Long a two-stater, Mitchell Plitnick says the two-state solution is finished and echoes Jerry Haber’s regrets for a viable Palestinian state. This is important because this awareness will be growing in weeks and months to come inside the US establishment. Plitnick:
Instead of wasting two decades on meaningless talks while settlements expanded like a plague and Israel maneuvered to keep key tracts of land and water resources of the West Bank, Israelis and Palestinians could have spent that time truly building their confidence in one another. Israelis could have come to understand that a Palestinian state would enhance, not threaten their security.
They could have seen that the Palestinians, even if they were fully independent and completely outside of Israeli control, could not threaten Israel, could not possibly build up sufficient military strength to do so, but more importantly would have too much at stake themselves to want to.
Instead, Israel built and built, making itself a global pariah, destroying the democracy Jews enjoyed and reversing the trend of integrating its Arab minority which, though it had been appallingly slow, had been progressing from 1949 until the end the 20th century.
With the two-state solution lying dead and dismembered before us, and without an alternative that is any more viable than it ever was in a single-state framework, it is time to articulate what should have been clearly spelled out decades ago: two states means two independent and self-sufficient states, with all the rights and responsibilities that implies. That is what the Oslo two-state formulation never offered. And that’s why it’s dead.