In the early years of Saturday Night Live there was a classic skit called “What if?” Posing as pseudo-intellectuals, Jane Curtain and company discussed such nonsensical topics as “What if Napoleon Bonaparte had B-52 bombers at the Battle of Waterloo?” or “What if Superman had landed in Germany instead of America?” As silly as those topics were, I have a feeling that in the future people will consider Israel’s resurrection of Yasser Arafat and the PLO nearly twenty years ago as being far more outlandish.
Kicked out of Jordan in the early 1970s and then out of Lebanon a decade later before finally being exiled to Tunisia, Arafat and his comrades were not only brought back to life by Israel but were even, in an act that defied all levels of pretzel logic, deposited on our own doorstep. Not surprisingly, such foolish acts of benevolence to someone who was arguably the godfather of international terrorism ended up costing us dearly throughout the past twenty years. In retrospect one can only wonder “What if Israel had not acted so imprudently?”
In order to counterbalance such rash Israeli behavior and perhaps even to point the way for a fresh change of direction, I’d like to pose here a series of very real “What ifs?”. Moreover, in light of President Obama’s recent speech and the unrealistic demands he is placing on Israel, the time for a real change has never been more urgent.
* What if Israel told the world that following years of repeatedly having its naïve willingness to divide the land and reconcile with the Arabs always greeted by an Arab refusal to settle the dispute, Israel finally understands that its intentions have been misguided and therefore it no longer intends to continue down the same path?
* What if Israel told the world that despite endless attempts at reconciliation with the Arabs as well as countless “good-will gestures”, we’ve had it with the murderous attacks, threats, boycotts, condemnations and overall de-legitimization?
* What if Israel said that the path it’s been following for the last twenty years, at the urging of the international community, has brought no peace to the region and has only weakened Israel’s deterrence and thus jeopardized its security?
* What if Israel told the world that the only chance for real peace in the region depends on Israel making a shift in direction?
* What if Israel politely yet firmly told the world “No, we don’t accept the two-state solution”?
* What if Israel told the world that the two-state solution will eventually lead to Israel’s destruction, and this being the case we do not intend to commit national suicide? Would the world criticize us for acting logically?
* What if Israel calmly and confidently told the world that the Land of Israel belongs to the Jewish people and therefore we are declaring full Israeli sovereignty over Judea and Samaria?
* What if Israel stated that the Jewish people, as opposed to its Arab neighbors, have only one country of their own? Would the world argue with this fact?