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by Dr. Arnold M. Soloway


The "Two State Delusion" I: Who Wants A "Two-State" Solution

Following the U.S. lead, the near universal consensus appears to be that the Arab-Israel conflict can be resolved only by the establishment of a Palestinian State in Judea and Samaria (the West Bank) and Gaza, providing a "Two-State Solution".

But a fundamental problem inherent in the "Two-State Solution" is clearly reflected in the controversy surrounding the proposed Ground Zero Mosque. Those sharing an extremist Arab Muslim mindset that insists on building a multi-storied Mosque only at Ground Zero, seem to share that mindset with Arab Muslims who are intent on gaining exclusive control of all of Palestine, including Jordan.[1]

Despite his artful public posture, Imam Rauf, leader of the Ground Zero Mosque project, affirmed the singularity of that Arab mindset when he refused to admit that Hamas, as labeled by the U.S. State Department, is a terrorist organization, challenged that America "was an accessory to the crime of 9/11", Osama Bin Laden "was made in America", and by his pursuit of U.S. compliance with Shariah law. And when he notably stated: " own personal analysis tells me that a one-state solution is a more coherent one than a two-state solution". (Italics supplied)

The one-state that the Imam would consider "coherent" certainly is not the Democratic Jewish State of Israel. From his public statements we know that the one-state he envisions and would consider "coherent" is an Islamic Arab State governed by Shariah law, and like twenty other Arab states would hardly feature democratic freedoms and human rights. This one-state solution is precisely the dictum of the Muslim Brotherhood, major fount of Arab terrorism, and its offshoot, Hamas. It is familiar code for challenging Israel's very right to exist as a sovereign state, thus attempting to legitimize the prospective destruction of Israel.

Moreover, there is little doubt that a new Palestinian Arab state would ally itself with and become a client of despotisms like Iran and Syria, and other forces hostile to America; it would directly threaten Jordan's survival and put Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and other Gulf states in peril. This would make the region more combustible than it already is - hardly in U.S. or Israel's interest.

Against this background the "Two-State Solution", as proposed, inevitably would constitute an unwarranted threat to vital American national security interests and to Israel's survival, a danger manifestly detrimental to U.S. credibility and its security interests in a true and lasting Arab-Israel peace.

Unfortunately U.S. and Western attention has focused almost exclusively on issues of "territory" and "settlements" as keys to the conflict. But the Arab-Israel conflict really is not about "territory" or "settlements". Its root cause is in that Jihadist religious political mindset that will not allow Israel to exist and is resolved to restore Arab Muslim influence, prestige, control and power to their glory of ages past. That is the Jihadists' proclaimed ultimate goal, and they will not willingly accept compromise.

Those who deny that extremist Ground Zero mindset do a disservice to the Muslim community that truly seeks reciprocal mutual respect, accommodation and accord with others, in the American tradition. Nor can we, who are committed to freedom, the civil, political and religious rights of all people, succumb to the immorality of not facing the reality of a great divide

The Two State Delusion II: Relevant History in Brief

In 1922, following the Allied victory in World War I, the organized international community of the time, the League of Nations, with the special concurrence of the U.S. (not a member), established the Palestine Mandate as a matter of binding international law, based on the "historical connection of the Jewish people with Palestine". It intended to establish "a National Home for the Jewish people", specifically including all the territory of what later became Jordan and Israel, explicitly designated in Article 6, for "close settlement by Jews on the land" of Palestine. (The league similarly established French mandates for territories that became Syria and Lebanon, and another British mandate for Mesopotamia-Iraq.)

In 1923, however, for her own imperial interests, Britain cut off 78% of the original Mandate territory to establish the Arab Emirate of Trans Jordan and installed as Emir a World War I ally, Abdullah, whose forces had been expelled from Arabia by the Wahabi Saudis. Abdullah, with some 2,000 Hashemite troops, took control of the territory in Palestine where Jews no longer would be permitted to live. The territory for the Jewish national home in Palestine was thus reduced to a mere 22% of the original Mandate.

