May 31, 2016

CNAS Releases Report on Ensuring Security in an Israeli-Palestinian Two-State Solution


Washington, May 31 – The Center for a New American Security (CNAS) has released a new report – authored by current and former U.S. and Israeli military officials and  negotiators – arguing that “well-thought-through security measures in the context of the two-state solution can provide Israelis and Palestinians with a degree of security equal or greater to that provided today by Israel’s deployment into the West Bank, and that such measures can be consistent with Palestinian needs for sovereignty and dignity.”

The report, “A Security System for the Two-State Solution,” outlines comprehensive security arrangements for Israelis and Palestinians based on six core principles and provides proposed solutions to all of the toughest security questions that have bedeviled Israeli and Palestinian negotiators.

The full report is available here:

The report’s authors include:

  • Mr. Ilan Goldenberg, Senior Fellow and Director of the Middle East Security Program at the CNAS and former Chief of Staff to the U.S. Special Envoy For Israeli-Palestinian Negotiations
  • Maj. Gen. (Res.) Gadi Shamni, Vice President for Land Systems at Israel Aerospace Industries and former Commander for Central Command for the Israel Defense Force
  • Dr. Nimrod Novik, President and CEO of Novik Networking, former Chairman of the Economic Cooperation Foundation, and Israel Fellow at the Israel Policy Forum
  • Col. Kris Bauman, Senior Military Fellow at the Institute for National Strategic Studies at National Defense University and former Chief of Staff to Gen. John Allen in his role as Senior Advisor to the Secretary of Defense

The report argues that Israelis will never agree to a two-state solution unless their security concerns are addressed. Palestinians will never agree to what they view as an endless occupation. To address both sides' needs this report proposes a security system based on the following key principles:

  • Build a multilayered system that addresses Israel’s security concerns in which Israel retains the right of self defense as well as the capacity to defend itself by itself, but ensures this is only necessary in extremis.
  • Minimize Israeli visibility to Palestinian civilians and pursue significant early steps that signal a fundamental change on the ground to Palestinians.
  • Plan a conditions-dependent, performance-based, area-by-area phased redeployment of Israeli security forces with target timetables, benchmarks, and an effective remediation process.
  • Conduct significant upgrades to security systems and infrastructure.
  • Build joint operations centers and data sharing mechanisms for all parties such that there is maximum situational awareness of the security environment for Israelis but minimal intrusion on Palestinian sovereignty.
  • Employ American forces for training, equipping, evaluating, and monitoring, and for conducting highly limited operations along the Jordan River.


The report also provides answers to the following difficult questions.

  • What would be the timetable for completion of Israeli redeployment?
  • What would be the status of the Jordan River and Jordan Valley?
  • Who would make the final decision on Israeli redeployment? Would Israel have a veto?
  • Would Israel have a right of re-entry into Palestinian territory in extreme circumstances?
  • What about the challenges presented by rocket attacks on Ben Gurion or tunneling into Israel?
  • What about even greater regional instability that directly threatens Israel or the new Palestinian state? 
  • How will the agreement address “game changers” regarding the governance or security situation inside the future state of Palestine that turn it into a government hostile to Israel?


The authors are available for interviews. To arrange one, please contact Neal Urwitz at or 202-457-9409.