The idea of an independent Palestinian state west of the Jordan River died when the Arab Legion invaded the West Bank in 1948. The land westward from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean was supposed to be divided into two states. One would be a Jewish state and the other would be an Arab state for those who were living there.
War was out of the question. The United Nations’ plan included the directive that both states would engage in economic cooperation – actually an Economic Union.
This plan was the United Nations Partition Plan for when Britain left the region. The plan arguably had the status of international law. The Security Council’s resolution concerned Britain. It set forth how the region that was mandated to the British to administer would look like when the British left. Britain tried (arguably) to set up the partition and to establish the outcome.
However, the Arab Legion violated this international law when it attacked Israel. Then, the Kingdom of Jordan annexed the West Bank – a new violation of international law.
The international community had helped Israel and Jordan negotiate an armistice in 1949. Since both sides agreed, the cease fire had the force of international law also.
The next time that the parties reached an agreement – negotiated by outsiders – was in 1993 through 1995. This was the Oslo Accords. These accords, which were signed by representatives of the Palestinians and of Israel, is the last word of international law.
UN resolutions passed by its Security Council arguably do not have the force of law. The United Nations is fulfilling its obligation to promote peace and security. It’s not unusual for effective parties to disdain peace and security.
Another event bears discussing. The International Court of Justice – commonly referred to as the World Court – is the principal judicial organ of the United Nations. However, it tries to resolve disputes wherein both parties agree to appear. It is out of the question for the Court to rule unilaterally.
To repeat. The Oslo Accords are the only agreement, the only law between Palestinians and Israel.
Palestinians cannot justifiably complain that they are living in cantons. Their representative signed off on this.
They have a right and obligation to regulate life in what are called Areas A and B. Only Israel has the right to regulate life and to develop new housing, industry, and parks in Area C.
If Palestinians wished to pick up where things stood in the middle 2000s everything could go back onto the negotiating table.
However, this is so unlikely that I can relax, heat up some water, and relax drinking hot tea with sugar. The ‘Two State Solution’ is dead.