The Israeli-Palestinian Two-State Solution Delusion

February 8th, 2023 - by Ralph E. Stone / the Berkeley Daily Planet

The Israeli-Palestinian Two-State Solution Delusion

Ralph E. Stone / the Berkeley Daily Planet

(February 6, 2023) — US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken recently returned from a two-day visit to Israel and the occupied West Bank with the initial purpose of coordinating how the US would work with the newly re-elected Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

During his visit, Blinken made the obligatory call for a two-states for two peoples solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, an unpopular notion for Israel’s new right-wing government who oppose concessions to the Palestinians and rule out an independent Palestinian state in the land Israel has occupied since the1967 Mideast War.

Consider that in December 2022, incoming Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu published his coalition’s principles and agenda, promising construction of settlements throughout the country including in the West Bank. One of the guidelines include the following: “The Jewish people have an exclusive and inalienable right to all parts of the Land of Israel. The government will promote and develop the settlement of all parts of the Land of Israel — in the Galilee, the Negev, the Golan and Judea and Samaria.”

As of January 2023, according to Wikipedia, there are 144 Israeli settlements in the West Bank, including 12 in East Jerusalem. In addition, there are over 100 Israeli illegal outposts in the West Bank. In total, over 450,000 Israeli settlers live in the West Bank excluding East Jerusalem, with an additional 220,000 Jewish settlers residing in East Jerusalem. Israel is slowly squeezing the Palestinians from their lands. The international community considers Israeli settlements to be illegal under international law, although Israel disagrees.

Consider also that The Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research shows that public support for a two-state solution is low. Only 33% of Palestinians and 34% of Israeli Jews expressed support for the proposed resolution. The survey seems to be in accord with the new Netanyahu government’s opposition to an independent Palestinian state.

Finally, the US and Israel have a well-established “special relationship” with a history of shared intelligence, military cooperation, and shared scientific knowledge. Thus, the conventional wisdom in the White House and in Congress is that it would be political suicide to threaten to cutoff foreign aid, military aid or loan guarantees to force Israel into meaningful peace negotiations.

This leaves the US notion of a two-state solution a fantasy, especially as the new Netanyahu coalition has made it clear that it has no intention of agreeing to a two-state solution and will continue establishing settlements in lands claimed by the Palestinians for an independent state.

All that remains to the US is bluster and outrage, which Israel and the Arab world have long realized signifies little or nothing. The prospect for peace in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in the next several years is slim to none. What’s left is achieving a peaceful status quo, a difficult enough task in this period of off-and-on again conflict.

Posted in accordance with Title 17, Section 107, US Code, for noncommercial, educational purposes.