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Netanyahu asserts no ‘two-state solution’ under his leadershi

Jan 24,2024 - Last updated at Jan 24,2024

Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu has made it clear that as long as he is in office there will be no “two-state solution,” no emergence of a Palestinian state alongside Israel. He has said Israel will retain exclusive security control over the territory between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River.

According to US sources cited by The Guardian, Netanyahu told US President Joe Biden that Israel’s “security needs left no space for a sovereign Palestinian state”.

He stated. “For 30 years, I have been very consistent, and I’m saying something very simple..

This conflict is not about the lack of a state, a Palestinian state, but about the existence of a state, a Jewish state.” Netanyahu meant, of course, a “Jewish state” in the whole of Palestine.

This was the inevitable consequence of British foreign secretary Arthur Balfour’s pledge on behalf of the then government to facilitate the emergence of a “Jewish national home” while Britain occupied Palestine after World War I.

This was strongly resisted by indigenous Palestinians who were 94 per cent of the population.

By 1937, they compelled Britain to propose the partition of Palestine.

This was a very unfair proposal as it gave European Jewish colonists 20 per cent of the country containing most of the coastline and some of the country’s richest agricultural land.

The plan introduced the “transfer” of populations which was again unfair as this involved 225,000 Palestinians and only 1,250 Jews.

The Arabs opposed the plan while key Zionist leaders saw it as the launch of the eventual conquest of Palestine and prepared to achieve this goal.

The Peel Commission plan was followed a decade later by the UN partition plan which gave Israel 56 per cent of Palestine and the Palestinian state 42 per cent with three per cent reserved for Jerusalem which was meant to be internationally administered.

Jewish leaders accepted the plan while Arab governments rejected it as native Palestinians were two-thirds of the population and the one-third Jews owned only six per cent of the land.

While the Peel plan was unfair it was workable.

The UN plan was both unfair and unworkable as the proposed states consisted of a patchwork of Palestine’s 16 districts.

Of the nine awarded to Israel, only one had a Jewish majority and in the other eight the indigenous Palestinian minority constituted 47 per cent.

The Zionists had prepared to remedy this situation by “transfer,” the expulsion of Palestinians.

The Jewish political and underground paramilitary leaderships had drawn up detailed plans for the conquest of territory of allocated to the Arab State.

The offensive began in early April, six weeks before the end of Britain’s mandate on May 14th, 1948, and by the time the war ended Israel had occupied 78 per cent of the country and expelled 750,000 Palestinians from occupied territory, negating the division envisioned in the partition plan.

Israel was able to maintain its grip on conquered territory because in 1948 US president Harry Truman adopted a policy of providing arms to give Israel the ability to defend itself against all Arab antagonists.

This policy has not only persisted but also enabled Israel to defend its occupation of Palestinian and Syrian lands conquered in 1967.

Whenever Israel is challenged militarily, the US and its ally Britain rush in bombs, artillery shells, and other needed weaponry.

This is exactly what the US and Britain have been doing since October 7th to enable Israel to fight Hamas, kill 25,000 Palestinians and devastate Gaza.

By arming Israel to “defend itself” and hold onto the territories it has conquered, the US-led Western powers have empowered Israel to reject sharing Palestine with the Palestinians via the two-state solution: the Arab world’s demand for peace. 

Whenever pressed to withdraw from occupied Palestinian territory, Israel refuses on the grounds of “security,” as Netanyahu has done when urged to pull out of Gaza.

If it had not enjoyed this Western guarantee during its early years, Israel might have been prepared to take seriously an initial peace offering which has largely been forgotten.

In 1955, during the presidency of Dwight Eisenhower, Elmore Jackson, a US Quaker, was asked by the Egyptian leader (later president) Gamal Abdel Nasser to organise secret meetings between Egyptian and Israeli officials to explore the possibilities of making peace.

The effort was backed by the administration and, Jackson wrote in his book, “Middle East Mission”, Israeli prime minister David Ben Gurion and —§ especially — foreign minister Moshe Sharett.

The effort collapsed when Israel responded disproportionately to pin-prick attacks mounted from Gaza by Palestinian fedayeen fighters.

Early mediation was made impossible after October 1956 when Israel joined with Britain and France in trying to topple Nasser and seize control of the Suez Canal which he had nationalsed that July.

During the “Tripartite Aggression” Israel occupied Egyptian Sinai and intended to annex strategic areas, allegedly to provide “security” for shipping through the Canal.

Eisenhower ordered Israel to pull out which it did in 1957.

After the 1967 occupation, Israel occupied East Jerusalem, isolated Gaza, expelled 250,000 Palestinians and planted 720,000 Israeli colonists in East Jerusalem and the West Bank where thousands of Israeli soldiers are deployed to provide security for the colonists.

Their domineering presence makes it impossible for Palestinians to create a sovereign, contiguous state with its capital in Jerusalem unless most if not all Israeli colonists are withdrawn from 44 colonies and 100 outposts and military camps are abandoned.

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