A trilemma occurs when three elements cannot exist at the same time. Israel has been living in one of those trilemmas for more than half a century. Despite the apparent complexity of the conflict between Israelis and Palestinians, the bottom-line boils down to a simple explanation: Israel cannot at the same time be a Jewish state, have a democratic character and maintain control over all the territories and populations it now dominates. Ethno-religious segregation, recurrent outbreaks of violence and the deterioration of Israel’s international image are direct results of the lack of resolution of this trilemma.
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