But Haj Amin El Husseini, Mufti of Jerusalem, (who later collaborated with Hitler in World War II) and other Arab elites belligerently opposed opening any part of Palestine for Jewish development. Their political theology dictates that Palestine, like other territory once conquered by Muslim forces, is "Holy Land", never again to be controlled by non-Muslims. Accordingly, despite conclusive archeological evidence supporting volumes of probative testimony, they minimalized or denied the multi-millennial connection of the Jews with the land of Palestine.

In 1937, concerned by escalating Arab violence, the British created the Peel Commission to investigate the Palestine problem. The Peel Commission subsequently called for further subdivision of the remaining 22% of the original Mandate territory into two states, one Arab, one Jewish, as "a chance for ultimate peace". The Arabs emphatically rejected the two state proposal.

In 1946, with British support, Abdullah converted the Emirate of Trans-Jordan into the Kingdom of Jordan, an Arab state within the Palestine Mandate, with himself as King.

(Palestine and Jordan were both under British Mandate, but as my grand-father pointed out in his memoirs, they were hardly separate countries. Trans-Jordan being to the east of the river Jordan, formed in a sense, the interior of Palestine." [King Hussein Jordan, Uneasy Lies the Head, New York, 1962, p.118])

Israel and the Wars that Followed

In 1947, after Britain had surrendered its Mandate, it was transferred as a "sacred trust" to the United Nations, successor to the League of Nations. The U.N. General Assembly adopted Resolution 181, calling for partition of the remaining 22% of the Palestine Mandate. This "Two-State Solution" provided for a second Arab state in Palestine (Jordan being the first). Although disappointed by the reduced portion of territory they would receive, the U.N. proposal was accepted by the Jews as "Israelis". It was rejected forcefully by the Arabs.

The U.N vote was timely and critical, and it affirmed Israel's legal and historic right to statehood. But the U.N. could not create the State: Britain opposed the U.N. plan and the U.S., France, and others failed in an attempt to have the U.N. General Assembly rescind the Partition Resolution. Contrary to hostile propaganda, Israel was neither created by nor imposed by the West, but arose in spite of obstruction, opposition, or inaction by most of the great Western powers. It was created by Jews who had settled the land, organized and built a functioning economy, society and governmental structure and demanded sovereignty for themselves and for their fellow Jews in Europe and in Moslem lands seeking security and dignity in the historic home of the Jewish people.

In 1948, five Arab armies undertook an avowed "War of Extermination" against the greatly outnumbered nascent Jewish State. To world-wide surprise, the Arabs were defeated. Under the subsequent armistice agreement when combat ceased, Jordan occupied the West Bank and Egypt occupied Gaza, but Israel had distinctly established its presence as a sovereign state in the Middle East.

The Two-State Delusion III :The "Strategy of Stages" and a Concocted Arab Narrative

After 1948, when five Arab armies were defeated in their avowed "War of Extermination" against the greatly outnumbered nascent Jewish State, Jordan illegally occupied Judea and Samaria, the West Bank, and Egypt controlled Gaza. But Israel had successfully defended its right to sovereign statehood.

In 1967, after again defeating three Arab armies in a war of self-defense and gaining control of the West Bank, Gaza, and the Golan Heights, Israel offered to return territory it had won in exchange for peace agreements with its neighbors. The Arab League responded with their Khartoum Resolution: "No peace with Israel, no negotiations with Israel, no recognition of Israel." Once again, no "Two-State Solution".

During the nineteen years in which Judea and Samaria (the West Bank) and Gaza were under complete Arab control, there was no agitation or effort to establish a Palestinian state. But to enhance their appeal to Western public opinion, the Arabs of Mandate Palestine waived their traditional self-identification as "Arabs", that is members of the Arab Nation, and described themselves as "Palestinians".

