Friday, November 30, 2012

Ireland and Czech Republic See Palestine Through Their Own Geopolitical History

The United Nations voted 38 to 9, with 41 abstentions, to recognize "Palestine" as a “non-member observer state.  Two European countries, Ireland and Czech Republic, campaigned and voted differently concerning Palestine due to their unique geopolitical history.


The Republic of Ireland took great pride in being the European spearhead for United Nations' recognition of a Palestinian state.  The Irish nationalist movement and by extension the Irish government has long sympathized with the Palestinian movement.  Irish nationalists see similarities between the centuries-long occupation of Ireland by the English and the Israeli occupation of the ethnic Palestinian territories.  Similarities extend also to 1949, the year the Arab war against Israel failed (destroying the chance for a Palestinian state controlling all of the old mandate) and Ireland left the Commonwealth of Nations and became fully independent.  Ireland therefore viewed advocating for a Palestine as continuing the fight for national sovereignty which freed the Irish and other ethnic groups.

Czech Republic

The Czech Republic was the only European country to vote against the United Nations' recognition of Palestine.  The geopolitical explanation is that the Czechs remember the pain and suffering caused by appeasement through cutting up and dividing a country.  Nightmares of the France and the United Kingdom giving into Hitler's demands for first the Sudetenland and then the rest of the country drive the Czech's support for territorial integrity on Israel's terms.


Dina said...

Oops, a little typo. You meant 138 in favor.
I stayed up late to watch the UN session live on my computer. History in the making. Let's see what will come of it.

Anonymous said...

Well, Czechs motivation seems to be simply to along with US... 4 years ago they forgot and ignored historical "pain and suffering caused by appeasement through cutting up and dividing a country" when they recognized unilateral declaration of independence of Kosovo... it seems ok to dismember Serbia, but Israel is different matter...

Dina said...

Did you see the U.N.Twitter typo just before the voting?! --

"On Day of Solidarity with Palestinians, Ban Ki-moon stresses urgency of reaching 1-state solution."