Argument for Palestinian State

[Writer Name]
[Supervisor Name]
Palestinian State

      Both Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and Foreign Minister Shimon Peres insist that the Declaration of Principles signed by Israel and the PLO in Washington on September 13 - popularly known as the "Gaza/Jericho First" plan - contains a fail-safe mechanism. Not a single Jewish settlement in the territories will be dismantled, and the Israeli army will be in charge of safeguarding the settlers. Moreover, the experiment will begin with Gaza, whose loss virtually no Israeli will mourn, and Jericho, a small and insignificant town near the Jordanian border. If the experiment fails, if the Arabs use the removal of the "occupation" not to build institutions of self-government but to establish terror bases from which to attack Israel, the Israeli army will move in and cancel the whole deal.
      If the plan works, we will have peace at last, even if it means the establishment of a Palestinian state. According to polls, a majority of Israelis deem peace and separation from the 1.7 million Palestinian Arabs in Judea, Samaria, and Gaza more important than keeping all the land won in the 1967 war. That a hostile army should again threaten Israel from hills within rifle range of Tel Aviv's suburbs and Jerusalem's center is something virtually every Israeli finds unacceptable. (Gresh, 12)
      The architects of the agreement with the PLO are aware of this fundamental concern. On returning to Israel from Washington he added another grievance - poverty - which will have to be eliminated if peace is to reign. If Israelis thought that there was no way back, that the Rabin-Arafat handshake on the White House lawn signified an irrevocable withdrawal to the 1949 armistice lines and the establishment of a PLO state beyond those lines, it is doubtful that more than a small minority would support the move.
      Yet in truth there is no going back for Israel - unless the army's departure from Gaza triggers an...