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What would make the ideal Palestinian state?
Florida 6%
Idaho 19%
Massachussetts 22%
Oregon 3%
Utah 22%
Puerto Rico 25%

Votes: 31

 On the Establishment of a Palestinian State

 Author:  Topic:  Posted:
Oct 12, 2001
Recently, President Bush surprised many veteran political observers by giving tacit support to the idea of an independent Palestinian state. Bush's comments ignited predictable mouth-frothing outrage from the right and bemused puzzlement from the left. This is not a new idea; the Palestinians have always said that statehood is a key component of any Middle East peace deal, and it has been mulled over by several previous U.S. presidents, but in all prior cases, there was a Democratic administration in place. Bush's comments are unprecedented for a Republican president.

So has Bush thought this through clearly? And if so, where do we go from here?


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It is obvious to even the most amateur political observer that peace will not be achieved in the Palestinian/Israeli conflict until the Palestinian people are given a state of their own, where they have full control of the government, the land, and the infrastructure; a place where they can exist separately from the Israelis, with whom they have had an antagonistic relationship (to say the least.) Legions of folks on the political right become infuriated when this is suggested, but the fact of the matter is that it is a reality with which we must deal.

President Bush has taken the first step by acknowledging this reality and has put in motion the machinery to give a state to the Palestinians. The most important question is: Which state? Which state, and why? Is there one single state that stands out as the ideal candidate, or are there several to choose from? Let's take a look at some choices that immediately come to mind.


On its face, Florida might seem to be a tempting choice. Of all of our states, Florida is one of the closest to the Middle East, and its vast shoreline would greatly simplify the process of relocating the Palestinian people to their new state. Cruise liners and other large passenger boats could sail directly to Florida and easily unload their cargo. The temperature in Florida is similar to the conditions that the Palestinian people have become accustomed to. And having a neutral third nation situated between the United States and Cuba would help to defuse the perpetual tensions that have existed between these countries for so many decades.

Still, Florida is not the perfect choice. The weather is warm, to be sure, but it is also very humid .. much more humid than the Middle East! Furthermore, the Palestinians are likely to unpleasantly surprised when they discover that they are living smack dab in the middle of Hurricane Alley and are forced to scatter like frightened rabbits, boarding up their windows and stocking up on groceries. Additionally, handing Florida over to the Palestinians would instantly make Palestine the most heavily-armed nation on Earth; I'm not sure that this is the greatest of ideas, particularly in the current political climate.

Furthermore, Florida is heavily-populated as it is; introducing countless new residents is likely to cause logistical problems. We would certainly have to relocate some of its current residents to other parts of the country. Florida is also inundated by obnoxious tourists, the presence of which would likely be unwelcome by the new Palestinian government. Finally, a large part of Florida's existing winter population consists of so-called "snow birds"; really old people who live in the state during the winter months so that they can escape the inhospitable climates of places like "Beaver Lick, Minnesota." Old people are generally intolerant of Mideasterners; they refer to them as "squirrely devils" and "Mohammadists." This would introduce too much tension into the new nation.

Clearly, Florida is out of the running as the future location of the new Palestinian state. We must look elsewhere.


Here's an attractive prospect. Idaho has almost none of the population or infrastructure problems that Florida has. In fact, outside of Idaho residents, virtually nobody has the foggiest idea of what's in Idaho, or for that matter, where Idaho is even located. When asked the question: "What is Idaho?", 82% of American high-school juniors responded "The emperor of Japan during World War II." This much is clear: if Idaho is turned into the new Palestinian state, it will not be missed. The sparse population of Idaho already hates the government anyway; perhaps now would be a good time to wash our hands of them and offer the state up as a sacrifice in the name of Mideast peace.

However, for all of its advantages, Idaho has some key flaws. First of all, I believe that the state is landlocked, though I would have to look at an atlas to confirm this. This would make trade issues for Palestine unnecessarily difficult. Without seaports, Palestine will become heavily dependent on goods and services from the United States and Canada; this is something that they are likely to view with resentment. Secondly, the weather in Idaho is virtually nothing like the weather in the Middle East. The Palestinians are likely to be more upset by the brutally cold winters than they would be by the humidity of Florida. As a people, they have not evolved to survive in such extreme conditions, and situating them in such a climate would be more genocidal than generous.

So Idaho's out. Who's next?


Ahh, Oregon. The Mighty Duck State solves many of Idaho's problems; it has a coastline to allow for easy trade, and its winters are much milder than those of Idaho (although still a rather drastic change from the Middle East.) The rainier climate in Oregon (as compared to the Middle East) will allow Palestine and its residents to pursue agriculture in ways that are currently unavailable to them. While Oregon has a fairly large population, it is not prohibitively populated; those current Oregonians that do not wish to cohabitate with their new Palestinian overlords should have no problems relocating to other locations in the United States.

