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My second book furthers my personal challenge to solve world's most intractable problems. Architect for Peace is my attempt to find an answer to the (current) biggest world problem - Peace in the Middle East. Another goal was to write this book in a style that most people could enjoy.

If you like what you read  - Please take the time to comment - or at least vote in the survey. Enjoy.

NOTE: New Chapters still to come!


Saturday, November 12, 2011

Architect for Peace

Architect for Peace

Peace in the Middle East by
Christopher Richard Rampson

Published by Christopher Richard Rampson
Detroit Michigan, USA

Copyright © 2011
Christopher Richard Rampson

All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced in any form, except for the inclusion of brief quotations in review, without permission in writing from the author/publisher.


First Edition

Other books by this Author:

From Blue Giant to Blue Marble – The Solar System Story

Most of the pictures and some of the text of this book have come from Wikipedia.org. Specifically from the following articles:
Jerusalem, West Bank, Golan Heights, Israel, Canada, North Korea, United Nations and many more.

Wikipedia has been a great reference for my research. Most of Wikipedia's text and many of its images are dual-licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 3.0 Unported License http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Text_of_Creative_Commons_Attribution-ShareAlike_3.0_Unported_License (CC-BY-SA) and the GNU Free Documentation License http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Text_of_the_GNU_Free_Documentation_License (GFDL)

Cover Art Image: ()

This book is dedicated to all Palestinians.

Architect for Peace - Section I - Introduction to Middle East Peace


From a very young age I was interested in politics. My mother was involved in local politics and through her, I received an excellent education on the topic. As I grew older, my best friend Lance and I would have debates and discussions on the topic. The Middle East was our favorite topic by far. Lance would always take the pro-Hawkish Israeli standpoint and I would be the defender of the Palestinians.

We would discuss every article we had read and every TV show on the topic. I would consider us both experts on the Middle East from all viewpoints – History, culture, warfare, economics, real estate, etc. But given the enormity of the issue, I expect to discover new data every single day.

I always wanted to write a book on the Middle East struggle, but I never had the time to do it. It was much more interesting to actually discuss the subject – than to sit down and write something. 

My attitude changed with the death of my best friend. No longer did I have an equal and mentor to discuss ideas with.  Lance would have pushed me to finish this book, so I am doing it for him.



My best friend Lance Reinhardt always had a keen eye on world events. He was well informed and very open to discussion and debate. His keen insights into the Middle East were invaluable to this author and this book. He was a brilliant man who I will miss very much. Rest in peace Lance.

My mother impressed upon me at an early age the structure of our government including the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Her viewpoints into politics and her experience helped to temper my own views. Love you Mom!

There were many teachers and professors along the way that contributed to my education in History and International Relations. I would like to single out a Dr. Claypoole who was my professor at Oakland Community College in the early 80's. His teaching style and willingness to help the student was top rate. I remember he always managed to find a few points to take off my tests (the life of a curve-breaker?).



Bill, Yitzhak and Yasser at the White House (http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/f/f2/Bill_Clinton%2C_Yitzhak_Rabin%2C_Yasser_Arafat_at_the_White_House_1993-09-13.jpg)
Most of us remember the Last Best chance for peace in the Middle East. U.S. President Bill Clinton and Prime Minister Ehud Barak of Israel and Yasser Arafat Chairman of the PLO (Palestinian Liberation Organization) were at Camp David – and they were shaking hands! It seemed that peace was so close you could taste it! Both sides were talking (and compromising) and making tangible progress.

The final proposal gave the Palestinians up to 95% of the pre-1967 West Bank, and Israel was ready to cede even more territory in the Negev desert. Barak had gone further than most Israelis were comfortable with – but there was support to get the deal done.

It was then that Arafat stopped negotiating. He told Clinton “The Arab leader who would surrender Jerusalem is not born yet.” He also brought up The Right of Return issue – where Palestinians that left (or were driven from)  their homes in what is Israel today, should be allowed to return to those (same) homes.

From the “West” point of view, Arafat ruined everything. He was vilified in the press and world leaders gave up trying to work with him. He was even criticized by his own negotiating team (Nabil Amr) – but he had had enough and dug in his heels.

