Israeli deputy PM warns against Palestinian state

Monday, January 14, 2013 |  Ryan Jones

Israeli Vice Prime Minister Moshe Ya'alon on Saturday stated that it was no longer seen as being in Israel's interest to allow the establishment of a sovereign and independent Palestinian Arab state.

Speaking at a pre-election event in the Tel Aviv area, Ya'alon said all the evidence of the past decade of failed peace-making pointed to the fact that an independent Palestinian state would become a platform for further hostility against Israel, just as happened in Gaza.

Ya'alon warned that those holding aloft Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas as a genuine peace partner are making a mistake.

"There are those who are trying to market Abbas as relatively moderate, but his goals are the same as those of Hamas. He does not believe in an agreement based on pre-1967 lines and he is refusing to come to the negotiating table," said the Likud candidate and former IDF chief.

Israeli expert Dr. Guy Bachor issued a statement in the Israeli press largely echoing Ya'alon's warnings.

Bachor explained that despite signing a peace agreement that would ostensibly bring a final conclusion to the conflict, a new Palestinian state would immediately open its doors to hundreds of thousands of Arabs claiming "Palestinian" descent and thereby create a demographic problem of epic proportions for Israel.

"The amazing thing is that there are those who actually use the demographic argument to justify a Palestinian state, while if that happens, demographic realities will become unbearable for every Israeli," wrote Bachor.

Ya'alon's boss, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, has again stated publicly that his official policy is to work for a peace deal that culminates in the creation of a Palestinian Arab state, but many in his party now oppose that goal.

Rather, many like Ya'alon are more receptive of the platform of Jewish Home party leader Naftali Bennett, who is advocating autonomy, but not sovereignty, for the Palestinian Arabs.

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