Home > Uncategorized > Fouad Ajami on the History of Palestine at the UN

Fouad Ajami on the History of Palestine at the UN


Fouad Ajami is a Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution and a frequent OpEd writer for the Wall Street Journal and other publications, and is/was a frequent commentator on the Talking Head TV shows, such as Charlie Rose.

He had an OpEd today in the Wall Street Journal, also available on the Hoover Institution Website: http://www.hoover.org/news/daily-report/93926

Today’s column has a rich history of the first time that the question of Palestine as a nation came before the UN, in 1947. According to Ajami’s account, both Israel and Palestine were were to live side-by-side in a partitioned Palestine. It took some heavy lobbying, but they secured the necessary 2/3 vote for statehood.

Israel became the 58th state, while Palestine refused the 59th state, figuring that their Arab brethren would vanquish Israel.

Beyond Ajami’s vivid writing style, the history and the backstory behind those UN machinations many years ago are compelling.

A small sample of a short but worthwhile read:
“Arab diplomacy had sought the defeat of the resolution, and the Palestinians had waited for deliverance at the hands of their would-be Arab backers. The threat of war offered the Palestinians a false promise; there was no felt need for compromise. The influential secretary-general of the Arab League, the Egyptian Azzam Pasha (by an exquisite twist of fate a maternal grandfather of al Qaeda’s leader Ayman al-Zawahiri), was to tell a talented, young Zionist diplomat, Abba Eban, that the Arab world was not in a compromising mood. “The Arab world regards the Jews as invaders. It is going to fight you,” he said. “War is absolutely inevitable.”



“The partition line shall be nothing but a line of fire and blood,” Azzam Pasha warned. And history would vindicate him. Six months later, with Britain quitting Palestine without even a ceremonial handover of responsibility, war would break out.
But the scenarios of doom for the new Jewish state were not to be fulfilled. Israel held its own. And the Palestinians who had bet on the Arab cavalry riding to the rescue were to know defeat and dispossession.”

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