Things went downhill from there. Israeli elections, renewed suicide bombings and a second intifada stopped all hope for a peace deal.

But let me say this: Arafat was right. It takes guts to stand up to the world – and take all the criticism (even from His own people). He had higher ideals that could not be compromised.

Trying to address Arafat’s requirements makes the peace process much more difficult. There are millions of Palestinians around the world – they probably won’t all fit (physically) in the West Bank. The problem of where to settle them all is so big that no one wants to address it – so it gets ignored in negotiations.

The other elephant in the room is Jerusalem. Splitting a city up makes it difficult to govern – but something must be done or there will be no peace.

I wrote this book from the Palestinian perspective. They must be completely satisfied with any peace deal – because they have to live with it forever. Palestinian interests will always be considered first. This does not mean that I am in any way anti-Israeli. I promise to correct any of my statements that are considered anti-Semitic.

There is but a single goal for this book and that is a comprehensive peace in the Middle East. Further, this peace must endure. I only wish that I could have had this book finished 20 years ago. Then maybe we could have had Arafat’s signature instead of just his handshake.

This is no time for ease and comfort. It is the time to dare and endure – Winston Churchill

Architect for Peace - Chapter 1 - The Land

The Land

Land is a precious and scare resource – especially in the Middle East. Water also falls into that category – especially in the Deserts of the Middle East. This chapter will address the former and the latter will be addressed later in the book.

In order to establish a viable Palestinian state, it needs as much land as it can get. There are about 10 million Palestinians alive today (stats from 2003) and they are spread out all over the world (by comparison there are about 7 million Israelis).

In reality, there is not enough land and resources to accept 10 million people in Gaza and the West Bank. Also there is a significant number of Israelis that live in the West Bank and would need to be moved out into (the already crowded) Israel “proper”.

There is also that issue of “The Right of Return” where Palestinians want to move back to their former homes that are now in Israel.

But I’m getting ahead of myself! This chapter is about how the land needs to be divided between the different peoples.

Syria and the Golan Heights

The borders of modern day Syria were set by the WW1 Allied Powers at The Treaty of Sevres (Lebanon was part of this country that was called Lebanon-Syria). Interestingly, The United States was excluded from the treaty – does that mean that it is still at war with (what was) The Ottoman Empire?

Syria is quite large geographically with an area over 185,000 sq. km. By contrast, Israel is about 22,000 sq. km. (~10% of Syria’s size) and the Golan Heights are 1800 sq. km (1200 occupied by Israel = ~1% of Syria).

Israel already has numerous settlements in the Golan Heights and would have difficulty in resettling those people if they were to leave the Golan.  Israel is a small country that has needs for land to alleviate their population growth pressure.

I personally call on Syria to make the biggest sacrifice for peace in the Middle East. Syria should sell the Golan Heights to Israel

Before you rush to judgment about that last statement – please read to the end of this section first. Remember this is only the first sacrifice for peace that I have written about (there will be many more – on both sides).

But what kind of price would you put on this land? There are many ways to come up with a number, but I believe my proposal is just. The (initial) price for the Golan Heights shall be $50,000 per square kilometer. That comes out to 600 million dollars. But that is not all. Most land deals between 2 countries (including sovereignty) are set for 99 years (there are numerous examples Hong Kong, Macau, Canal Zone, and Guantanamo). But this would not be a lease – it will be a purchase. 

So Israel will pay $600 million up front and then $600 million every year (on the anniversary date of the peace treaty signing) for 99 years – for a total price of $60 billion. That seems like a decent price. NOTE: There are about 500 sq. km. (of the Golan) on the Syrian side of the border – they may want to sell that too (they wouldn’t be required to). If they wanted to sell that also, the total deal would be worth $85 billion.

In addition, all Syrian citizens living in the Golan Heights today will become (full) Israeli citizens. And all of the Syrians that left the Golan will be compensated by the Syrian government using part of the sale proceeds. Any Syrian that wanted to return to the Golan would need to submit to an Israeli emigration process.

I believe that this process would result in a satisfactory outcome for all parties. But it is a compromise – for peace. Israel needs the land in order to withdraw from the West Bank – so Syria will be helping the Palestinians with this (very significant) concession.