"There are no differences between Jordanians, Palestinians, Syrians and Lebanese. We are all part of one nation. It is only for political reasons that we carefully underline our Palestinian identity, because it is in the interest of the Arabs to encourage a separate Palestinian identity...Yes, the existence of a separate Palestinian identity is there only for tactical reasons." (Zuheir Mohsen, head of military operations for the PLO and a member of its Supreme Council as interviewed by James Dorsey in the Dutch daily Trouw, March 31, 1977.) (Emphasis supplied)

In 1974, after another Arab defeat, the nine-year old P.L.O., at its Twelfth National Convention, adopted "The Strategy of Stages". This was designed to create an impression of "moderation" - primarily for Western consumption - by agreeing to set up a Palestinian Arab state in any West Bank and Gaza territory vacated by Israel as Stage I, without recognizing the State of Israel. Stage II, was to be resumption and intensification of the "armed struggle" from the greatly enhanced power base, which would ensure the destruction of Israel and allow Arabs to take the rest of Palestine in Stage III.

At the same time, the P.L.O. began advancing a narrative according to which "Arab people were engaged in farming and building, spreading culture throughout the land for thousands of years, setting an example in the practice of freedom of worship, acting as faithful guardians of the holy places of all religions." (Arafat's speech in the U.N., N.Y.Times, 11/11/74)

It is hard to imagine a description that stands in harsher contrast to the facts. For while archeological evidence suggests that Palestine possessed one of the largest populations and most varied economies in its history during the sixth century, the Arab invasion of the seventh century inaugurated a period of over a thousand years, where except for brief breathing spells, Palestine settled into a period of deep decline punctuated by periodic massacres of its remaining population.

(As late as 1867, on his visit to Palestine, Mark Twain wrote of "A silent mournful expanse...a desolation...not even imagination can grace...never saw a human being on the whole route (from Jerusalem to Tabor)...even the olive and the cactus, those fast friends of a worthless soil, had almost deserted the country." Innocents Abroad)

The plain fact, documented in a wide range of unimpeachable sources, is that the regeneration of Palestine, the growth of its population and economy, came only after an increasing and consistent flow of Jews had begun returning in the last decades of the 19th century. And after them came Arabs from Transjordan, Saudi Arabia, Morocco, Egypt, the Sudan, Iraq and even far away Yemen, seeking a share in Palestine's emerging prosperity. It is estimated that at least 300,000 Arabs migrated into Palestine during the period of the Mandate.

The Two State Delusion IV: Oslo's Bloody Aftermath

In 1993, the Oslo Accords were signed by Arafat of the P.L.O. and Prime Minister Rabin of Israel at the White House, supposedly to allow for the development and growth of mutual trust and respect - leading to the establishment of a Palestinian State.

The event was widely hailed as a harbinger of the long-sought peace. Friends of Israel, willing to place hope before experience, indulged in a paroxysm of joy and optimism. But other friends of Israel, mindful of the underlying realities of of the Arab-Israel conflict and the problematic details of the accord, were not bemused by the euphoria of the time. One observer described the event as marking "The Delusion of a People Under Siege".[2]

(Arafat himself soon confirmed the delusion. Speaking to his own people he reaffirmed the P.L.O. commitment to the "Strategy of Stages" for Israel's destruction, and equated the Oslo Accords with Mohammed's Treaty of Hudabya with the Koreish tribe, which the Prophet maintained for two years - until his forces grew strong enough to crush the Koreish.)

The Israeli government, driven by its intense desire for peace, and trusting that Arafat would honor his commitment to eliminate Palestinian terrorism and anti-Israel hate indoctrination, placed significant territory under P.L.O. control and without consideration of vital security issues gave arms to its "Police".

However, rather than moderating the Palestinians (PLO and Hamas alike), the Oslo Accords produced an unprecedented level of hate-education, resulting in a vast wave of anti-Israeli Palestinian terrorism, a gross violation of Palestinian commitments made to Israel and to the U.S.

