Photo: Niv Calderon
We’ve been hearing “horrifying scenarios” recently regarding the possibility of Hamas taking over Judea and Samaria just like it did in Gaza. Yet is this possibility really that bad for Israel? We can argue that this would actually be a desirable development for us.
If this materializes, it would put an end to the false and dangerous negotiations with Fatah and with the Palestinian national movement, which makes pretenses of resolving the refugee problem, the Jerusalem question, etc. We need to admit, after rivers of blood have flowed here, that there is no possibility of resolving those issues, and only an irresponsible person would enter such dangerous situation, as was done in Oslo.
A situation whereby there is no dialogue between the sides would in fact prompt automatic separation from the Palestinians in Judea and Samaria as well; then, all those imaginary nightmare scenarios being spread around Israel, as if the Palestinians would wish to become a part of the State of Israel, would disappear. The parties to the conflict would part ways.
Cairo invites Fatah, Hamas to attend talks which would deal with establishment of PA unity cabinet ahead of January elections, integration of Hamas, Islamic Jihad factions into PLO
Hamas has no legitimacy and it is being boycotted around the world, including in the Arab world. Under such circumstances, it would be clear to everyone who the good guys and bad guys are in this story. The ambiguity that the Fatah movement was able to surround itself with so well would disappear.
Hamas is telling the truth, which the other organization hid well: We have no interest in Israel and we are uninterested in cooperating with it, just like most of us, Israelis, are no longer interested in ties with the Palestinians. In such state of affairs, the monthly fund transfers from Israel to the Palestinian Authority would of course come to an end, as would the Palestinian labor that is finding its way back into Israel. Each side would go to its own territory, and the settlements will remain in place.
Hamas will be the master of the house, as it is doing in Gaza. Fatah was never able to serve as a true “return address” in the territories, and always made an effort not to enforce its authority over other organizations.
Open border crossings
As the IDF will maintain its presence in the area, unlike in the Gaza Strip, the danger of missile attacks on Israel is not expected in the immediate future. In any case, regardless of whether Hamas is in power or not, other groups including Fatah are currently making efforts to transfer this simple missile technology to Judea and Samaria as well.
And here comes the last and most important point: Israel needs to open the border crossings between the West Bank and East Bank, that is, Jordan, in coordination with the Jordanians. This would be the same as opening the Rafah Crossing to Egypt. Just like Egypt will again get involved in the Gaza affairs, this needs to happen with the Jordanians too, and they know this.
Jordan would do a better job than Israel in monitoring the border and deciding who and what will enter Judea and Samaria. This will start signaling the solution to the Palestinian problem: Gaza under Egyptian responsibility, and the Palestinian Judea and Samaria under Jordanian responsibility.
By bringing back a type of Jordanian option into the picture, Israel will start moving towards a final-status agreement with the Palestinians: A security fence will separate us from them, with Egypt assuming growing responsibility in Gaza and Jordan assuming growing responsibility in the Arab areas of Judea and Samaria.
What will the Egyptians or Jordanians do with the deposit that will be handed back to them for the first time since 1967? Israel needs to aspire for this to be their problem. Regardless of whether they establish a state there (the Egyptians and Jordanians won’t let that happen) – this would no longer be our problem.