By Ted Belman
Five years ago I wrote a major article, Israel from the Mediterranean to the Jordan. I proposed annexing Judea and Samaria and giving citizenship over time and subject to certain prerequisites, to the Arabs.
It was based on a new demographic study by the AIDRG which concluded that if Israel were to annex these territories the Jews would outnumber the Arabs by a ratio of 2:1 for the forseeable future. Israel Demography contains a number of articles which fully explain this conclusion.
Mike Wise who was part of this group went on to also propose annexation and the Democratic Jewish One-State Solution.
Over the years I have written a number of articles on the subject. And now I am happy to say that we are getting traction.
None other than Haaretz just published a major article entitled Endgame
Once the sole preserve of the political margins, the approach is now being advocated by leading figures in Likud and among the settlers – people who are not necessarily considered extremists or oddballs.
Mike and I are some of those oddballs.
They (the leading figures) talk about a process that will take between a decade and a generation to complete, at the end of which the Palestinians will enjoy full personal rights, but in a country whose symbols and spirit will remain Jewish. It is at this point that the one-state right wing diverges from the binational left. The right is not talking about a neutral “state of all its citizens” with no identity, nor about “Israstine” with a flag showing a crescent and a Shield of David. As envisaged by the right wing, one state still means a sovereign Jewish state, but in a more complex reality, and inspired by the vision of a democratic Jewish state without an occupation and without apartheid, without fences and separations. In such a state, Jews will be able to live in Hebron and pray at the Tomb of the Patriarchs, and a Palestinian from Ramallah will be able to serve as an ambassador and live in Tel Aviv or simply enjoy ice cream on the city’s seashore.
This is exactly what Mike and I have been proposing.
Thus we don’t have to divide Jerusalem, fight over our borders, transfer Jewish settlers, allow for the “right of return” or share the airspace. We would control everything as the only sovereign.
Of course the chore wil be to avoid civil unrest. I think we are up to that challenge.