The Two-State Solution and the Golem

The Golem, like Oslo and the two-state solution, was conjured into existence by the pride and magical thinking of its creator. 

Jeffrey Ludwig

OpEds Nobel Peace Center, Oslo
Nobel Peace Center, Oslo

Jonathan Tobin in a recent article expresses concern that “the Americans [will not] keep their promises to prevent the UN from imposing a solution on Israel that will compromise its security and its rights.” Thus, Obama may impose the two-state solution upon Israel even though the original premise of the Oslo Accords was that two states (an Israeli state and a Palestinian Arab state) would only be accomplished through negotiations (UN Resolution 242). 

The UN is likely to pass a resolution giving the Palestinian Arabs living in Judea and Samaria statehood, and this resolution could only be voided by a U.S. veto, which veto may not be forthcoming.  As wicked as such a failure to veto would be, Tobin fails to see that the Oslo two-state solution was ill-conceived from the beginning, and could only have a bad end.  

This writer would instead use as a parallel the creation of the Golem in Jewish folklore. The Golem looked like a person, but like Frankenstein, "it" was not a man. Rather, the Golem was conjured into existence by the pride and magical thinking of its creator.  Likewise, the Palestinian Authority (PA) and Gaza under Hamas control were, to some degree, products of the magical thinking of various Israeli and American leaders who believed that a two state solution to the tensions between Israel and the Palestinian Arabs was possible.

It looked like a solution, it was ratified by Bill Clinton at the White House standing with glowing approval September 13, 1993 as Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and PLO terrorist leader Yasir Arafat shook hands.  This historic handshake was the direct result of earlier talks begun in Oslo, Norway between the parties.  The deal symbolized by the handshake was portrayed by the NY Times and pundits throughout our land as though it were a solution; and it was embraced by Israel and a whole series of American leaders both Dems and Republicans from the 1990’s until the present.

But ultimately the two state “solution” was a magical creation out of magical thinking.  It was generated by a wish, not by a reality.  It moved forward claiming to be "real," but it was a chimera disguised as reality.  It was based on mere words, and pseudo-documents, not on eternal verities. So, for example, if the Ten Commandments is correct (and it IS more than correct, as it contains the moral law of Almighty God) then "thou shall not murder" is a bedrock truth, and not negated because the murderer claims his/her action is a consequence of political differences.

Anyone who takes it into their own hands to murder innocent others cannot excuse himself by citing some political concern. We negotiated with murderers who should be punished, not negotiated with.  The murderers were not put to death by Israel, but held as prisoners and later exchanged at various times in negotiations with the PLO.  PLO murderers should be put to death, executed like any other criminals would be who commit a heinous premeditated murder.

Thus the words of congeniality and "peaceful coexistence" – handshakes between Rabin and Arafat --  were not built upon reality, but upon mere words.  In light of this back-looking clarity, let us look at what  Talmudic literature has to say about the Golem

"According to one story, to make a Golem come alive, one would shape it out of soil, and then walk   or dance around it saying combination of letters from the alphabet and the secret name of God. To "kill" the Golem, its creators would walk in the opposite direction saying and making the order of the words backwards.

"Other sources say once the golem had been physically made one needed to write the [Hebrew] letters aleph, mem, tav, which is ‘emet’ and means 'truth,' on the Golem's forehead and the Golem would come alive. Erase the aleph and you are left with mem and tav, which is ‘met,’ meaning 'death',"

Oslo... was built on an unwarranted optimism about the goodwill that well-intentioned people could generate in the mad world of medieval Muslim manias that characterize Arab civilization.
Thus, to draw the parallel to its conclusion, the two state solution and the documents that moved it forward -- the agreements -- were not worth the paper they were written on. More civilian Jews have been killed since the two state solution became the official U.S. and Israeli policy in the 1990’s than in all the years from the re-creation of Israel in 1948 up to the Oslo Accords and the fateful handshake in 1993.   (This writer will never forget the ignorance disguised as generosity of Mort Zuckerman for buying Israeli greenhouses and giving them to Hamas when they took control of Gaza in 2005, which the Gazans promptly destroyed when they took over.)   When will people learn you do not reward evil behavior?

This two state solution happened because there was a strong element of magical thinking involved. Now those who, like this writer, had embraced the Oslo two-state solution can see clearly that it was wholly unrealistic, built on an unwarranted optimism about the goodwill that well-intentioned people could generate in the mad world of medieval Muslim manias that characterize Arab civilization.

The magical words of two state solutions and of Oslo, like the words that generated the Golem, must be repudiated and reversed.  If the PLO governed areas of Judea and Samaria are declared an independent country, it would automatically have the effect of superseding and cancelling UN Resolution 242 which declares the land now often called the 'West Bank' to be the subject of negotiations, not as land belonging to either Israel or the Palestinian Arabs occupying that land. 

At that point, Israel should forbid Palestinian Arabs from entering as guest workers based on work permits issued to Gazans and those in Arab occupied Judea and Samaria.   All Palestinian Arabs who want to work in Israel would have to apply for work visas as if they were foreign nationals.  Israel should no longer supply electricity or water to this "new country." They should cut off all trade with this "new country" or gradually phase out trade to the extent possible with the least damage to the Israeli economy.  Further, all Palestinian Arabs living in Judea and Samaria should then be portrayed as unlawful foreign nationals living on Israeli soil and subject to expulsion, to be carried out to the degree possible.