It wouldn't be easy to give away Oregon, but it also wouldn't be that difficult, either. Oregon is a pretty state, but let's face it .. there's not a lot there. There are very few national parks and monuments, the larger cities are pretty much nondescript, and like the rest of the Pacific Northwest, Oregon has no professional sports teams. The United States would be giving lots of trees, hills, and grassy plains, but it's not as if we haven't got more of those. There's more than enough purple plains and fruited mountain majesties to go around; I'll bet that giving up Oregon in the name of ending strife is something that the majority of Americans would be willing to do (assuming that Oregonians are not included in the poll.)

Still, domestic politics may well prevent the President from dropping Oregon from the Union. The radical right in the United States is rapidly dwindling, but they do remain heavily armed. There is a very real possibility that turning Oregon into Palestine could ignite a small-scale civil war in this nation. While Bush showed admirable cajones in his statement on a Palestinian state, it is unclear if he will have the moral fortitude to cede a state on the mainland. This leaves only a few options, the most obvious of which is

Puerto Rico

The advantages of Puerto Rico as a Palestinian state are numerous; the disadvantages are virtually nonexistant. It's true that Puerto Rico is not currently a state; however, Congress and the President have the power to make it one. A majority vote in both houses of Congress and a signature from the President is all that is needed to make Puerto Rico the 51st state of the Union. We could then immediately cede it to the Palestinians, bringing our total back to the nice round number of 50. This, incidentally, is another reason not to give the Palestinians one of our existing states; it would result in a Union with 49 states, and that would just be .. odd.

I mentioned that one of Florida's advantages is that it is relatively close to the Middle East, compared to the rest of the American states. Puerto Rico is even closer. The climate is a bit warmer and more turbulent, but I'm sure that the Palestinians will enjoy it more than they would the climates of Idaho or Oregon. They would most likely be best-acclimated towards a more desert-like climate a la Nevada, but we cannot afford to give up Nevada; Americans will not travel to Palestine to gamble. Weather-wise, Puerto Rico is about the best we can do.

Some Puerto Ricans will likely be displaced by this, but many will remain. I predict that the Puerto Ricans will get along well with their new Palestinian government. Both peoples are swarthy and share the same affinity for moustaches. Hopefully, the government of Palestine will recognize what a generous offer we have made them and allow the U.S. military to continue to use the bombing range on Vieques Island; after all, these people have become accustomed to explosions and should not be quite as sensitive as the Puerto Ricans have demonstrated themselves to be.

If all goes as planned, in future years you may be able to open up a world atlas and see the Island of Palestine. We must seize this opportunity to put an end to this destructive conflict. I salute President Bush for his bold stance on this issue, and I implore the nation's leaders to get the ball rolling. The longer we ignore this issue, the longer the pointless fighting is going to drag on. We are in a position to end it. We cannot let this chance pass us by.


Canada (5.00 / 2) (#8)
by Craig McPherson on Fri Oct 12th, 2001 at 03:14:11 PM PST
I agree that it's probably neccessary to sacrifice one of our states in order to achieve peace, but let's not make it one of our GOOD states. I think Canada would be the ideal state to sacrifice to the Palestinians for a number of reasons.

Canada is the furtherest state away from the Middle East, and hence, from Palestine's traditional enemies and friends. Keeping Palestine well isolated from its enemies will help quelch future antagony before it begins, and keeping it isolated from its friends kill keep them from cooking up new anti-American schemes together. The only downside would be close proximity to Russia, but they'd have to go through Alaska to do so, and we could post large military forces there to prevent defection or other undesired intercourse.

Canada, although the largest state in terms of area, is one of the smaller states in terms of population and is dead-last in terms of population density. Fewer people would have be displaced if the state were given to Palestine. Also, Palestine wouldn't benefit from a large gift of transportation and communication infrastructure because for the most part Canada HAS no communication and transportation infrastucture.

Most of Canada is barren wasteland because of the climate and environmental hazards. This would keep Palestinian population small and confined into (God forbid, but you never know what we might have to do in the future) easily-bombable areas.

The lack of transportation and communication infrastructure and the difficulty of travel over the broken and mountainy terrain would prevent the various Canastine cities from conducting very much intercourse with each other, which could weaken the country as a whole. They'd perhaps fracture into warring citystates like in ancienct Greece and spend their time trying to destroy each other instead of trying to destroy Democracy.

