The OECD is comprised of 31 leading industrial democracies and being accepted into it is a very difficult task. “Israel’s scientific and technological policies have produced outstanding outcomes on a world scale,” the Paris based organization said in welcoming Israel into it’s fold. Other remarks were equally as effusive. For example, OECD Secretary General Angel Curria said “This new chapter in the history of the organization confirms our global vocation as the group of countries that searches for answers to the global challenges and establishes standards in many policy fields such as environment, trade, innovation or social issues,”.
The decision to accept Israel was made solely on economic grounds and was unanimous. The Palestinian Authority tried very hard to block it but failed to do so because the OECD did not accept it’s argument that Israel’s membership “would be like accepting it’s occupation of the Palestinian territories.” The byzantine world of the Middle East being what it is however that was not the only reason the Palestinians wanted to keep the Israelis out.
Israel’s acceptance into the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development was a tremendous accomplishment by any stretch of the imagination. It affirmed the country’s place as one of the most advanced and developed nations in the world and recognized the achievements that have occurred there since it came into existence a mere sixty two years ago, not only in economics but in science, technology, social justice and other areas as well. It speaks to Israel as a force for good in the world and as an example that other small nations can emulate. Israeli’s can feel very proud indeed, especially since they built the country from nothing and have ben forced to spend the whole of the past sixty two years in a state of war resulting from it’s neighbors refusing to recognize it’s legitimate right to exist and constantly trying to wipe it off the map. It isn’t easy to achieve what the Israeli’s have but to do so under the conditions they have had to live with is most remarkable.
One wonders what they could have done if they were allowed to live in peace and didn’t have to spend so much of their human and financial capital in a never ending fight for survival.
Conversely, Israel’s acceptance is a very poor reflection on the Palestinians. Their standard of living is nowhere near Israeli’s, their accomplishments in the international arena are miniscule in comparison, their society is beset by hatred, violence, anger, misogyny and a misplaced sense of victimhood, their institutions are riddled with corruption and incompetence, they are not in control of their own destiny and are dependent on the outside world for virtually everything they need to live and they are a stateless, badly educated, poverty stricken people. Every success story such as Israel’s acceptance into the OECD magnifies the difference between the two societies and speaks to the futility of their mindset and behavior. That is something their leaders do not want them to be too cognizant of or the outside world to think about.
One also wonders how much further ahead they would be if they had agreed in 1947 to the partition plan contained in United Nation’s General Assembly Resolution 181, which would have given them their own state next to Israel, or if they had taken other opportunities over the years to have their own state and live in peace with their Israeli neighbors. A great deal no doubt. All of the energy spent on trying to kill and maim Israelis and remove Israel from the face of the earth could have been spent on building their own country and improving their quality of life…how much better that would have been for everyone, themselves not the least.
The OECD’s refusal to consider any political arguments against accepting Israel was also very significant, which the Palestinians and their apologists were well aware of and which coceivably was the main reason they wanted it to reject Israel’s application. Palestinians can only justify their actions on political or religious grounds and if they are not going to be considered by the international community when discussing Israel they really have no other arguments to make and no rationalizations for the way they act. It is also a very short step from refusing to consider political or religious arguments to rejecting them altogether, which is something they most defintely do not want because they have nothing else…they might even be forced to quit blaming Israel for their parlous condition and examine their failures openly and honestly as a precursor to throwing off their shackles, changing, and becoming part of the modern world.
All in all, a very good day for Israelis and a very bad day for Palestinians.