Immediate adoption by the government of this plan – in its entirety — will help restore calm and provide Israel with benefits in the local, regional and international arenas.
Rolling in against the background of a frozen peace process, recurrent waves of Palestinian terror have exposed Israel’s failure to guarantee the welfare and security of its citizens, both within the Green Line and on the West Bank. The security of Israel’s citizenry is a key element in its overall national defense. Israel must immediately launch an integrated military-political-civil initiative to guarantee it.
This plan, put forward by Commanders for Israel’s Security, offers a roadmap to extricate Israel from the current impasse, relax tensions and improve the security and political situation of the State of Israel. Members of the movement, veterans of the IDF, the Israel Security Agency (Shabak), the Mossad and the Police, united in their concern for Israel and its people, bringing to bear their military expertise in a variety of fields, have formulated this plan in the wake of months of in-depth analysis.
The plan would enhance personal and national security through separation from the Palestinians (to the extent possible), while retaining full security control in the West Bank until a final status agreement is reached — all while preserving the conditions which will allow for a negotiated peace deal with the Palestinians.
The plan is informed by the following assumptions:
- There is currently no feasibility for the establishment of a demilitarized Palestinian state alongside Israel within the framework of a final status agreement based on the principle of “two states for two peoples”.
- Terror cannot be stamped out by force alone. It is also untrue that incitement is the sole cause of terror. Terrorism draws on a variety of social, nationalist and religious sources, and is amplified by a sense of despair.
- The illusion of the status quo: If the peace process remains frozen it will lead to new rounds of violence, deterioration in security and increased political isolation. It may render the two-state solution impractical.
- The situation on the West Bank requires the continued deployment of the IDF until satisfactory security arrangements are put into place within the framework of a final status agreement.
- Israel is strong enough that it can – and must – launch an independent initiative aimed at changing the situation dramatically and improving its standing in the regional and international arenas.
Alongside detailed security recommendations, therefore, the plan advocates complementary economic and political steps, simultaneously addressing the West Bank, Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip.
Members of the movement have no illusions that the situation can be changed overnight. Only an integrated effort combining military and civil-economic measures in the West Bank, Jerusalem and Gaza can bring about significant, sustainable improvements in Israeli security. Isolated actions in one field or in a single geographical area are not enough to confront the complex challenge facing the State of Israel. At best, such actions may have a short term effect – or no effect at all. In the worst case they might create new problems.
The strength of the plan lies in its practical recommendations; measures designed to bring about significant change without engaging in futile debate as to whether or not we have a negotiating partner, while preserving conditions for future negotiations with the Palestinians on a permanent status arrangement when circumstances allow.
The movement is united in its view that immediate adoption by the government of this roadmap in its entirety, along with steps to begin its implementation, will help restore calm and provide Israel with benefits in the local, regional and international arenas.
We therefore submit this plan to Israel’s decision makers and the general public for consideration.