Willful blindness

By Ted Belman

Yesterday, I attended, along with a few dozen international journalists at the Institute for National Security Studies (INSS), a debate on alternate solutions to the two state plan. It held great promise but failed to deliver.

Giora Eiland stated off by advising why the Two-state Plan could not work. Moshe Dann who was also present, covered Eiland’s position in an earlier article of his “Is the Two-state Solution realistic?” . What Eiland proposed was a regional solution.

A way had to be found to enable Israel to keep about 13% of Judea and Samaria, he said. This would move Israel’s border to the east thereby including in Israel a higher percentage of Jews living there. He was quite prepared to have 50,000 left behind to be evacuated later and made no argument for defensible borders. Jerusalem wasn’t worth a mention.

He suggested that Mubarak be induced to triple the size of Gaza by ceding adjacent territory to Gaza in compensation for what Israel wanted to keep. Jordan would be asked to also contribute some of their territory north of the Dead Sea.To induce them to cooperate, Israel would give some of the Negev to Egypt near the south end and allow a 10 km tunnel to be build to Jordan thereby giving Egypt access to Jordan and the Gulf states. This would also give them access to the Mediterranean and a great port could be built in the extended Gaza for all to prosper from. Mubarak could be given a Noble Prize for his generosity and all would live happily thereafter.

Shlomo Brom offered in rebuttal that such a Plan had no chance in hell. Its bad enough he said trying to negotiate a deal between two parties but attempting to do so among four parties would be a non starter. Besides he said there is no way Mubarak would give an inch. But he had a brilliant plan, negotiate with Hamas. Did I hear that right? Indeed I did.

According to Brom, due to the fact that Hamas and Fatah are not unified, no deal can be negotiated. So it is obvious that we should talk to Hamas. He made no comment on whether Hamas would change its position or what Israel would have to offer for nothing in return; something that Israel is getting good at.

Neither of them mentioned that the Arabs wanted to destroy Israel.

I pointed out that they were both still kneading the dead horse of a two-state solution and what was needed was an alternate solution. Israel should keep Judea and Samaria.

That suggestion was too absurd to even discuss.

July 3, 2008 | 7 Comments »

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6 Comments / 7 Comments

  1. This is not a case of willful blindness, but as Yamit alludes to, an inability to think outside the box.

    No matter how the two state solution peace paradigm is twisted, stretched and turned has not worked and cannot work because it invariably winds up trying to bang a square peg into a round hole.

    Arab/Palestinian Jew hatred and probably in part at least, fundamentalist Islamic supremacy dogmatic beliefs and dreams are the undoing of any two state solution.

    One must therefore change or render weak or irrelevant the circumstances that negate any chance for a peace solution in the region.

    I have written before on that to suggest that by Israel manoevering to heighten fear in Egyptians and Jordanians of an independent Palestinian state to the point it overrides their Jew hatred, those two nations might come to see that a despised, but strong and peaceful Israel as a neighbor far more serves their self interest then the Jew hatred they hold fast to.

    In summary, if the rules of the game are against you, either get out of the game or change the rules.

  2. And neither of them was nearly as nuts as some of the audience. One journalist whose affiliation I didn’t catch demanded of Brom how he could claim that the Palestinians are politically divided when they “were all dancing in the streets” to celebrate the downing of the twin towers on 9/11. Maybe she’s been asleep for the past two and a half years.

    Another turned out to be Ted Belman of Israpundit, who demanded of Brom why, if Egypt could give up some of the Sinai to Gaza, it shouldn’t just give up a bigger chunk so Israel could keep all the West Bank. This is clearly someone who takes the claim that “there is no such thing as a Palestinian people” quite literally.

    He notes on his blog, apparently without irony, that keeping the West Bank “was two (sic) absurd to even discuss.”

    Still, I can be as huffy as I like from my lofty position of “neutrality”. People like Belman are the future. After the presentation I popped in to see an Israeli journalist friend and we talked about how the bottom is falling out of the newspaper business. In three or four years, he said, the paid newspaper columnist in Israel will be almost gone as a profession. Bloggers do the job just as well, and for free. And to a lot of their readers, the more outrageously biased they are, the better.

