Here in the Bay Area, most Jewish voices seem to support the two state solution, while very few voices are heard opposing it. In this article, I’ll explain why I think the two state solution is both impractical and dangerous, and why the pursuit of it weakens Israel while strengthening its enemies. While the religious reasons for opposing the two state solution are obvious, this article will only focus on reasons that don’t require religious belief.

Palestinian culture preaches nonstop hatred of Jews and continually incites murderous violence against them. Palestinian schools teach children of every age that suicide martyrdom should be their highest goal. These attitudes are deeply ingrained in their culture, and getting their own state won’t change them. In fact, any Palestinian state would almost certainly be taken over by Hamas, whose charter explicitly calls for the death of all Jews everywhere. Such a state would be neither demilitarized nor democratic, regardless of any international guarantees to the contrary, and would pose a permanent threat to the Jewish state.

In the Middle East, strength and firmness are respected, while weakness and vacillation are not. When Israel fails to stand up for its most vital interests because of fear of how Arabs might react, it’s sending the very dangerous signal that it fears conflict more than its enemies do, which only invites further attacks. This is doubly inexcusable since Israel is in fact much stronger than its foes.

Israel’s most vital strategic interest is the acquisition and settlement of its entire historic homeland. Controlling territory is not only strategically essential, but it also sends a powerful message that Israel is there to stay, that it’s certain of its right to be there, and that it will defend that right with everything it’s got. On the other hand, retreating from territory and surrendering it to its enemies in the forlorn hope that they might suddenly become peaceful, sends the exact opposite signal, that Israel is ephemeral, not quite sure of its right to exist, and likely to soon disappear.

The more Israel bows to international pressure, the less respected it is and the more it’s taken advantage of. For Israel to survive and thrive, it needs to change direction. For many decades, Israel has only sought peace, while its adversaries have only sought victory. This has put Israel at a severe psychological disadvantage. Israel needs to change its primary objective from peace to victory. It has to stop retreating and start advancing if it wants to win. 

The first step should be to declare the Oslo Agreement null and void because of all the Palestinian violations of it. Next, Israel should reject outright the idea of a separate Palestinian state. The Palestinians are not a true nation in any sense of the term, and could never be trusted to be a stable or peaceful neighbor. The myth of their being a distinct people entitled to their own state was invented by Yasser Arafat for the sole purpose of undermining Israel. This myth must be discarded once and for all. 

Finally, Israel should open the entire land to Jewish settlement, not only to create facts on the ground but also to make room for the many more Jews who are likely to make aliyah in coming years. 

The Palestinians often threaten that if Israel continues its settlement expansion, it will lead to an “explosion.” It’s time to call their bluff. If they and their allies thought they could destroy Israel militarily, they would attack immediately, without needing the excuse of settlements. But if they do fight, Israel should use everything it has to finally defeat them and not settle for a mere stalemate.

We are often told that the two state solution is essential, because the only alternative is the one state solution, in which Israel would acquire hundreds of thousands of additional Arabs. If it gives these Arabs full rights, so the argument goes, Israel will no longer be Jewish, but if it doesn’t give them full rights, it will no longer be democratic.

This argument is fatally flawed. Israel is the nation state of the Jewish people. Its first obligation is to protect its Jewish population. After it annexes the territories, any organized opposition to Jewish rule, or any organized anti-Jewish incitement, must be dealt with decisively. The first priority must be to utterly remove the toxic culture of anti-Jewish hatred and violence from the land. After that has been accomplished, the remaining Arabs who are prepared to live peacefully with their Jewish neighbors can enjoy democratic rights.

The unfortunate reality is that there’s no peaceful solution to this conflict because of the Arab unwillingness to accept a Jewish state of any size or shape. Israel can stand firm on its principles and risk war now, or keep making concessions and risk a much greater war later. 

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