Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Palestinian Statehood

This week Palestinians will ask the United Nations to recognize Palestine as a state.  And everybody is freaking out.  Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu is asking Palestinian Authority President Abbas for talks, instead of the UN bid.  But Abbas is determined to go through with the bid.  Some Israeli settlers are already protesting against any Palestinian state.  Israeli President Peres is talking to the leaders of various countries, asking them to oppose the bid, and Netanyahu is on his way to New York.

I'm not sure where I stand on this issue.  On the one hand, declaring a new state could seriously undermine any peace process between the Palestinians and Israelis.  Some Israelis are worried about an "ethnic cleansing" removing Jews from a new Palestine (I guess they've forgotten about the "ethnic cleansing" of Palestinians).

On the other hand, the peace process hasn't really worked so far anyway.  And maybe if there was a Palestinian state, it would be harder for Israel to continue illegally blockading parts of it.  I wonder if that is part of the problem.  Right now, Israel can claim to fight evil Palestinian terrorists who live nearby.  But if Palestine becomes a state, then Israel would be fighting another nation.  In some ways it would legitimize Palestinian attacks on Israel and delegitimize Israel "responses."  It will be interesting to see what happens this week.

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