Jonathan Tobin, a neoconservative Zionist writer at Commentary magazine seems to think that Jews will be ‘ethnically cleansed’ from a new Palestinian state. However, as I have explained in a letter to him, his argument is flawed. Here’s what I wrote to him:
Your argument in your article “Abbas’ Vision of an Ethnically Cleansed Palestinian State” is flawed. You write “…that any Israeli who would call for the expulsion of Arabs from Israel is rightly branded as an extremist whose views are out of touch with the democratic values of the nation.”
The problem with this is that Arabs living in Israel are subject to Israeli law and jurisdiction whereas Jewish settlers living in the West Bank want to remain subject to Israeli laws and jurisdiction if and when there is ever a Palestinian state. Settlers remaining in the West Bank after the creation of a Palestinian state would not be prepared to subject themselves to the laws and jurisdiction of a Palestinian state if the settlements were included within the new Palestinian state.
It’s not so much a case of ‘ethnically cleansing’ the new Palestinian state but, rather, Jews living in the settlements not wanting to subject themselves to the laws and jurisdiction of the new Palestinian state and, therefore, leaving and returning to Israel or from wherever they originally came from.
Neoconservatives and Zionists have consistently argued when discussing Israel’s history that the Palestinians were never ‘ethnically cleansed’ from modern Israel – with all that that implies – but left as the state was being created. Now you are arguing that, when the state of Palestine gets created, Jews living within it are somehow going to be ‘ethnically cleansed’ when in reality they will simply prefer not to live under Palestinian laws and jurisdiction.
Unlike most Palestinians that fled to become refugees at the creation of Israel, Jews in the new state of Palestine will not be chased out at the point of a gun amidst threats of death. In fact there will be no ‘ethnic cleansing’ of Jews from a Palestinian state, only an orderly departure of those Jews that live in the West Bank who would prefer to remain Israeli and not become Palestinians.