Andrew Sullivan believes that he has one solution to the Israeli/Palestinian
just fence the two off. In the short term, it’s probably a reasonable and
necessary idea. Close off the avenues for suicide bombers to enter Israel and you
end a lot of opportunities for terror. Still, even a relatively short border like that
will never be impervious, and the threat will still be there.
I think I have one way of dealing with the problem: Israel needs to take over.
Not directly, but indirectly. Use whatever tools are available – outright bribery,
blackmail, threats of violence, but ensure that whoever takes over from Arafat
knows that it’s in their best interest to play nice. Make sure that they don’t
abuse their power, and let things take their course. Find a Palestinian Ataturk –
a dictator who won’t resort to genocide, but is willing to make the kind of
drastic, heavy-handed actions needed to get things done. Cutting a deal
with a more moderate Arab country such as Jordan to do some of the dirty
work would be even better.
Is this plan amoral? Extremely. Would it work? Possibly. Eventually the hope
would be that the regime implemented would fall away in a bloodless coup
as happened against Milosevic, or more recently, Hugo Chavez. Until then,
you essentially have an Israeli puppet state. Yes, I admit this is something
that would fly in the face of democracy, human rights, and a lot of other
principals, but it has the chance to save lives. In the long run, this
may be a case where virtue must be broken in order to preserve the life of
not only Israel, but the Palestinian people as well.