Friday 1 June 2001

Israel Arab Conflict (Peace Objectives)

Peace - Objectives and the means to achieve them.

1. Time to think the unthinkable and come up with a bold approach based on fundamentals and not on preconceived prejudices and entrenched positions.

2. Unlike Christian or Muslim countries Israel can not be treated in isolation from the Jewish people worldwide. After what happened in Europe, Jews believe that defeat of Israel means annihilation. Israel is all the Jewish People’s refuge of last resort.

3. Lasting Peace is not a matter of goodwill. It lasts only if it is based on absence of potential future conflicts on the ground.

4. Only maximum defensible real SEPARATION of Israel and Palestine on the ground will work. Last 8 months killings and the recent outrages make separation mandatory.

5. GAZA is the core of the problem. Its population has to be reduced to its original inhabitants to be a viable entity. Its refugees have to be resettled in the West Bank, in Arab Countries including sparsely populated labour hungry Gulf and in Continental Europe. Otherwise it will always be a pressure cooker waiting to explode.

6. Jerusalem has to be divided into Jerusalem Capital of Israel and Al - Quds Capital of New Palestine - Twin Cities with clear SEPARATION between the two. Without this no peace will survive.

7. Arab inhabitants in Jerusalem (those who were annexed after 6 Day War) should revert to Palestine citizenship but can live as residents in Jerusalem if their residence falls within Israeli Jerusalem.

8. Likewise Jews who choose to stay in Al - Quds can retain their Israeli citizenship but continue to live as residents in Palestine subject to its laws after a period of protection by Israel.

9. Similar status should apply (after a period of protection by Israel army) to all Israelis who choose to stay in New Palestine. This includes the Jewish enclave in Hebron. The same arrangement should be accorded to any Jewish settlement which falls within the borders of Palestine.

10. Media/TV wars are nowadays taking precedence to Diplomacy and conventional wars. Israel is failing to use its many cards and moral weapons in this field to the dismay and utter frustration of its friends in the World.

11. Above suggested solutions lead to stability on the ground and are to the mutual benefit and future advantage of Israel, Palestine the Middle East and beyond. They have to be portrayed and CAN BE portrayed with sincerity and conviction as such.

12. Yasser Arafat is not in control. Hamas has to be brought directly into any negotiation for an enduring settlement. If either or both do not accept this scheme Israel should unilaterally implement it.

Aharon Nathan, June 2001