The paradigm of autocratic governments providing stability in the Middle East has led to radicalisation. These governments have viciously suppressed any form of dissent; there’s been an acute lack of aspirational achievement. The resultant frustration has been craftily channelled by the radicals into a focused hatred of Israel. The Arab Spring has provided the much needed platform for debate and brought into its political fold the extremists. It’s imperative that this process be nurtured and directed toward the election of governments that are representative.

The Palestinian/Israeli peace process/conflict in its present context is a slow moving train wreck to nowhere. Having sidelined Mahmoud Abbas, Netanyahu/Lieberman and Hamas want to maintain the status quo. The rocket fire that Hamas directs at Israel is the gift that keeps giving for the Likud/Beytenu coalition. Likewise, the siege of Gaza by Israel gives Hamas legitimacy and creates a groundswell of support for it.

In a regional context Wahabi Saudi Arabia and Shia’ Iran are using their immense oil wealth to wage a proxy war. Saudi Arabia and Iran are two sides of the same coin; police states masquerading as theocracies. Their surreptitious activities in neighbouring countries are an attempt to distort ground realities and incite violence. They create an environment of instability through subterfuge and the promotion of ethnic and sectarian strife. The monarchs and the mullahs are not accountable, so hasten to blame Israel for their own policy failings and mismanagement.

The State of Israel was created by UN Resolution 181 on 29 November 1947 but came into existence on 15 May 1948. Neighbouring Arab States invaded the fledgling democracy the very next day in support of the Palestinian Arabs. In the 1948 War of Independence and in each of the subsequent Wars – 1967 Six Day War and 1973 Yom Kippur, Israel seized land from the Arabs. The bellicose and belligerent Arab States were repulsed notwithstanding their superior numbers and military hardware. These victories lend credence to the claims of the Israelis on the land that they captured and for legitimacy of the de facto borders for the State of Israel.

The resolution of the Arab/Israeli conflict must be part of a grand regional bargain overseen by the Middle East Quartet. Countries in the Middle East except Israel must destroy all chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear weapons. Israel should be allowed to retain some limited measure of its nuclear deterrent albeit monitored by the International Atomic Energy Agency. Those members of The Organisation of Islamic Countries that have boycotted Israel must normalise all diplomatic and trade relations. Israelis/Palestinians must hold a referendum to decide whether they want a two-state solution or a one-state solution. The grand regional bargain must be predicated on the recognition by all Palestinian factions of the incontrovertible right of the State of Israel to exist.

A two-state solution could be achieved on an approximation of the 1967 borders with Jerusalem either as a divided capital or a UN administered ‘International City of Faith’. Provision will have to be made to link the West Bank to Gaza without compromising the security of Israel. A one-state solution will need to incorporate the occupied territories of the West Bank and Gaza into Israel proper. A system of voting will have to be devised such that no one ethnic group can dominate the government indefinitely. Irrespective of the voting dynamics, certain portfolios and ministries will have to be retained by ethnically Jewish people. The education system, its curriculum, will have to reflect the sensitivities of all ethnic groups. Those educational institutions whose curriculum is in Hebrew may teach Arabic as a second language. However, those whose curriculum is in Arabic will have to teach Hebrew as a second language. Policing can be a local matter but admission into the IDF and intelligence agencies will require scrutiny.

The Israeli state invests in its citizens and by virtue of a tacit social contract the citizens work diligently to build a prosperous Israel. This is evidenced by their commitment to excellence; in the face of great adversity the Israelis have made the desert bloom. In contrast, the despotic regimes in neighbouring Arab countries through their gratuitous corruption have impoverished their citizens. Here there is a concerted effort to dumb down the population through the proliferation of religious schools. Clerics laud the regimes achievements from the pulpit; thugs spread fear amongst their own people.


About Husein M
I have created this blog in order to bring new informed ideas with the view that it would promote an educated discourse amongst progressive British Muslims.

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