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April 21, 2014

Andrew Silow-Carroll: Passoverkill? Suggestions to make next year's seders even more culturally sensitive

Sara Israelsen Hartley: Seeking the Divine: An ancient connection in a new context

Christine M. Flowers: Priest's execution in Syria should be call to action

Courtnie Erickson: How to help kids accept the poor decisions of others

Lizette Borreli: A Glass Of Milk A Day Keeps Knee Arthritis At Bay

Lizette Borreli: 5 Health Conditions Your Breath Knows Before You Do

The Kosher Gourmet by Betty Rosbottom Coconut Walnut Bars' golden brown morsels are a beautifully balanced delectable delight

April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review

After peace talks collapse, will Israel be forced to take unilateral steps?

By Sean Savage





JewishWorldReview.com | With the recent collapse of the U.S.-brokered peace negotiations, the Palestinian leadership has embarked on a broad plan of unilateral action to gain recognition of a Palestinian state and to isolate Israel internationally. Couple those developments with the Palestinian Fatah movement's unity pact with the terrorist group Hamas, and Israel is facing a complex new reality. Without peace talks, what options does Israel have left? Will Israel be forced to take its own unilateral steps?

"If [an] agreement is unachievable, then moving independently to shape the borders of Israel is the better course," Amos Yadlin, a retired Israeli Air Force general and former head of the Israel Defense Forces Military Intelligence Directorate, told JNS.org. "While it is not the [ideal] alternative, it is better than the status quo or a bad agreement [with the Palestinians].

Yadlin, who now serves as director of the Institute for National Security Studies (INSS), is among a growing number of respected Israeli leaders putting forth proposals for unilateral steps.

Yadlin argues that Israel has more than the two options usually discussed—a peace agreement and the status quo. According to Yadlin, Israel's four strategic options are as follows: a peace agreement along the parameters established by former U.S. President Bill Clinton at Camp David in 2000, an "unacceptable" peace agreement on Palestinian terms, a status quo in which the Palestinians can dictate their own terms, or a status quo in which the Israelis dictate their own terms.

Yadlin argues that while the Clinton parameters—which include the Palestinians agreeing to end the conflict and give up both the "right of return" of Palestinian refugees and dividing Jerusalem—are Israel's "best option," it is "highly unlikely" that such an agreement will ever be realized.

Click photo to download. Caption: An Israeli soldier comforts a Jewish resident while evacuating the Israeli community of Morag during the August 2005 unilateral Israeli disengagement from Gaza. Unilateralism has been a taboo subject in Israel since the perceived failure of the Gaza disengagement due to the rise of the terrorist group Hamas there, but a growing number of respected Israeli leaders are proposing unilateral moves in the wake of the recent Palestinian unity pact between Fatah and Hamas. Credit: Israel Defense Forces.

Instead, Yadlin believes that Israel should promote an "Israeli option" that preserves Israel's objectives to remain a "Jewish, democratic, secure, and just state." He said this move allows Israel to "independently shape its own borders" with a strategy towards "advancing a two-state solution."

In this scenario, Yadlin said Israel would "withdraw from heavily populated Palestinian areas to the security barrier, keeping the Jordan Valley for security reasons.


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"[This would leave] 70 to 80 percent of the West Bank to the Palestinians and allow Israel to keep 70 to 80 percent of the major settlement blocs," Yadlin told JNS.org. Unilateralism, however, has been a taboo subject in Israel for many years since former Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's unilateral withdrawal from the Gaza Strip in 2005, which many Israelis—especially on the right—look back upon as a failure due to the rise of Hamas there. Sharon suffered a stroke before he could implement plans for unilateral moves in the West Bank.

As such, Israel is likely to be cautious in considering any unilateral plans, especially given that the status quo still favors Israel.

"I don't see the Israelis necessarily making any unilateral moves at this moment. The collapse of the peace talks wouldn't prompt any immediate action from the Israelis, because there is no immediate threat," Jonathan Schanzer, a Middle East expert and vice president for research at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, told JNS.org.

Nevertheless, with the ongoing unity talks between Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud Abbas's Fatah Party and the terrorist group Hamas, along with recent unilateral actions by the PA through the United Nations and other international avenues, Israel may soon realize it does not have a viable partner for peace—possibly spurring a unilateral move.

"Those are the things that I think could prompt a response from Israel," Schanzer said.

Other prominent Israelis have come out with their own unilateral plans of action.

Historian and former Israeli ambassador to the U.S. Michael Oren said in an interview in February—while peace talks were still ongoing—that Israel needs to have a "Plan B" like the Palestinians do.

"The two-state solution is the preferred solution. And if we can reach a negotiated agreement with the Palestinians that is permanent, legitimate and assures Israel's security, that is of course of the preferable choice," Oren told the Times of Israel.

"However, the Palestinians have intimated that if they can't reach a negotiated solution with us they then have a Plan B, and their Plan B is a binational state. And I think it's important that we also have a Plan B," he said.

Meanwhile, Israeli Economy Minister and Jewish Home party leader Naftali Bennett recently wrote a letter to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that urged him to annex a number of the major Israeli communities in the West Bank, including Gush Etzion, Maale Adumim, Ofra, Beit El, and several more—which are home to a total of about 440,000 Israelis.

"These areas enjoy a broad national consensus and have security, historical, and moral significance for the State of Israel," Bennett wrote.

If Netanyahu does decide to pursue a unilateral course of action, one of his toughest sells might be with the international community, which has rejected previous Israeli unilateral moves such as the annexation of eastern Jerusalem or the Golan Heights.

In order to address this, Yadlin believes that Israel should offer the Palestinians a "fair and generous agreement" before taking any unilateral steps.

"The international community has to be convinced, as they were with [former Prime Minister Ehud] Barak in 2000 or [former Prime Minister Ehud] Olmert in 2008, that Israel really offers the Palestinians a fair deal," Yadlin told JNS.org.

After nine months of negotiations that produced little results, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has said that the U.S. will likely take a "pause" in its peace efforts.

Without peace talks holding back the Palestinians, it is clear that Abbas is seeking to shape his own legacy and future—one that may include reuniting the Palestinian people, which split under his watch during Hamas's bloody 2007 takeover of Gaza.

"You can make a very valid argument that all of these moves are designed to spook the U.S. and Israel and force them back to the table to yield more concessions. I would say that the trajectory is far from clear," Schanzer said.

Yadlin believes that Israel must be proactive and not allow the Palestinians, or anyone else, to dictate their terms to the Jewish state.

"[Unilateral action] is a move done out of a position of strength and the ability to shape your own destiny according to parameters that I believe are better for the state of Israel," he said.

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