First Published February 1989
The following article appears exactly as it was written by Professor Beres 21 years ago. It is especially important to reconsider at this moment, when U.S. President Barack Obama, still-embracing the so-called Road Map, pushes
A pair of prominent Israeli commentators recently pointed out that continued control of the territories would have grave consequences for
In these assessments, Harkabi is certainly correct, but nowhere does he compare the risks to
If there were to be an Arab-ruled state in Judea/Samaria/Gaza, its danger to
These assessments, therefore, are hardly in
What, exactly, are the major strategic risks to
Ballistic missiles that could carry chemical warheads now exist in
I know. I visited
Ultimately, enemy ballistic missiles could carry nuclear weapons.
What about delivery systems?
Let us turn to
What delivery systems are available to
Let me be more precise. Should an independent
Among the anti-P.L.O. parties, most (e.g., Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine-General Command; Popular Struggle Front; the Abu Musa organization and Saiqa) are tied intimately to Syria, and one (Fatah Revolutionary Council) - known popularly as the Abu Nidal group - is linked to Libya. Samir Gosheh's Popular Struggle Front currently displays more independence from
Even the mainstream Fatah organization could spawn anti-Arafat cells. Saleh Khalef, Fatah's second-in-command (nom de guerre: Abu Lyad) was closely associated with Black September, and is far more radical than Arafat. Farouk Kaddoumi (nom de guerre: Abu Lutf) has close ties to the Soviet Union and eastern bloc countries, and Khaled al-Hassan frequently challenges Arafat in search of more collective leadership.
We see that many factions, including some newly developing Islamic fundamentalists spun off from Egypt's Moslem Brotherhood, would contend for control over any new state of Palestine, and that all of these factions could resort unhesitatingly to high levels of violence. Before long, the resident Palestinian population would suffer far more than it had under Israeli rule, and anarchy would pose a real threat to
It follows from all of this that
LOUIS RENE BERES (Ph.D., Princeton, 1971) is Professor of Political Science and International Law at
Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the authors.