By Ted Belman
I went on a tour yesterday of part of Jerusalem which included the Shepherd hotel of Sheikh Jarrah as well as part of the Shimon HaTzaddik neighborhood. The organization KeepJerusalem.org who organized the tour is dedicated to educating people, mostly Israelis, on how impossible it would be to divide the city. I am not now able to report on the whole conversation and hopefully I will find the time to do so.
Today this Haaretz article caught my eye.
In new survey, 35% say they are willing to relocate if their neighborhoods become part of a future Palestinian state; only 30% say they would prefer Palestinian citizenship over Israeli.
This credible survey suggests that only 30% of Arabs living in the eastern part of the city want to be part of a Palestinian state. That’s no reason to divide the city. The international community should support Israel’s claim to all of the city. 70% of the Arabs would accept such a resolution. Who knows, the rest would probably accept it too.
Many Arabs and Jews are living in the diaspora. So what is the problem with these 70% also living outside Palestine. All it would take is a 10 minute ride to visit it.
After all over 100,000 Arabs moved into the city when Israel began building the fence because they wanted to be on the west side of the fence.
That is not to suggest that I accept the creation of a Palestinian state outside Jerusalem. I don’t. Too dangerous and problematic.
My preferred solution is autonomy only for the Arabs. Thus not only Jerusalem need not be divided but the same would go for Judea and Samaria.