Moshe Arens, former Defense Minister, and noted Israeli hawk, has endorsed a one-state solution for Israel/Palestine. It can be achieved in a matter of months. Israel should formally annex the West Bank and offer the Palestinians citizenship. As he puts it:
Adding another 1.5 million Muslims, the population of Judea and Samaria, to Israel's Muslim population would of course make the situation considerably more difficult. Would a 30-percent Muslim minority in Israel create a challenge that would be impossible for Israeli society to meet? That is a question that Israeli politicians, and all Israelis - Jews and Arabs alike - need to ponder.
Unlike the dire predictions heard so often, Israeli sovereignty over Judea and Samaria would not be the end of the State of Israel, nor would it mean the end of democratic governance in Israel. It would, however, pose a serious challenge to Israeli society. But that is equally true for the other options being suggested for dealing with the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. This option of Israeli sovereignty in Judea and Samaria merits serious consideration.
Of course, Arens is not interested in adding Gaza to the equation; he doesn't care about the former Philistine region from an Eretz Yisrael standpoint, and he doesn't want all those Arabs. The fact that the Palestinian people are located in both the West Bank and Gaza, and in other places around the world, means nothing to him. And it is not as if Arens is giving up on his credentials. The idea not to annex the territories was conceived by the Labor Zionists, and not by Herutniks of Arens ilk. He presumably would keep the same legal mechanisms in place to keep Israel Jewish – the law of return and the nationality law.
Still, there is an element of thinking-outside-the-box, and if the effect of the Arens' piece (he joins Reuven Rivlin here) is to think of different ways to end the Occupation, then that is a blessing in itself.
It sure beats proximity talks.