Lebanon and the Shebaa Farms

Lebanon lays claim to a small parcel of land called Shebaa Farms that is located within the Israeli–controlled Golan Heights. The area of Shebaa was never properly demarcated by the French mandate of Lebanon-Syria which is why it is in dispute today.

Most of the maps of this area in 1967 show this area to be Syrian territory, which is what Israel and the USA contend. In any event, it amounts to 22 sq. km. of area which is quite small, but the area includes heights overlooking southern Lebanon and Israel to the west – so it is strategic.

I propose that Israel pays Lebanon in the same way as Syria ($50000 per sq. km. for 99 years) to purchase the land. This is a small yet significant compromise for peace.

The West Bank and the Gaza Strip (except Jerusalem)

The West Bank of the Jordan River (http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/8/8d/WestBankGovernatesNonLabeled.png)
Since this encompasses ALL of the land of the future Palestinian state, it must be as big as possible. This is where we invoke UN Resolution 242 and 338 – where Israel must withdraw to pre-1967 borders.

This may look like quite a bit of pain for Israel as there are many settlements in this area, but they withdrew in Gaza and now they can do it in the West Bank. But remember, Israel gets to keep the Golan Heights so there will (hopefully) be room to move those settlements.

Instead of the total withdrawal that Israel accomplished in Gaza, the withdrawal from the West Bank must be made in stages. This will be to try and prevent the destruction of viable housing and farms that followed the Gaza withdrawal.

The biggest issue - Jerusalem

There is no bigger issue than the future status of Jerusalem. The Palestinians want to make their capital in  East Jerusalem, but the Israelis remember those “bad old days” where they were prevented from visiting their holy sites – and had snipers taking potshots at them from the East side. No Israeli is willing to return to the former status quo.

I think everyone understands that the future of Jerusalem will involve many negotiations and take time – and would unnecessarily drag out the overall peace process, so the solution for Jerusalem must be separate from the rest of the peace process.

In the meantime, there will be a temporary status for Jerusalem. Here is what I propose:
The city of Jerusalem will be declared a UN mandate and controlled by the UN for a period of 99 years. The UN will be charged with protection of citizens, property and religious freedom. 

In this way Jerusalem can be used as a capital for both Israel and Palestine, and neither side could pressure the other in any way (other than diplomatically!).

For Israel to cede control of Jerusalem, they must be fully confident in the country that will lead the UN mandate. Ideally that would be the United States. Israel would probably agree to the USA being in charge. But the Palestinians might not be comfortable with that arrangement – and they shouldn’t be forced into accepting it.

I have another country in mind – keep reading and see if you would accept my proposal. Remember compromise is the way to lasting peace.

Architect for Peace - Chapter 2 - The UN Mandate

The flag of the United Nations (http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/2/2f/Flag_of_the_United_Nations.svg)
The UN Mandate for Palestine will be much different from the League of Nations Palestinian Mandate. The country to be given the mandate will not be a victor in war, but a partner in peace.

This country will be solely responsible for security in Jerusalem and the Palestinian territories (West Bank and Gaza). It will provide police protection as well as military force. It will also be an arbiter of disputes between the Palestinians and Israelis – and its decisions will be final. It will report to the UN Security Council on a regular basis.

This is a huge job! I wonder who would be crazy enough to take it on . . .

The country with the Mandate

As I said before, the US would be a good fit for the job. It is one of the only countries that Israel trusts implicitly. But the Palestinians I suspect would have a different opinion. The US has consistently sided with Israel in many disputes and consequently has lost face in the Arab world.

So who would be the better choice? This country would need to be:
  1. Strong
  2. Trustworthy
  3. Acceptable to both sides
  4. Experienced in Peacekeeping
  5. Fair and Impartial
  6. Willing to take on risk
I believe that there is (only) one country that completely fits this criteria – Canada.

The US implicitly trusts its neighbor to the north and Israel should be comfortable with this arrangement. The Arab world also does not have any issues with Canada – so I believe they would also accept them. Now we need to convince Canada . . .

Oh Canada

The Canadian Flag (http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/c/cf/Flag_of_Canada.svg)

Remember I said that EVERYONE must sacrifice for peace? That includes the United Nations. Just what will this sacrifice be?

