August 2, 2022

Two peoples, two states

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by Robert Nicholson, Philos Project President

A one-state solution would be a disaster for both Israelis and Palestinians


President Biden’s visit to Jerusalem is now over, but it raised again the old question of peace in the Holy Land: Is the establishment of two states, one Jewish and one Arab, the best formula? Or is some kind of one-state solution—whether Jewish, Arab, or ethnically neutral—the better course of action? Growing numbers of people on both sides of the conflict are abandoning 30 years of a two-state consensus and embracing the one-state approach, but the facts are obvious: A one-state reality is the surest path to destruction for everyone.

The reason is simple, if uncomfortable: Israeli Jews and Palestinian Arabs are simply too dissimilar to share a single state. This was the subtext of an insightful Washington Post column published by Ambassador Ronald Lauder, current president of the World Jewish Congress. Lauder’s main concern is the “demographic threat,” a code word for the numerical outpacing of Jews by Arabs in the land between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea. Some Israelis believe that Israel should annex Judea and Samaria…