Below is a letter I wrote to Mr Avigdor Lieberman and Mr Ahmed Tibi. As I write, I express my views today (they may change). You may or may not agree with them. You are welcome to respond as you wish, your opinions interest me, the main thing is to preserve the culture of speech.
I understand that it may be that Mr. Lieberman and Mr. Tibi will not have time to read my letters answer them, and will turn this role over to their assistants. This is why I wrote: "To Mr. Lieberman, Mr. Tibi and their teams of assistants." I will not be hurt. However, I hope I get some answer. Thank you in advance!
To Mr. Lieberman, Mr. Tibi, and their teams of assistants, hello!
Who am I?
Let me introduce myself: My name is Yossi Patt. I am 64 years old, a resident of Ramat Gan, a retired software engineer. I tell a little more about myself in my blog: yossipatt.com that I wrote last year.
Why am I writing to you?
In my blog, I intend to write a post titled "Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Politics and Did Not Dare to Ask". This letter (and the answer, if any), will be addressed to M Ahmed Tibi and M Avigdor Lieberman. I most boldly dare to think that this letter may interest you. Why both of you? After all, your opinions are completely different! And you are 180% different people? Well, this is not my opinion! You have something in common, and your opinion interests me because you are both intelligent, honest people as much as one can be in politics, honest, not hypocritical, and not demagogic. And this is a rare commodity in the landscape of Israeli politics. As an extreme opposite example, I would give Mr Aryeh Deri.
On top of that, Mr. Tibi, I like your response to attacks against you with tolerance and a sense of humor, rather than aggression. For example, I remember that an ultra-Orthodox member of the Knesset once attacked you and spoke to you in Arabic in his speech (even though it was not his language). A few days after that, you delivered a speech in which you responded to him... in Yiddish! 😊
The coalition crisis
As an ordinary citizen, I wanted to tell you that I am anxious about our beloved country's fate, which is not conducted after several consecutive elections, without a budget and more when it has to deal with a severe occupational and health crisis. And what do I hear in the news? Two or three parties with no real ideological connection united (for electoral considerations), one retired and formed a new party (knowing that its current party would not pass the blocking percentage), one party precludes any possibility of forming a coalition majority, "Yes with Bibi", "By no means without Bibi", "without Bibi but maybe with Bibi after the election" ... Gentlemen, is this the issue?
The root of the problem is with our method: a parliamentary regime with a relative electoral system. A similar problem existed in France in 1958 during the Fourth Republic, until De Gaulle arose and in two referendums (one in 1958 for the establishment of the Fifth Republic and one in 1962 for the President's direct election) changed the system.
I am not saying that the French model should be imitated, but what is clear is that the method should be replaced. Yet no party offers it. Everything is talked about, and it is not! Why? Is it not time for us that some De Gaulle arises among us who would prefer the state consideration over his party's narrow and momentary interest?
Review and critic of all proposed solutions to the Middle East conflict
1) Maintaining the existing situation
This is what our leader has chosen without explicitly declaring it, of course. Netanyahu does not want and cannot deny the Oslo Accords, signed by the State of Israel, but rejects the continuation of the process that has been frozen since the assassination of the late Rabin on various excuses. I do not know what he expects. The situation is unstable in Gaza with its 2 million residents. In the Palestinian Authority, the unreserved US policy toward us may change with a new president's election.
We can no longer go on like this. History has taught us that a government based on always winning on the battlefield will end up losing one day (Napoleon, Hitler). And Israel's survival only through its nuclear deterrent scares me.
2) "Two states for two peoples" solution:
It does not seem to me either: it is not two states and that it is not two peoples.
- It is not two states: it will be three states: there is no chance that a Palestinian state that includes Gaza and the Palestinian West Bank will be sustainable. Already today, we have seen that Hamas and not the Palestinian National Authority have taken over Gaza. And also, remember the example of divided Pakistan, whose eastern territory became Bangladesh after a bloody war.
These are not two peoples: perhaps the Druze and the Circassians will want their independence one day.
3) Annexation of the West Bank without granting rights to its Palestinian residents:
This is not the democracy we are so branding. This is a democracy for only a small majority, which may be a minority in the future, due to demography in favor of the Palestinians. It has a name: it is an apartheid state, as our enemies say. So, what if it's an apartheid state, you may ask me? I'm not afraid of words! It is also that it will not guarantee lasting peace. There will be revolts from the Arab residents, and this will be a "state of terror" on both the West Bank and Gaza, no less than the one described by the opponents of a two-state solution.
4) The annexation of the West Bank and Gaza with the granting of rights to Palestinian residents:
This is a solution that is sometimes mentioned in the media but is not proposed by any party. I will be told: this is the end of Zionism! This is the end of Israel! But maybe, I say: "maybe" is the only option for peace, despite all the problems involved. Perhaps a return law for Palestinians will also be enacted, which will exist alongside the Law of Return for the Jews of the World.
There are bi or multinational countries in which the various peoples live in peace, all of which share a common destiny and each maintains its own separate culture: Britain, Indonesia... Tell me there are also those who have failed: the USSR, Yugoslavia, ... In France, where I was born, as is well known, there is the problem of immigrants, most of them from North African countries. (The cynics among us will say that not only the Zionists, but also the Arabs are slowly taking over other countries and peoples.) Even there, I am less pessimistic than the extreme right and actually welcome the immigrants.
Between the ages of 25 and 32, I lived in France. The few friends I had then were either Jews (which is, after all, natural) or Arabs. I said this to an Arab friend who replied: "We have a similar mentality. The relations between the Jews and the Arabs were excellent until Zionism began." In Israel, too, I try to connect with Israeli Arabs and Palestinians, and I hope to see the day when Isaac reconciles with Ismael.
I would like to read your comments:
- What are your comments on the topics I raised?
- How do you see the future of our relationship with the Arabs?
- What is your vision for the State of Israel?
Thank you so much for reading my letter.