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« Eye-Opener for Indonesian Journalists | Main | To Die in Jerusalem »

Tuesday, October 23 2007

Five Arguments Against the One-State Solution

FlagSonja Karkar, president of Women for Palestine, pushes for a one-state solution. In the pages of The Age, she writes:

If Israel wants to be recognised as a democratic state, it must be inclusive of all its citizens; if it wants peace, it must allow the Palestinians under occupation the right to live in freedom and accept that the Palestinian refugees have an inalienable right to return home.

Here are five reasons why the one-state (a.k.a. bi-national) solution isn't and shouldn't be on the agenda for the upcoming Annapolis conference:

1. There's no shame in the concept of a Jewish state for the Jewish people.

2. The one-state solution negates Palestinian national aspirations just as it negates Jewish national aspirations.

3. Jews and Arabs don't share the language, history, religion, culture, or values required to make a bi-national effort work. Case in point: without an iron-fisted ruler, Yugoslavia disintegrated along ethnic lines and "Balkanization" became part of the world's lexicon.

4. Among themselves, the Arabs have no history of successful multi-ethnic states. Lebanon teeters on the brink of yet another civil war. Sunni-Shiite bloodbaths may lead to Iraq's partition. Fleeing the Mideast in droves are Christian Arabs.

5. The South African model doesn't apply. Among the many differences between the two regions, Benny Pogrund points out that South Africa's blacks and whites had a cohesive leadership who could sell power-sharing to their constituencies, as well as economic interdependence. This is not the case with Israelis and Palestinians.

Karkar was responding to Colin Rubinstein who was responding to Ghada Karmi.



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