4 May 1999 and Palestinian Statehood: To Declare or Not To Declare?
After examining the legacy of Oslo, particularly the structure of the peace process and the pattern of negotiations that has emerged since the advent of the Likud coalition, the author analyzes the Palestinian option of unilaterally declaring a Palestinian state on 4 May 1999 and the various scenarios that might ensue. Concluding that the declaration would benefit the Israelis, not the Palestinians, he then sketches out possible alternatives that remain for the Palestinians with the ending of the transitional period.
Azmi Bishara, former professor of philosophy at Birzeit University, is one of the five Arab deputies of the Israeli Knesset. This article is a shorter, updated version of one that appeared in al-Hayat on 26 August. it was translated by Joseph Massad.