Dr. Mordechai Kedar, the Director of the Center for the Study of the Middle East and Islam (under formation), a research associate of the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies and a lecturer in the Department of Arabic at Bar-Ilan University in Israel visited Sarasota, Florida, while on a thirty-day tour of the United States. Dr. Kedar presented his “Palestinian Emirates” solution as part of the Israel@65 celebration hosted by the Sarasota/Manatee Jewish Federation.
Dr. Kedar’s solution is based upon the realities of Arab culture in the Middle East.
Dr. Kedar is the architect of a solution to the Israel-Palestinian conflict which calls for the creation of eight Palestinian Emirates within the state of Israel. The eight city-states would comprise the areas of Jenin, Nablus, Ramallah, Jericho, Tul-Karm, Kalkilya, the Arab part of Hebron and Gaza. The concept is simple in its design. Dr. Kedar pointed out that the most prosperous and peaceful nation states in the Middle East are culturally homogeneous. Examples include: Dubai, Qatar, the United Arab Emeritus, Kuwait and Bahrain.
Dr. Kedar believes that the two state solution proposed by the United States, the EU and supported by the United Nations and Israeli politicians is the greatest threat facing Israel. According to the Palestinian Emirates website, the creation of two states, “could lead to the demise of our beloved Israel? After all, it’s been the mainstay policy thrust upon Israel with various international initiatives and road-maps to peace. But in reality it would bring about the opposite result.”
Dr. Kedar discusses his Palestinian Emirates solution on ReThingingIsreal.com:
The Palestinian Emirates solution is based on the following eighteen points (realities):
1. The only true loyalty for Middle Eastern Arabs is to family, clan and tribe and the local sheikhs who are their true leaders.
2. There is little trust that currently exists between peoples of the different tribes in the Arab Palestinian cities of Judea, Samaria and Gaza.
3. Any PA led government of a Palestinian state would most likely become another corrupt and failing Arab state.
4. If a Palestinian state existed the more militant Hamas would soon seize control in Judea & Samaria from the less militant, weak and corrupt PA/Fatah.
5. Israel would be faced on two borders by Hamas whose Charter openly calls for the destruction of the Jewish Homeland and the killing of Jews worldwide.
6. The PA/Fatah and Hamas are not reliable negotiating partners for peace and the concept of the Two State Solution must be abandoned.
7. Israel must now take the lead to find a workable solution in light of the recent UN vote which did not confer actual statehood to the Palestinians.
8. As tribal leaders the individual sheikhs may want their independence from the PA to chart their own destiny of peace and prosperity.
9. Israel should recognize the development of independent city-states in seven cities of Judea & Sumaria which would likely occur over a period of years.
10. The eight city-states would comprise the areas of Jenin, Nablus, Ramallah, Jericho, Tul-Karm, Kalkilya, the Arab part of Hebron and Gaza.
11. Local residents would become citizens of these eight independent city-states while those remaining in rural lands would have the choice to become citizens of Israel.
12. The Palestinian refugee problem can only be addressed once the UN realizes that there is no Right of Return for Arabs as citizens of Israel. Naturally Arabs should find their solutions in Arab states, not the one Jewish state.
13. As these independent Arab Palestinian city-states develop they may choose to form a beneficial alliance together to increase security, economic development and other aspects of common interest.
14. The leaders of these emerging city-states are more likely to accept Israel as the Jewish Homeland and root out terrorist and jihadist elements within their secure borders.
15. Israel would absorb and control the less populated areas of Judea & Samaria to enhance security for the region and expand housing and commercial development.
16. The PA leadership will eventually disappear from Judea & Samaria once the city-state movement takes root.
17. Gaza remains an ongoing problem requiring possible future Israeli defensive military action and will only have freedom and opportunity for it’s citizens once Hamas and the other jihadists no longer behave like terror groups against Israel, but rather manage their state for the sake of their people.
18. Jerusalem will remain as it has been since 1967, the undivided capital of Israel that welcomes peaceful people of all religions to live, visit and pray there.
As Victor Hugo (1802-1885) wrote, “Nothing is as powerful as an idea whose time has come.” Dr. Kedar’s solution may be the last best solution because it empowers the tribal peoples of the Palestinian Emirates.