Friday, February 8, 2013

Israel Accepts Two-State Solution, But Skeptical it’s Possible to Achieve

Polls conducted in Israel during the recent election affirm that Israelis still accept the contours of a two-state solution to the Palestinian-Israel question, but they are extremely pessimistic it can be achieved.

Two polls captured the support for a two-state solution with slightly different terms. The first poll question below was from a poll conducted by The Mark Mellman Group for the Yesh Atid (There is a Future), a surprisingly successful left center party in the recent election. The second poll is from the University of Maryland Sadat Center conducted in November 2012.
A two-state agreement: “With the Palestinians entailing a demilitarized Palestinian state with boundaries based on the 1967 lines, along with territorial swaps that reckon with Israel’s security concerns and keep the major settlement blocs under Israeli control; if Palestinian refugees could return to the new state, but not to Israel; if the Arab neighborhoods of Jerusalem reverted to the Palestinian state, the Jewish neighborhoods stayed in Israel and the Old City were under some kind of joint administration; and if the agreement would come into effect only after the Palestinians ended all terror activities and the United States approved the deal.” (68% support) (Mellman Group)
“In 2002, Arab countries offered the Arab Peace Initiative, a comprehensive peace deal with Israel based on Israeli withdrawal from the territories occupied in the 1967 war and full peace agreements between Israel and all Arab states.  If this offer is renewed with the support from Egypt’s new government, how should the Israeli government react?  Do you think it should:” (Sadat Center, University of Maryland)
The Mellman poll question tosses in a huge number of favorable conditions for Israelis to consider with the U.S. as a guarantor. The University of Maryland poll question is much leaner and inserts Egypt as a participant.
In both polls, Israelis believed the peace process was at a standstill with little chance of progress.

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