I’m a two-stater, although I have pretty much given up on the possibility that it will ever happen. The Israelis have gobbled up too much of the West Bank and there are a half million settlers who will fight to stay where they are. Nonetheless, I maintain the hope that somehow the two-state vision can be realized.
I do not however buy into the lie that the one-state vision means the end of Israel. The Palestinians have accepted the right of Israel to live in security in the Middle East ever since the Oslo declaration, still in force, by which Israel and the PLO recognized each other. The old story about the Palestinians wanting to “drive Israel into the sea” may have been true once but it isn’t now.
The one-state vision is not about one people destroying the other but two peoples living together in one state. It would not be a Jewish state or a Palestinian state. It would be a state for all the people who live there.
I have never favored that because I believe the Jewish people needs a state of their own. And that, yes, the Holocaust conveyed that lesson.
But it may be time to re-think.
This week the Jerusalem Post writer, Caroline Glick, the far right Israeli columnist endorsed the one-state idea.
She said that she favors Israeli annexation of the West Bank and indicated that she does not believe that annexation would threaten Israel.
The truth is that if Israel applied its laws to Judea and Samaria [the West Bank] tomorrow and all the Palestinians in those areas received Israeli citizenship, Israel would still retain a two-thirds Jewish majority. Moreover, all the demographic trends for Israel, including increasing birthrates and positive immigration rates, are positive. And all the demographic trends for the Palestinians, including decreasing birthrates and negative immigration rates, are negative. According to Israeli demographic researcher Yoram Ettinger, by 2030, Jewish will likely comprise 80% of the population of Israel, Judea and Samaria.
Her belief that Israel would retain control is entirely based on the demographic argument. She believes Jews will remain the majority of a Greater Israel forever. (Most demographers disagree).
But, to her credit, she is for a democratic Israel for all its people regardless, rejecting the idea of “limited voting rights” for Palestinians to prevent them from controlling the government:
In truth, there is no reason for them to receive anything but full voting rights.
This is pretty remarkable. Glick, an Israeli uber-nationalist, does not want to divide the land and, if that means one democratic state for all its people, so be it. (Why not add Gaza too?)
I have to give her credit for taking her annexationist position to its logical conclusion. Now I’m going to think seriously about this. Who would have thought Caroline Glick would lead me to contemplate whether the one-state solution may, in fact, be the only solution.
Because it just may be.