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Netanyahu Will Ignore Arab League's Land-Swap Proposal

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's ideology will prevent him from accepting the pragmatic Arab League peace proposal, writes Akiva Eldar.
Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu gestures as he speaks during a Likud party meeting at the Knesset, the Israeli parliament, in Jerusalem April 22, 2013. REUTERS/Baz Ratner (JERUSALEM - Tags: POLITICS) - RTXYVXD

The April 30 announcement by Qatari Prime Minister Hamad bin Jassim Al Thani that the Arab states agree in principle to a land swap between Israel and Palestine, based on the 1967 border lines, failed to stir any particular excitement among Israel’s top political offices. That is a natural reaction, given the views of those leaders — it’s obvious they cannot trade sovereign Israeli territories for other territories that they also regard as their own and call “Judea and Samaria,” despite the fact that the rest of the world defines them as “occupied territories.” This is a non-starter. Even a child understands that in order to trade stamps with a friend, both of them have to at least agree that each is the proprietor of his own collection. As far as Israel is concerned, it owns most of the other side’s stamps, as well.

In a previous article, I noted that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu strenuously objects to recognizing the June 4, 1967 lines as a basis for discussion from which to launch negotiations on mutual exchanges of land. His stand is deeply rooted in the revisionist worldview on which he was raised and educated.

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