By the end of 1945, the paroxysms that slaughtered more than 60 million people and left cities in smoking charred ruins ended with 100 nations in the world. By 2005, there were roughly 200 nations depending on whom you asked. Since 2005 we have seen Sudan split into two nations and Montenegro movie away from the yoke of Tito’s Yugoslavia and Yemen seems to be able to split as well. One of the reasons that more borders skein through maps than ever before is because of the existence, the arguable legitimacy and the authority of the United Nations. Like it or not, it is the closest thing the world has to a world voice and those who deny its power are deluding themselves. It’s precursor, the League of Nations, was weak tea compared to the UN. Supporting this notion of course is the predilection of the UN to rely on multinational military aggregate force structures like NATO and the African Union to exert influence. More importantly, once the “world” recognizes new borders, it’s hard to stop the world’s governments from acting on it. It is very likely that the US will find itself on the bad end of a Security Council vote if we do not vote with the Security Council to recognize Palestine. After Obama received the Nobel Peace Prize recognizing his outreach to Muslims around the world, how can we vote no to Palestinian Statehood?
When the international community began slowly hearing arguments for the independence of the former Yugoslavian provinces, Slobodan Milosevic denied recognition and interdicted foreign efforts to relive the besieged Kosovars and Bosnians. Thusly, NATO and global economic pressure brought the weight the world down to crush him. The same might apply here, and this will be the single most momentous moment for the State of Israel in the 21st century. Gaza will not benefit from this because the militant arm of Hamas simply doesn’t have the credibility to mount a successful bid for statehood. However, while all this is happening, the Arab Spring is the Winter of Peace between Egypt and Israel. I do not know how the interim government in Egypt will interact with Israel but you can bet that more flotillas will cause more confrontations and more supplies through the Gazan tunnels may lead to terrible violence.
It is not enough to anoint the UN with all this power. A lot of it came from digital media. Yes, the revolution was tweeted. And Facebooked. And YouTubed. Communities are organizing around cell phone technology and authorities can do little to stop other than shut off local Internet nodes.
Suddenly, it will seem to Israel that it is all alone. Even a long series of protests shows that the old AIPAC Paleo Zionist political scaffolding is starting to topple. A few weeks ago, with polling that ascribed 90% support, almost a half million Israelis took to the streets and protested what appeared to be a reprisal of the American economy: rich oligarchs with immunity from prosecution, huge perks and privileges and working class people who haven’t had a raise in ten years. And a defense industry that is thriving.
What will befall Israel will unfold not just from the outside, but from the inside. Israeli foreign policy has been dominated by corporations and lobbyists who are not too far away the evangelical Christian front that tells Americans that if Israel falls, so too will the United States. Israeli militarism and anti Palestinian furor has done little to settle a peace between armed neighbors. The Israelis are tired of the economic situation that has stagnated for the last decade. They are tired of war and tired of being broke. The Palestinians are tired of being ghettoized.
This scenario doesn’t include the likelihood for another massive Hezbollah flare up. But simply put, the Arab Spring will bring surprises we can only guess. We really don’t know if the regimes that replace Mubarak and the Tunisian oligarchy will be better than the dictators they deposed. We have no idea how Lybia’s new governors will turn out. The scenarios must also include the notion that the Arab Spring will be aimed at eradicating US policy in toto from the Mid East. There is so much dudgeon in the Mid East and much of it is directed at the unfaltering, unwavering support that the United States has for Israel.
The security counsel vote will come within the month. We will see.
UPDATE: Maybe I was a bit too hasty.