February 22, 2011
If Binyamin Netanyahu's govenment, and its lobby in Washington, were rational they would be rushing to plan Israel's evacuation from the occupied territories, and encouraging the establishment of a Palestinian state in the West Bank, Gaza and East Jerusalem.
That is because they would understand that the Arab revolution will not stop at the gates of the West Bank, especially when it is the occupation that unites virtually all Arabs and Muslims in common fury.
As for the Palestinians themselves, they are watching the revolutions with a combination of joy and humiliation. Other Arabs are freeing themselves from local tyrants while they remain under a foreign occupation that grows more onerous every day -particularly in East Jerusalem. While other Arabs revel in what they have accomplished, the Palestinians remain, and are regarded as, victims.
It is not going to last. The Palestinians will revolt, just as the other Arabs have, and the occupation will end.
But it is up to the Israelis to help decide how it will end (just as it was up to the Mubarak government and Egyptian army to decide whether the regime would go down in blood and flames or accept the inevitable).