Geneva Initiative Annexes
Geneva Initiative Annexes

Search:

Home Page

Yossi Beilin: The Coffin of the Zionist Idea

By Yossi Beilin, via Mako (translated by Geneva Initiative staff) 
21.03.2012
via Mako (translated by Geneva Initiative staff - click here for the original article in Hebrew
 
Chairman and architect of the Geneva Initiative, Dr. Yossi Beilin, writes that the window for the solution of two-states living side by side is quickly slipping away. The prospects of any other solutions will never satisfy the self-determinations of either peoples and risk the rise of violence. 
 
Hard to believe, but after Muammar Gaddafi’s shameful propaganda, his dubious legacy could become more popular, both in Israel and with the Palestinians.  This crazy invented concept of “Isratine”, which is his version of Greater Israel: not drawn in a particular boundary west of the Jordan; the two people will live side by side; Palestinian refugees could return to live anywhere they want; Israelis could live anywhere in that area, and remain in settlements, more legal and less legal; everyone will be guaranteed equal rights, and everything will be fine.  Although the proposal was originally mocked, today it seems more and more people are willing to take him seriously.
 
Distinguished Palestinians and Israelis alike have been interviewed in recent months by local and international press, and called to give up the two-state solution and to think seriously about the idea of a joint state, democratic, liberal and egalitarian. Now, this week joined by one of the fathers of the two-state solution, Palestinians Ahmed Koria, otherwise known as Abu Ala. Palestinian newspapers published an article in which he offers to give up the two sovereignties, and create a single sovereignty, common to both warring nations. 
 
Abu Ala is not just another Palestinian personality. He chaired the informal talks held in Oslo, led the Palestinian delegation on the economic agreement in Paris, led the permanent status talks in Aqaba in 2001, and then – led the delegation for talks on final settlement with Tzipi Livni and the Israeli delegations from the last term of the Olmert government. He also served as Chairman of the Palestinian Legislative Council and Prime Minister of the Palestinian Authority.  He is the clear symbol of the idea of two states. His article is thought to be a dangerous milestone for Palestinians, as interviews and articles on the Israeli side also reflect a dangerous grade of Israeli thinking.  
 
We are very close to a situation where to the west of Jordan (and Gaza included) will be a majority Palestinians.  In two-three years, Palestians will be the relative majority and this majority will not agree to continued control by the Jewish minority. All the ideas of population transfer (from the Zeev Jabotinsky school) or territorial (from the Lieberman school), have no chance. The whole world will support the demand for the majority of Palestinians to vote in the joint state. This would inevitably be no less than the end of the Jewish state. 
 
Dr. Yossi Beilin, Chairman and architect of the Geneva Intiaitive 
 
Only after the leaders realize this dire consequence, they will be ready for a two-state solution based on the 1967 borders (something like the Clinton parameters or the Geneva Initiative). But when the Palestinians will be the majority, they will have no reason to settle for only 22% of the land, and no reason to agree that the Jewish minority wins 78%. If that is the case, you will have two fundamental options: 1) Israel refuses to grant citizenship to the Palestinians, and tries to ensure the minority rule through military superiority (the so-called “apartheid”). 2) Israel would withdraw unilaterally from the West Bank (presumably to the line of the fence), without an agreement, and without any obligation of the Palestinians, just as Sharon did in Gaza.
 
Abu Ala’s article has a warning for those who still believe in Zionism, aka the necessity of the Jewish and democratic state that will allow every Jew worldwide to immigrate to and live in. The shared state is a nice concept, but it is hiding behind the coffin of the Zionist idea. Any that solution is different from the two-state solution is nail in the Zionist coffin.