In the midst of the pandemic, Prime Minister Netanyahu formed an Israeli emergency government that appears able and determined to carry out unilateral annexation of occupied Palestinian territory in the West Bank. It was agreed that, with the approval of the Trump administration, Netanyahu could begin annexation as early as July 1st.
Annexation would be deliberately intended to prevent the creation of a Palestinian state alongside Israel, and would institutionalize an undemocratic system in which Israel would rule permanently over stateless Palestinian residents of the West Bank. It would fundamentally betray the vision and democratic principles of Israel’s founders, severely imperil the US-Israel relationship and make it nearly impossible to maintain broad support for Israel in the US.
Standing together with American lawmakers, policy experts and an overwhelming portion of the Israeli security establishment, we’re making clear why annexation would be so destructive — and taking action to stop it.
A brief on what annexation by this Israeli government might look like and what its consequences could be.
Results of an in-depth, year-long study by retired Israeli generals on the consequences of annexation.
A former legal adviser to Israel's Ministry of Foreign Affairs discusses the potential consequences of annexation and steps the US could take to prevent annexation from moving forward.
Attorney Michael Sfard explains what annexation could mean for the rights of Palestinians.
According to a poll by Commanders for Israel's Security, only a quarter of Jewish Israelis support annexation.
Annexation Under the Trump Plan
Annexation of Area C
Source: Dan Rothem
Members of Israel’s security establishment have warned that annexation risks provoking outrage in the West Bank and would undermine or destroy important cornerstones of Israel’s security strategy, including the current ceasefire with Hamas, security cooperation with the Palestinian Authority and peace treaties with Egypt and Jordan. They also warn that annexation could lead to the collapse of the Palestinian Authority and Israel retaking control of the entire West Bank at great additional cost and risk to its soldiers and people.
Annexation would be a gross violation of international law, designed to prevent the creation of an independent Palestinian state alongside Israel. It would leave millions of Palestinians living permanently in disconnected enclaves, surrounded by Israeli territory and subject to unaccountable military rule — without basic civil or political rights or any hope of self-determination.
Israel’s identity has long been rooted in the goal of being a safe, secure, democracy and a homeland for the Jewish people. But maintaining permanent control over millions of Palestinians within its territory — while denying them the most basic civil and political rights — would be a betrayal of Israel’s founding values of democracy and equality, as enshrined by Israel’s 1948 Declaration of Independence. Annexation would force Israel to choose between abandoning its commitment to democracy, or abandoning its status as a majority-Jewish state.
America’s longstanding special relationship with Israel is built on a foundation of shared democratic values and a commitment to the pursuit of regional peace and stability. This would be severely undermined by annexation — a fundamentally anti-democratic act that also imperils US and Israeli security. Annexation would alienate a large swath of American lawmakers and voters, making it nearly impossible in the long run to maintain the same levels of broad support for Israel.
West Bank annexation has the potential to undermine vital American and Israeli security relationships in a highly volatile region, and to prevent Israel from developing closer ties with currently-hostile Arab states. In particular, it could shake the foundations of Israel’s essential peace treaties with Egypt and Jordan.
A roundup of quotes and statements from Israeli security officials, American supporters of Israel, Palestinians and global leaders.
"Those who care for Israel’s future as a secure Jewish democracy that upholds the
values enshrined in its declaration of independence must act now.”
A former commander of the IDF Central Command and former directors of Shin Bet and Mossad penned an op-ed against annexation.
"At this critical moment, we support and are grateful for our American allies who are speaking out against unilateral annexation. Your expressions of concern and care for a treasured ally and for the vital US-Israel bipartisan..."
"Our fear is that unilateral actions, taken by either side, will push the parties further from negotiations and the possibility of a final, negotiated agreement."
Amb. Daniel Shapiro, Shira Efron and Evan Gottesman warn that annexation would "fundamentally alter the nature of the relationship between Israel and the United States."
We're keeping an up-to-date roundup of statements by members of the senate.
Today, the greatest threat to the continuing fulfillment of that [Zionist] dream would be the annexation of the West Bank, the ending of the possibility of two states, and the absorption into Israel of several million Palestinians.
We believe any such act outside the context of a broader peace accord to be a fundamentally flawed idea that would cause significant damage to the State of Israel, to the special relationship between our countries, and to Israel-Diaspora...
Hashomer Hatzair World Movement is proud to be part of this global initiative of progressive Jewish and Zionist organisations which speak up and stand against the unilateral annexation of parts of the West-Bank by the Netanyahu government a
“[Annexation] will make it more challenging for American Jewish leaders as they seek to maintain strong support for Israel and pro-Israel policies at this time. Should annexation be advanced..."
"It would have grave consequences for the Palestinian people most obviously. Israel’s international standing would also suffer and it is incompatible with the notion of Israel as both a Jewish and democratic state."
"As leaders of America’s Jewish youth, we see it as our obligation to object to the dangerous steps toward annexation being pursued by the current Israeli government.”
"The envoys from the UK, Germany, France, Ireland, the Netherlands, Italy, Spain, Sweden, Belgium, Denmark, Finland and the EU issued a formal objection to the Foreign Ministry against the move"
"The implementation of plans to annex any part of the Palestinian territories occupied in 1967 ... and the lands on which Israeli settlements are standing represents a new war crime..."
"More than a thousand European lawmakers have signed a joint letter protesting Israel’s planned annexation of parts of the occupied West Bank, saying such a move would “be fatal” to hopes for a peaceful resolution..."
Urge your senators to back the Van Hollen amendment, which prohibits US military aid from being used for West Bank annexationTake Action
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Jewish communities around the world are working stop stop annexation.