Oslo might have led to a Palestinian state in a "Two-State Solution", but Arafat rejected that option. Instead, he launched the first bloody "Intifada" and intensified vitriolic anti-Israel hate indoctrination in programs that continue to this day. The "Hate Jews and Israel" mantra, heard every day in their Mosques and media, resonates powerfully among the Palestinian Arabs, unwitting recipients of gross historical revisionism. It is especially aimed at the young, even in programs designed for early school age children.

In 2000, with no regard for this very dismal experience, President Clinton, joined by Ehud Barak, then Israel's Prime Minister, offered to Arafat and the Palestinian Arabs a sovereign state with 97% of the West Bank and Gaza, its capital in East Jerusalem and large sums of money in compensation to Palestinian refugees. Arafat again rejected a "Two State Solution" and responded with the "Second Intifada", including the bloodiest sustained terrorist attacks in Israel's history that also devastated the economy of the corrupt, repressive P.L.A. regime.

Nevertheless, international politicos, lead by the Obama administration, still focus almost exclusively on a "Two-State Solution". They ignore the fact that over a period of more than seven decades at least five distinct international diplomatic initiatives for such a "solution" could have created a Palestinian state. But Arafat would not accept the concept of two states, Arab and Jewish, permanently "living side-by-side in peace". His goal was never peace with Israel, but its destruction and a single Arab Muslim state from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea.

The Two State Delusion V: Critical Realities:Fatah and Hamas

Quite apart from the intrinsically contradictory fundamental approach that would beset any Arab-Israel negotiations for a "Two-State Solution", there is another basic problem. The Arabs are divided in two hostile camps. Fatah (P.L.O.) controls territory in the West Bank while Hamas maintains control of Gaza which it seized by force from Fatah.

The hostility between Fatah and Hamas encompasses a range of important political and ideological differences. But they share the same. ultimate goal: the destruction of the State of Israel. In both the P.L.O.-Fatah and Hamas covenants that goal is specific, clearly stated, and glorifies "armed struggle" - all having been substantiated by both terrorist actions and repeated declarations.

Following Yasser Arafat's death, Abu Mazen, the P.L.O.'s second-in-command, who, at Arafat's side, was directly involved in many deadly terrorist acts over the years, now has the title of "President Abbas". He has taken over command of Palestinian Arab governance (P.L.A.) and has attempted to transform his and the P.L.O.'s image by adopting a pretense of moderation to gain favor in the U.S. and the West. Unlike Arafat, he speaks, dresses and acts in a more "Western" fashion. This has allowed current U.S. policy-makers to ignore his terrorist past, to portray him now as a "moderate", and to accept him as a partner in the pursuit of Arab-Israeli peace through a "Two-State Solution".

These policy-makers also evade reference to the fact that despite Abbas' supposed "moderation", as Arafat's First Deputy it was he who had instituted hate-education in the Palestinian Authority in 1994, and has sustained hate-education as Arafat's successor. His "Strategy of Stages" and the articles in the P.L.O. covenant specifically calling for Israel's destruction by "armed struggle" remain unchanged. In addition, Abbas and the P.L.O. still will not even acknowledge Israel's right to exist; they insist on the immediate expulsion of all Jews from half of Jerusalem and territories the Arabs lost in the 1967 war of aggression, and they claim "the right of return" for millions of Arabs to a reduced Israel within its 1967 armistice lines, which in itself would mean the end of the Jewish national home.

The ultimate Abbas-P.L.O. goal remains the same as Arafat's: the elimination of the Jewish State.

Seeing the true face of Fatah, what can be expected of the even more extreme Hamas? Unequivocally committed to Israel's destruction and still continuing terrorist actions, a "transformation" is hardly credible. Nevertheless, Hamas has been pursued avidly by U.S. ex-officials and public figures implicitly representing the Obama administration, urging reconciliation of Hamas and Fatah, so that they can appear as a single Palestinian entity for negotiations with Israel. Presumably for humanitarian aid, but in part at least to encourage that reconciliation, on June 9, 2010 President Obama granted $400,000,000 to be shared by the terrorist organizations, Fatah and Hamas. How the total sum is to be divided and who will control its actual disposition was not disclosed. However, with Hamas now receiving significant support and arms from Iran and Syria, "reconciliation" of Fatah and Hamas, it is unlikely and at best would be a very temporary affair, but it would open the door for even more U.S. pressure on Israel to make further hazardous territorial "concessions" toward the "Two-State Solution" - and to its Jihadist opponents, when the conflict clearly is not about territory.

