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THE GOLAN HEIGHTS
AND THE FACTS
UN SECURITY COUNCIL
RESOLUTION 242 -
A WITHDRAWAL TO THE 1949/1967 LINES?
FORMER PRESIDENT LYNDON JOHNSON: Israel should not have to withdraw its forces to the pre-June 5 armistice lines. "This is not a prescription for peace, but for a renewal of hostilities." (Address, June 19, 1967). "It is clear however, that a return to the situation of June 4, 1967, will not bring peace. There must be secure and there must be recognized borders..." (Address, Sept. 10,1968).
FORMER PRESIDENT RONALD REAGAN: "In the pre-1967 borders, Israel was barely ten miles wide at its narrowest point. The bulk of Israel's population lived within artillery range of hostile Arab armies. I am not about to ask Israel to live that way again." (Address to the Nation, September 1, 1982).
FORMER SECRETARY OF STATE, GEORGE SCHULTZ: "Israel will never negotiate from, or return to, the lines of partition or to the 1967 borders." (Address to the Washington Institute For Near East Policy, Sept. 16, 1988).
THE AUTHORS OF RESOLUTION 242:
"The former British Ambassador to the UN, Lord Caradon [the chief-author of 242], tabled a polished draft resolution in the Security Council and steadfastly resisted all suggestions for change... Kuznetsov of the USSR asked Caradon to specify 'all' before the word ' territories' and to drop the word 'recognized.' When Caradon refused, the USSR tabled its own draft resolution [calling for a withdrawal to the 1967 Lines] but it was not a viable alternative to the UK text... Members [of the UN Security Council] voted and adopted the [UK drafted] resolution unanimously..." (UN Security Council Resolution 242, The Washington Institute For Near East Policy, 1993, pp 27-28).
Arthur Goldberg, former US Ambassador to the UN, a key author of 242: "...The notable omissions in regard to withdrawal... are the words 'all', 'the' and 'the June 5, 1967 lines'...There is lacking a declaration requiring Israel to withdraw from all of the territories occupied by it on, and after, June 5, 1967... On certain aspects, the Resolution is less ambiguous than its withdrawal language. Resolution 242 specifically calls for termination of all claims or states of belligerency and respect for and acknowledgment of the sovereignty of every State in the area. The Resolution also specifically endorses free passage through international waterways...The efforts of the Arab States, strongly supported by the USSR, for a condemnation of Israel as the aggressor and for its withdrawal to the June 5, 1967 lines, failed to command the requisite support..." (Columbia Journal of International Law, Vol 12 no 2, 1973).
Prof. Eugene Rostow, former Undersecretary of State, a key author of 242, international law authority, Yale University: "UN SC 242 calls on Israel to withdraw only from territories occupied in the course of the Six Day War - that is, not from 'all' the territories or even from 'the' territories...Ingeniously drafted resolutions calling for withdrawal from 'all' the territory were defeated in the Security Council and the General Assembly one after another. Speaker after speaker made it explicit that Israel was not to be forced back to the 'fragile and vulnerable' [1949/1967] Armistice Demarcation Lines..." (UNSC Resolution 242, 1993, p. 17). The USSR and the Arabs supported a draft demanding a withdrawal to the 1967 Lines. The US, Canada and most of West Europe and Latin America supported the draft, which was eventually approved by the UN Security Council. (American Society of International Law, 1970).
WHAT IS THE STANCE OF SYRIA AND OTHER ARAB STATES ON 242?
Syria rejected UNSC Resolution 242 because it did not require Israel to withdraw to the 1949/1967 cease fire Lines. Syria was joined by the other Arab States, claiming that the 1949/1967 Lines were not final borders.
IS THE EVACUATION OF SINAI A PRECEDENT FOR THE GOLAN HEIGHTS?
Prof. Eugene Rostow, former Undersecretary of State: "...The Egyptian model fits neither the Jordanian nor the Syrian case...Former Secretary of Defense McNamara has said that if he were the Israel's Minister of Defense, he would never agree to giving up the Golan Heights...UNSC 242 authorizes the parties to make whatever territorial changes the situation requires - it does not require the Israelis to transfer o the Arabs all, most, or indeed any of the occupied territories. The Egyptian-Israeli peace treaty awards [to the Arabs] more than 90 percent of the territory Israel captured in the Six Day War... permits a transfer [of all the territories] if the parties accept it, but it does not require it..." (UNSC Resolution 242, 1993, pp 18-19).
UNSC RESOLUTION AND ISRAEL'S DEFENSIBLE BORDERS:
A few days before the UNSC vote on 242, President Johnson summoned UN Ambassador Arthur Goldberg and Undersecretary Eugene Rostow to formulate the US position on the issue of 'secure boundaries' for Israel. They were presented with the Pentagon Map, which had been prepared by the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Earle Wheeler. The map displayed the "minimum territory needed by Israel for defensive purposes," which included the entire Golan Heights and the mountain ridges of Judea and Samaria. The participants of the meeting agreed that the Pentagon Map fulfilled the requirements of 242 for 'secure borders.' (Prof. Ezra Sohar, A Concubine in the Middle East, Geffen Publishing, p. 39; Makor Rishon weekly, March 10, 2000).
THE ESSENCE OF UNSC RESOLUTION 242:
***242 does not refer at all the 1949/1967 Lines;
***242 mandates negotiation - give and take, rather than give and give;
***242 never refers to withdrawal from ALL the territories, which would negate the principle of negotiation;
***242 calls for the introduction of a NEW reality of 'secure and recognized borders', which indicates that the OLD reality of the 1949/1967 Lines is neither secure nor recognized.