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January 11, 2003

Munich, 1938 - Europe, 2003

The ominous news about the Quartet keeps rolling in. On December 25, 2002, for example, Ha’Aretz, reported [bold font added]:
Blair: London talks to pave way for Palestinian state by 2005

LONDON - British Prime Minister Tony Blair said Wednesday that next month's conference in London on PA reform is intended to pave the way for a renewal of negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians, which will result in the creation of a Palestinian state by 2005 "next to Israel."
...
The two-day conference, headed by British Foreign Minister Jack Straw, will be attended by representatives of the Quartet and official delegates from Jordan, Saudi and Egypt.
Many commentators have already noted that the one party missing from the list of participants is ... Israel, just as Czechoslovakia was not invited to the Munich Conference of September 1938. Indeed, as the Quartet’s scheming proceeds, one is reminded more and more of the Munich Conference. The similarities and parallels are stupefying not only with regard to the overall picture - appeasing terrorist blackmailers, depriving a small, democratic republic of her defences, and, ultimately, dismembering the republic - but also in many of the details.

Recalling that the German claim to the Sudetenland was based on "self-determination", note, for example, this passage on the background to the Munich Conference, as quoted from p. 146-147 of

Deighton, Len. Blood, Tears and Folly. London: Jonathan Cape, 1993.

In the following quotations, I have inserted within brackets the contemporary parallel, but otherwise I have not changed a single word.
Hitler's [Arafat’s] claim to Czechoslovakia's Sudetenland [Israel’s Yesha] was based upon spurious complaints ... The Sudeten Germans [Palestinian Arabs] lived in the borderlands [the Jordan Valley and the mountain ridge west of the valley], an area well fortified against German [Arab countries’] attack... Chamberlain, [the Quartet] convinced that Hitler [Arafat] was a rational individual with whom an agreement could be reached, offered to meet him...
Let us continue this horror story with another source, say, the description given, in the University of SF site about the Munich Conference proper. Again, I have inserted within brackets the contemporary equivalents, but otherwise I have not changed a single word.
When Hitler [Arafat] revealed that the Sudentenland [Yesha] was his final territorial request, Chamberlain [Quartet] came to believe it was a small, if unseemly, price to pay for the prevention of a continental war [terrorism in Europe]. It never occurred to Chamberlain [Quartet], as was feared by Churchill [all those who oppose the Palestinian-Arab state], that Hitler [Arafat] was lying... By the time the four powers (Britain, France, Italy, and Germany) [the Quartet] met at Munich [place to be determined], Czechoslovakia's [Israel’s] fate was already sealed. The Munich Conference [the Quartet Conference] was about how to give Hitler [Arafat] his prize rather than whether or not he deserved it.
The most troubling aspect of the Munich/Quartet analogy may be found in Shirer’s work on World War II:

Shirer, William L. The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich New York: Simon and Schuster, 1960.

Shirer (op. cit., pp. 424-5) states, that
It is inconceivable that the British and French general staffs and the two governments did not know of the opposition of the German Army General Staff to a European war. For, as already noted here, the conspirators in Berlin warned the British of this through at least four channels in August and September and, as we know, the matter came to the attention of Chamberlain himself.
But the Franco-British perfidy at Munich pulled the rug from under the anti-Hitler conspiracy and opposition (not for the first time, nor for the last time). We do not know of any real opposition to Arafat and his terrorist ways, but the parallel suggests that if any such opposition does exist, then the Quartet’s scheming and refusal to isolate Arafat are sure to discourage and throttle any nascent opposition. Herein lies the tragedy that the Quartet is cooking for Israel and for all western democracies.

If we don’t stop the insanity of the Quartet now, we may have to live with consequences that will parallel those of World War II.

Contributed by Joseph Alexander Norland. This piece is cross-posted on IsraPundit and Dawson Speaks.