Jordan part of the solution
by Guy Bechor
Ynetnews.com, Jan. 3, 2014
Op-ed: Israeli-Palestinian conflict can be solved when West Bank’s Arab residents regain their Jordanian citizenship
Famous British diplomat and author Harold Nicolson (1886-1968) believed there were two types of negotiators: Warriors and shopkeepers. Warriors use negotiations to improve their position ahead of the next stage of the conflict, while shopkeepers try to reach an agreement which will satisfy everyone. Warriors are here to take, shopkeepers – to give. Warriors see an agreement as a temporary stage, shopkeepers hope to end the conflict through it.
The Palestinian Authority comes to the negotiations as clear warriors. It is interested in going back in time, fixing the past of 1948, expelling 700,000 Jews from Judea and Samaria and replacing them with one or two million Palestinians from Syria,Lebanon and the Arab world. These will be the most dangerousSalafis in the region. Israel wants to end the conflict, but the PA wants to strengthen itself in order to intensify the conflict. Its goal is to go on with the plan to destroy Israel in stages.
The problem begins when the shopkeepers believe they are facing another shopkeeper, and realize that they are facing a warrior – sometimes when it’s already too late. Those who understand that these are two forces with opposite intentions and a different language, understand that there is nothing to talk about with what is called “the Palestinian Authority.”
This means that in a while we will see the failure of what has been called “negotiations” with that PA, which are entirely based on American naivety in the best-case scenario. A mediators who fails to understand that he is facing warriors against shopkeepers will find it difficult to understand the conflict, and may even be a shopkeeper himself. It’s time, therefore, to prepare and come up with a Plan B, after realizing Plan A is impossible. And I mean Jordan.
Just like Egypt was forced to return to the Gaza Strip and to its affairs, the same is expected to happen with Jordan, as it is part of the conflict. It was Churchill who disconnected it from the western Land of Israel as “the Arab state,” but it is part of the solution, and it knows that and is interested in it. After all, the West Bank was part of the Jordanian kingdom in 1967 in the full sense of the word. Jordan completely annexed it, and granted its residents full citizenship. On July 31, 1988, Jordanian King Hussein revoked the full Jordanian citizenship given to the Arab residents of Judea and Samaria and east Jerusalem as part of what he referred to as a “withdrawal.” But who revokes his residents’ citizenship just like that, and why did it go by peacefully?
The Arab residents of Judea and Samaria will get their Jordanian citizenship back, and Jordan will oversee the civil life in Area A. The IDF will remain militarily in charge of all Judea and Samaria territories, in coordination with the Jordanians, with whom we have a peace agreement, and all the settlement will naturally stay put. The Arabs in Judea and Samaria will vote for the Jordanian parliament, and their passports will be Jordanian. The Jerusalem issue will also be solved quickly, as Israel is committed in the peace treaty with Jordan to giving the kingdom a “special status” in Jerusalem’s holy sites.
Israel will be interested in this arrangement, between shopkeepers and shopkeepers. The Palestinians will be happy, as they are being given a desired citizenship, second in its prestige to the Israeli one, and Jordan will be satisfied too. A Palestinian state, which within a short while will be filled with Salafis and al-Qaeda operatives, is a strategic threat to its security. The only one which won’t be satisfied is the Palestinian Authority, which was invented out of nothing in Oslo. But it’s not our job to worry about that authority.
Jordanian spokespeople reiterate that the United States and Europe are wrong about Jordan not being the desirable solution, while expressing their reservations and remoteness from the “PA.” They also know that a Palestinian solution is bad news for everyone, even for the Arabs living in Judea and Samaria, as a peace agreement with warriors is a contradiction.