Confronting the demographic demon

A rational Palestinian policy needs demographic facts; but Israel hasn’t done the requisite research.

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May 29, 2014 12:22
A crisis of faith with demographic consequences

A crisis of faith with demographic consequences 521. (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)

 
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In a Bloomberg interview earlier this month, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu observed that due to the stalled peace process, “the idea of taking unilateral steps is gaining ground, from the center-left to the center-right.” Prof. Efraim Inbar has a counter-proposal, succinctly encapsulated in the title of his May 15 column in Israel Hayom: “Let’s do almost nothing.”

I’m a longstanding fan of that approach. As I’ve argued in previous Jerusalem Post columns, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is analogous to the Cold War: It can’t currently be solved; it can only be managed until such time as circumstances change. And while unilateral moves could theoretically contribute to managing the conflict, every actual proposal I’ve seen, from both left and right, would entail major security and/or diplomatic risks in exchange for zero benefits (for details, see Jerusalem Post columnist Martin Sherman’s dissections of both left-wing plans – here, here and here – and right-wing ones).


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