In an op-ed for the New York Times, Israel’s Deputy Defence Minister Danny Danon has called upon Israel to annul the Oslo Accords. Danon says that despite repeated rounds of negotiations over the past 20 years, ever since Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin stood next to PLO leader Yasser Arafat and President Bill Clinton in front of the White House to sign the Accords real peace has become more distant. Accordingly, he believes the Israeli Government must confess that it has made a mistake and the Oslo process has failed.
Danon writes, “Only by officially annulling the Oslo Accords will we have the opportunity to rethink the existing paradigm and hopefully lay the foundations for a more realistic modus vivendi between the Jews and Arabs of this region.”
Danon believes that the failure of the Oslo process does not stem from Israel’s “lack of will and persistence” but instead from the fact that the PLO and the Palestinian Authority have never recognized Israel as homeland for the Jewish people, a fact that no grand statements, celebrations nor cosmetic changes in the Palestinian National Charter can change. According to Danon, this Palestinian intransigence is what has led to the failure of Israel’s attempts to achieve peace with conferences, secret negotiations, unilateral disengagements and joint security patrols.
Haaretz newspaper reported on Danon’s article, highlighting his proposal for a “three state solution,” which maintains some level of Palestinian autonomy and keeps Israel responsible for security in various parts of the West Bank. Following an initial period, the proposal entails that West Bank residents develop their community as part of an agreement involving Egypt and Jordan while Gaza residents work with Egypt to create a community that provides Palestinians with “full civil authority” acceptable by all parties.
Danon has been highly critical of the two-state solution in the past, saying that if a deal is ever brought to vote at the Knesset it will be rejected. During an interview with the Times of Israel last June, Danon remarked that Netanyahu only called to renew negotiations with the Palestinians because he knows they will never result in any settlement.