In order for Canada to not be (seen as) controlled/influenced by the US (or any other country) – it must be made a permanent member of the UN Security Council, with full veto power.

The UN has been talking about changing the security consul for a while now, this will be the first step. 

This is not unprecedented – Canada was a major contributor to the Allies in World War II and those countries are the ones that were emplaced in the Security Council.

But Canada is stretched thin with its many peacekeeping engagements – and its NATO responsibility in Afghanistan. Canada will need help (troops)! I propose that another country will provide troop strength and that Canada will have command responsibilities over these troops (their Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) will have exclusive responsibility for the policing activity).

The troops are from the North 

– Korea that is

North Korean flag (http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/5/51/Flag_of_North_Korea.svg)

North Korea has been in a difficult position for many years. They initially shut out the world and then their economy failed. The only successes they have had have been in their military – which is quite substantial. They became a major arms dealer to get hard currency, and the US (and other western countries) strongly objected to their choice of customers. This has led to strong negative feelings on both sides.

It is my belief that North Korea wants to re-engage with the rest of the world, but doesn’t know how. They need a win-win scenario - which is what I am proposing.

North Korea has very little to offer – but it does have a (well trained) million man army. If North Korea was invited to participate in peacekeeping, it would go a long way to building trust between it and the UN – which can only be good news for both. This could be the “icebreaker” that North Korea and the UN/US need to re-start other negotiations (including a peace treaty to end another war – the Korean War. Maybe make that part of the Middle East Peace Treaty).

One division of troops (~10000) should be sufficient to be peacekeepers. The Canadians would be in command.

North Korea has not taken sides (publicly) on the Mideast conflict, so their presence should not be seen as “hostile” by the Palestinians.

The Layout

Two brigades (~6500 troops) of NK troops would be deployed in the West Bank while one brigade (~3400 troops) would be deployed in Gaza (there would be no NK troops in Jerusalem).

Canada would deploy logistical/command troops in WB (West Bank) and GS (Gaza Strip), and combat troops in Jerusalem. They would also deploy RCMP (Royal Canadian Mounted Police) in all areas. 

Canada would use the RCMP to train police in the WB and GS – but not in Jerusalem, since Canada would be solely responsible for police protection there (for a long time ...).

Architect for Peace - Chapter 3 - The Peace Treaty

The Palestinian Peace Treaty (hereafter to be referred to as The Treaty of Detroit or tD) would cover most every aspect of Palestinian life. There must be as little ambiguity as possible, while fulfilling Rule Number One – Palestinians come first.

The Palestinian Government


The US has in the past been quite hands off with regard to other countries governments (and constitutions). Both Iraq and Afghanistan were left to create a government on their own (with mixed results).

It makes sense that the new Palestinian government would be modeled after Canada. The Canadian Constitution would stand-in for a true Palestinian one (until that one was written). Also Canadian Law would be adopted along with all Canadian Supreme Court decisions. A Palestinian citizen would have the same rights and responsibilities as a Canadian citizen (but not be bound to a monarch . . .).

Canada would be responsible for setting up all branches of the Palestinian government and running the bureaucracy.

Prisoner Release


When war is over, all POWs need to be released. This includes all Palestinian prisoners in Israeli prisons. There can be no distinction over whether an individual has “blood on his hands” (all effective soldiers do).

I propose that all signatories to tD must release all Palestinians they are holding (and vice-versa i.e. any remains must also be returned). In the spirit of sacrifice, this applies to the U.S. and means that Sirhan Sirhan the Palestinian assassin of Robert Kennedy must also be released.

Once released, these former prisoners shall have no rights to voluntarily traverse the borders of the country that released them. In other words, no Palestinian former prisoners will be allowed in Israel for any reason. They will be subject to arrest and incarceration.

NOTE: This last clause excludes kidnapping someone and bringing them across a border (i.e. like “The Great Train Robber” Ronnie Biggs 24-March-1981). In that case, the person must be immediately released.

Self Defense

The Palestinians would not be allowed to have an Army or an Air Force. They would not be allowed any heavy weaponry – such as MANPADS, artillery, mines, tanks, etc. The UN is charged with protecting Palestine so the Palestinians will not need these things.

