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One State for Two Peoples?

Yonoson Rosenblum

Counterintuitive, brash, original. All are good ways to describe Caroline Glick. Her latest book, advocating for one state, both for Israelis and Palestinians, may be her most inventive argument yet.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Now I can finally answer affirmatively one of the questions I’m asked most frequently. Whenever I’m introduced as a Jerusalem Post columnist prior to delivering a speech, I can count on at least one member of the audience approaching me afterward and asking, “Do you know Caroline Glick?” Glick is the paper’s superstar, its must-read columnist, and her popularity extends far beyondIsrael’s borders.

Last week I spent several hours with her discussing the imminent release of her new book, The Israeli Solution: A One-State Plan for Peace in the Middle East. I always find it easier to interview people if I have some feel for who they are. Fortunately, Glick and I quickly found enough common elements in our background to ease the subsequent discussion.

She grew up in the same Hyde Park neighborhood ofChicagowhere I spent four years in college at theUniversityofChicago. Her family attended the same synagogue where my grandfather and great-uncle served as president. And we had similar Zionist upbringings.

While still in grade school, she tells me, she grew disillusioned with American Jewry in the aftermath of the 1982 Sabra and Shatila massacre, in which Christian Phalangists killed Palestinians in revenge for the assassination of newly elected Lebanese president Bashir Gemayel. She was appalled by the readiness of American Jewry to accept blame uponIsraelfor not having anticipated a possible Phalangist attack.

Immediately after graduating from ColumbiaUniversityin 1991, Glick made aliyah and enlisted in the Israel Defense Forces, where she served as an officer for over five years. Initially, she was in the IDF legal corps, where she edited and contributed several chapters to Israel, the Intifada, and the Rule of Law, a volume makingIsrael’s case under international law. After the signing of the 1993 Oslo Accords, she served as coordinator of negotiations with the Palestinians for civil affairs.

Oslowas a major turning point for her. “Oslowas a strategic error of Biblical proportions,” she tells me. “When I read the accords for the first time, I lost my faith inIsrael’s leaders. They had conceded so many ofIsrael’s core rights that until that point had even never been subject to debate —Jerusalem, our national rights to Judea andSamaria, the freedom of action of our military.

“Until then I had idealized the IDF in a very childlike way, imagining that all soldiers were Yoni Netanyahu [commander of theEntebberaid], and thatIsrael’s leaders were modern-day King Davids. At that moment, I grew up. I felt I could have done better and realized that I had to trust myself.” 

 

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