The Israeli Right Was Wrong
I am not an admirer of Rabbi Kahane, but he was correct about one thing: the Palestinians must go.
Kahane was brutal in his delivery. He would walk up to Arabs and called them "dogs" (see 7:40), one of the worst insults possible to Muslims, who detest canines as unclean. But he nailed the problem down, even if his methods were detestable.
Yet modified versions of Kahane's suggestions are ignored while the left and right compete with each other in folly. There is no need to fully examine the left's errors; they are self-evident. But there is a need to expose that the right is doing no better.
It should be clear to all unbiased observers that the two-state solution, lauded by the left, is impossible. Gaza has shown that no independent Palestinian polity will remain at peace with Israel. But let us examine what might have happened had the right wing prevailed in Israel.
Assume that the Jewish state remained defiant against the world, confident in its Zionist stance and claim to all of Eretz Yisrael, and that Oslo was never signed. Assume that even more settlers moved from Tel Aviv to Gaza and Judea and Samaria.
The Palestinians would not have disappeared, and Israel would now be facing a demographic debacle where the Jews might soon be close to a minority in the area they control. The right never realistically addressed how Israel should have acted if the Gazans and Judean/Samarian Arabs offered peace for the vote. Well, the right should. Because a one-state solution is starting to be seriously considered.
Israel may be reluctant to admit it, but part of the reason for the abandonment of Gaza in 2005 was to rid itself of 1.6 million hostile Arabs. Israel can survive Hamas rockets, but it would not have survived millions more Arab voters. As awful as it is to contemplate, the leftist withdrawal from Gaza may have been the least destructive option.
But the right claims that Israel could avoid that problem by giving the Arabs autonomy, without enfranchisement in the Israeli state.
What makes the Israeli right think the Arabs would settle for such a second-class arrangement? Did the Jewish people accept it when Argentina offered them autonomous zones in the 19th century? The Argentines welcomed Jewish colonists and were willing to treat them as equals -- something the Israeli right would never concede to the Palestinians.
The rabbis, however, told Herzl that Argentina was not acceptable, that nothing but Israel would suffice. Are the Arabs less human? Does the right hold the Arabs in such contempt that they think the Arabs would accept what the Jews would not?
Of typical note is former MK Elyakim Haetzni, who advocates annexing Judea and Samaria, while denying the Palestinian Arabs the franchise in Israel. He has opined that "Arabs can live full life in Jewish state, satisfy political desires in territory called 'Jordan.'"
If he thinks Jordan will co-operate with his idea -- or that the Palestinians will accept it -- then he is just as loopy as any leftist. The right promulgates this silliness as regularly as the left proffers the idiocy of the two-state solution.
People do not willingly accept an inferior status.
Haetzni is not alone. Professor Steven Plaut has proffered similar ideas.
MK Dr. Arieh Eldad wonders if a revolution in Jordan might occur, and if the Palestinians would take over and make peace on Israel's terms. A perfectly wonderful dream, unless Salafist extremists take over -- which would be more likely. A Palestinian-run Jordan would probably be more hostile to Israel than the semi-Westernized half-British king running the show right now.
The fact is, Jordan is now actively disenfranchising Palestinians, which sort of throws a monkey wrench into these ideas -- but it does not stop the right from entertaining the suggestions. Denial of reality, it seems, is not confined to liberals.
The booby prize goes to Dr. Mordechai Kedar, who proffers an Eight-State Solution. He would break up the PA zones even further into smaller clan-run autonomous zones. He thinks they would be more stable and easier to manage. Why stop at eight? Why not break them up by high school? Competing basketball squads?
The only solution at this point is removal. The left and right should both stop entertaining ridiculous ideas about how to deal with the Palestinians, and start suggesting ways they can be removed humanely.
It does not have to be done violently. Dr. Martin Sherman of Tel Aviv University has shown that 44% of Palestinian youth would leave immediately if given the opportunity. He and MK Feiglin have suggested variations of a buyout plan. I myself have independently come up with monetary estimates similar to theirs. Rabbi Kahane came up with the buyout plan decades ago; adjusted for inflation, his numbers are similar to the estimates of Dr. Sherman, MK Feiglin, and myself, an American Gentile who crunched some numbers.
Dr. Sherman has taken it a bit farther and suggested that severe political pressure be put on Arab states to suspend their policies of refusing to naturalize Palestinians. I concur.
Most Favored Nation Status could be pulled. There should be high duties on products from those Arab states who maintain the Casablanca Protocols which leave the Palestinians as refugees. The Saudis want protection against Iran. It is time to cut a deal. Egypt wants assistance -- so cut a deal. With Israeli gas discoveries and American fracking, the West may be energy-independent again. It is time to cut a deal.
As I have also noted, South America has a history of assimilating Arabs well.
This could be done humanely. As the first few Palestinians take up the monetary offer with papers to leave, a groundswell would eventually overcome social resistance. At some point, a small remainder could be enfranchised.
We may disdain Kahane's legacy of thuggery, but he was not a fool. Those who listened to him speak found an educated thinker. He certainly thought things out better than the present crop of talking heads.
We do not even have to like the solution of removal. I think it is awful. Many of those Palestinians have been the victims of injustice -- more than many Zionists will admit. Many have roots in the land that go back for centuries or more. There is evidence that a few may even go back to first-century Jews which converted to Christianity and then to Islam. This will not be pretty.
But it is the only solution which will work, and the only alternative to the destruction of Israel, which is far worse.
Kahane was right. The Israeli right is wrong. The only thing to debate is how to do it, and who should pay.
Mike Konrad is the pen name of an American who is not Arab, Jewish, or Latin. He runs a website, http://latinarabia.com/, where he discusses the subculture of Arabs in Latin America. He wishes his Spanish were better.