Something I used to hear when I was a kid is that there’s no need to create a Palestinian state because if Jordan was turned into a democracy, then in effect that would be a Palestinian state and then Palestinians living in the West Bank and Gaza could go move there. Voluntarily, I guess. Or else maybe they could be “encouraged” to go. That’s not really a position one wants to advance in the context of international diplomacy, but with anti-Muslim sentiment on the rise in Europe, far-right Israeli political positions are suddenly finding a respectful hearing. For example, Geert Wilders, leading of the Netherlands’ Party for Freedom, sees a “Greater Israel” agenda as part of an epochal conflict between the West and Islam:
“Jordan is Palestine,” said Wilders, who heads the third-largest party in Holland. “Changing its name to Palestine will end the conflict in the Middle East and provide the Palestinians with an alternate homeland.”
Wilders added that Israel deserved a special status in the Dutch government because it was fighting for Jerusalem in its name.
“If Jerusalem falls into the hands of the Muslims, Athens and Rome will be next. Thus, Jerusalem is the main front protecting the West. It is not a conflict over territory but rather an ideological battle, between the mentality of the liberated West and the ideology of Islamic barbarism,” he said.
“There has been an independent Palestinian state since 1946, and it is the kingdom of Jordan.” Wilders also called on the Dutch government to refer to Jordan as Palestine and move its embassy to Jerusalem.
In light of the recent election results, there’s actually a fairly plausible scenario in which Wilders could become the main junior partner in a right-wing coalition with the Liberals and the Christian Democrats. That could lead to him becoming Foreign Minister and finally Avigdor Lieberman would have a buddy. For now, though, the Christian Democrats seem to have nixed that idea and the Liberals are exploring the idea of forming a coalition with three left-of-center parties, the largest of which is actually led by a secular Jewish guy named “Job Cohen.”