    Isn’t it odd that when anyone opions out of the accepted conception think box none has an intelligent answere and therefore either ignore the idea or opinion or deride it without even consideration. I remember that the popular conception of all our great leaders and thinkers after the 6 day war that we needn’t worry too much about the Arabs as we were all reading our press clippings from that war. We were arrogant and we were disrespectful to our enemies and we paid a stiff price for it in 73.

    We are locked into a lot of erroneous and condescending conceptions re: the Arabs in and out of Israel and the so called territories and as long as we do not move away from those conceptions we will neither have , peace or victory but will bring a devastating conflict between Israel and all our immediate and even not so immediate neighbors. When the basic conceptional principles are faulty and unworkable to cling to them is suicidal.

    “Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”

    “We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.”

    “Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.”

    We need a whole new generation of thinkers who combine all of the merits of Zionism, Judaism, Patriotism and Modernity, who can see past his or her nose.

  3. Gideon Lichfield from the Economist covered the debate and wrote Two-states in La-La Land
    and had this to say about my comment,

    [..] Another turned out to be Ted Belman of Israpundit, who demanded of Brom why, if Egypt could give up some of the Sinai to Gaza, it shouldn’t just give up a bigger chunk so Israel could keep all the West Bank. This is clearly someone who takes the claim that “there is no such thing as a Palestinian people” quite literally.

    He notes on his blog, apparently without irony, that keeping the West Bank “was too absurd to even discuss.”

    Still, I can be as huffy as I like from my lofty position of “neutrality”. People like Belman are the future. After the presentation I popped in to see an Israeli journalist friend and we talked about how the bottom is falling out of the newspaper business. In three or four years, he said, the paid newspaper columnist in Israel will be almost gone as a profession. Bloggers do the job just as well, and for free. And to a lot of their readers, the more outrageously biased they are, the better.

  4. wasting time

    Israel has to invade and conquer libanon, syria, jordan and west-irak and proclame the State of Israel on all Jewish Land. Full Stop. Then the whole world would respect us.

  5. Ted,

    I pointed out that they were both still kneading the dead horse of a two-state solution and what was needed was an alternate solution. Israel should keep Judea and Samaria.

    That suggestion was two absurd to even discuss.

    Here you hit at the real problem, not only is such an idea not considered but it is not on their Radar Screens.

    All are bright and all to larger or lesser have been involved in past and current policy and execution positions in different Israeli governments. All are failures in analysis, planning execution and extracting correct revisions and updates to their failures in the past. None admit to their personal mistakes and errors of judgment and with different nuances continue to base their current ideas upon factors either not relevant or correct therefore any workable solutions cannot come from those who failed in the past and present. We need new blood new ideas or new old ideas that either have never been tried or were never executed fully or properly to be able to judge if they are workable.

    Mubarak can’t hang on much longer and the Egypt after Mubarak may have no resemblance to the Egypt today under Mubarak. Jordan is a dead kingdom walking, and Hamas and Fatah, in the final analysis we have created for our own political expediency a differentiation between them that is fictional. Neither Hamas or Fatah accept Israel as a jewish State and both want our ultimate destruction. Both attack Israel through their militias(Fatah more than Hamas). Big difference is rhetoric, Hamas is Honest and says what it thinks and means and Fatah leaders tell the West and us what we want to hear while carrying out terror against Jews and Israel.

    If Kahane were alive today he would get at least 30 seats in the Knesset. Eventually our leaders catch up with the man on the street who knows instinctively what needs to be done and is not encumbered with the political correctness of the media and our other entrenched institutional bastions of secular left wing liberalism.

  6. It matters not that the Arab – like Ishmael is a wild beast at heart, covered by only a thin veneer of civility. It matters not that the Arabs do to each other the worst things imaginable. It matters not that the Arabs ruthlessly kill Jews when given the opportunity. With all this, it beggars the imagination to assume the Arabs’ nature would be miraculously transformed if they were given a state. They want Jews dead – it doesn’t get an simpler than that and those who pursue utopian fantasies of Jewish Arab co-existence are living in denial.