By Mordechai Kedar
Palestinian territorial contiguity is dangerous for Israeli national security:
Over the years, many Israelis and others have adopted the Arab-Palestinian narrative that views territorial contiguity as a condition for the establishment of a viable Palestinian state. As a result of this narrative and its pervasiveness worldwide, efforts are made to insure that the West Bank Palestinians will have an integral territory from Mount Gilboa in the north to the outskirts of Beersheba in the south...
The central strategic goal of the state of Israel should be to permanently remain in Judea and Samaria and to prevent Palestinian territorial contiguity... Territorial contiguity will compromise Israel’s security for the following reasons:
Non-viability of PA governments. Experience has shown that PA governments do not resolutely and consistently act against terrorists. Political and media messages since 1994 have proven that neither the PLO nor Hamas have prevented terrorism and the proliferation of weapons. There also is no evidence that any Palestinian government will prevent terrorism, even if Israel withdraws all the way to the Green Line. A further danger is the possibility of a Hamas takeover in Judea and Samaria and the creation of a terror state like the one in the Gaza Strip.
Rockets. Territorial contiguity will enable weapons smuggled from Gaza to easily reach all parts of the West Bank and to be used against the surrounding major Israeli landmarks and cities. For example, Israel’s only international airport, nuclear reactor, and towns such as Petah Tikva, Kfar Saba, and Afula in addition to Jerusalem, Haifa and Tel Aviv will fall within rocket range.
Tunnels. After the completion of the security fence in the West Bank, the Palestinians are likely to dig tunnels along the perimeter, as they have done along the Gaza-Egyptian border. These tunnels can be used to smuggle explosives and terrorists in and out of Israel...
Territory. Transferring land to the Palestinians will remove the IDF presence from Palestinian towns. Two problems arise with this scenario. First, every strategic location Israel evacuates is at risk of becoming an arms depot and a haven for launching missiles into Israel. Second, any IDF operation against terror in these towns will require movement through hostile territory. This eliminates the element of surprise, essential for an operation’s success and forces the IDF to cope with explosives, mines and ambushes on the way to the target...
Water. Most of Israel’s water comes from an aquifer located under the Judea and Samaria. Palestinian sovereignty over the aquifer will create a grave water problem, compounded by the presence of hundreds of thousands of Israelis who will need to be evacuated from the settlements of Judea and Samaria.
Arab neighbors to the East. Palestinian territorial contiguity will cut off the strategically vital Jordan Valley from Israel, exposing it to dangers from the east - Jordan, Iraq and Iran. The threat posed by Iraq and Iran is thus greatly magnified by the loss of this territory.
Settlements. Retaining the rural areas in Judea and Samaria will significantly reduce the number of settlements to be dismantled, increase the chances that evacuation of settlements will be accomplished by agreement, decrease the expenditures for compensation and rebuilding, and limit the destructive repercussions on Israeli society. At present, there are serious social disruptions resulting from the events of Gush Katif, Northern Samaria and Amona. There is also a growing distrust and the resultant alienation from the political establishment and the democratic system by religious Zionists and settlers. Efforts should be made so that further withdrawals will be conducted in cooperation with the settlers and not in opposition to them. (After all these perfectly reasonable objections the author still believes and advocates possibility of creation of another Arab terrorist state on Jewish land! What is have to happen that would convince those ‘liberal’, if not self-hating, Jews that they need to regain self-pride and self-respect, and pay more attention to interests and the future of their own people? May be they will understand this: “It is our land!” Simple, isn’t it?)