knows this fact as much as we do, probably with much more details, one wonders: What does he wish to accomplish by investing so much resources and energies into a futile exercise? It is obvious that Abu Mazen wants this show to go on for a reason that we do not know. More importantly, it is only known to him what he intends to do after his almost guaranteed failure at the UN.
It would be an uninformed, ignorant judgment to simply dismiss Abu Mazen as miscalculating or as being stupid. The more sober observer would say that it remains to be seen to which direction Abu Mazen is leading the Palestinian people. His supporters would follow his lead to the bitter end; his adversaries might attack him; and others might speculate, but in less than three months, we will find out.
Hope is the stuff from which life is made!