Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni has been speaking enthusiastically about “two states, two nations” ever since her conversion from the Greater Israel ideology. She can easily convince people why Israel must have a right of return only for Jews, while an independent Palestine would grant the same right only to Palestinians.
Like Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, Livni has realized belatedly that this is the only way two democratic nation states could survive. This simple, rational idea could have been implemented easily had not Israel’s leaders rejected it for generations – for 40 years the border line has been obstructed by settlement building.
Now on the eve of the Annapolis conference, Israel has suddenly come up with the absurd demand that the Palestinians recognize Israel as a Jewish state – after Israel’s own leaders have done everything in their power to sabotage it.
It is easy to speak about a Jewish state, but difficult to find the political courage required to do what it takes: Settlements scattered in the heart of the Palestinian population make it impossible to separate between Israel and Palestine along a plausible and viable border. With each passing day and each passing year, every settlement expansion, every outpost and every road built to reach it disrupt the chance to separate the two nations. [complete article]