Middle East “Deal of the Century” is an appeal to the Palestinians to finally grasp historical trends and act in their own self-interest before its too late.
American ambassador to Israel David Friedman opined recently during an interview that Israel would be within its rights to annex some parts of Judea and Samaria, the so-called “West Bank”, but not all of it. Predictable condemnations from the Palestinians ensued, but there is a lot to unpack in Friedman’s laconic comment. Substantially, it does two things at once: first, it acknowledges the on the ground reality that certain parts of the “West Bank”, primarily East Jerusalem its large suburbs such as Ma’ale Adumim, but also large cities like Ariel in Western Samaria will never revert to Arab control of any kind. Second, it issues a veiled threat, really just another acknowledgement of on the ground reality, to the intransigent Palestinian Authority. Israel has no right to talk about annexing ALL of the “West Bank”. Yet. Should the Palestinian Authority prove to be intractable in its violent opposition to Israel as a Jewish state, a time will come when Israel will have the right and indeed the military necessity to annex Judea and Samaria IN THEIR ENTIRETY.
Among the things I have always found to be one of the most tragicomic manifestations of the Arab-Israeli conflict, a conflict that has more of them than arguably any other in history, is the Pavlovian response of many Israelis, Arabs, and various progressives to the suggestion that such an annexation is now all but inevitable. “But DEMOGRAPHICS!” They cry out in unison. “It’s either democracy or Jewish majority!” Having finished expounding this bit of nonsense, they experience a drop the mic moment as if they had just hit you with an irrefutable argument.
In truth, their argument is much more pathetic than irrefutable for two reasons. The first reason is historic. The so-called demographic argument is as old as Zionism itself and it has never once failed to be wrong. I well remember the demographic hysteria of the 1970’s and 1980’s, a hysteria well-funded by the usual alliance of Israel and Jew haters both inside and outside of Israel, a hysteria that brought upon Israel one of its rare strategic mistakes, the Oslo accords. Of course the gevaldt yellers and compassion trolls propounding this scare forgot to take into account the imminent demise of the Soviet Union and the resulting repatriation to Israel of roughly one million Soviet Jews.
The second reason is that the demographic argument is simply an old trick, a slight of hand. It is the eternal trick of confidence hucksters who present you with a false choice as if it were the only one available. “Should I follow up with you at home or in the office?” asks the car salesman. “How about never?” you want to answer, but somehow never do. “Do you want a Jewish state or a democratic one?” Ask our enemies pretending to be our friends. To this silly question, Israel has already provided an answer. Israel will be a Jewish state, one that continuously defines and redefines its system of governance in a way that suits Jewish interests, and only Jewish interests, the best. Today, Israel already has several classes of residents just like any other country. There are citizens, permanent residents, guest workers, and illegal aliens. Among citizens, Jews alone get to exercise communal rights, according to the Nationality Law. Non-Jewish citizens get to exercise personal rights only. If need be, further adjustments will be made to ensure that Israel remains Jewish, independent, and the only polity in the world in which Jews have the final say.
“But, but, but..” I hear our enemies and misguided well-wishers sputter . “The productive Israelis, the high-tech workers will not want to live in such an “apartheid” state and will flee, living Israel at the mercy of “dark” and retarded forces of religious nationalism,” they say. “First of all, stop being racists,” I answer. Israeli high-tech is chock full of Sephardi, Mizrachi, traditional, and religious Jews, every day more and more so. But even putting this fact aside, there is no evidence of any productive people leaving Israel because of its religious or nationalistic policies. A small number of Israelis leave because Israel has become unaffordable and because personal security has deteriorated due to the Oslo Accords and the precipitous withdrawal from South Lebanon, both policies promulgated, with disastrous results, by the Israeli left and their international sponsors.
And where exactly will Israelis go? To Western Europe in which murderous Muslims hold national governments hostage and which will soon see a full-scale resurgence of fascism brought about by the insane globalist policies of the Brussels Eurocrats? To Eastern Europe, which aside from being less developed than Israel, is also rapidly closing its doors to any and all immigration? To America perhaps, where one of only two political parties, the Democratic Party is now controlled by anti-Semites be they Muslim, Jewish, or “Christian” in the mold of Sanders, Buttigieg, or Tlaib? To America where attacks on synagogues have become a matter of near routine and whose cities are rapidly descending to 1970’s level of crime and pestilence?
Let us not kid ourselves; Israelis are well aware of the extreme and growing danger that being Jewish in the diaspora poses. If there is going to be any mass movement of Jews, and there will be, it will be from the diaspora to Israel and not vice versa. Israel will need much more room to house the hundreds of thousands of French, British, and other Western European Jews who in the near future will be run out of Western Europe. And when American Jews, including first and second generation Israeli expats are faced with the choice of going back home to Israel or changing their family names so as not to be singled out for violence and discrimination, Israel will need to make room for a few million more.
What Trump is telling the Palestinians is that the historical trends are clear and they show that Israel is among the winners and they are among the losers. The world, including the Arab world, needs Israel with its irreplaceable technologies that give and take lives alike, but has zero need for whiny, backward, and violent “Palestinians”. Maybe it’s not fair, but the world is vomiting out its diaspora Jewry and it has only one place left to go: back home to the Land of Israel, a land that includes the so-called “West Bank”. There is a rapidly vanishing window of opportunity in which the Arabs residing between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea can still make a deal for a limited autonomy in that narrow strip of land, but they must act now. If they don’t, there will soon be substantially no Arabs left on that piece or real estate, with or without rights.
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