Two-state solution is possibly dead

By Sumantra Maitra
0 Comment(s)Print E-mail, November 15, 2015
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It might seem unbelievable to fathom, but there is still a solid percentage of people who consider the settlement building a major wrong. Not all Israelis, of course, support Netanyahu's plan. It is considered a crime, and it is considered stifling for further dialogue towards an Israeli-Palestinian solution. The two-state solution, first decided by President George W. Bush, also found bipartisan support under President Obama.

The issue got even further complicated with the advent of the Arab Spring. The Obama administration naively supported regime changes and the toppling of brutal, but secular dictators, which resulted in utter chaos across wide swathes of the Middle East. Israel, being much more realistic, weren't swayed by the freedom and democracy rhetoric. The Israeli defense mindset was always about the devil we know. In this case, Mubarak and Assad were adversaries, but maintained a negative cold peace with Israel.

With that in mind, Netanyahu also hardened his posture, and decided that his legacy will be a solidification of Israel as a "city on the hill," as a besieged oasis of civilization and democracy. What Netanyahu failed to understand is that his idea of an oasis of democracy can only be if there is an inclusive state with the rights of Palestinians in mind.

Like any leader drunk on nationalistic rhetoric, he sold Israel's security to her population and won an even bigger mandate in the last election. The frustrated Palestinians started indiscriminately attacking Israelis, including grandmothers and babies, which consolidated the Israeli siege mentality. Palestinian leadership, including Fatah and Hamas, now risk losing control of these attacks, and the leadership may pass on to more radical ones, which will essentially mean more Palestinian attacks, more Israeli responses, and massive bloodshed.

Overall, the hope is fading and it is at fault from both sides. Netanyahu is a leader who is more focused on having a historical legacy. He is someone who thinks he is the savior of his people and is there to etch his name for posterity to remember. Palestinians also don't realize that they have gotten nothing using terrorism for the last 60 years. As for peace in our lifetime, it is turning from a two-state solution, to two dead states. And that's one of the greatest tragedies of our times.

The writer is a columnist with For more information please visit:

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