They would have a National Guard using the Costa Rica model – for border guarding and such. These troops would be allowed to have machine guns (probably AK-47s) – but NO ONE ELSE (except SWAT police units). NOTE: Secret Service personnel – those whose job it is to protect diplomats and high-ranking government officials would have “different” rules.

Police would be the only non-military people allowed to carry sidearms (pistols). If they find themselves in a situation where they are outgunned, they call for backup and the (fully equipped) SWAT team will be dispatched.

The Right to Bear Arms

The Canadian Constitution allows anyone the right to bear arms, so every Palestinian would be able to bear arms. Today the region is awash in high-powered rifles and pistols – and they would be banned. But the average Palestinian citizen needs protection, so what to do?

All citizens would have the right to own a 20-guage shotgun. They would be allowed to carry these guns at any time and any place – as long as they are not concealed (thus rules against “sawed off” shotguns will be in force).

The advantage here is that a 20-guage shotgun is a fine home defense weapon. It can be used for hunting as well. It can be operated by everyone (women and older children can handle it).
There would be no restriction on ammo, but it would not be allowed to hold more than 8 shells. Most 20-guage shotguns today fit this requirement.

Self Determination

In order to instill pride and reassure the populace, there needs to be some sort of armed forces. Where can Palestinians become heros?

You will notice that there is a “loophole” in the requirements for Self Defense – it doesn’t specifically mention a Navy. So could the Palestinians be allowed to have a Navy?

I don’t see why not. It would not pose a significant threat to Israel, but it would give the Palestinians the option of military service.

A Palestinian Navy would not be an all-weather, all-ocean capable Navy – it would be more like a Coast Guard. And that is where you get your heros! Coast guard search and rescue would be a point of great pride for the Palestinian people. Any time you rescue people in distress, you create heros. This is a capability that Palestine must have.

The Nuclear Free Zone

The undeclared but obvious Israeli nuclear capability has provoked/inspired other Arab countries to try and achieve the same capability. Libya had a nuclear program and gave it up. Syria had an experimental nuclear reactor that was attacked and destroyed by Israel. Iraq had the nuclear plant that Israel bombed. And now, Iran is attempting to join the nuclear club.

Nuclear proliferation is a problem that needs to be addressed eventually, so why not write it into The Treaty of Detroit?

I propose that all (mid-east) signatories to tD agree to banish all nuclear weapons. In return, they will be given help developing a peaceful nuclear capability (as the existing non-proliferation treaty allows).

At first glance, this looks like it penalizes Israel more than the other countries as they already have nuclear weapons. There needs to be some kind of reassurance that Israel will not be unfairly weakened. This will be addressed by the UN.

In order to address the defensive needs of the Israeli people, Israel will become a member of NATO. This is where Europe steps up and makes their sacrifice for peace. Once Israel is a member of NATO, there will be no doubt as to what happens to someone that is stupid enough to attack them.

This should remove all reasons for Israel to have nuclear weapons.

Oh yeah, Egypt must give up the 2 nukes that the USSR delivered to them in the waning days of the 1973 Yom Kippur War. I mean everyone must give up their nukes.

Anti Defamation

The Nazi regime in the 1920s and 30s used propaganda (quite effectively) to paint Jews in very unfavorable terms. This (eventually) led to the Holocaust where the German people were cowed into believing the big lie – and looking the other way while Jews were murdered. The Nazis showed the world how to brainwash entire countries – and that lesson should not be forgotten (nor allowed to happen again).

But this situation exists today in many Middle Eastern countries – including the Palestinian territories. Everywhere you look – schools, television, radio – antisemitism is rampant. There is even children’s TV programming where cartoon characters are depicted as getting killed by Israelis. This must stop and never be seen again.

My Mother taught me that if you can’t say anything good about someone, then don’t say anything at all. This is the basis for this education clause. If you want peace, and signify same by signing tD, then you agree on that principle – you must stop spreading hate.

This will be enforced by the United Nations (UNESCO). All countries will submit educational materials to be approved by this agency. There will also be spot monitoring of teaching institutions and radio/TV broadcasting. Canada will be responsible for enforcement in Palestine.

