Two state solution is ‘dead and dismembered’

on 15 Comments

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.

15 Responses

  1. yourstruly
    June 23, 2011, 9:29 am

    the two-state solution is dead?

    long live palestine

    free and independent

    & the zionist entity israel?*

    into the dustbin of history

    *the entity, not its people

  2. Woody Tanaka
    June 23, 2011, 10:10 am

    I think this analysis is dead on and shows nothing less than the abject stupidity of the Israeli people over the last two decades at least, and more like last 4 decades.

    • pineywoodslim
      June 23, 2011, 10:54 am

      I’m not so sure I would call it stupidity. Perhaps it’s not even shortsighted since the long-term has yet to play out despite increased worldwide pressure against Israel. Call me a pessimist I guess.

      Israel simply coveted the land on the West Bank, and made calculated decisions to take it. I would suspect that the Israeli powers that be are gleefully amazed that they have been able to keep their obfuscations and lies going as long as they have.

      • Citizen
        June 23, 2011, 11:20 am

        And it sure looks like any forseeible US regime will allow & support all of Israeli obfuscations and lies to keep Israel moving towards the final solution regarding the Palestininans. In fact, as Chomsky pointed out recently, the US regime couldn’t care less about Arab democracy. 89% of Arabs in ME view Israel-US as #1 threat while Hillary Clinton et al echo Arab dictators’ view Iran is #1 threat, while only 10% of Arabs agree on that. link to

        Any sincere effort towards peace would have Israel & US on one side of the bargaining table, and a coalition of European states on the other side. In short, no peace is even faintly possible without recognition that the US has never been an honest broker, but rather has consistently been Israel’s lawyer in the matter.

        The American people just don’t get it, same as they don’t get that both main political parties, especially the Republican-Tea Party, could care less about them. Our terrible economy is the direct result of the cost of our wars to assure Israel’s safety at any cost & and to assure the continued thriving of Wall St, again at any cost to the American people.

  3. Richard Witty
    June 23, 2011, 11:30 am

    The two-state solution is never dead, so long as the populations identify nationally, and they do.

    When there is an #and# construction of well-meaning leaders in both communities, there will be reconciliation and two states.

    Kadima and Fatah could have done it, except for the results of the 2009 Israeli election, in which Hamas’ actions shifted the Israeli electorate 5 seats to the right.

    Likud is unlikely to. Fatah still could.

    It is NOT structurally too late, but may be politically.

    There is no alternative is the only issue.

    • Richard Witty
      June 23, 2011, 11:38 am

      I hope that you will comment on my blog post, privately if not here.

      link to

      • Donald
        June 23, 2011, 5:54 pm

        I read your post. You bash the Israeli right and the people to your left. If you ever get around to criticizing liberal Zionists of your own stripe you might be worth reading. You’re not wrong about the dangers of demonizing from all sides, but you fail to see how you contribute to it, because you are too committed to your ideology to admit the crimes committed by people of your own ideological stripe.

    • Donald
      June 23, 2011, 3:40 pm

      “Hamas’ actions shifted the Israeli electorate 5 seats to the right.”

      Witty’s idea of humanizing actually seems to involve infantilizing the Israelis. Israelis are not responsible for their own voting. On the other hand, if Palestinians do anything wrong it is entirely their own fault.

      • Richard Witty
        June 23, 2011, 5:08 pm

        Of course they are responsible for their own voting.

        The argument for intense and intrusive defense was made for likud by hamas.

        And, even on the oft-cited kadima emphasis on defense, it varies. When not necessary, its not emphasized (in PR or in behavior). When it is necessary, it is emphasized.

        Hamas in December, 2008 made it necessary.

      • Citizen
        June 24, 2011, 8:08 am

        Gee, I thought Israel in November of 2008 decided it was necessary.

      • Donald
        June 24, 2011, 8:26 am

        “Hamas in December, 2008 made it necessary.”

        Again Richard completely ignores Israel’s responsibility for its own cruelty. The blockade had been ongoing and Israel refused to lift it, but that doesn’t matter to Richard. Israel had killed far more civilians in the preceding years in Gaza than had been killed in Israel by Hamas, but that doesn’t matter to Richard. He goes through the record and only notices what he wants to notice.

      • Citizen
        June 23, 2011, 5:50 pm

        Yep, Donald. Reminds me of that German officer who said the Warsaw uprising shifted the moderate approach the Germans had been taking.

    • Shingo
      June 24, 2011, 9:29 am

      The two-state solution is never dead, so long as the populations identify nationally, and they do.

      Witty just can’t let that Monty Python skit go can he?

      link to

  4. seafoid
    June 23, 2011, 11:36 am

    “Israelis and Palestinians could have spent that time truly building their confidence in one another.”

    What were the Palestinians supposed to do? Is it their fault that Israel was taken over by a messianic cult?

    Israel is a system . Everything it did over the last 20 years was rational from the point of view of the system. The reaction to the flotilla is inherently rational from the point of view of the system.

    Looking at Israel now is like seeing a patient dying from complications related to diabetes and wondering if exercise would have helped the patient avoid obesity . It’s too late. “The dopamine made me do it”.

  5. mudder
    June 23, 2011, 11:37 am

    Until Abbas and the PLO declare the 2SS dead, it will be considered alive by most of the world. But a veto by the U.S. in the UNSC this September may give the PLO the diplomatic cover it needs to declare it officially dead. I hope they do, but I have no reason to believe that is Abbas’s strategy.

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