On the occasion of the seventieth anniversary of the ratification of the UN Partition Plan, the Washington Institute for Near East Policy has launched Settlements and Solutions, a first-of-its-kind interactive mapping tool that clarifies the reality of West Bank demography — both Israeli and Palestinian — in unprecedented detail. It is as fact-based, neutral, in-depth and easy-to-use as any resource I’ve seen. Therefore, I wanted to share it with the Wexner Network.
Through advanced mapping technology and satellite imaging, you can view the most up-to-date, granular information needed to accurately assess the human geography of the West Bank and the size and composition of Israeli settlements. The tool was designed and built under the direction of David Makovsky, the Institute’s Ziegler Distinguished Fellow, Director of its Project on the Middle East Peace Process and a scholar the Wexner Foundation has benefited from engaging as faculty over the years.
Here is additional information from The Washington Institute’s press release:
Data is provided on such issues as voting trends within the settler population and construction activity within the settlements. Through innovative interactive tools, users are able to view — and even experiment with — details of various negotiating proposals for territorial exchanges, commonly known as land swaps. Settlements and Solutions does not advocate any particular outcome; rather it is designed as a tool to provide a factual basis for negotiations and to facilitate creative answers to hotly contested issues.
“While the Israeli-Palestinian negotiating agenda is long and complex, with security, refugees, Jerusalem, and the basic ‘acceptance of the other’ all looming large, resolving territorial questions will be critical to determining whether a political agreement to this longstanding conflict can be achieved,” said Institute executive director Dr. Robert Satloff. “David Makovsky and his team have done an invaluable service by providing a source of independent, factual data, shorn of politics and hyperbole, on this crucial issue.”