The Two State Delusion VI: Jerusalem: Forgotten History and a U.S. Policy Charade

Three Thousand years ago, King David made Jerusalem his capital and Jews have aspired to live in Jerusalem ever since. Since the 1840's, Jews have comprised the largest single group of Jerusalem's inhabitants. Moreover, since the 1880's, Jews have been a majority of its population. Jerusalem has never been the capital of any nation other than ancient and modern Israel.

Jerusalem always has played the central role in Jewish religious and political life. The "Western Wall" was part of the Jewish Temple built more than 2,000 years ago. Jerusalem has been an integral feature in daily Jewish prayer, and when Jews pray anywhere in the world, they still face Jerusalem. (Muslims face Mecca.) To the Jewish people, "Jerusalem" is a synonym for all of Israel, their ancestral homeland.

Jerusalem has long been a city of people from diverse backgrounds. There were fairly distinct Jewish, Arab, Christian and other neighborhoods, but in all its history the city was never divided - until the Jordanian occupation in 1948, which forcefully drove all Jews out of East Jerusalem, including the Jewish Quarter of the Old City.

"Only from 1948-1967 - during the Jordanian occupation - was the eastern part of Israel's capital 'Arab territory'. Palestinians have no more claim to sovereignty there than Russia does in formerly occupied Eastern Berlin."[3]

President Obama's "Two-State" proposal calls for a divided Jerusalem. The Arabs will accept a portion of Jerusalem for their state only as a tactical component in their Strategy of Stages for Israel's destruction. But aware of what that portends and the fact that "East Jerusalem" contains the Jewish quarter of the Old City with the "Western Wall" of the sacred Temple, Israel could not yield to such a "solution".

Bi-Partisan Congressional Resolutions in 1990 and 1992 strongly affirmed the conviction that "Jerusalem should remain an undivided city and recognized as the capital of the State of Israel."

In 1995, the Jerusalem Embassy Act, S.1322, was passed. Among it's cosponsors: Joseph Biden, Ted Kennedy, John McCain, Harry Reid, John Kerry, Joseph Lieberman, Strom Thurmond, Bob Dole. It was termed a "Statement of the Policy of the United States":

"(1) Jerusalem should remain an undivided city in which the rights of every ethnic and religious group are protected;

(2) Jerusalem should be recognized as the capital of the State of Israel."

In 2007, Hillary Clinton, now Secretary of State, issued a paper stating: "Hillary Clinton believes that Israel's right to exist in safety as a Jewish State, with defensive borders and an undivided Jerusalem as its capital, secure from violence and terrorism, must never be questioned".

In 2008, Barak Obama stated: "Jerusalem will remain the capital of Israel, and it must remain undivided". But the very next day, Obama explained that he actually supported dividing Jerusalem, and said: "The point we were simply making is that we don't want barbed wire running through Jerusalem, similar to the way it was prior to the 1967 War, that it is possible for us to create a Jerusalem that is cohesive and coherent". (Ital. added) [4]

Is it "possible for us to create a Jerusalem that is cohesive and coherent" - and divided? What, if anything, does a "cohesive and coherent" divided Jerusalem really mean? The point is that in his push for a "Two-State Solution", even before any Arab-Israel negotiations, President Obama unilaterally rejected the idea that Jerusalem should remain undivided. And signaled thereby that he, President Obama, already has determined what the outcome must be on other critical issues in the Arab-Israel "negotiations". This is consistent with his apparent presumption that the cause of Arab bitterness and hostility originates from injustices committed against them by Israel (and America). And that presumption implies unjustifiable apologetic deference to the political and religious based Arab hostility to Israel's very existence.