Because of Canada's unsuitableness for agriculture, Canada is 100% dependent on foreign commerce and humanitarian aid to feed its citizens. If Canastine ever got out of hand, we could simply blockade food shipments into their country and they would be starved out within a year.

This decision isn't all tactical, though. I really do care about the safety and welfare of the Palestinian people, and I think Canastine would be an ideal situation for them. They're already used to living in a barren wasteland with no technology, no medicine, and no big cities, so all that would be changing for them would be the temperature.

And let's face it, Canada is just the most expendible. In fact, although Canada's induction as a state is all but complete, it's still not "official" on paper, so there'd be less paperwork involved. It would also bring us back down to an even 50 states (not counting Puerto Rico, which is a territory), and an even 100 Senators, which would make the math a lot easier.

If you want to know why Lunix is so screwed up, just take a look at the people who use it. Idiocy.

you have committed multiple fallacies (5.00 / 1) (#10)
by Anonymous Reader on Fri Oct 12th, 2001 at 07:15:47 PM PST
You have also munged facts beyond recognition, have abused punctuation, misspelled "grease", and generally made me blush violently at your embarrassing lack of insight into the Great White North of the Great Satan, eh.

for the most part Canada HAS no communication

Huh?! We have a French radio station to play Celine Dion and an English station to listen to Anne Murray. I remind you of the existence of hundreds of millions of USians who cannot summon one lucid sentence of French in reply to a question posed in English.

and transportation infrastucture

Huh?! Every city with a Hockey team is connected to every other city with a Hockey team. I remind you of the existence of many, many USian cities without a single Hockey team.

Obvious Answer: the Sudetenland (none / 0) (#9)
by CorporateRepublic on Fri Oct 12th, 2001 at 06:15:32 PM PST
There is absolutely no reason to give the Palestinians a state in the US. We should give them the Sudetenland.

I da ho. You da pimp. (none / 0) (#11)
by elenchos on Fri Oct 12th, 2001 at 07:45:34 PM PST
Idaho is still a good choice. It is indeed the most unruly and least loyal of the US states, and the most in need of a few new waders in the old gene pool, if you know what I mean. Let's just say the girls there tend to have a bit of an underbite, ok?

As far as ports and trade, Idaho does a fantastic business with British Columbia in hemp products and by-products, and is a leading exporter of methamphetamines. This means there is a whole range of opportunities for Palestinians of all kinds, from militiamen to skilled scientific lab workers to simple laborers. Though the Palestinians have a thing or two to learn about democracy, the Idahoans have even more to learn about it, and so they would again bring much that is sorely needed to the most degenerate and backward of US states.

The main hitch would be the natives. There are bunches of Native Americans in Idaho, and they've really gotten wise to the kind of tricks invaders use to yank their land out from under them. They are going to fight damn hard to keep what bits of their reservations they have left. So as long as the Palestinians can respect the way Idaho is currently partitioned, it all will be well. But if they start planting settlements on the rez, well, look out.

I do, I do, I do
--Bikini Kill

Yo ho. (5.00 / 1) (#12)
by poltroon on Fri Oct 12th, 2001 at 09:24:52 PM PST
If we've learned anything from the Israeli Palestinian conflict, it is that homelands simply don't work when enclaves of natives remain. So, while I'm all for the creation of a Palestinian state, a homeland, they deserve a completely empty state. Idaho would still be quite ideal, in terms of climate and privacy. I hope it's obvious where I'm going: the Native Americans deserve a state of their own too. There is no sense in the US suffering through decades of complaining and abuse inbetween allocations of homelands. It could all be taken care of at once. Native Americans could take Texas or Alaska. Unhappy Mexicans could take California. Similarly, unhappy Africans could take Alabama. Anarchists desperately need a homeland too; they could have Oregon, seal the borders and cease with their worrying.

Oh dear. (5.00 / 1) (#13)
by elenchos on Fri Oct 12th, 2001 at 11:45:36 PM PST
This is a lot of musical chairs. What if there is someone in all that who doesn't get a palce to go?

I think it's a good plan, but we're going to have to face up to the prospect of making somebody live in Canada. It was inevitable that that barren region would become populated some day.

So let's keep your plan, but put the displaced Californians in Canada. They will find it brisk, and will enjoy the stark silence of the wide-open Canadian wasteland. Any who survive the winter will be allowed to apply for statehood.

Where will the happy people be? Everywhere else?

