Is it a 2-state or a 2-stage solution?
Robin Shepherd has written a disturbing though not surprising column where he notes the results of a new poll indicating that a majority of Palestinians see the 2-state solution as a stepping stone to a one state Palestine under Sharia law ie a stepping stone towards the destruction of Israel.
Robin Shepherds column is based on a poll sponsored by the Israel Project.
Shepherd summarises as follows:
1) 60% of Palestinians support the proposition that “The real goal should be to start with two states but then move to it all being one Palestinian state”.
2) Only 30% supported the contrasting proposition that “The best goal is for a two state solution that keeps two states living side by side”. A mere 12% of Palestinians supported that proposition “strongly”.
3) 66% support the proposition that “Over time Palestinians must
work to get back all the land for a Palestinian state” with 42% strongly supporting that proposition.
4) Only 23% supported the contrasting proposition that “Israel has a permanent right to exist as a homeland for the Jewish people”.
5) 71% believe Yasser Arafat was right to reject the two state solution brokered by Bill Clinton in 2000 which offered the Palestinians east Jerusalem as well as a peace settlement along 1967 lines. Only 24 percent said that in retrospect they did believe Arafat should have accepted the deal.
6) 55% support the proposition that “A Palestinian state should be run by Sharia Law” with only 35% supporting the contrasting proposition that “A Palestinian state should be run by civil law”.
7) 56% agreed with the proposition that “We will have to resort to armed struggle again” while 38 percent supported the contrasting proposition that “Violence only hurts Palestinians and the days of armed struggle are over”. Interestingly, residents of Gaza are much less enthusiastic about continuing the armed struggle (48%) than residents of the West Bank (62%) indicating, in line with other polls, that far from “radicalising” the Palestinians the Cast Lead operation in Gaza showed many people there that violence is the wrong path for the Palestinians to take.
This evidence seems disturbingly clear (and we are evidence driven, aren’t we?!). Sure, opinions can change according to the situation, and questions might always be worded differently but isn’t it sobering to read that “71% believe Yasser Arafat was right to reject the two state solution brokered by Bill Clinton in 2000 which offered the Palestinians east Jerusalem as well as a peace settlement along 1967 lines. Only 24 percent said that in retrospect they did believe Arafat should have accepted the deal.”
Anyone who’s aware of the small distances involved would know that a 2 state position will make the next stage of the “Palestinian struggle” easier to achieve.
Shepherd recommends that people paste these poll results on their wall as a reminder that current negotiations and Obama pressures are fraught with danger. For impact, I would still favour a photograph taken from a West Bank village here which shows how easy it would be for a Palestinian in the West Bank to lob a rocket onto your cousin’s place in Tel Aviv; For Sydney-siders think of a rocket lobbed from Mosman to Nielson Park while you’re swimming there, or from Cronulla onto the Kingsford Smith airport runway or at your plane on approach.
Yes, some will want to suppress this poll news, others will pretend it doesn’t exist.
Waking up is hard to do, it’s true!