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Doesn't anybody else see the train coming?

Reader comment on item: A Rapid and Harsh Turn against Israel

Submitted by Stephen E. Connor (United States), Jun 4, 2009 at 06:39

I don't understand why nobody talks about the alternatives to settlement freeze. If settlement construction is not frozen, very soon there will be no possibility for a two state solution. Anyone that believes that it will be possible, at some point in the future, to simply extract all Palestinian Arabs and redistribute them in various neighboring countries is just plain fantasizing. If Israel regards Judea and Samaria as conquered territory then its residents must be granted full citizenship just as the Iriquois have been.

I have heard suggestions such as "extraterritoriality," i.e. allowing them to stay in Israel either as "guest workers" without citizenship, or perhaps in isolated "cantons," which conjures up visions of Soweto. Either suggestion will drive a stake into the heart of civil human rights and likely put an end to a great tradition of a strong and independent Israel judiciary. Some people fantasize about "transferring" or expelling all of the Palestinian Arabs similar to what the Serbian attempted to do to the ethnic Albanians in Kosovo. This as most people will recall, resulted in the massacre of thousands of Kosovars that resisted expulsion.

If the Palestinian Arabs in Judea and Samaria cannot be either removed or separated then they will have to be absorbed. The demographic cost of absorbing so many non-Jews to the Jewish character of the State of Israel will likely be drastic and probably unacceptable to the majority of Israelis. I see no alternative to a two state solution and a two state solution requires a "viable Palestinian state." Such a state becomes less and less viable as the settlements erode the remaining territory in Judea and Samaria. At that point wherein there is no more possibility for a Palestinian state, Israel has sealed its own fate.

Peace
Stephen

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