If there are Israeli Arabs, why not Palestinian Jews?


James Woolsey in The Wall Street Journal:

It’s still unclear why the administration has a problem with Jews living in the West Bank. Even if every settlement and its residents were transferred to Palestinian sovereignty, Jews would still comprise under 10% of the population of the new Palestinian state. Arabs, overwhelmingly Muslim, would continue to comprise nearly 20% of Israel’s population. Why should such a Jewish minority be forbidden in Mr. Fayyad’s Palestine?

It would of course take some time for his hopes to become reality. It is also clear that without American support for religious and political freedom in Palestine, there is no chance that Palestinian leaders will decide to make their country one in which Jews can feel safe. Yet rather than promoting the rule of law in a future Palestine, the Obama administration essentially urges us to accept that, because Palestinians will kill unprotected Jews, Jews cannot be permitted in a Palestinian state.This is what the late New York Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan called "defining deviancy down."

Will it provide the basis for peace in the Middle East for us to define deviancy for Palestinians in such a way that essentially accepts Fatah’s goal of a Jew-free Palestine? As Mr. Moynihan once wryly understated it, such a move would simply be our deciding to "get used to a lot of behavior that is not good for us"—let alone for Israelis and Palestinians.

Read the full story.

Recommended from JTA