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25 May 2011

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Fiorangela

jdledell, you wrote, "I think some of you have your head in the clouds. If you look at a map what I have proposed is ceding land very close to the Green Line."

About 6 weeks ago Gershom Gorenberg spoke at a local synagogue. He told the group that in the mid-70s an Israeli ministry instructed that all Israeli maps, including especially maps in textbooks, erase the Green Line. Gershom said the Green line has not been visible on any map in Israel for over 20 years; no one has any sense of where the Green line is.

Gershom next displayed the 1967 letter from an Israeli jurist that stated categorically that creating settlements in territory taken in 1967 was a violation of international law. The opinion had been requested by the Israeli government; the opinion is unequivocal; the Israeli government knew it then and knows it now; but, Gershom says, the Israeli government has buried the letter. He spent many years petitioning the Israeli government to give him access to files; it was only by accident that he came upon the Opinion.

Israel has knowingly defied international law since 1967.

Why should that behavior be rewarded? Why should Israel be allowed to perpetuate a war of attrition against the Palestinian people? Why should any entity be rewarded for persistent violation of international norms?

You don't want peace, you want pacification.

JoeC

jdledell -

Could you work with a regular commenter with mapping skills (there are probably several such commenters/lurkers here) to produce a map showing your proposal in detail. It would be much easier to seriously consider your proposal with the geography clear.

It appears to me that most commenters objecting to your proposal are doing so from generic/moral views that may have little relevance to achieving a practical peace settlement. - of real value to both parties.

It would seem of great value to further think through and possibly refine your proposal - circulating a well developed settlement proposal based on your concepts might even make a difference!

Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts on this with us. It is encouraging to think that there may be at least some hope for progress towards peace.

Trent

jdledell, Pat, do you think the IDF should remove the settlers from Kiryat Arba as in Gaza once a deal is struck?

Also, is it possible the Israeli government will pay twice? Once to the Palestinians to give up the right of return. Second to the settlers to vacate the WB.

Cal

Israel has knowingly defied international law since 1967.

Why should that behavior be rewarded? Why should Israel be allowed to perpetuate a war of attrition against the Palestinian people? Why should any entity be rewarded for persistent violation of international norms?
You don't want peace, you want pacification.

Posted by: Fiorangela
>>>>>>>>>>>

I agree with Fiorangela.
Furthermore, who is Israel to say what they won't agree to....that's like the pickpocket in the docket saying he won't accept the Judge's sentence.
Israel has nothing "to give" Palestine---they only have occupied land that has to be "returned" to its rightful owners.
Israel legally has only what UN Resolution 181 gave them.
The world has enough of Jewish and Israeli tribalism and exceptionalism.
Israel should returned to the boundaries in 181 and made to abide by the terms of the 181 resolution, period. If they want any more than that they can do what every one else has to do...bargin for it and buy it with their own money.

kao-hsien-chih

I think this is the most "practical" solution that is imaginable between Palestinians and Israelis, pending the clarification of the technical details which I won't pretend to know anything of. I don't think its real value will be that it will offer a "just" peace, but set up the foundation for stopping the conflict and some sort of constructive cooperation in the medium to long term future, something of real value for those involved, something worth keeping.

But the absence of "justice," as perceived from both sides, in the settlement, will make its acceptance and implementation, even in the short term, difficult. Everyone with a beef will find a reason to undermine it and, once they do, the size of the long term peace dividend will be minimized--and with all the arms, ill will, and angry, unhappy folk in the area, it won't be too hard to sabotage everything.

I think the content of the proposal is really good, better than most. I just don't think the problem is the content of the potential agreement. Unless IDF is willing to level Kiryat Arba and wipe out its extremists for the sake of peace, or Hamas is willing to liquidate all the die-hard terrorists amongst its ranks, I don't see even a chance of any proposal succeeding. Yet, even if they pull off such extreme actions, I'm skeptical that they will win enough goodwill from the other side--while their own supporters will turn against them, hard. What I found inexplicable is why so few have even brought up the question of domestic political costs of credibly making and keeping peace.

jdledell

To all - I share your outrage at the unfairness of the Palestinians plight and any proposal for peace. Your outrage and 4 bucks will get you a cup of coffee at Starbucks.

The reality is the world and the US are in no position to force Israel to completely remedy the injustice in the foreseeable future (like 100 years). There are several hundred million Christians in the world who would not tolerate military action against Israel for religious reasons. In addition, it would take a LONG time for others to get past the possibility such military action would cause at least a mini-holocaust.

Last but not least is the hundreds of nuclear weapons in Israel's hands. The "Samson Option" is real and I have no doubt Israel would let loose with everything they had if they thought they would lose their state.

The best we can do is to cajole and use sanction sticks to get Israel to do what is needed to get to a Just solution - not the very best solution - but good enough. Even that does not look promising and impossible with Netanyahu at the helm.

