We are running out of time for a two-state solution

We are running out of time for a two-state solution

The following is from Meretz USA’s electronic newsletter on August 22:

For some time now, Meretz USA, has been warning that, when it comes to peacemaking, time is not on Israel’s side.

We have cautioned that the situation in the Middle East is never static: That if options for peace exist today, they must be seized with full force, for they might not be there tomorrow.

We have insisted, together with other American Jewish organizations dedicated to Middle East peace, such as Americans for Peace Now, Brit Tzedek V’Shalom and Ameinu, that Israel does not have the luxury of blithely waiting for “perfect timing”, or until the “ideal Palestinian leader” emerges – for this will mean that meaningful peace talks will never progress.

These arguments unfortunately received even further validation this past week, when the President of Al-Quds University in Jerusalem, Prof. Sari Nusseibeh, was interviewed in Haaretz by journalist Akiva Eldar.

Perhaps more than any other Palestinian figure, Prof. Nusseibeh represents a nonviolent Palestinian political realism, which translated a generation ago into his courageous, wholehearted, unswerving support for a two-state solution. So when Prof. Nusseibeh was quoted last week as contemplating the imminent death of the two-state solution, it should have come as an earthquake for any lover of a peaceful Israel.

This interview, in which Nusseibeh expresses the belief that, if peace doesn’t happen soon, the Palestinian Authority should be disbanded and Palestinians should press for equal rights within a single state, should be taken very seriously. Nusseibeh is not a games-player; he is an intellectual with a keen eye for where developments are moving the peoples in the region. It would be folly to dismiss his projections.

Click here to read the interview with Nusseibeh.

By | 2008-08-24T23:08:00-04:00 August 24th, 2008|Blog|2 Comments


  1. Anonymous August 25, 2008 at 6:05 am - Reply

    Heaven forbid, Ron! Palestinians may press for equal rights in a single state! That sounds awful. Meretz is right, Israelis had better act now before it’s too late.

    Well, I have to say, it’s frightening, but not impossible. Look at the what happened in South Africa.

    And here in the US, hard as we struggled against it, we’ve got this guy Obama who could end up being President (and on top of being Black, his Dad was a Muslim!), and studies show that non-whites will be a minority here by 2042. On the other hand, we have managed to keep many Native Americans on the reservations, kind of like Israel’s bantustans for Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank.

    Still, maybe it’s not too late for Israel to learn from the US’ successes and failures, preserve the Jewish majority, keep the Palestinians in their place, and ensure that there will never be a Palestinian Obama running for Prime Minister.


  2. Anonymous August 25, 2008 at 7:53 pm - Reply

    Anybody who knows about these things, is aware that progressive Zionists support equal rights for Palestinian Arabs and other non-Jewish citizens of Israel. This includes the possbility of Israel having an Arab prime minister one day (there is no legal bar to such an event even in today’s so-called Jewish state).

    The importance of a viable two-state solution for Jews is that a Jewish majority state is the only guarantee of Israel remaining a safe haven for the Jewish people after two millennia of recurring antisemitic persecution in most societies where Jews have existed only as a minority.

    If the Palestinian Arabs had welcomed Jewish refugees from persecution before the Holocaust and the survivors after, there would be a historical basis for a bi-national state which many Zionists supported prior to the Arab onslaught of 1947-48. Instead, the Arabs univerally rejected such a solution. It is not credible to most Jews that Palestinians would now embrace a single state as a genuine commitment to bi-nationalism rather than as a strategy to destroy the Jewish people’s right to national self-determination.

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