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  • Are we really ready to start being reasonable?

    by guest
    25th November, 2009 at 10:11 pm    

    This is a cross-post by Bananabrain from the Spittoon.

    Ray Hanania, the Palestinian-American journalist, is proposing to run for president of the Palestinian Authority on a very interesting platform indeed, as detailed here at the Huffington Post:

    It’s been picked up in the Israeli press by Bradley Burston of Haaretz – you’ll forgive the large c&p, but I think it’s important in this case:


    1. I support two-states, one Israel and one Palestine. As far as I am concerned, I can recognize Israel’s “Jewish” character and Israelis should recognize Palestine’s “non-Jewish” character.

    2. I oppose violence of any kind from and by anyone. I reject Hamas’ participation in any Palestinian government without first agreeing to surrender all arms and to accept two-states as a “final” peace agreement. But I also reject allowing Israeli settlers to carry any weapons and believe Israelis must impose the same restrictions on them.

    3. I can support some settlements remaining – given the reality of 42 years of time passing – in a dunam-for-dunam land exchange. If Ariel is 500 dunams with a lifeline from Israel, then Israel gives Palestine 500 dunams in exchange.

    4. Jerusalem should be a shared city and Palestinians should have an official presence in East Jerusalem. The Old City should be shared by both permitting open access to the city to all with a joint Palestinian-Israeli police presence.

    5. Palestinian refugees would give up their demand to return to pre-1948 homes and lands lost during the conflict with Israel. Instead, some could apply for family reunification through Israel and the remainder would be compensated through a fund created and maintained by the United States, Israel, Egypt, Jordan, Syria, Saudi Arabia and the United Nations.

    6. I also think Israelis should find it in their hearts to show compassion and offer their apologies to Palestinians for the conflict.

    7. I support creation of a similar fund to compensate those Jews from Arab lands who lost their homes and lands, too, when they fled.

    8. I think the Wall should be torn down, or relocated to the new borders. I have no problem separating the two nations for a short duration to help rebuild confidence between our two people.

    9. All political parties, Palestinian and Israelis, should eliminate languages denying each other’s existence, and all maps should be reprinted so that Israeli maps finally show Palestine and Palestinian maps finally show Israel.

    10. A subway system should be built linking the West Bank portion of the Palestine state to the Gaza Strip portion of the Palestine State. Palestine should be permitted to build a seaport access to strengthen its industry, and an airport to permit flights and too and from the Arab and Israeli world.

    11. I would urge the Arab World to renew their offer to normalize relations with Israel if Israel agrees to support the creation of a Palestinian State.

    12. And I would ask both countries to establish embassies in each other’s country to address other problems.

    13. While non-Jewish Palestinians would continue to live in Israel as citizens, Jews who wish to live in settlements surrendered by Israel could become Palestinian citizens and they should be recognized and treated equally.

    14. If Jews want to live in Hebron, they should be allowed to live in Hebron and should be protected, just as non-Jews. In fact, for every Jewish individual seeking to live in Palestine, a Palestinian should be permitted to live in Israel. In fact, major Palestinian populations in Israel could be annexed into Palestine (like settlements).

    15. Another concept is to have non-Jews living in Israel continue to live there but only vote in Palestinian elections, while Jews living in Palestine would only vote in Israeli elections. A special citizenship protection committee could be created to explore how to protect the rights of minorities in each state.

    16. Israel and Palestine should create joint-governing and security agencies working with the United States to monitor the peace, and establish an agency to pursue criminal acts of violence.


    As in every potentially workable peace proposal, something in it to upset and disappoint everyone. But its underlying principle of compromise based on mutual respect and compassion, its openness to the needs and wounds of two victimized peoples, and its suggestion that grassroots sentiment for peace can succeed where leaders have so consistently failed, are surely as worthy of serious consideration, as anything currently on the table.

    I think it’s interesting, not least because virtually all of it, especially point 7, forms part of my own proposed solution – I just didn’t think we were anywhere near ready for it to be discussed in public and perhaps I’m wrong.

    I really hope so.

                  Post to

    Filed in: Current affairs,Middle East

    10 Comments below   |  

    Reactions: Twitter, blogs
    1. Paulo Furtado

      Israeli-Palestine conflict: Are we really ready to start being reasonable?

    2. pickles

      Blog post:: Are we really ready to start being reasonable?

    3. RichHL

      RT @pickledpolitics: Blog post:: Are we really ready to start being reasonable? << Almost certainly not. :(

    1. Richard Lyle — on 25th November, 2009 at 1:23 pm  

      Makes sense so it's bound to fail.

    2. Rumbold — on 25th November, 2009 at 1:25 pm  

      It seems sensible, and well done him for adovocating it, but how is Jerusalem to be shared? Who has jurisdiction over say, the police? In other words, who gets to make the final decision if needed?

      Solve the Jerusalem question and the theory behind a two-state peace process will be complete.

    3. MiriamBinder — on 25th November, 2009 at 8:44 pm  

      I like it … I definitely like it! I think the sharing of Jerusalem is proposed through the joint authority. If you have both Palestinian and Israeli policemen with no difference in uniform or authority working together and sharing shifts/beats it could well work. It may require some juggling of manpower to ensure a constant mix but it definitely has potential. Which is far more then anything else I have read.

    4. kismethardy — on 25th November, 2009 at 9:29 pm  

      Start with doing what they do in Bradford and turn religious temples into restaurants

    5. dave bones — on 26th November, 2009 at 1:24 am  

      nice try

    6. chairwoman — on 26th November, 2009 at 2:10 am  

      Says everything that I've been saying for years, but far more efficiently, and with a far wider audience.

    7. Tanvir — on 26th November, 2009 at 3:46 pm  

      I've done a massive U-turn on my previous view that the creation of Israel should be reversed since they never kept to the conditions of the its creation - that the poeple living there shouldnt be disturbed. They want you to keep wishing a 2 state solution is on the cards.. and will keep dragging it on till the end of time. Its never going to happen. They should learn to live with one another like everyone else in the world. 1 state. Call it whatever you want.

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