Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Preliminary SWOT Analysis of the PM's Plan

The Prime Minister must answer what is the extent of Palestinian Independence in his plan under International Law before his plan can even be called an option. Resolving all the internal strife between Israelis and West Bank and Gaza refugees is wonderful. But increasing the potential for external strife (regional war) is not a peace plan.

I am not trying to nor trying to encourage a rushing to judgment against the duly elected Prime Minister of the State of Israel. Perhaps after the Iranian issue becomes more calm than it is today, it will become easier for news agencies to receive clear communication on this matter from the PM's office and also the PM's office will have more time to present the current peace plan with all its nooks, crannies and variations to the public.

Yet, I cannot remain silent, even as I wish I could. Silence can be a sin in such a circumstance. Hopefully, the PM will accept my words for their good intent, as the Holy Sages of the Talmud said, "Who is wise? He who learns from everyone."(Avos/Ethics of the Fathers 4:1) My concern over saying nothing is that there should be open debate and honest discussion, and consequently also the potential opportunity to perfect any peace plan that is presented.

In academic circles, generally scholars humbly send in their thesis papers to other co-practitioners of their trade for assessment. Or, as in my case, nowadays scholars who are pressed for time can at least create a blog such as this one to discuss the matter and allow some sort of public review and chance to receive criticism. By denying the possibility of any real critical review, previous peace deals fell apart as their underlying theories were untested until it was too late, when it was time to actually put them into practice. So my public critique of the PM is not an effort to defame him in any manner, but to put even my very critique of his plan to the test so that I can offer even better quality aid to him the next time I open my mouth, pen, or computer. While my reverence for his office is present, the greater calling is to do the will of God and the needs of humanity, and so I comment thusly.

As the revealed aspects of his plan, as per the text that I have received so far, have been a bit sketchy, here then is a very preliminary SWOT Analysis of PM Netanyahu's peace plan (but really this sort of appraisal is for the Prime Minister's office or the Foreign Ministry to run via an objective agency or think tank and then communicate to the public when toting their plan)...

  • The PM's plan ends the dangers of missiles firing at Israeli cities.
  • It ends the dangers of roving bands of terrorists destroying holy sites such as happened with the Tomb of Joseph.
  • It increases the economic welfare of West Bank and Gaza Palestinians Arabs.

  • It keeps the noses of the nations in Israel's business. Does any Israeli like this status? If the (non terroristic) Palestinians were all absorbed into Israel instead, it would be an internal matter under International Law and an end to external interference. Such independence is a good place for an open democracy like Israel to be in. The plan was supposed to resolve this, but in my opinion it does not cover all potentialities.
  • It creates a veil of immunity to the just prosecution of terrorists based in the West Bank and Gaza that their Arab brethren inside Israel do not have.
  • It has an element of bias, as it creates an artificial limit on where Jews are allowed to settle in their historic homeland. Israel set no such limits on Arabs within the Green Line, so Jews on the other side of the Green Line should enjoy at least the same courtesy and rights as Israeli Arabs do.

  • It can remove a huge monkey off the back of the State of Israel that is impeding its finding an economic and prestigious place among the nations of the world.

  • War.
  • Perpetual international interference in internal Israeli affairs.
  • Consequently the monkey actually remains on the back with people scratching heads and asking why. Thus the opportunities that the PM's plan offers, as I have heard it, while well meaning are fallacious in character.

So, it appears to me that Bibi and his administration have come up with a sincere and strong peace plan that in its current form may begin nicely, yet does not address all of the present and pending issues in its wake, and thus creates a false sense of opportunity where, unfortunately, none exists.

I urge the Prime Minister to reread the letter that I sent him four months ago concerning the Everyone Wins Peace Plan and consider incorporating some elements therein to his plan in order, by the grace of God, to enrich and strengthen the chance for true and lasting peace.

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