The idea of Israel exporting democracy to its Arab neighbors always seemed like a far-fetched idea for this jaded blogger.
But the time is ripe for David Suissa’s hopeful 22-State Solution:
Israel can surely keep chasing the dream of peace with Hamas and the Palestinians, which would be wonderful if it ever happened. But if the world is really serious about responding to the revolution of Tahrir Square, then the real urgency is to stop ignoring the 99 percent of Arab victims not named Palestinians.
In other words, instead of the narrow-minded “two-state solution” mantra that is repeated ad nauseam, the future of the Middle East should revolve around a more just and inclusive “22-state solution,” whereby the nations of the region would gradually be exposed to the liberating and dignifying values of democracy. Maybe the United Nations, instead of issuing another condemnation of Israel, can send a mission to the Jewish state to pick up some pointers on how they might introduce democratic institutions and economic prosperity to the rest of the Middle East.
I’m not holding my breath. The industry of maligning Israel is a deeply popular one, and the obsession with Palestinian victimhood is a global phenomenon. Still, the wrenching process of “truth transformation” has begun. The fact that the freest Arabs in the Middle East live in Israel is a truth that Israel’s enemies cannot bear. In the post-Tahrir Square era, more and more Arabs will come to see that Israel was never the enemy — but a model to aspire to.
Can Israel allow radical Islam to fill power vacuums in Tunisia, Egypt, and possibly more places in the future, and not do something?
It’ll be an uphill battle, but I’m less grizzled to Suissa’s idea.
If you’re satisfied with a two-state solution, you need to think bigger.