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The Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the prospects for a two-state solutionis.....

The Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the prospects for a two-state solution is important for understanding international relations and the dynamics of the Middle East.

  • The only viable long-term solution to the Jewish-Arab conflict is to divide the land between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea and create two countries for two people.

  • Jews have accepted the inevitability of partition, while Arabs have rejected it for much of the 100-year war.

  • In recent decades, the situation seems to have reversed, with one section of the Palestinian leadership, the Arab world, and the West supporting a two-state solution, while Israel is hesitant.

  • Understanding Israel's reasons for hesitating is important in predicting the consequences of Hamas's recent terror attacks on Israel.

  • The key stakeholder in the conflict has always been the Israeli public, as without their agreement, no solution is possible.

  • The question to ask is whether Hamas's attacks will push the Israeli public into creating a sovereign Palestinian state.

  • Some opinion-makers believe that Israel's recent trauma from Hamas's strikes will make the people understand the need for a sovereign Palestinian state for peace.

  • However, it is more likely that Israelis will come to the opposite conclusion and believe that a two-state solution will empower Palestinians to attack Israel more effectively.

  • Hamas does not accept Israel's right to exist and attacked Israel on its southern borders, targeting the very existence of Israel as a Jewish state.

  • The support of the supposedly moderate Palestinian Authority in the West Bank for Hamas only heightens Israeli fears that the end of the conflict will not be a two-state solution, but a single Palestinian state.

  • The main obstacle to a two-state solution has been the Palestinians' inability to convince Israeli voters that they would leave the Jews alone in the other part of the land.

  • There is a radical Israeli fringe that does not believe Palestinians deserve a state

  • Israeli voters have a widening distrust of Palestinians as partners in peace

  • Palestinians believe that Israeli civilians need to share their pain to force them to reduce it

  • Israeli perspective is that every wave of violence against their civilians makes them less likely to end the occupation of Palestinians

  • Recent terror attacks by Hamas will reinforce Israeli suspicions about creating a sovereign Palestinian state

  • Palestinians need to convince Israeli voters that a future Palestine will live peacefully next to Israel

  • The only way forward is for a Palestinian leadership that can credibly signal it will not use its freedoms to hurt Israel

  • The prospects for this seem dim.

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