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Thursday, November 24, 2011

An alternative to the PA?

From Makor Rishon, translated by Jameel at The Muqata:

Exposé: Israel's Plan to Replace the Palestinian Authority

Makor Rishon's illustration
The first exposure of Israel's contingency plan to replace the Palestinian Authority.

Under this plan, supported by some of the government's ministers, Israel will establish an autonomy or Arab autonomous regions in Judea and Samaria, in response to unilateral moves by the PA which breach existing agreements.

Possibilities [of breaching agreements] include [the PA] setting up a joint government with Hamas, or returning to the track of unilateral declaration, as threatened by the PA in September.

The linchpin of the plan is based on Hebron's Sheikh Mukhtar Abu-Khader al-Jabri, who had long challenged the PA and even controls security forces. In recent years, al-Jabari cultivated his contacts with Israeli officials, including settlers. In this context, three months ago, he participated in a secret meeting in Tel Aviv which discussed the possibility of alternative forces that could replace the PA. The meeting was held at the home of former minister Rafi Eitan, who has longstanding ties with al-Jabari clan and other independent forces in Judea and Samaria. Also in attendance were Cabinet Minister Yisrael Katz, a representative of the General Security Service, historians, experts in Palestinian society and figures close to al-Jabari.

At the meeting, Al-Jabri presented details of his worldview that rejects the establishment of a Palestinian State -- he outlined his support for the establishment of an autonomous region which would rely on the State of Israel, and would be free of terrorism. He clarified that he, his staff and especially the Palestinian population are interested in improving their financial situation which greatly deteriorated due to PA policy. As an example, he noted that the PA completely destroyed the Hebron-area marble industry, many of whom made ​​their living from it in the Hebron mountain area, by taxing marble exports. He clarified that in addition to him, there are other area leaders that support his approach against the PA, if they knew that Israel would agree to cooperate with them. "I am not your collaborator. I am not Antoine Lahad or Bashir Gemayel, but I need to know if we act together, you will agree to recognize us and cooperate." To this end he asked that Israel will agree to issue identity cards to him and the rest of the population.

At this stage of the meeting, he passed the ball to the Minister Katz, who is considered close to Netanyahu. Those present at the meeting imply that Katz was represented Netanyahu's position. Katz made ​​it clear that he would not in any way grant Israeli citizenship to residents because it contradicts the basis of the Zionist idea. However, he noted that in the event that the PA violated the agreements, Israel would be liberated from them. And so "if there will be a unilateral move, we will evaluate recognizing them."
Read the whole thing.