Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Natanyahu says that Israel can possibly annex West Bank territories because he has the support from both sides of the political spectrum, if the Peace Process had failed. He also denied any plans of “unilateral territorial withdrawals” from the West Bank. According to the Jerusalem Post, Natanyahu was interviewed by Bloomberg View and said “The idea of taking unilateral steps is gaining ground, from the center-left to the center-right.”
Last December, Arutz Sheva, an Israeli-based news network reported that economics minister Naftali Bennett had proposed that Israel could annex key areas of the West Bank which includes Judea in the Southern West Bank and Samaria located in the northern West Bank (both biblical names given by Israelis to justify their claims on the West Bank based on religious grounds) which are dominated by Jews and place them under the control of Israeli Defense Forces. Bennett said
“I favor implementation of Israeli sovereignty over the zone where 400,000 Jews live and only 70,000 Arabs.”
Since “only 70,000 Arabs” live in both Judea and Samaria, then maybe the Israeli government can exile them to other Arab nations and at the same time, create a refugee crisis. The Israeli government’s idea to annex certain areas of the West Bank because there is a Jewish population already living there is absurd. The Jerusalem Post article reported what Natanyahu had said in regards to a “unilateral withdrawal” in what he described as a left-wing idea to appease the Palestinian Authorities:
Many Israelis are asking themselves if there are certain unilateral steps that could theoretically make sense,” he added. But Netanyahu appeared to dismissed left-wing ideas of territorial withdrawal from portions of the West Bank as one possible unilateral option.
He explained that Israel’s 2005 disengagement from Gaza, a unilateral plan designed to rescue a frozen peace process, had strengthened terrorist groups bent on destroying Israel and had failed to bring peace. “People also recognize that the unilateral withdrawal from Gaza didn’t improve the situation or advance peace — it created Hamastan, from which thousands of rockets have been fired at our cities,” Netanyahu said
The Prime Minister also spoke about the two-state solution and Iran’s relationship with the Palestinians when he said “The first point of consensus is that we don’t want a binational state. Another point of consensus is that we don’t want an Iranian proxy in territories we vacate.”
Natanyahu is clear that they do not want a two-state solution because they only want a Jewish state to exist, nor do they want to withdraw from West Bank territories because of the so-called “Iranian threat” to Israel.
Natanyahu also said that “We want a demilitarized Palestinian state that recognizes the nation-state of the Jews. How do you get that if you can’t get it through negotiations? “The Palestinians don’t agree to recognizing Israel as the Jewish nation-state, and it’s not clear to me that they’ll agree to elements of demilitarization that are required in any conceivable plan that works.”
So far, there has been no success with the Israeli-Palestinian peace process since the Palestinians have made it clear on their decision not to recognize Israel as a “Jewish state”. Doing so would be admitting that their presence in Palestine has been illegitimate, therefore it would be conceding to Israel’s demands. It will also designate Jews with the right to be in Palestine.
As for the Palestinians themselves, they would need permission of the “Jewish state” to live in Palestine since they do not have an innate right to do so. It would be a political disaster for the Palestinians if they agreed to such demands. It is a major condition that comes with risks if a Jewish state were to be imposed on the Palestinians.
Natanyahu believes that the conditions should be considered to move forward on peace, but the Palestinians would not negotiate on Israel’s terms. He said that “The minimal set of conditions that any Israeli government would need cannot be met by the Palestinians.” The Natanyahu Government was also not happy when the Palestinian Authority decided to form a unity government including Hamas to negotiate with Israel. Natanyahu said:
No matter what the spin is about blaming Israel, do we actually expect Abbas, who seems to be embracing Hamas, to give a negotiated deal? In all likelihood, no. I hope he does, but I’m not sure he’s going to do it,” Natanyahu continued “There is an emerging consensus that we don’t have a partner who can challenge constituencies, do something unpopular, do something that is difficult. Abbas has not done anything to challenge the prevailing Palestinian consensus. In fact, he’s doing the opposite: the Hamas reconciliation, internationalizing the conflict, not giving one iota on the right of return, not giving an iota on the Jewish state. He wouldn’t deal with Kerry’s framework
According to Israel Shahak’s article, “Greater Israel”: The Zionist Plan for the Middle East”, he explains what Israel’s main objective is by expanding further into Palestinian territories and other areas of the Middle East:
The Zionist project supports the Jewish settlement movement. More broadly it involves a policy of excluding Palestinians from Palestine leading to the eventual annexation of both the West Bank and Gaza to the State of Israel.
Greater Israel would create a number of proxy States. It would include parts of Lebanon, Jordan, Syria, the Sinai, as well as parts of Iraq and Saudi Arabia.
Here is a map of Israel’s expansion into Palestine since 1946:
Palestine is slowly disappearing. Annexation by the Israeli government would result in an international backlash and a public relations disaster. It can also start a new conflict if Israel were to annex more land in the West Bank. In an opinion piece written by Gershon Baskin for the Jerusalem Post described what the consequences would be if Israel were to annex certain areas of the West Bank:
Not only will annexation of the territories bring on the wrath of the whole world, the Palestinians will never give up their nationalism and if they have no political avenue to wage their struggle in the world, they will use violence against Israel, and we will certainly feel the pain of their wrath
Israel’s intention of acquiring more land through force would not improve relations with the Palestinians or their Arab neighbors, and it certainly would not bring any peace in the foreseeable future.
Timothy Alexander Guzman is an independent researcher and writer with a focus on political, economic, media and historical spheres. He has been published in Global Research, The Progressive Mind, European Union Examiner, News Beacon Ireland, WhatReallyHappened.com, EIN News and a number of other alternative news sites. He is a graduate of Hunter College in New York City.