Tuesday, January 25, 2011

I Wonder Who Was Out of Touch with Reality


The Palestinians had agreed to divide Jerusalem based on the Clinton peace plan and the Geneva Initiative maps, with slight modifications, according to maps found among the documents leaked to Al Jazeera, cartographers said.

The maps the Palestinians brought to the negotiating table had a number of changes made in them in favor of their position, said cartographers Shaul Arieli of the Council for Peace and Security and Yair Assaf-Shapira of the Jerusalem Institute for Israel Studies.

While the Geneva Initiative map left the Har Homa neighborhood in Israeli territory, the Palestinian maps had the neighborhood on the Palestinian side. The areas adjacent to Jerusalem, like the Etzion settlement bloc, which are assumed to be annexed to Israel, are larger in the Geneva Initiative map than in the Palestinian ones.

The Palestinian maps show that for every West Bank territory annexed to Israel, land is given to the Palestinians in compensation. For example, in the south of Jerusalem, the Palestinians receive areas near Kibbutz Ramat Rahel and in the north, areas near the Ramot neighborhood.

..."This map is reasonable as a stage in the negotiations," said Arieli, "but it is out of touch with reality. For example, giving the Palestinians land adjacent to Route 1, where the railway line to Jerusalem will pass, or cutting off the connection to Betar Ilit almost completely."

Maybe it was Arieli who was out of touch with reality?


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