Sunday, January 23, 2011

FantasyLand - Isn't it Fun To Carve Up A Map Of Israel?

Today's New York Times (where else?) sports the nifty little map above, courtesy of David Makovsky of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy. Pravda-on-the-Hudson identifies Mr. Makovsky as 'a mild-mannered analyst at a pro-Israel think tank'.

What he was attempting to do here was to show how a new Palestinian state in the West Bank and Gaza could be created using the pre-1967 boundaries of Israel as a starting point while keeping the Jewish residents of Judea and Samaria largely within Israel...or as the Times puts it, reconciling 'the Palestinian demand for sovereignty over the West Bank with the Israeli demand for control over a majority of the settlers.'

“In my view, it is definitely possible to deal with each other’s core demands,” Makovsky said. “There are land swaps that would offset whatever settlements Israel would retain. The impossible is attainable.”

Isn't it pretty?

The Time's editorial comments, by the way, point out a key reason this is pure fantasy.

To begin with, it's not the Israelis who are demanding 'control' over the 'settlers', it's the 'Palestinians' who are demanding that their new reichlet be 100% Jew-free. And therein lies the problem with the pretty map above.

The little fingers of land containing major Jewish communities like Ariel and Ofrat are isolated sitting ducks for terrorist attacks and in the event of hostilities, could easily be cut off and the inhabitants massacred. Does anyone seriously think that the 'moderate' Fatah mafia who can't even abide the idea of a single Jew living among them could be trusted to honor an agreement like this? Not only that, but anyone who knows the topography of the area knows that these borders would sacrifice the high ground to the 'Palestinians'..ideal sites for rocket attacks that could not only devastate the Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria but Israel's densely populated central plain.

It gets even more ridiculous. Part of the land swaps Makovsky envisions involve areas adjacent to Gaza,now under Hamas rule. How are these going to be connected to a 'Palestinian' reichlet in Judea and Samaria? And how long would they survive a Hamas takeover?

For that matter, the same question could be asked about the new 'Palestinians' state itself. The unelected Abbas and Selim Fayyad regime are far from popular, and Hamas has considerable support in Jordan and in the Palestinian occupied areas of Judea and Samaria. The main thing keeping Hamas at bay there right now is the IDF's security apparatus. Once the IDF moves out, the shiny new Fatah army the US spent millions equipping and training under General Keith Dayton is on it's own.

That army didn't even last a day in Gaza, and likely would last about as long in Judea and Samaria once Hamas attacks the Fatah enclave there. What does Israel do then?

Needless to say,neither the Israelis or the 'Palestinians'would entertain anything like what's presented above for a moment - the Israelis because it would be suicidal and the 'Palestinians' because accepting something like this would involve them negotiating their demands and making concessions, which they adamantly refuse to do.

What the Times, David Makovsky and those who think like them don't understand is that the main obstacle to settling the Arab-Israeli conflict isn't 'settlements', borders or Jerusalem. It's the inability of Arabs to live next to Jews in conditions of peace and equality in the areas the Arabs control.

Solve that problem, and the rest of them fall into place. Ignore it and absolutely nothing changes.

please helps me write more gooder!


Anonymous said...

they know it, thats why they defend a judenrein arab state, they know the arabs will exterminate them all, and the myth of the poor occupied palestinians will show what it really is

Nevet said...

In the spirit of justice and even-handedness, the "two-state" discussion (if it ever actually happens) should include these two items: (A) How many Jews will be allowed to remain in Palestine and (B) How many Arabs will be allowed to remain in Israel. Is there any reason why "all those who wish to do so" isn't the right answer to both of these? Is there any legal or moral justification for A=0 but B=1.5 million?

Freedom Fighter said...

Hello Nevet,
The 'Palestinians' have already provided the answer to the first half of your Jews whatsoever.

So the wishes of Jews wanting to live in their homes, even in land in places like Ariel and Gush Etzion mean nothing to them.

If I were the Israelis, I would be insisting on a quid pro quo in population swaps, Jews for Arabs in any settlement as well as compensation for Jewish refugees of the 1948 conflict.

