Trump's Israel advisor questions wisdom of two-state solution

Friedman asserted that both Israeli and Palestinian majorities now prefer "Israeli rule to a nascent Palestinian state."

July 8, 2016 18:00
1 minute read.
Palestinian protest

A Palestinian argues with IDF soldiers near Ramallah, December 10, 2014.. (photo credit: REUTERS)

WASHINGTON – American attempts to broker a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict are like “forcing a square peg into a round hole,” one of Donald Trump’s two top Israel advisers, David Friedman, wrote in a letter in which he repeatedly questioned the viability of the effort.

Responding to a note from Rabbi Rick Jacobs, president of the Union for Reform Judaism, Friedman on Wednesday wrote that “the numerous proposals and initiatives for a two-state solution over the years have brought neither peace nor security to the State of Israel.”

Jacobs’s letter expressed alarm at the Trump presidential campaign’s apparent willingness to entertain a permanent Israeli presence in, or perhaps annexation of, the West Bank.

Friedman said, “Both peoples are entitled to live in peace and dignity, and both peoples are being deprived of those fundamental rights because of one thing and one thing only – radical Islamic jihadism, a cancer that infects Israel and much of the rest of the world.”

A bankruptcy expert, Friedman was named a top Israel adviser by Trump, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, alongside Jason Greenblatt, executive vice president and chief legal officer of the Trump Organization.

“No reallocation of land will cure this scourge, and, indeed, Israel knew no peace from 1948 to 1967 when it did not even control Judea and Samaria,” Friedman added.

He asserted that both Israeli and Palestinian majorities now prefer “Israeli rule to a nascent Palestinian state,” and characterized the two-state solution as an effort to “divide Israel in two, leaving it without defensible borders.

“I’m not saying, one way or the other, that a ‘one-state solution’ is the correct path,” Friedman continued. “That is a decision for the Israeli people to make in consultation with the Palestinians.

But it is simply not true that Jews will become a minority in their own land if a two-state solution is not implemented.”

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