Enforcement of The Treaty of Detroit

What happens if some signatory secretly develops nuclear weapons? What is the price to be paid for breaking the treaty? Will this treaty become the “scrap of paper” that Neville Chamberlain waved to his fellow countrymen?

Since this is a peace treaty that is guaranteed by the United Nations, breaking the treaty is AN ACT OF WAR! All signatories are REQUIRED to defend the treaty – up to and including sending troops and attacking the treaty breaker – as determined by the UN Security Council and the signatories.
There is simply no room for this treaty to be ambiguous and weak – there is too much at stake for the entire world. Once you sign it, that’s it – no more undermining the letter or spirit of the peace.

Architect for Peace - Chapter 4 - The Right of Return

The most contentious point of a Middle East peace is The Right of Return. As I mentioned in the Introduction, Yassir Arafat derailed the 1994 peace negotiations over it. This is an issue that MUST be resolved for any lasting peace to take hold.

The Right of Return has its origins in the 1954 Mid-East war. The Arab countries (Egypt, Syria, others) used propaganda that they would soon annihilate Israel and they told Palestinians living in the path of the invasion to leave their homes before the fighting started – so they wouldn’t get hurt. Thousands of Palestinians heeded the call and left – and then Israel won.

After the war was over, the Palestinians were not allowed to come back to their homes in Israel. "The Return".

This "snub" outraged the Arab countries, and the Palestinians that had left their homes were placed in “Camps”. These were specifically stated as being “temporary” as the Arab countries would not allow the Palestinians to permanently settle in their countries.  This gets to the crux of the Palestinian experience – segregated, discriminated and at the mercy of their “hosts”.

It was wrong for Israel to confiscate the Palestinians property without any compensation. You can understand why the Palestinians would want their property back.

But that was almost 60 years ago, and in the meantime the populations have grown. There is simply no way Israel could accommodate all of the original owners and their (thousands of) dependants. Israel would become a majority Arab country and lose its identity.

You can see that this is a pretty intractable problem – with both sides “in the right”. So how can this be overcome and the peace treaty finally become a reality?

The Right of Return – to Detroit


In order to break the deadlock of the right of return, I propose the Right of Return – to Detroit. This means that Palestinians that have The Right of Return would be given compensation for their confiscated homes, and would be given an equivalent home – in Detroit Michigan.
You must be wondering Why Detroit? So let me explain in greater detail.

The City of Detroit Michigan


Detroit is older than the United States – it just had its 300th birthday. It was founded by the French, later it was captured by the British and eventually it was ceded to the US. It is patterned after Paris with its hub and spoke street layout. It has an area of 140 square miles – which makes it exactly the same size as the Gaza strip. But whereas Gaza has 1.5 million people, Detroit has less than 800,000 (more like 700,000) and it’s dropping.

Therein lies the problem – Gaza and Detroit are the same size, but Detroit has (about) half the population (Detroit had almost 2 million people in 1950). There are over 100,000 empty lots and 30,000+ vacant buildings (which are finally being demolished - albeit very slowly).

Detroit has plenty of land – and desperately needs population (immigrants). Palestinians have plenty of people and they need land. Seems like a great match!

Although there are many cities in this situation, Detroit is special. The Detroit area (already) has the largest Arab/Muslim population outside of the Middle East (and yes, there are Palestinians here). There is a rich mix of Arab Christians (such as Chaldeans) and both Shiite and Suni Muslims. The Middle Eastern people have already chosen Detroit – and Detroit’s future is already intertwined with theirs.

The future of the United States


I think it is obvious to just about everyone that the United States (the “West”) and the Islamic world don’t understand each other. This almost always leads to hatred and conflict – as evidenced by recent terrorism and war. The question is how do we turn this around and become friends?

The answer is Detroit. Detroit won’t just be a destination for immigrants – it is the “great experiment” in living together. Detroit will become the center for Islamic studies in the US (at the local universities). 

But in order for this to become a true exchange of ideas, there needs to be a “feedback loop” so the people in the Middle East can gain exposure to what’s happening in Detroit. I propose that the Palestinians living in Detroit have the option of returning to Palestine and vice versa so that lessons learned could be shared in both places.



