The Israeli problem

Danny Rubinstein, Haaretz, February 26:

Forty years after the Six-Day War, the Palestinian attitude that has become consolidated toward the State of Israel is quite clear: It is possible and necessary to achieve an agreement for coexistence with Israel on the basis of the 1967 borders. Israelis who think it is possible to reach an accord with the Palestinians that includes annexation of settlement blocs in the West Bank or leaves East Jerusalem under Israeli jurisdiction are deluding themselves. In all the decades that have passed since occupation of the West Bank and Gaza, not a single Palestinian voice has been heard that agrees to less than that. Of course, there have been those who demanded more, and even today some want to destroy Israel entirely, but no Palestinian will agree to allow Israel to annex even one meter beyond the boundaries of the Green Line.

If one can speak of any power to this Palestinian position, it stems from the fact that it enjoys total public consensus. Aside from a few isolated exceptions, all Palestinians adhere to one position that the Palestinian state will be established within the 1967 borders and that East Jerusalem will be its capital. Of course, it is possible to speak about differences between the political approaches of the Hamas and Fatah movements regarding profound ideological gaps: Hamas’ leadership is, under no circumstances, willing to recognize Israel, while Fatah is. But this can be viewed as differences in principle that lack any practical significance.

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