I do, I do, I do
--Bikini Kill

one slight problem. (none / 0) (#24)
by linuxrulez on Tue Oct 16th, 2001 at 05:58:13 AM PST
Native Americans could take Texas or Alaska.
Well, we can't give away Texas. I thought we were only disccusing giving away states of the Union, not Third-World countries that happen to border Oklahoma, Louisiana, and New Mexico.

More sutable arrangement (5.00 / 1) (#14)
by legolas on Sat Oct 13th, 2001 at 11:09:39 AM PST
Giving the Palestinians a country in the United States and all is a good idea, but would undoubtably cause racial tensions, since Islam is being fingered as the enemy.

What would the most agreeable solution be, then?

Simple. Return Palestine to the Palestinians, and give Israel New York.

With an estimated Jewish population of 1.75 Million, New York is the city with the highest Jewish population in the world. In fact, The United States of America has more people of the Jewish faith then any other country of the world, Israel included. The infrastructure is in place to handle a large Jewish influx.

Also, with the recent variety of terrorist activity, and resulting backlash against arabs, the people of Israel would feel right at home.

Finally, rubbing shoulders with other New York notees, like Henry Kissinger and Madeleine Albright, the Israel Prime Minister Ariel Sharon will fit in well.

So, in summation, give the Palestinians back Palestine and give Israel New York. That should be an arangement that satisfies everyone.


Return Palestine to the Palestinians? (2.50 / 2) (#15)
by Anonymous Reader on Sat Oct 13th, 2001 at 06:55:28 PM PST
Last I heard, the jews came from Israel, and had to return it to themselves after the world stood by, allowing them to be butchered.

There were jews in palestine long before any palestinians showed up. Suggesting that the jews 'Go Home' to New York is denying them their rightful home in Israel. It also sounds like a justification for terror attacks on Israeli citizens, since the jews don't belong in the region, except as second class citizens under the caliphate.


Last I heard... (5.00 / 1) (#16)
by Anonymous Reader on Sat Oct 13th, 2001 at 07:23:05 PM PST
Last I heard, land claims to territory one's ancestors lived in 2000 years ago are laughed at everywhere in the world but Israel, where instead, they are used to justify ethnic cleansing.

Last I heard, (none / 0) (#17)
by Anonymous Reader on Sun Oct 14th, 2001 at 10:33:34 AM PST
The track record for treating jews like human beings is only just improving over these past 50 years. And if you listen to the mainstream Arab press, it's not likely to improve in the middle east anytime soon.

What's the difference between 2000 years and 50 years anyways? Is there a statute of limitations on wanting to get back into the land that was once yours until you were forcibly removed from it?

my ancestors (none / 0) (#18)
by Frithiof on Sun Oct 14th, 2001 at 11:46:31 AM PST
lived in what is now the USA's borders for centuries, possibly several millenia, before anyone else did. when are the native americans going to get their land back?

when the Jews get their land back, I think I should get my land back.


MY ancestors (none / 0) (#20)
by Anonymous Reader on Sun Oct 14th, 2001 at 11:53:02 AM PST
evolved out of Africa. I want my African stomping grounds back.

Not to mention the land that is rightfully mine in Ireland, England, Scotland, and France.

And, since before being Irish, my descendants were Vikings, I want my Scandinavian land too.

Jews? (none / 0) (#19)
by Anonymous Reader on Sun Oct 14th, 2001 at 11:49:30 AM PST
This conversation was about the state of Israel, not Jews. The state of Israel, as it stands, refuses to respect international laws, and allows state sponsored genocide.

And it is most disturbing that Israel uses US built F-16s and Apache gunships to do it. Somehow, I doubt that Americans would be very happy if the Germany let Israel set up shop Texas, and start killing the Texans with European built Tornados, all in the name of GREAT JUSTICE.
(Strange how "treating people like human beings" is a two-way street.)

How unlike the USA (none / 0) (#27)
by dmg on Fri Oct 19th, 2001 at 01:03:21 PM PST
The state of Israel, as it stands, refuses to respect international laws, and allows state sponsored genocide.

I am not saying that two wrongs make a right, however at the risk of seeming unpatriotic I feel I have to point out that the USA itself is no stranger to genocide. And seldom respects international laws.

time to give a Newtonian demonstration - of a bullet, its mass and its acceleration.
-- MC Hawking

Yes (5.00 / 2) (#21)
by Verminator on Sun Oct 14th, 2001 at 04:12:04 PM PST
The statute of limitations for homeland restoration was originally 28 years, much like the original US copyright law. This could be extended for an additional 28 years.

Homelands that were taken away after January 1st, 1978 fall under the Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act of 1998 and can be restored during the life +70 years of those who were living in said homeland when it was taken from them. The new law also affects the term extension of homelands taken between 1923 and 1977, extending the term from 28 to 67 years.