But then, I'd also be insisting on the Arab states providing just as much land for 'Palestine' as Israel has. After all the refugee crisis, boith Jews and Arabs was caused by the Arab states attacking Israel.

B.Poster said...

Every time I see articles like this it makes me want to tear my hair out. You point out the obvious very correctly. It is not borders or any thing like this that is the problem. The problem is the Arabs don't want a Jewish state and they don't want to compromise.

Why can't these people get this? Perhaps they don't understand the culture of the Arab world. They may think the Arabs are speaking metaphorically when they speak of the complete destruction of Israel.

Nevertheless the American government claims to want a two state solution. The EU cliams they want a two state solution. Even Israel claims they want a two state solution. The idea appears to be "two democratic states living side by side in peace. One of these will be the Jewsih State of Israel and the other a State of Palestine" or something to this effect.

Assuming this is the goal, how can we best achieve this? Right now the Arabs want it all. They want all of the state of Israel plus what is now "Palestine." This is hardly surprising. When one has a conflict with someone, they usually want it all and don't really want to compromise. From their pserspecive, why should they compromise? With the massive amounts of unconditional aid coming in from the EU and America they are in a VERY favorable position. As such, there is no incentive for the Arabs to make any of the "painful concessions" politicians so love to talk about.

It seems to me the first step would be to cut off all aid to the Palestinians. This means no aid from the US, the EU, no funds transfers from Israel, and no electricity supplied by Israel. Without this massive aid the Palestinians will be on much more equal footing with the Israelis. This just make make them more willing to negotiate in good faith.

Finally, America and the EU are in DEEP TROUBLE economically. Things are especialy bad for America on this front. As such, at the curent rate, very soon the Aemricans and the Europeans will not have the money to be able to support teh Palestinians. This will lead to a de facto cut off in aid to the Palestinians. When this happens, I think this creates a fabulous opportunity for a resolution of this conflict. Whether or not it includes land swaps or not will be up to the parties directly involved. In any event, when the Arab position is less favorable they may well find in their interests to negotiate with Israel in good faith.

B.Poster said...

Isn't it fun to carve up lands that don't belong to you? The arrogance of these people is absolutely breath taking. When the US seriously and publically considers carving up TX, AZ, CA, NM and other territories formely under Mexican control and publically considers giving some of it to Mexico, then I MIGHT consider taking the proposals of such people seriously.

If they tried such a thing, I think we know how the American people might act. As such, they won't publically do this. At least not right now. Why should we expect Israelis to act any differently than Americans would at the prospects of their country being dismembered.

Also, given that Mexico can't admimister what it currently has, does it really want the responsibility that would go with administer the vast new territories that would result from receiving this vast amount of new land? For that matter do the Palestinians really want a state and the responsibilities that go with administering such a thing? For both Palestine and Mexico why not keep the status quo? Both Mexico and Palestine are benefiting tremendously from the status quo.

This leads back to my original premise. If we REALLY, REALLY want a Palestinian state, CUT THE FUNDING TO PALESTINE and DO IT NOW!! In the current situation, the Palestinians have absolutely no incentive to negotiate in good faith with the Israelis. Once their minus this funding, they will be on much more equal footing with the Israelis. When this happens, they just might be more amicable to negotiating in good faith with Israel. Then we just might be able to reach a settlement that would be acceptable to all parties directly involved.

How this settlemnt looks will be up to Israelis and the Palestinian Arabs. Its not the business of the EU, America, Russia, or anyone else. At first I thought it might just be me regarding the funding to Palestine but Ted Belman of supposedly suggested this in a meeting with the Canadian ambassador to Israel. Perphaps I'm on to something here. Maybe, just maybe, someone in an important position will get this.

The current foreign aid that Palestine receives from Aemrica and the EU is good for nobody and we can't afford it any way. The sooner it ceases the better it is for all directly affected parties. At a minimum, the peace agreement that politicians claim they want will be much likely to come to fruitiion without this aid.