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Hussein Ibish, PhD Biography

Senior Fellow at the American Task Force on Palestine
Pro to the question "Is a Two-State Solution (Israel and Palestine) an Acceptable Solution to the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict?"

“There are two fundamental flaws with pro-Palestinian strategic thinking that focuses on the idea of abandoning two states and going for a single state. The first is the question of feasibility, and it’s hard to argue with that. Obviously anyone who is familiar with this sees the difficulty, and I would be the first to say that success is not assured by any means. Even a two-state agreement looks, at the moment, like something of a long shot. The difference between the two-state solution and everything else is that yes, it’s a long shot, but it would work. And if we could conceivably get it, if we did get it, it would solve the conflict.

The fundamental argument that the one-staters seem to be making, which is that we can’t possibly get Israel to end the occupation and relinquish their control of the 22 percent of Palestine (the West Bank and Gaza) but we will inevitably succeed in getting them to relinquish one hundred percent of the territory under their control. This is a problem of logic. The second thing is that once you’ve realized this, obviously what you’ve done is set yourself the task of convincing Jewish Israelis to voluntarily do this. The idea of coercing the Israelis into this through military force is absurd, and it could only really be done through voluntary persuasion. What the one-staters argue, actually, is that they don’t have to do that. What they’re going to do, they say, is bring the Israelis to their knees.”

“Hussein Ibish on the Fantasy World of One-Staters,” The Atlantic, Nov. 3, 2009

Involvement and Affiliations:
  • Senior Research Fellow, American Task Force on Palestine, 2009-present
  • Executive Director, Hala Salaam Maksoud Foundation for Arab-American Leadership, 2004-2009
  • Vice-President, National Coalition to Protect Political Freedom, 2001-2004
  • Communications Director, American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee, 1998-2004
  • Contributor, The Atlantic, Foreign Policy, Al Hayat, Now Lebanon, Daily Star
  • PhD, Comparative Literature, University of Massachussetts at Amherst
  • Recipient of the “Dedicated Service Award” from the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee in 2004
  • Named “Best TV Spokesperson for the Arab Cause” by the New York Press in 2003
  • Recipient of the “Arab-American of the Year” award from the Arab-American Community Center for Economic and Social Services in Ohio in 2002
  • Born in Beirut in 1963
  • Describes himself as “an agnostic from the Muslim-American community”