I’m not going to vote for Naftali Bennett and his Jewish Home party, but I do admire the way he has kicked up a merry old fuss among the old political establishment here. One way he is driving a wedge into supporters of the traditional parties, is that he has actually put together a plan for the future of Israel and its security. I’m not sure if you would call it a peace plan. Judge for yourselves with this English language version:
From one perspective, it’s bold. From another, it’s rash. Given the condemnation Israel received for building a few houses, there is likely to be a firestorm if this becomes official policy. But, what if the Palestinians offered citizenship took it up? We know, behind the headlines, Palestinians want nothing to do with failed Arab states, and have close to no confidence in the state building skills of their own leadership. Interesting.
The other major disadvantages are security related. It would create, effectively, a new border needing very tight security to avoid terrorist infiltration. And what does Israel do if there are rockets smuggled into the Palestinian parts, and launched? That’s a real challenge.
It’s unlikely – but not impossible – Jewish Home will be in a position to turn this into policy. But in the absence of a competing plan – as opposed to the “let’s do nothing” camp – Bennett is entitled to argue this is the only way for Israel to take charge of its own destiny.
[A tip of the hat and a special, belated, ‘thank you’ to Leah for this.]