From accepting a state on 22 percent of Mandate Palestine to Israel's facts-on-the-ground in the West bank and the loss of rights for refugees, Palestinians have already made significant, historic compromises. By Willem Aldershoff and Jaap Hamburger Despite the U.S.’s optimism, recent comments and statements coming from Israel and Palestine indicate that the U.S.-led Israeli-Palestinian negotiations are not progressing well. This is not only due to the relative complexity of the subject matter at hand, but first and foremost, due to the fact that the Palestinians and Israel differ greatly in power and position: one being the occupied, the other…Read More... | 209 Comments
two state solution
The two-state solution, imperfect as a final-status agreement, could still be a crucial stepping stone toward achieving a more comprehensive formula for equality and just peace that everyone can live with. It has been a long time since I’ve heard someone make an optimistic case for the current round of peace talks. Insiders, observers and outliers on every which side of the political spectrum in both Israeli and Palestinian society have every reason to smell failure in the air. History alone makes the strongest case for why the current American-led peace process is doomed. Add the on-the-ground reality into the…Read More... | 11 Comments
After 20 years of a failed and fictitious peace process, there is no more room for 'processes' that serve as substitutes for peace. There is nothing left to clarify between the two sides. The only possible compromise for a peace agreement is well known. By Rona Moran and Hana Amouri (Translated from Hebrew by Itamar Haritan) The ongoing “peace” negotiations are headed for failure. Everyone knows it. Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu know it, as do the leaders of the Palestinian Authority, who are participating in the negotiations under heavy American pressure. The U.S. knows it too…Read More... | 81 Comments
Alan Dershowitz published an op-ed in Haaretz on Wednesday giving his top 10 reasons why boycotting Israel is immoral. What if he wrote the same article in 1974 about the anti-Apartheid movement? It might look something like this. By Sol Salbe Ten reasons why the anti-Apartheid movement is immoral and hinders peace The anti-South African movement threatens the reconciliation process by promoting extortion rather than negotiation, and discourages blacks from agreeing to any reasonable peace offer. By Alan M. Dershowitz | Feb. 12, 1974 | 4:00 PM 1. The anti-Apartheid movement immorally imposes the entire blame for the continuing Apartheid and…Read More... | 14 Comments
The Israeli prime minister tells reporters he wouldn't 'uproot' a single Israeli. Netanyahu's office later explains that the object of the new demand is to score points against the Palestinian Authority by 'exposing its real face.' A couple of statements from Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu are adding to the confusion over the kind of solution he envisions, if he supports one at all. Answering a question from a reporter in Davos regarding the possible evacuation of Jordan Valley settlements – Israel seeks to keep IDF forces along the Jordan River even after any withdrawal – Netanyahu said that he “wouldn’t…Read More... | 25 Comments
It’s time to put a stop to the immoral and impractical attempts to rid ourselves of the Arab citizens of Israel, and start thinking in terms of securing their bond to Israel secure - making them true partners in Israeli society. By Yaniv Sagee Those who thought there could not be serious peace negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians were mistaken. The talks are on and the Israeli right-wing is feeling the pressure. The context of peace talks is also the pretext for Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman’s latest proposal to transfer territory and populations to a future Palestinian state in…Read More... | 31 Comments
According to reports, the secretary of state has accepted Netanyahu’s demand that Israel be recognized as a 'Jewish state.' I added an important update to this post, see below. Haaretz's Barak Ravid reported Wednesday that U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is demanding that Arab leaders pressure the Palestinians to recognize Israel as "a Jewish State,” or at least not protest if he can get Abbas to agree to such terms. This is yet another confirmation that the Obama administration has accepted the new demand posed by Netanyahu, and that it is intended to be a part of its proposal for a…Read More... | 32 Comments
Erstwhile negotiator and former Minister Yossi Beilin, in a New York Times op ed, has an idea for breaking the impasse on negotiations for a two-state solution. He suggests that Palestinians recognize Israel as a Jewish state in order to cement the consciousness of each side as the proper home for its people. Then Israel would undertake incentives for settlers to go back behind the Green Line, but those who stay in the West Bank would form the numerical basis for the number of Palestinian refugees who can return to Israel proper. Each side has incentive to keep the other…Read More... | 53 Comments
During a recent interview with Charlie Rose in New York, Israeli Finance Minister Yair Lapid tacitly reveals why the Israeli-Palestinian conflict endures and why Israel will only accept peace on its own terms. Over the past week or so, as the United Nations General Assembly brought leaders from around the world to New York, several of them made their way onto American political talk shows. Charlie Rose, one of America’s best and most watched interviewers, hosted a number of political leaders from the Middle East, including Bashar al-Assad of Syria (from Damascus) and Hassan Rouhani of Iran. Rose also interviewed…Read More... | 68 Comments
After 65 years of 'peace talks,' Ariella Azoulay believes what is needed now is not a new vision but an old one - one envisioned by people who lived in Palestine before the curse of partition. By Ariella Azoulay Over the past few years, it has been fairly common to hear: “the time has come for a new vision for Palestine/Israel.” It is hard to refute the reality of a dead-end implied in this expression, but must a dead-end always lead us to a new vision? As Hanan Ashrawi has previously stated, new forms of talks, dialogue, and inventiveness are not what was missing…Read More... | 17 Comments
By Lisa Goldman and Dahlia Scheindlin (This article has been updated. See the addendum below.) In a recent New York Times op-ed, a prominent American academic posits that the time for implementing a two-state solution to the Israel-Palestinian conflict is now past. Ian Lustick, a professor of comparative politics at University of Pennsylvania, argues that after 20 years of failed negotiations, the two-state paradigm is a proven failure. The Americans, Palestinian Authority and Israeli government cling to what he calls the “two state illusion” out of vested interests that have nothing to do with the facts on the ground. It…Read More... | 66 Comments
Jewish leaders remain unmoved by this year's performance. From the events of the previous week: Prominent Israeli coalition members – including heads of different Knesset committees – published an ad in Haaretz, calling on Netanyahu to oppose any sort of territorial compromise. Netanyahu’s collation chairman, Likud’s Yariv Levin, told Al-Monitor that his boss will cease to be a prime minister should he sign an agreement with the Palestinians. Deputy Defense Minister Danny Danon called for canceling the Oslo Accords (a good idea, although Danon supports doing so for the wrong reasons), and to make the current status quo – Palestinian autonomy under…Read More... | 5 Comments
The absence of an honest one- vs. two-state debate prevents progress in the reconciliation between Jews and Palestinians in Israel/Palestine. By Dubi Kanengisser In a recent piece, Noam Sheizaf berated the entire gamut of participants in the debate surrounding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict for wasting time by arguing about whether the two-state solution is dead or only mostly dead, and whether the one-state solution is impossible or merely improbable. The trigger for this particular piece was a text published by Prof. Ian Lustick in the New York Times. I believe Sheizaf has it exactly backwards and Lustick’s piece is a wonderful example…Read More... | 58 Comments
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