Poll: One-fifth of Jewish Israelis prefer Palestinian state in Jordan, rather than the West Bank

Likud MK Tzipi Hotovely calls for annexing Area C.

August 26, 2013 07:05
3 minute read.
Likud MK Tzipi Hotovely

Likud MK Tzipi Hotovely_311. (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)


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Some 19 percent of Jewish Israelis prefer to see a Palestinian state in Jordan rather than in the West Bank, but only 7% really think it could happen, according to a Maagar Mochot poll commissioned by Professors for a Stronger Israel.

“There are alternatives; we are not sitting with a gun to our heads,” said former National Union MK Arye Eldad, as he addressed a daylong conference on Sunday that debated all aspects of the question of two states for two peoples on two banks of the Jordan River.

There are more options than the standard equation of “Either we will have a Palestinian state in Judea and Samaria, or we will have a bi-national state,” Eldad said.

It is also possible to have a Palestinian state in Jordan, he explained. Jordan’s King Abdullah II would not agree to this plan, he said.

But, he said, eventually King Abdullah’s Hashemite Kingdom will fall prey to the Arab Spring, which has caused the ouster of other regional leaders.

“We need to have a plan in the drawer for that moment,” he said.

Otherwise, the situation could end badly for Israel, he said.

“We have to prepare for this scenario because it is realistic,” he said.

At present, the idea of a Palestinian state in Jordan does not seem feasible, but if the Hashemite Kingdom falls in the future, it will receive wide support, Eldad said.

Mudar Zahran, a Jordanian- Palestinian political activist who lives in London, said he believed that King Abdullah II’s reign would soon end.

Based on the Maagar Mochot poll, however, only a minority of those questioned supported a two-state solution in which Palestine was on the east side of the Jordan River.

Out of those polled, 41% of Jewish Israelis preferred the status quo and 51% said they believed that the situation would stay the same. Only 11% said they preferred a two-state solution in the West Bank based on land swaps, and only 21% said they believed this would happen. Some 29% said they did not have a solution.

Maagar Mochot conducted the telephone poll on August 18 and 19 among 504 Jewish Israelis over the age of 18. It has a 4.5 margin of error.

According to the poll, 53% of Likud Beytenu supporters said they preferred the status quo, 1% wanted a two-state solution in the West Bank and 30% supported Jordan as a Palestinian state.

Among Shas and UTJ party supporters, 67% preferred the status quo, 3% wanted a two-state solution in the West Bank and 21% wanted Jordan to be a Palestinian state.

Among the Yesh Atid, Hatnua and Kadima parties, 33% preferred the status quo, 14% wanted a two-state solution in the West Bank and 8% believed that Palestine should be in Jordan.

Out of those polled from the Labor and Meretz parties, only 7% preferred the status quo, 52% supported a two-state solution in the West Bank and none of them wanted to see Jordan become a Palestinian state.

Not all the speakers at the conference believed that Jordan should become a Palestinian state.

Former deputy foreign minister Danny Ayalon, however, warned that a scenario in which the Hashemite Kingdom would fall was dangerous for Israel.

Stability in Jordan is critical for Israeli and American interests, Ayalon said. Jordan acts as a buffer zone between Israel and Iraq and Iran, he said.

MK Tzipi Hotovely (Likud) said she believed the whole issue was a question for the future. What needs to happen now, she said, is for Israel to annex Area C of the West Bank.

This won’t pose a demographic threat because only a minority of Palestinians live there.

It won’t lead to a bi-national state; it will simply increase the size of Israel as a Jewish state, Hotovely said.

Israelis, she said, want Jewish settlements in Judea and Samaria. Israel won’t evacuate them as it did during the 2005 disengagement.

At one time, she said, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu believed that a Palestinian state posed an existential threat to Israel.

“I assure you Netanyahu goes with a heavy heart and unwilling steps when forced into talks with the Palestinians by the US,” she said.

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