The "Two State Solution" to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, today's front runner in the desperate search for a way out of a century of tension in the Holyland, is seen as the most viable way to put this conflict to rest, once and for all. Proposed by then-President Bill Clinton in December 2000, it is endorsed by the world's major powers and, incredibly, by Israel herself, in the hopes that somehow this time they've found the right formula. Somehow, this time the Palestinians will step out of character, accept Israel and make peace. Somehow, this time Israel will give away land and not get war in return. Somehow. Folks, it's time to get our heads out of the sand. Despite the hype and high hopes, this "solution" is really just another false promise. It's just a rehash of the many failed and unworkable past attempts to secure peace between the two parties. The 1947 U.N. Partition Plan did not bring peace. Nor did the 1993 Oslo Accords. Nor did the 1998 Wye River Memorandum. Nor did the 2000 Lebanon retreat. Nor did the ill-conceived 2005 Disengagement. Wishful thinking is not the answer. We need to go back to the drawing board. We must begin to think outside of the box.
The Two State Solution is based on the "land-for-peace" formula with the folowing built-in assumptions:
1. The Palestinians truly want peace, will share the land with the Jews and recognize Israel as the Jewish state.
2. The Palestinians can be trusted to encourage and nurture a warm peace with Israel for generations to come.
3. The newly-formed Palestinian state will dialogue freely and cooperate with Israel, as any friendly neighbor state might.
4. The newly-formed Palestinian state will be democratic, moderate, Western oriented and demilitarized.
5. The newly-formed Palestinian state will reflect Israel's right for secure and defensible borders, as per UN Resolution 242.
6. The newly-formed Palestinian state will resist any attempts to be drawn into the orbit of neighboring rogue states such as Syria and Iran and will shun Hamas and any other terrorist organization.
A tall order indeed! Can any expectation be more unrealistic than that? The above requirements would tax even the most wishful of thinkers. Given the past 63 years of Arab hatred, terror and intransigence, beginning with their rejection of the 1947 U.N. Partition Plan (the original Two State Solution) and subsequent attack in 1948, how can any objective and rational observer possibly conclude that such an arrangement is even remotely possible? Is there any indication that the Palestinians have turned over a new leaf?
After a string of failed land-for-peace deals, dashed hopes and bitter, bloody experiences on both sides, the wobbly peace process simply cannot afford yet another disappointment.
Any alternative to the Two State Solution will be imperfect, but must be seriously considered. There are better options! Here are a few:
1. The Israel Initiative ("Benny Elon Plan")
* Strives for a humanitarian solution to the Palestinian problem, instead of a political one.
* Bases peace on strategic cooperation with Jordan, instead of with the Palestinian Authority. A future Palestinian state will be in Jordan, which occupies 77% of the original Palestinian Mandate and whose population is mostly Palestinian.
* Extends Israeli sovereignty over Judea and Samaria, as conceived in various post WW I international agreements, instead of handing over these areas for a Palestinian State.
For more info: http://www.israelinitiative.com/rewr-true/language-en_us/Introduction.aspx
2. One State Plan ("Wise Plan")
* Israel's democracy and law will be extended to all of Judea and Samaria.
* No forcible tranfer - Residents of Judea and Samaria will become permanent residents and elect local municipalities.
* Civil and religious rights for all inhabitants of Israel.
* Citizenship standards for non-Jews will recognize Israel as the Jewish national home and include national service.
* Israel political parties and elected and appointed officials must affirm Israel as the Jewish national home.
* Electoral reform will divide Israel into districts to insure local representation.
Simply put, it would end the "occupation", end the incitement, end the border dispute, end the need to compromise on Jerusalem, end the need for population transfers, solve the viability problem and allow Israel to get on with building a Jewish democratic state, from the Mediterranean to the Jordan.
For more info: http://globalpolitician.com/23826-israel
3. Compensation and Relocation Plan ("Sherman Plan")
* Offers individual Palestinian families generous relocation grants. A 2004 survey shows that this approach would be well received by the plan's beneficiaries and result in their emigration from Judea and Samaria.
* Will dramatically and immediately improve the lot of individual Palestinians and reduce their dependence on welfare institutions such as UNRWA.
* Will inject many billions of dollars into the economies of low income nations that host the emigrees.
* Eliminates the UNRWA, the UN body which perpetuates the "Palestinian Refugee Problem" at the expense of the truly needy around the globe (see this Youtube video).
For more info: http://frontpagemag.com/2010/08/03/the-palestinian-problem-a-real-solution-2/
4. One State for Two Peoples ("Hotovely Plan")
* Calls for gradual Israeli sovereignty over Judea and Samaria while taking into account the human rights of the local Arab population.
* Proposes granting local Arab population "Residency" rights initially, followed by the gradual granting of Israeli citizenship, based on loyalty tests.
* Proposes the dismantling of refugee camps (thus breaking the cycle of poverty and reducing overcrowding) and eliminating the PA's hostile educational system.
* Obviates the need for any resident of Judea and Samaria, Jew or Arab, to relocate.
For more info: http://www.jpost.com/Features/FrontLines/Article.aspx?id=186956
5. Status Quo ("Do Nothing Plan")
Though certainly not the ideal solution, keeping the staus quo unchanged in the so-called "Occupied Territories", even indefinitely, is arguably preferable to a forced "Two State Solution", which can only end badly for all the parties involved.