Trent - you asked about Kiryat Arba. I think they have to be removed - they are crazy as are the settlers in Hebron. Have no doubt if left in Palestinian territory they will carry out a terror campaign that could scuttle peace. If Palestine moved against them and killed a number of them, it would be difficult for Israel not to intervene. Eventually, I would like to see some Jewish presence in Hebron but as Palestinian citizens.

In answer to your question on payments - most definitely Israel will end up paying twice. The settlers will get their money as well as Palestinian refugees.

Mark Logan

Well, I, for one, applaud your efforts Jdledell. I think a public effort to sort out the specifics of Bibi's hazy outline is a great idea. I would hope some Palestinians realize that this would also be a wonderful way to call his bluff, and engage in a dialog with honest Israelis, such as yourself.

Sooner or later, there will be a government that will have a use for this work. Gotta have hope.

GulfCoastPirate

jdledell wrote:

'The reality is the world and the US are in no position to force Israel to completely remedy the injustice in the foreseeable future (like 100 years).'

Really? How are all those old white guys doing in South Africa these days? Israel could no more withstand an international economic boycott than any other state.

'There are several hundred million Christians in the world who would not tolerate military action against Israel for religious reasons. '

Really? They are going to continue to ruin their own economic prospects and those of their descendants for the sake of Israel? I wouldn't be so sure.

'Last but not least is the hundreds of nuclear weapons in Israel's hands. The "Samson Option" is real and I have no doubt Israel would let loose with everything they had if they thought they would lose their state.'

And who would be on the receiving end of these nukes? This option guarantees the Israelis would lose their state. You make the Israelis sound like a child throwing a tantrum if he doesn't get his way.

Kieran

"Yes this is a peace by the strong against the weak... we live in the real world where power and might make right."

This is the logic of the Athenians and the Melians. "The strong do what they can and the weak suffer what they must."

http://www.mtholyoke.edu/acad/intrel/melian.htm

There is one crucial difference, however. The Athenians began their parlay by stating that "For ourselves, we shall not trouble you with specious pretenses... and make a long speech which would not be believed".

But you appealed to what is "fair and just", "dignity and honor", even going so far as to appeal to "what the G-d of all of us would want" - statements belied by your resort to power logic.

Why the hasbara?

I believe it is because you do not seek peace with the Palestinians. You seek peace with the growing regional and international sentiment against Israel's behavior. And while you have no intention of giving the Palestinians justice, you want to convince international opinion of the fact.

Why? You must recognize the untenability of Israel's position in attempting to defy the whole region and world.

In this context, by your power logic, Israel is Melos, though the world has not yet recognized it.

I am always interested to talk with Israelis about what a genuinely just solution would be. Your argument boils down to 'we have America' and 'we have nuclear weapons' and 'we have the settlements'. Well, white South Africa had all those things. What went wrong?

Fred

jdledell, you write:
"The "Samson Option" is real and I have no doubt Israel would let loose with everything they had if they thought they would lose their state."

Your statement makes Israel out to be far more dangerous than Iran, which has no 'Samson Option'. The world needs to continue to pay extortion - to Israel, or else? It seems like it is time for the UN to take some real action regarding Israel's nuclear weapons.

Cal

jdledell you said:

"The reality is the world and the US are in no position to force Israel to completely remedy the injustice in the foreseeable future (like 100 years).

I am afraid it is you friend, who is living outside reality. If a US President so much as "whispered" in someone's ear that the US no longer unconditionally supported Israel it would be the whisper hear round the world.

There is a big difference between 'can't' and 'won't'..the US indeed could force Israel to do what we say, we could disappear Israel overnight if we chose to...but we won't due to our corrupted political leadership.

But that could change.

Did the Jews ever expect what happened to them in Germany? Of course not.
Do they expect to ever lose their control of US policy? No they don't.
I think zionist and Israeli hubris and delusion however ..the kind showed in the statement that no one in the world could force anything on Israel... has exceeded the world and the US public's tolerance for it.. and has no where to go now but down.
And I don't think that fall is going to take 100 years.

I am sure your intentions are half good at least, but I really don't know how to account for the kind of ignorance or delusion of that statement.
I think you must measure Israel might and strenght by the rag tag Palestines the IDF attacks.
The US,not to mention the world, is an entirely different animal.

And the Sampson Threat?...all Israel can do with that is take themselves and some Arabs out.

It's interesting that no matter how reasonable someone like yourself appears or even sincerely tries to be-- if one stratches them that delusional hubris comes to the surface.

jdledell

I guess I touched a nerve with my quick comment about the US and the world being able to force Israel to change its behavior. You have raised valid points and my comment was a little too flip.

Of course the US and the world could force Israel to do most anything - they are only 7 million people. But the issue I was trying to get at was do we and the world have the will to do so. I could be wrong but I don't see that coming anytime soon for the reasons I enumerated.

BTW - I am hardly spouting hasbara. If you read any of my previous writings on Blogs you will know I'm on the shin bet shit list because of my very critical opinions concerning Israel and I get hassled every time I enter the country.

Kieran

jdledell

I would like to hear your views as to what a just settlement would look like (as opposed to what now seems feasible). Maybe then we can clarify the challenges.

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