The Two State Delusion VII: Changing Arab Perspectives:Iran

The Obama administration argues the extreme urgency of achieving the "Two-State Solution" as necessary to gain support from the Arab states in our conflict with the Taliban and Al Qaeda. Certainly we want any intelligence and support we can gain from the Arab states, but long experience demonstrates that the factor that really determines the policies and actions of Arab leaders concerns threats to their survival in power. Despite their often impassioned rhetoric, largely for domestic purposes, regional, and global factors impact inter-Arab, Arab-Western and Arab-Israel relations much more than the Palestinian issues.

Today, a number of Arab regimes are increasingly apprehensive about Jihadist domestic challenges from forces like Hamas, and the "Two-State Solution" is viewed as a direct threat by Jordan. Arab hostility toward Israel certainly persists. But because the Arab-Israel conflict in Palestine is not really their most vital concern, the support we want to gain from the Arab leaders depends less than ever on the degree of pressure the U.S. puts on Israel and more on their assessment of what power will prevail in the turbulent Middle East.

Obviously, that critical assessment will be profoundly influenced by Iran's prospective emergence as a nuclear power. The Arab states know that Israel poses no threat to them, while Egypt, Jordan, the Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and other Arab states do fear the prospect that a nuclear-armed Iran would pursue regional hegemony.

"The world's most open secret is that the Arab countries of the Middle East fear a nuclear Iran as much, and perhaps more, than Israel does...the comments this week by United Arab Emirates Ambassador to the U.S. Yousef Al-Otaiba are worth noting...asked if he wanted the U.S. to stop the Iranian bomb program by force", he answered: 'Absolutely, absolutely. I think we are at risk of an Iranian nuclear program far more than you are at risk'. Mr. Otaiba's other comments leave no doubt what he and most Arab officials think about the prospect of a nuclear revolutionary Shiite state. They desperately want someone, and that means the U.S. or Israel, to stop it, using force if need be." [5]

The Arab states that are inclined to offer U.S. intelligence and other support recognize tacitly that Israel today constitutes a force for stability in the region and may be their best hope for security against a hegemonic Iran, particularly as they witness the lack of American resolve to face the challenge of Iran.

The Two-State Delusion VIII: The New Middle East Paradigm:Wavering U.S. Resolve?

President Obama's publicly stated opposition to a united Jerusalem logically concentrates attention on other positions and actions he has taken that ominously diminish the U.S.-Israel relationship: His eloquent Cairo apology to and effusive praise for the Muslim world, while implicitly criticizing Israel; his very deferential attitude in various encounters with Arab leaders, contrasted with the utter disdain and disrespect he publicly showed Israel's Prime Minister, Netanyahu; his endorsement of a Ground Zero mosque; his repeated acerbic demands on Israel alone, while courting terrorists that Israel must contend with every day. President Obama also seems to ignore the grim prospect that the "Two-State Solution" would effectively advance the P.L.O.'s "Strategy of Stages" for the destruction of Israel.

Most disconcerting: President Obama's diplomatic outreach to Iran has proven an abject failure; all the U.N. and U.S. sanctions will not bring Iran to give up its pursuit of nuclear weaponry, leaving us dependent on "containment". But it will be very difficult, if not impossible, to contain a nuclear-powered Iran, the dominant power in the Middle East with growing influence beyond. And from its past experience of simply ignoring successive U.N. resolutions and U.S. opprobrium with no fear-inspiring reprisal, it will have no great fear of a U.S. or international community response to any of its future actions.

The portents of a nuclear Iran are obvious, ominous, and far-reaching. Israel, the "Little Satan" has been targeted for prompt annihilation, but the repeatedly announced threat goes beyond the Middle East, by one means or another to extend its lethal reach to the "Big Satan", the U.S.

Although giving occasional rhetorical assurance that "the American-Israel bond is unbreakable", judged by his actions, President Obama has shown little concern for the existential threat to Israel from a nuclear-powered Iran and how that would affect our own security interests. Rather, he has warned Israel against taking preventive defensive action to thwart Iran. But permitting Iran to go nuclear and pandering to terrorists and their state sponsors, while disavowing America's exceptional commitment to protect and advance freedom in the world, is strategically and morally unacceptable.

