Gideon's Blog

In direct contravention of my wife's explicit instructions, herewith I inaugurate my first blog. Long may it prosper.

For some reason, I think I have something to say to you. You think you have something to say to me? Email me at: gideonsblogger -at- yahoo -dot- com

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Tuesday, May 28, 2002
Nadav Shragai has a piece in Ha'aretz arguing against the division of Jerusalem. He's right. Unfortunately, many of the same arguments obtain against the creation of a Palestinian State in the territories, which is still the policy of the Labor Party, of Ariel Sharon and of the United States government. Quite apart from the historic Jewish connection to these regions, there is no plausible plan for separation from the Palestinians of the territories that would not be devastating to the Palestinian economy, Israeli security, or both. Even if the settlements did not exist, it would be impossible to create a viable, truly independent Palestinian state in Judea and Samaria. Any Palestinian state that Israel could accept would be a practical dependency on Israel, and therefore anathema to Palestinian nationalism. And acknowledging the claims of Palestinian nationalism as part of the "legitimate aspirations" of the Palestinian people amounts to the repudiation of Zionism and of the legitimacy of the Jewish State.

The Palestinians must have practical control over their own lives and communities. Denying them this, which first Jordan, then Israel, and now Arafat's P.A. have serially done, is manifestly unjust. Since it is impossible for the State of Israel to carve a viable Palestinian state out of the heart of the Land of Israel, there has only ever been one way to achieve this. Israel must come to some kind of arrangement whereby Jordan would have an acknowledged extraterritorial interest in protecting the rights of the Palestinians living within the borders of Israel, including Judea and Samaria. This would protect the Jewish character of the state, and uphold the historic rationale for a Jewish state in the Land of Israel, at the price of accepting a role for Jordan within Israel's borders. The price of the Oslo policy - undermining the legitimacy of Zionism itself, even to the point of surrendering the Jewish capital and Judaism's most holy places - is too high. It is time to evaluate the alternatives.