Letters to the Editor: The two-state solution is dying. Who’s to blame?

Two men stand side by side behind lecterns on a stage with U.S. and Israeli flags behind them
Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken, left, and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu give a joint news conference in Jerusalem on Jan. 3.
(Debbie Hill / AFP via Getty Images)

To the editor: The Biden administration appears to have lost confidence in the viability of any two-state solution for our best ally in the Middle East, Israel. The problem really is denial of the obvious.

As long as Hamas, which controls the Gaza Strip, has a written goal of a single state that does not include Israel, and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has no real control over militants in the West Bank, two states are not an option.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has raised this question many times, but nobody in the Biden administration appears to be listening: How can Israel negotiate with anyone who denies its right to exist?


Alan Segal, San Diego


To the editor: When you reported on what appears to be the demise of the two-state solution, I was dismayed. What is happening in Israel’s government now is disheartening.

As an American Jew and a Zionist, I am always hopeful, and to see that thousands of Israelis are protesting and speaking out for democracy feeds that hope.

We have gone through similar angst over the future of democracy here in the U.S., and we have seen some good change. But the fight against authoritarianism cannot stop here, in Israel or anywhere else.

Esther Friedberg, Studio City


To the editor: By rejecting every attempt to negotiate a two-state solution, Palestinian leaders have made it clear that is not what they want.


Read the Palestine Liberation Organization and Hamas charters for specifics, such as the PLO’s Article 4: “Armed struggle is the only way to liberate Palestine. This it is the overall strategy, not merely a tactical phase.”

Hamas is equally clear in its rejection of a negotiated path to peace: “Hamas rejects any alternative to the full and complete liberation of Palestine, from the river to the sea.”

Why hope for a “solution” that is antithetical the foundational ideology of Palestinian leaders?

Julia Lutch, Davis, Calif.


To the editor: Thank you for your coverage of this important topic.

While the U.S. government keeps pushing its empty, moribund policy of a two-state solution, nothing has been done to advance it. It’s all words and no action. What message are we sending when we give Israel billions in aid and give it diplomatic cover at the United Nations?


It’s time to try something different — such as a one-state plan, secular and democratic, in which all citizens are treated as equals.

Paul McDermott, Los Angeles


To the editor: Usually, it is only in retrospect that we recognize when history takes a drastically wrong turn.

Sadly, we are seeing in real time the tortured history of Israeli and Palestinian relations veering directly toward the edge of a cliff. Will no one put on the brakes before the predictable, looming disaster?

Sheldon H. Kardener, Santa Monica