Taken together, these negative perceptions are troubling to all who are concerned about our own security and future as well as that of Israel. They lead to a most disturbing conclusion. Despite a long, mutually beneficial relationship, and the rhetorical assurances, Israel's security and survival appear less important to President Obama than his ardent cultivation of Arab-Muslim favor.

This paradigm is perceived in the Middle East and in other regions as yet another sign of America's wavering resolve and abandonment of its historic role as a powerful moral and strategic force. That perception emboldens not just Israel's enemies, but our own: Al Qaeda, the Taliban, Iran, and the formidable network of radical Islamist terrorists who have declared war on us to advance their own theocratic and political ambitions.

These unpleasant realities challenge the sanctimonious pretensions of the "Two State Solution". They signal the dangers inherent in attempts at a quick, simple "fix" for a conflict that is rooted in Arab Muslim political theology, and is not simply about territory. In our own security interest, the realities instead call for a renewed, resolute American commitment to strategic and moral leadership in the war against Islamist terrorism and the threat of a nuclear-armed Iran. This still is the best hope for essential stability, and ultimately a true and lasting peace in that much troubled region and the world at large.

The Two State Delusion IX: Why Speak Peace When Peace Is Not In Sight?

Since 1937, when Great Britain's Peel Commission vainly proposed a "Two-State Solution" as "a chance for ultimate peace", Arab-Israel "peace plans" have been advanced in predictably futile succession, among them:

Their titles, origins, dates and details vary, but all these "peace plans", including President Obama's "Two-State Solution", were doomed to fail: They unperceived or willfully misrepresented the core conflict as being about territory, that if Israel would trade enough "Land for Peace", the conflict could be resolved.

Seven decades of failed "peace plans" should have alerted our policy makers to the reality that this conflict is not about a division of territory. Israel's offers to trade "Land for Peace" in 1949, 1967, 1993, 2000, and 2002, all met a consistent Arab response: No "Peace for Land". But using "peace negotiations" to acquire Judea and Samaria, the West Bank, is critical to the PLO's "Strategy of Stages": Establish a Palestinian State in territory acquired by negotiations without recognizing Israel as Stage I, and intensified "armed struggle" in Stages II and III from advanced positions, easing the way to Israel's annihilation.

This established Arafat PLO doctrine, distinctly reaffirmed by P.L.A. President Abbas in March, manifests that the basic conflict is not about "settlements" or territorial division. Such could be resolved by reasonable compromise - - but no compromise is possible when the root cause of the conflict is the rigid Jihadist Arab Muslim political theology that prohibits recognition of Israel, denies the Jewish people's multi-millennial bond with the land, insists that all of Palestine is their exclusive "Holy Land", its governance never to be shared with others.

Forcing Israel to withdraw from territories in Judea and Samaria would inspire the Jihadists to immediately intensify the "Armed Struggle". Moreover, such territorial "compromise" today would perversely ignore the considered judgment of American military and diplomatic authorities made during the Cold War with the Soviet Union.

On June 29, 1967, General Earl Wheeler, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs-of-Staff, submitted to President Johnson a document on "The Minimum Requirements for Israel's Defense", noting the historical, geographic, topographic, political and military reality of the Middle East that behooves Israel to control the mountain ridges of Judea, Samaria and the Golan Heights.

In April, 1978, Major General George J. Keegan Jr. (Ret.), former Chief, U.S. Air Force Intelligence, Admiral E.R. Zumwalt, Jr. U.S.N. (Ret.), former Chief of Naval Operations, Hon. Eugene A. Foley, President, National Committee on American Foreign Policy, and others, wrote:

"Israel is a matchless strategic asset for the West (indeed for the few genuinely moderate forces in the region) against threats emanating from extreme Arab and non-Arab elements...If our present self-defeating policy continues, the danger is that we might no longer have a strategically viable Israel..." (1978 - 2010 redux?).

