Surprisingly the American media seems shocked at the speech by Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu calling for the Palestinians to recognize Israel as the Jewish State, giving it headline status. For example the UPI headline said:

Netanyahu: Palestinians must recognize Jewish homeland

“For the [peace] process in which we find ourselves to be significant, … for it to have a real chance of success, it is necessary to hear the Palestinian leadership finally say that it recognizes the right of the Jewish people to a state of its own, which is the state of Israel,” Netanyahu told Bar Ilan University’s Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies Sunday. “I hope that it shall be so, so that we can advance a real solution to the conflict.”

“After generations of incitement we have no confidence that recognition [of Israel] will trickle down to the Palestinian people. Therefore, we need very strong security arrangements, and to go forward without blindness,” the prime minister said.

“The root of the conflict is the deep resistance among a hard core of Palestinians to the right of the Jewish people to its own state in Israel.”

 However, this is is not a new demand for any Israeli Prime minister including Netanyahu. He outlined the issue in a speech before Congress in May 2011:

“You see, our conflict has never been about the establishment of a
Palestinian state. It has always been about the existence of the Jewish
state. This is what this conflict is about….

They were simply unwilling to end the conflict. And I regret to say
this: They continue to educate their children to hate. They continue to
name public squares after terrorists. And worst of all, they continue to
perpetuate the fantasy that Israel will one day be flooded by the
descendants of Palestinian refugees.”

My friends, this must come to an end. President Abbas must do what I
have done. I stood before my people, and I told you it wasn’t easy for
me, and I said… “I will accept a Palestinian state.” It is time for
President Abbas to stand before his people and say… “I will accept a
Jewish state.”…

The real issue is where the Palestinian refugees go. While the number of
Palestinian refugees in 1949 was somewhere between 800,000-900,000,
today the number is over 4 million. This group of refugees is the only
example in history where the number of refugees has grown without a population shift
(the UN counts the original refugees, their children, grandchildren,
first cousin twice removed on their mother’s side, friends etc. as
refugees-The Jewish refugees from Arab countries, 900,000+ were absorbed
by Israel and other countries).

One of the stated goals of the Palestinians is to flood Israel (within
the green lines) with Palestinian Muslims. Being a democracy, if Israel
allows herself to be flooded with millions of those1948 refugees’
descendants of those 1948 refugees, she will cease to be the Jewish
State. Instead Israel will be just another Muslim country in the Middle

Abbas claims to recognize Israel’s right to exist, but he refuses to
recognize Israel as the Jewish state—per UN Resolution 181(the original
partition resolution passed by the UN in November 1947, UN Resolution 181 calls
for dividing Palestine into Independent Arab and Jewish States). And
that refusal is part of the Palestinians stated strategy to destroy
No Palestinian leader has ever recognized the right of Israel to exist
as the Jewish Homeland. Charter of Abbas’ party FATAH does not recognize
Israel’s right to exist in any form.

Compounding the problem is the President of the United States, Barack Obama has never called for the Palestinians to recognize Israel as the Jewish State. He has called for the recognition of Israel’s right to exist as a state…and has personally called Israel the Jewish State, but Obama has never called on the PA to recognize Israel as the Jewish State.

On the other hand EVERY single Israeli prime minster after Rabin recognized the right to a Palestinian Arab state (sorry leftists but Rabin did not recognize the need for a Palestinian State).
This lack of recognition, and lack of demand by Obama has stifled the peace process. For example, in October 2010 negotiations were going on to convince Netanyahu to
extend the building freeze in Judea and Samaria. The Israeli Prime Minister made a very
simple offer to the PA. If they were to recognize Israel as the Jewish
State, Israel extend building freeze indefinitely. As reported by Al Jazeera the answer was a resounding no:

Netanyahu’s proposal met with swift rejection from senior Palestinian officials.

“The whole world holds Netanyahu responsible for what is happening in
the region, after he chose to push ahead with the settlement project at
the expense of an advance in the peace process. Settlement freeze is a
commitment Netanyahu should respect,” Saeb Erekat, the chief Palestinian
negotiator, told Al Jazeera.

Yasser Abed Rabbo, a senior official of the Palestinian Liberation
Organisation, described the settlement issue as “an aggression on
Palestinian rights and land”.

“What Israel calls itself is an Israeli matter that does not concern
us. The two issues are not related,” he told Al Jazeera in reference to
Netanyahu’s condition that Palestinians recognise Israel as a Jewish

Nabil Abu Rudainah, the spokesman for Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestinian
president, said a return to peace talks required a freeze on settlement
building by Israel.

“The issue of the Jewishness of the state has nothing to do with the
matter,” he told the Reuters news agency. According to Al Jazzeera Abbas
replied almost imminently with a resounding no.

The words “I recognize Israel” is nothing but a ruse…time and time again
the Palestinians have refused to recognize the JEWISH State of Israel.
And without that recognition, none of the other issues will be resolved.