The Michigan economy is in a tailspin, it has lost tens of thousands of high-paying manufacturing jobs in the last few years. Its unemployment levels are the worst in the nation. Two of the “Big 3” auto companies went bankrupt and needed government help to stay in business. The population is declining as people move out to find jobs or retire “down south”. Just why do I think adding a million more unemployed Palestinians would help the situation?

First, rebuilding Detroit will take years and require many construction workers. That alone would be enough employment for immigrants – for a while. There would also be ancillary jobs such as teaching Arabic – the US government needs many translators and there are not enough teachers.

Beyond that, there needs to be some sort of trade deal between Palestine and Detroit. I envision Palestinians passing a law that gives preference to imported goods from companies that employ Palestinians. Example: instead of buying European or Japanese automobiles, the Palestinian Government would buy vehicles from (Detroit) American auto companies (assuming they hire Palestinian workers - and they will).



I would like to see the Detroit area become a friend (and family) to the Palestinian people and vice-versa. People should feel safe and welcome in both places. Both areas should prosper as they gain strength from their rebuilding. I will elaborate in later chapters.

The Treaty of Detroit

I also intend to make Detroit the host city for the Middle East Peace conference. The peace treaty will be signed in the City of Detroit - who will lend its name to, The Treaty of Detroit.


Architect for Peace - Chapter 5 - Jerusalem


What is the Value of Jerusalem?


The city of Jerusalem has been fought over for centuries. Greeks, Romans, Persians, Christians, Muslims, Jews and others have controlled the city since its creation. There are only 2 reasons that people would fight over a city:
  1. It’s valuable
  2. It’s in the way
In this case, Number 1 is more applicable than number 2. So if so many people think Jerusalem is valuable, then just what is the Value of Jerusalem?

In the past, Jerusalem was a center of trade. Caravans crossed the desert from the Far East consisting of spices, fabrics, gold, myrrh, frankincense and much more. These items were destined for Europe, and Jerusalem was the perfect transit point (the sea route to Europe was treacherous).

Today Jerusalem is at best a regional trade center. It isn’t a port city which is essential for today’s (container ship) economy – so its (prime) value is no longer (mainly) in commerce. So what is its value today?

Because of its location and history, Jerusalem is a center of culture. It is the most holy site for both Judaism and Christianity and an important site for Islam. This culture draws religious scholars (from 3 faiths), scientists (archaeologists, anthropologists, others) and tourists.

Here’s a question for you to answer, if there were a lasting peace in the Middle East, would you visit Jerusalem? I think the answer to that question is YES for millions if not billions of people. I think that – right there – is the Value of Jerusalem. Just about everyone wants to visit – to celebrate the history and culture of the city.

The Compromise

In order to have Israel give up (sole) control of Jerusalem -  that would be the only thing that they give up. And "give up" is not quite accurate - Israel would agree to share the control of Jerusalem. But whom would they share "control" with?

By using a business analogy - control should be shared with "stakeholders" - people/groups with a vested interest in keeping Jerusalem "healthy". I listed some of them above. Now for my proposal.

The sovereign government of Jerusalem

Motto: Unfettered access to the holy city for all who come in peace.

The city will be governed by a city council. This council will consist of (appointees) :
  • The Canadian Governor General - Council president (with full veto power).
  • An Israeli Government Official - Council vice president (veto power over Western city decisions).
  • A Palestinian Government Official - Council vice president (veto power over Eastern city decisions).
  • Three religious representatives (Christian,Muslim,Jew) - Council members (veto power over religious decisions).
  • Science adviser (archaeologist,anthropologist) - Council member (no veto).

In addition, there would be an advisory council (with no voting power) consisting of:
  • Two NGOs (Sierra Club, Red Crescent, DWB, etc.).
  • Six citizens living in Jerusalem - consisting of 2 Jew, 2 Muslim, and 2 Christian members.

The future of Jerusalem is to have good tourism income, great scientific access (excavations), along with traditional religious customs. Any future building in the city would need to improve upon these strengths (more hotels than apartments, more seminaries than factories, more museums than stadiums ).