Israel was established on May 14th, 1948. Provided that they renewed their claim to the territory the Palestines will keep rights to the territory until May 14th, 2043. If they failed to renew their claim they lost their rights to homeland restoration on May 14th, 1978. Apperently they failed to do this as peace talks between Israel and Egypt happened shortly thereafter.

I'm not entirely certain what effects the DMCA has on the situation.

Whu-hu? (none / 0) (#23)
by Dexter Descarte on Mon Oct 15th, 2001 at 12:44:56 PM PST
There were jews in palestine long before any palestinians showed up.

Am I the only one who finds this statement absurd?

Jews are a religous group, palestinians are a geographical group, and semites are a racial group of which the vast majority of jews and palestinians are members of. The sons of Shem (one of Noah's sons) predate the creation of Israel even using biblical timelines. In fact the seperation between Hebrews, the sons of Issac, and Arabs, the sons of Ishmael, predates the founding of Israel. So non-jewish semites, Cannanites for instance, predate any Jewish claim to the area by millenia.

Israel --> NY (5.00 / 1) (#22)
by loverman on Sun Oct 14th, 2001 at 08:24:57 PM PST
Might have a winner here. In retrospect, recognizing the state of Israel wasn't the Truman administration's finest moment. Clearly the outcome was unjust for Palestinians. And by now it must be obvious that they aren't going to let it go. Nor it seems are Muslims from places as far away as Iran and Indonesia. That's pretty remarkable when you think about it. And formidable.

So rather than hang tough and continue giving them advanced weaponry, maybe we should consider inviting the Israelis to emigrate to the U.S. We'd enjoy a much needed economic shot in the arm with the infusion of talent. And the Israelis themselves would be far more productive here since they wouldn't have to spend half the GDP trying to secure themselves from aggrieved Palestinians and other offended Muslims.

Could be a win-win.

What is truth? - Pontius Pilate

Is Sharon a war criminal? (none / 0) (#25)
by Frithiof on Thu Oct 18th, 2001 at 03:01:14 PM PST
and is he fit to lead the Jews in Israel?


maybe not. unless of course some people believe that the Jews do not have to follow the same rules that the rest of the world has to.


Just a comment? (none / 0) (#26)
by Anonymous Reader on Fri Oct 19th, 2001 at 05:40:57 AM PST
There are no Israelians, just jewish terrorists.

It's not that simple (none / 0) (#28)
by Anonymous Reader on Mon Oct 22nd, 2001 at 12:29:09 PM PST
First of all, I'm not a native English speaker, so if my English is not very good, please forgive me.

I've read all this article and i'm very surprised about the ideas expressed on it. The middle east problem cannot be solved by a simple displacement of people.

The problem in the middle east it's too complex to be addressed with just moving the Palestinians or Israel. It is a religious problem, in fact a fanatism problem. For the Jews, that's their promised land, and Jerusalem their sacred city. They just won't move from there. They have their roots there, where they have been from the year 1000 BC. They were displaced by the romans because of a rebellion, and deported to several cities in the roman empire around the 2 century AC.

It was later, in the 7 century AC, that the arabs conquered Jerusalem. The cristian inhabitants of the region conversed to the islam, and that is how the palestinian were born. In fact, both have the same racial origin: both are semits.

When the II World War ended, and Israel was created, the palestinian who lived there were given full citizenship. It's after the Yon Kippur war, and the six days war that Israel conquers some regions from their neighbourgs. Their inhabitants are the palestinian that now reclaim a palestinian state.

But they don't want any state, they want to create an state on the territories they now control.

Jerusalem is the worst problem: it's a sacred city for the Islam. It's also a sacred city for the Jews. The Jews will never move from there if not forced to. Nor will the palestinians.

Perhaps the solution for Jerusalem would be to create an international zone there under control of UN. Just as Tanger was before WWII.

ha (none / 0) (#29)
by Anonymous Reader on Mon Oct 22nd, 2001 at 05:50:13 PM PST
I wonder when someone is going to get the idea that the Arabs and the Jews might try sharing the land... although the simple concept might be a little difficult for many to comprehend, I do think that it may calm things down over there.

on an unrelated note, in the Christian Bible, does it not state that the Jews had broken their covenant with God and are no longer deserving of Jerusalem? if this is 'true,' and just as valid as anything in the Torahs, then why isn't anyone acting upon this? perhaps Jerusalem would be better run by Christians and Muslims working together, rather than by folks who still live in 1,000 BC.


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