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Palestine: State or Statement?

Updated on December 1, 2012


Or Israel?
Or Israel? | Source


In the United Nations this week, there was a vote amongst the general assembly as to whether Palestine should be recognized as a non member State.

What does this mean?

Basically it means that Palestine asked the rest of the world, if they recognized it as being an independent State and not a part of Israel.

The General Assembly overwhelmingly voted in favor of recognizing the State of Palestine.

What does this mean?

What it should mean is that Palestine be granted all the advantages that any other State expects. Unfortunately though, it will not, why?

Security Council

Given the number of countries that make up the United Nations general assembly, it would be impossible for them to hear all submissions and so most submissions are dealt with via a smaller group, that group is the United Nations Security Council.

The Security Council is a smaller number of countries that make decisions on behalf of the general assembly and is made up of two kinds of member states.

First there are the permanent members. These are countries that are always represented on the Security Council and are the “original” nuclear states including Russia, China and the United States. These permanent members have a right of “veto”. That is to say that if one of these countries vetoes a submission, then that submission is not approved regardless of how many of the other states are for it.

The other kinds of states that are representative of the Security Council are non permanent members. These are countries that take it in turns to have representation on the council. They do not have the power of veto but do get to vote on submissions.

Palestine had previously submitted to the Security Council that it be recognized as an independent state. On those occasions however, the United States always vetoed the submission.

It was only after a lot of diplomacy that Palestine was eventually granted permission to have their submission put to the general assembly.

What this all means is, that although the general assembly recognizes Palestine it is the Security Council that makes most decisions and as the United States previously vetoed Palestinian requests AND voted against them in the general assembly, it is likely that the US will veto any further submissions by the now officially recognized state.


The main reason for Palestine wanting to be recognized as an official independent state is so that the United Nations may bring “pressure to bear” on Israel, who the Palestinians say, are treating them badly.

The fact that Palestinians have grievances against Israel is another reason why their recognition by the United Nations means very little.

Israel is not only oblivious of Palestinian feelings but also of the United Nations.

Israel is responsible for either ignoring or directly acting against more United Nations resolutions than any other country, including Cuba, Iraq, Iran or even North Korea. As if to underline this fact, on the day after Palestinians official recognition, ISRAEL, in a show of defiance to Palestine and a blatant snub of the nose to the UN, approved the building of 3,000 houses on Palestinian soil.

In Israel’s defense, they say that Palestine should have brought their grievances to them through direct talks.

Is this reasonable or childish?


Do not get me wrong, I am not saying that the Palestinian grievances are justified, only that any grievance deserves to at least be heard without prejudice. Isn’t that what justice is about and shouldn’t we all strive for justice in this world.

Obviously everybody will have their own view but personally I don’t blame the Palestinians for their action on this occasion of taking the matter to the United Nations, after all aren’t we all taught at school that if there is a classroom dispute, it should not be solved by fighting in the playground but rather by taking it to the teachers for unbiased resolution.

I can’t help but feel that due to the United States and Israel’s previous actions in dealing with the Palestinian’s concerns, that this recognition of Palestinians statehood is little more than a statement being made and that no real differences will be forthcoming.

Considering the large role that the United Nations has played in the security of Israel in the past, people would think that Israel would have more respect for the institution.

Considering the number of grievances against other countries that the United States has brought before the UN, people would think that the US would be more supportive for others to do the same.


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    • Rodric29 profile image

      Rodric Johnson 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

      Interesting article, though I tend to side with Israel against Palestinians any day of the week given the psychotic behavior of those people over the years.