The Israel Victory Project (IVP), an initiative by the Middle East Forum to resolve the Arab-Israeli conflict by steering U.S. policy toward backing an Israel victory over the Palestinians, has generated much controversy during its two-year lifespan. In order to clear up some misconceptions about IVP spread by its critics, here is a short guide to its its key precepts.
Why Israel Victory is needed:
- A quarter century of the "peace process" has left Palestinian-Israeli relations worse than in 1993.
- Historically, conflicts end when one side goes through the bitter crucible of having to give up on its war goals.
- Should there be a Jewish state or not? Palestinian and Israeli aims are too incompatible for compromise; resolution requires one side to give up its aims, i.e., to lose.
- Palestinians will only achieve their potential after giving up their irredentist delusion; that will finally liberate them to focus on developing their own polity, economy, society, and culture.
What the Israel Victory Project is:
- A paradigm shift away from the "peace process" which rewards Palestinians even as they pursue eliminationist goals.
- A call on Israel to adopt a policy of victory over its enemies and then seek international support for such a policy, starting with the United States.
- A process that works within legal, moral, and humanitarian norms.
- A change of heart among Palestinians, increasing those who accept the Jewish state of Israel from the current 20 percent to over 50 percent.
- A weakening of the Palestinian Authority, Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and all those who reject the existence of Israel.
- A return to the Israeli policy of deterrence as practiced in 1948-93, using all tools: diplomatic, religious, economic, and military.
- A campaign to convince Palestinians the war is over and they lost.
- Replacing Palestinian violence and delegitimization with strongly worded letters to the editor and demarches to the Israeli foreign ministry
- A way forward for the Palestinians.
- An effort to get U.S. government backing for Israel to win.
What the Israel Victory Project is not:
- A call for the annihilation of Palestinians or World War II-style total victory.
- A formal declaration of surrender by the Palestinians.
- A formal declaration of victory by Israel.
- A discussion of tactics.
- A program for final resolution of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. IVP is solution agnostic: those favoring a two-state solution, a one-state solution, confederacy, autonomy, etc., are all welcome.
- A quick fix. Changing Palestinian attitudes is a long process.