Wednesday, May 26, 2010

30% Of Palestinian Arabs Don't Want A Two State Solution

Joel Brinkley, former foreign correspondent for The New York Times and now a professor of journalism at Stanford University, has made a discovery:
A new poll of Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza provides a startling conclusion: Fully one-third of the population no longer wants a separate state of their own. No, these Palestinians now say they want to live in one state alongside the Israelis, in what they call a bi-national country.

The number of Palestinians calling for this has increased by 60 percent since the last poll was taken 10 months ago.

...Now, it’s apparent, no one really wants a peace agreement, except maybe a few officials in Washington.
The poll is from the Jerusalem Media and Communications Centre, a Palestinian group. According to their poll:
Nearly 34 percent of respondents favored a binational state in all of historic Palestine over the two state solution, which only 43.9 percent supported.

The decline in support for the two-state solution has persisted since shortly after the start of the Palestinian uprising in September 2000, however, those who favored a binational state were only 20.6 percent in June 2009.

In 2001, 18.3 percent of respondents favored a binational state, according to JMCC polls.


Just over 30 percent of respondents believe that the peace process is dead and there is no chance that negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians will be resumed.

An additional 46.2 percent believe the peace process is passing through a difficult time and are uncertain of the outcome. Only 18.4 percent of Palestinians believe the peace process is alive and well.

Still, there is a rise in optimism, with 68 percent of Palestinians saying they are optimistic towards the future over 63 percent in October last year.
According to Brinkley, the optimism--at least in the West Bank--is due to the economic progress being made in the area:
As for the Palestinians, Israel has removed most of the checkpoints in the West Bank. New businesses are opening in Ramallah, Nablus. The Palestinian economy is growing. A telling statistic: Cement production is up 20 percent. Life is somewhat easier now.
The economic turnaround should not be news by now, since it has been covered since last year.
One-third of them now say they simply want to live with the Israelis. In that random-sample survey of about 1,200 Palestinians, by the Jerusalem Media and Communication Center, a Palestinian organization, fewer than half now say they support a two-state solution, a sharp decline since last year. Just 18.4 percent hold any faith in peace negotiations.
And what happens if the those 'peace' negotiations stop and the current status quo vis-a-vis the Palestinian Arabs continues? According to Brinkley, the quest in Washington to be the one to solve the Mideast crisis would come to a halt. Furthermore, according to Brinkley, peace would mean that Arab leaders would no longer be able to distract their subjects from how they suffer under their rulers.

Then again, that does not seem to have been a problem before in Arab history.

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