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Sunday, October 31, 2010

Haunted Netanyahu offers 'Palestinians' 'interim solution'

Apparently haunted - by Abu Mazen? - Prime Minister Netanyahu has proposed another 'interim solution' to the 'Palestinians' according to a report in Saturday's al-Hayat.
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu is making efforts to convince the Obama administration to accept a plan by which a Palestinian state would be established within temporary borders for a period of ten years, leaving difficult issues such as refugees and Jerusalem to be decided in future negotiations, London-based Arabic language daily Al-Hayat reported on Saturday.

According to Palestinian sources quoted by Al-Hayat, the temporary borders of the Palestinian State would coincide with the current security fence.

Under the proposed plan Israel would be allowed to maintain control over the Palestinian state's eastern border, on the western border with Israel, on Jerusalem and on water sources.

According to the Palestinian source "what Netanyahu proposed to us is a gradual solution which will continue for more than 10 years, that will leave Jerusalem and the big settlements under Israeli control, that will lease Israel the Jordan Valley for 40 years and will leave Israeli army bases at the entrances of Palestinian cities."

The plan would leave some 40% of the West Bank under Israeli control during the ten year interim period.
Ultimately, the 'security fence' is a horrendous border for Israel. It would leave us in a permanent state of 'hunkering down,' with no high ground and no water sources.

I've shown this video before, but it's worth another look. Let's go to the videotape.

YNet adds:
Another Palestinian official said that Netanyahu's plan is based on two aspects: Security and geography. On the geographical level, Israel will withdraw from Palestinian cities and leave settlement blocks under Israeli control. On the security level, Israel will keep army bases in the Jordan Valley and in entrances to West Bank cities. The two sources did not say what the Palestinians think about the plan.
Until now I thought tried to convince myself that Netanyahu was trying to call the 'Palestinian' bluff by showing that there was no solution they would accept. And I suppose that there will be those who will argue that Netanyahu's offer is undoubtedly full of conditions that would allow him to cancel withdrawals if 'Palestinian' terror continues. But the ultimate borders are not defensible.

Over the weekend, Caroline Glick wrote:
The challenge that Washington now poses to Israel is not unprecedented. Indeed for Netanyahu it is familiar.

During his first tenure as prime minister, Netanyahu faced a similar predicament with the Clinton administration. In October 1998, thenpresident Bill Clinton was about to be impeached. The Republicans stood poised to expand their control over the House of Representatives. Paralyzed domestically, Clinton turned to Israel. He placed enormous pressure on Netanyahu to agree to further land concessions to Yasser Arafat in Judea and Samaria. In what became the Wye Memorandum, Clinton forced Netanyahu to agree to massive concessions in exchange for which Clinton agreed to free Jonathan Pollard from prison.

At the time, Israel’s allies in Washington enjoined Netanyahu not to succumb to Clinton’s pressure. They argued that in his weakened state, Clinton had limited capacity to harm Netanyahu. Moreover, they warned that by caving to his pressure, Netanyahu would strengthen Clinton and guarantee that he would double down on Israel.

In the event, Netanyahu spurned Israel’s allies and bent to Clinton’s will. For his part, Clinton reneged on his pledge to release Pollard.

Netanyahu’s rightist coalition partners were appalled by his behavior. They bolted his coalition in protest and his government fell. Rather than stand by Netanyahu for his concessions, Clinton and the Israeli Left joined hands to defeat him in the 1999 elections.

The lesson Netanyahu learned from this experience was that he cannot trust the political Right to stand by him. While not unreasonable, this was not the main lesson from his experience. The larger point is that Netanyahu must not delude himself into believing that by falling into the arms of the Left he will win its support.

The post-election Obama administration will make the lives of Israel’s leaders unpleasant. But Netanyahu and his ministers are not powerless in the grip of circumstances. They have powerful allies and supporters in Washington and the confidence of the Israeli people. These are formidable assets.
Netanyahu ought to take Glick's advice. Unfortunately, he appears to have learned the wrong lesson from his first term in office.


At 11:30 AM, Blogger Stuart said...

How about the Guantanimo precedent? An indefinite lease, now between hostile states, and which can't be terminated without the consent of both states.

Not for Israeli towns, but for bases and control of the strategic territories.

Just a thought.

At 1:02 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

There's no chance the Palestinians will accept it and there's no chance the Israeli Right will swallow it. Netanyahu's offer is going to go nowhere.

At 3:34 PM, Blogger Xhosa said...

My opinion: No negotiated solution will be in Israel's interest. All of them will lead to the establishment of another hostile Arab state.

In my opinion, Netanyahu (and other future PMs) should make a deal contingent on unacceptable conditions: All of Jerusalem; recognition of Israel as Jewish; stationing troops throughout the West Bank; elimination of Hamas; complete demilitarization of the WB (for Palestinians); recognition and treaties signed with all of the Arab states.

As this is what it should be, were a state to come into existence, why not make them conditions now?


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