In January 1979, 183 Generals and Admirals (Ret.) publicly declared that "...the ability of the U.S. to protect its security interests in the Middle East is closely linked, if not dependent on, the maintenance of a potent Israeli military capability in the area." The late Admiral "Bud" Nance, on July 29, 1991, defined Judea and Samaria's eastern mountain ridge dominating the Jordan Valley, as "the most effective tank barrier "and the western mountain ridge overpowering Jerusalem and Tel Aviv as a "dream platform for invasion to the narrow coastal plain." While Iran with radical Islam has replaced the Soviet Union as prime Middle East threat, the minimum requirement for Israel's defense actually has increased.

The "Two-State Solution" is strategically and morally wrong. Requiring Israel to withdraw from these critical territories as part of the "Two-State Solution" clearly would advance the promised Jihadist end game: Israel's total extinction. Given the facts, fair-minded observers realize that peace will become possible only when Jihadist Arab Muslims no longer dominate in Israel's neighborhood, and the Arab people and their leaders are reconciled to Israel's permanent sovereign presence in Palestine.

That time is not yet in sight. But it is being delayed by President Obama and others, still pushing the delusive "Two-State Solution" while the Arabs refuse to resume negotiation unless Israel again halts all West Bank construction. Pressing hard to induce Israel's submission to that Arab demand, the U.S. has offered twenty stealth bombers - - and a promised veto of hostile U.N. action: pointedly, recognition of a self-declared Palestinian State. But the U.S. offer also contains a shameful implied threat: To not veto hostile U.N. action unless Israel submits to the Arab demand.

Significantly, such manipulation by the U.S. marks again an obstinate refusal to recognize and confront the underlying reality: there can be no durable Arab-Israel peace until the Arabs totally cancel the state of War they declared in 1948, disarm and dismantle Jihadist terrorist cells, clearing the way toward peace and the prospects it offers.

Until that time comes, as long as it takes, Israel's unavoidable choice is either survival of the Jewish State, defended by sustained, convincing, deterrent armed strength, -- or surrender to ruthless Jihadists and their sponsors who threaten Israel's annihilation, another Holocaust.

Nor will U.S. and Western security interests or credibility benefit from a continuation of their feckless failure to confront Middle East reality. Moreover, that failure undermines the many Muslims who courageously are challenging Jihadist political theology and seek only reciprocal respect, accommodation and accord with others. But our Middle East policy still does not appear willing to recognize that they, and we who are committed to freedom and human rights, stand at a great divide--opposing Islamic forces of intolerance, hatred, terrorism and war.


[1] 1 A multi-storied mosque at Ground Zero would be seen in the Middle East and beyond as a triumphal testament to the terrorists success on 9/11. The name "Cordoba House" recalls the Arab triumph in Cordoba, Spain, and the quick conversion of its church to a mosque, just as the two mosques built on the Jews' Holy Temple Mount signaled their conquest of Jerusalem.

[2]  See: The Oslo Syndrome, Dr. Kenneth Levin, Smith and Kraus, 2005.

[3] "Jerusalem - One City Undivided", editorial column in The Boston Globe, July 22, 2009

[4] Outpost, May, 2010

[5]  The Wall Street Journal, July 8, 2010

Dr. Arnold M. Soloway, President Emeritus and Founder of the Center for Near East Policy Research was trained as an economist. He has served as Special Advisor on Fiscal Affairs to Governor John A. Volpe and as Special Consultant to the (U.S.) Economic Development Administration. He was principal author of "Truth and Peace in the Middle East", Friendly House, New York, 1971 and "The Role of Arab Political Culture and History in the Conflict with Israel," Center for Near East Policy Research, April 1985.

The individual sections appeared in Israel Unity Coalition (UCI) from September 21, 2010 on. Section 1 is archived at The version posted here is a later version, somewhat revised and with footnotes, from Thanks are also due Israel Resource Review for sending in the whole article, January 9, 2011.


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