The Five Strangest Solutions to the Arab-Israeli Conflict
In just a few weeks, statesmen from around the world will convene at an international peace conference in Annapolis, Maryland, to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The conference will coincide with the sixtieth anniversary of the UN's historic decision to partition … Read More
In just a few weeks, statesmen from around the world will convene at an international peace conference in Annapolis, Maryland, to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The conference will coincide with the sixtieth anniversary of the UN's historic decision to partition Palestine into two states. Yet after six decades of diplomatic failures and fruitless peace plans, the attendees look set to consider only warmed-over versions of the same stale and unimaginative "two-state solution."
It's time to consider daring new ideas and radical new solutions. To that end, I present to you the five strangest proposals to end the Arab-Israeli conflict. Olmert and Abbas, please take note.
Peace of Mind
According to the International Meditation Society of Israel, peace between Israel and her neighbors can be achieved without protracted negotiations or conferences. The key is transcendental meditation (TM). Practitioners of TM—including, famously, the Beatles—believe that by turning inward, one is able to unite with "the Source of all Being" and spread kindness all around. If enough people in a society practice TM, hatred and violence will dissipate.
Alex Kutai, a leader of the TM movement in Israel, has done the math. Kutai has determined that bringing peace to the entire Middle East will require that the square root of one percent of the region's population undertake transcendental meditation.
During Israel's 2006 war with Hizbullah, Kutai dispatched a "squadron" of 65 TM practitioners into the war zone to create a spiritual force shield of invincibility around the north of Israel. Kutai has challenged the government of Israel to demonstrate its commitment to peace by assemble 265 TM practitioners around the country. Two-hundred sixty-five is the square root of one percent of seven million, and thus should be sufficient to bring peace to Israel/Palestine. The government of Israel has yet to finance even a single practitioner of TM.
The No-State Solution
Forget the two-state vs. one-state debate. It is time to consider the anarchist-inspired no-state solution. Conflict between Israel and her neighbors is a result of the divisive and coercive influence of state power, the reasoning goes. Peace will come only when the the people of Israel/Palestine assemble into a non-authoritarian cooperative community of free individuals.
In Israel, political groups like Anarchists Against the Wall, Israeli National Traitor Anarchists, and Amoria have been at the forefront in advocating for this solution. According to Amoria, "AMORIA is the intentional community that we wish to create in Kna'an, the land that is called Israel by some and Palestine by others. We are anarchists, so we are opposed to the state system that oppresses all peoples on the planet and the planet itself. We sidestep this semantic political conflict by advocating not a one-state solution, or two-state solution, but a NO-state solution in the Land of Canaan."
Weed for Peace