After the failure of nine peace plans since 1970, it may be time to abandon the two-state solution pushed by the West in favor of a “one-state solution.”
That provocative proposal is put forth not by an anti-Zionist writer but by Jerusalem Post senior contributing editor Caroline Glick in her book The Israeli Solution: A One-State Plan for Peace in the Middle East, released March 4.
“Ninety years of continuous failure, and people are still trying it,” she told an audience of 175 at Rutgers University in New Brunswick March 11.
Instead, what Glick is proposing is a single Jewish state, making the West Bank part of Israel, and offering the 1.5 million Palestinians living there legal resident status and a pathway to Israeli citizenship with full “human rights.”
Glick downplayed fears of a “demographic Intifada,” in which Jews would become a minority in their own country, claiming the Palestinian Authority has inflated the number of its residents by 50 percent, or 1.3 million people in its census, as well as its birth and immigration rates.
Glick said the Palestinian birth rate is actually dropping, in some cases below that of the Jewish rate, while Israel is enjoying a large influx of new immigrants. Gaza is not part of her proposed solution.
“Fifty percent of Palestinian youth want to emigrate,” said Glick. “The demographics are an asset. Even with 1.5 million Palestinians, two-thirds of Israel will still be Jewish.”
Although the pro-Israel mainstream tends to reject “one-state” solutions proposed by anti-Zionists and the Boycott, Sanctions, and Divestment movement, Glick said her proposal differs by applying Israeli law and Israeli sovereignty throughout all of Judea and Samaria, as many in Israel call the West Bank.
Her talk at Rutgers was sponsored by Rutgers Hillel, the Zionist Organization of America, and the Community Relations Committee of the Jewish Federation of Greater MetroWest NJ, and was supported by the Jewish Federation of Greater Middlesex County.
The Greater MetroWest CRC, said Elliot Mathias, its Israel and World Affairs chair, “supports the Israeli and U.S. efforts to bring the parties together to the negotiating table. However, we thought that it is important to support the exchange of ideas related to the peace process in terms of speakers who present alternative viewpoints.”
“I think she is a most valuable voice in Zionist thought whether you agree or disagree with her,” said Hillel executive director Andrew Getraer, in introducing Glick. Getraer said she had come to Rutgers 10 years earlier when Jewish students first came under attack by the pro-Palestinian movement and hailed her as the first journalist to recognize Iran as Israel’s primary threat.
Speaking six days before an upcoming meeting between Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and President Barack Obama at the White House to discuss the peace process, Glick questioned why the United States is again pressing for a two-state solution when the Arabs have always had one goal — not to live with Israel, but rather to destroy it.
When asked, Abbas said “he would never recognize Israel as a Jewish state,” said Glick. “Then he went to the Arab League and got them to say they would never recognize Israel as a Jewish state. This is indicative of a larger problem.”
Were Israel to annex the territories, it could no longer be considered “an occupying force,” nor could it be accused of oppressing Palestinians.
Even if it were possible to reach agreement on a Palestinian state, Glick believes her plan is still a better option than living alongside as many as four million “jihadists and radicals” — along with “people from the [refugee] camps in Lebanon who have been marinating in hate for five generations” and who, she said, would come pouring into the new country of Palestine.
Glick — who is also director of the Israel Security Project at the David Horowitz Freedom Center in Los Angeles and the adjunct senior fellow for Middle Eastern Affairs at the Center for Security Policy in Washington — was raised in Obama’s old neighborhood of Hyde Park in Chicago; she made aliya weeks after graduating from Columbia University.
As an IDF captain, she was coordinator of negotiations with the PLO in the Coordinator of Government Activities Office in the West Bank and Gaza. She was assistant foreign policy adviser during Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s first term.
Even on the Right, reactions to Glick’s one-state proposal have been divergent. Calling her “one of Israel’s most brilliant journalists,” Seth Lipsky, editor of the New York Sun, writes that “the best part of Ms. Glick’s book is her comprehension of Jewish rights to the land of Israel, not only within the 1967 lines, but in Judea and Samaria.”
By contrast, Jonathan Tobin writes in the right-leaning Commentary that “a one-state solution in which the one state is a Jewish state of Israel is a fantasy.”
Debating Glick last year at a conference in New York, pro-Israel attorney Alan Dershowitz said her support of a one-state solution “sounds to me exactly like the arguments of radical Muslims…. [T]he two groups — the Muslims who say one-state solution and the Jews who say one-state solution — are leading us to disaster.”
In her Rutgers talk, Glick outlined a history of anti-Zionist violence and rejection from 1920 to the present, and cited the Arab alignment with the Nazis during World War II.
“We don’t want to go down that memory hole of history, because it brings to light certain truths about the Palestinian movement,” said Glick.
Glick said the Arab rejection of Jewish historical claims to any part of Israel, while encouraging their own people to die for the cause — a situation that predated modern Israel — should have made it obvious that any sort of negotiation of a two-state solution would prove futile.
“It’s a cycle of violence, with Israel [portrayed] as an aggressor and the aggrieved party, the Arabs, who have to be appeased by the Jews,” said Glick. “But the Jews have never had a problem with appeasement. The reason this hasn’t worked is because the aggrieved party is not interested in appeasement. They are interested in annihilation.”