More thoughts in Appendix A


Architect for Peace - Chapter 6 - The Palestinian Government

This is where I invoke the quote from poet and philosopher George Santayana - Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.
So let’s look into the recent past for some examples of attempts to establish Democratic governments. The Afghanistan government is probably as inept as could be imagined. Corruption is rampant and Money disappears. There are voting irregularities. It is hard to retain police and soldiers and the bureaucracy hardly works.

Now lets look at Iraq. Hmm, same thing. And what about the current PA? Looks like a trend here! Of course I’m oversimplifying – these governments are being established in war zones, and thus have great external pressures to contend with.

So how do we avoid Mr. Santayana’s maxim with this new Palestinian government?

Ready made Federal Government

By adopting the Mandate country Canada's Constitution along with its 100+ year record of judicial proceedings, a government can be set up in a minimal time.


One of the lessons of past attempts at forming governments is this – amateurs are unable to make it work. It doesn’t matter how much money and time and effort you throw at it, there is no substitute for experience.

This is where the UN Mandate comes in. The mandate country (Canada) is responsible for setting up AND RUNNING the government – until such a time as the Palestinians can do it for themselves.  This timing can only be determined by the Canadians. This ensures that the government will be functional and not (very) corrupt for a period of time.

The natural progression of the future Palestinian government would be to (slowly) remove Canadian bureaucrats and replace them with Palestinian candidates.

Provincial Government

Each province in the West Bank and Gaza would have a premier using the Canadian model. They would be Palestinians chosen by a democratic vote. These Premiers would represent the Palestinian people to the Governor General.

Architect for Peace - Chapter 7 - Water & Power Resources

The most precious resource in the Middle East is water. Much of the history of this conflict (and wars in general) have been linked to water rights. Consequently the one goal that the Israelis and Palestinians work the closest together on is water.

Giving up the West Bank means Israel loses access to the Jordan River – which is the most important source of water in the region. Also many wells in the West Bank will not be accessible. This is quite a hardship for the Israelis – their survival depends on access to water.

There really is only one solution to this problem - Water Desalination. This is something that the Gulf states are quite advanced at.

I propose that a (very large) water desalination plant be built on the Palestinian side of the Gaza border with Israel. This plant would be managed by the Palestinians, and would provide water to the Israelis as well as the whole of Gaza.

These plants require a lot of energy, so there would need to be a power plant built, large enough to provide the needed power (and provide for all of the areas electrical needs).

I propose that Israel construct a nuclear power plant on their side of the border. These 2 complexes side-by-side would create an excellent buffer zone and offer improved infrastructure to everyone. In this way, the surrounding area would be co-dependent on each other. There would be good paying (high tech) jobs and it's in everyone's best interest to keep this infrastructure safe

I also propose building another one of these complexes near Hadera/Tulkarm (and possibly at the Lebanese border). This would provide water and electricity that would benefit the people of Palestine and Israel both.

Architect for Peace - Chapter 8 - The Future of Palestine

Let me remind everyone that Palestinians come first. It is their interests that must be upheld in this Peace process.

When the Palestinian state is formed and the repatriation begins, Palestinians from all over the world will come together and become new neighbors. It will take time to overcome cultural differences and forge a new national identity.

The Nation building process is very difficult as evidenced with recent examples in Libya, Iraq, and Afghanistan. I believe the failure there was trying to build the federal governments first. The best government begins locally, in neighborhoods - so I advocate a bottom up approach. At the beginning The Palestinians will work together in local government, and at the Province (State) level. The Mandate Country (Canada) is responsible for setting up, training and organizing these governments into working bureaucracies. As these institutions mature, eventually the Palestinian federal government will be ceded to the people - when Canada fulfills the terms of The Treaty of Detroit.

The first Palestinian citizens will need to build the future state. Construction jobs will be plentiful as the infrastructure is built up. 

Friday, November 11, 2011

Architect for Peace - Section II - The Future

Section II
The Future

Now that the peace treaty description is complete, the hard part begins. How do we set up all sides for success? Since this next section deals with human relations and the future of the region - There is much uncertainty. The following Chapters should be considered in the spirit of hypothetical discussions and not as requirements for tD. They are only my opinion.