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MAPS: Projections of the Israeli offer at Camp David, the Israeli offer to Palestinians in December 2000, the Bridging Proposal of US President Clinton and the Israeli Offer of January 2001

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Beginning in July 2000, Palestinians and Israelis tried to negotiate a permanent peace settlement with active American help, first at Camp David, and in December of 2000 in Washington. The Israelis and Palestinians continued negotiations in January 2001 at Taba. Because no maps of offers  were published, various claims were made about what was offered. "Palestinian sources" published maps that supposedly showed that Israelis had offered non-contiguous "Bantustans" with US approval. Israelis claimed that PM Barak had made a "generous offer." In his book "The Missing Peace: The Inside Story of the Fight for Middle East Peace." (Farrar, Strauss and Giroux, 2004), US negotiator Dennis Ross published maps that support the Israeli version.

July 2000

The Clinton offer at Camp David as characterized by Palestinians (at left) and the map that President Clinton actually proposed according to Dennis Ross, and which Arafat rejected. Ross observed in an interview (http://www.carnegiecouncil.org/studio/transcripts/5000.html):

For the first time, I present maps that compare what the Palestinians were offered with what Arafat says he was offered.

Arafat says he was offered cantons, small, isolated Palestinian islands, completely divided up by Israeli roads and settlements and surrounded by the Israelis - completely untrue. He says he wasn't even offered 90 percent of the West Bank - completely untrue.


December, 2000

During the final weeks of the administration of Israeli PM Ehud Barak in 2000, there was an attempt to complete final status negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians. Clinton was a lame duck president, and Barak was facing elections in February. Violence initiated by the Palestinians in September 2000, and Israeli countermeasures formed the background for these talks held in Bolling Air Force base and in the White House. At the conclusion of these talks on December 23, President Clinton presented bridging proposals that, as reported were principles rather than detailed borders, and asked that the sides accept them. Both sides eventually accepted them as a basis for further negotiations. According to some sources, Clinton also presented a map at these negotiations, and that is the map shown below.

A second round of talks was held in Taba, Egypt, near the Israeli town of Eilat on January 21-27, under European sponsorship.

Pro-Palestinian analysts claim that Barak proposed a Palestinian state of "Bantustans," enclaves separated by zones of Israeli control and large areas of temporary Israeli sovereignty.  Pro-Israel analysts claim that Barak made a generous offer comprising 97% of the area of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. In actuality, there were several stages in the negotiations, and, if informal reports are correct, the final offer of the Israeli side was indeed generous relative to earlier offers - but it is not clear that the offer was really made. The map of the "final Israeli offer" that has been published in several places (see below)  didn't include enclaves or zones of temporary authority. However, according to the non-paper of Miguel Moratinos which summarized the negotiations, there was nonetheless disagreement between the sides about borders, Jerusalem and refugees. Moratinos notes that the Israelis made an offer which Barak later rescinded as invalid It is not clear if the map of the final offer of January 2001 published in several places is the one that was rescinded by Israel.

On January 27, both sides published a statement saying they had never been closer to agreement, but Barak, facing elections, suspended the talks.

Final Statement and Positions of Israelis and Palestinians regarding the refugee problem.

Miguel Moratinos' "non-paper" summarizing the positions of the sides.   Post-mortem of the Oslo Process - click here

These maps were provided by FMEP. Though they were not disputed by the sides, according to Dennis Ross they were NOT an accurate reflection of President Clinton's bridging offer. According to the maps, the Palestinian state would have been  permanently divided into several sub areas in the West Bank , separated by areas of Israeli Control. Striped areas would have remained under Israeli control for 12 to 20 years. According to FMEP, The calculation that the Palestinians were getting 97% of the land ignores the area of Jerusalem and the striped areas. In actuality, the area of the Palestinian state would initially be about 70% of some 2,200 square miles.

US Bridging Proposal According to Palestinians

Israeli Proposal According to Palestinians

clinton.gif (30083 bytes) Israel.gif (31517 bytes)
These two maps were circulated by FMEP based on  Palestinian sources. According to Dennis Ross, the map showing the US proposal in December 2000 is incorrect. The correct map is shown below. Dark gray areas are currently Areas A and B of Palestinian control. Light gray and dark gray areas would become part of the Palestinian state. Gray-striped areas would become part of the Palestinian state after an interim period.  Maps are adapted from http://www.fmep.org.

Note that the dark and light gray areas are both to be ceded to the Palestinian state, and do not represent "enclaves."

A map showing supposedly the projection of the Israeli proposals of the government of Israeli PM Barak, December, 2000. Dark gray areas are currently Areas A and B of Palestinian control. Light gray and dark gray areas would become part of the Palestinian state. Gray-striped areas would become part of the Palestinian state after an interim period.  Maps are adapted from http://www.fmep.org.

Note that the dark and light gray areas are both to be ceded to the Palestinian state, and do not represent "enclaves."

Map Showing Clinton Ideas for Palestinian-Israeli Peace Settlement, December 2000.

At left is a map drawn by Dennis Ross that shows President Clinton's Bridging Proposals. The inroads into Palestinian territory are much smaller, and the confusing and irrelevant Areas A, B and C are not shown. Likewise the zones of temporary Israeli control are not shown. This map is presented by US negotiator Dennis Ross in "The Missing Peace", Farrar, Strauss and Giroux, 2004.

In an interview, Ross noted:

In the Clinton ideas, which are also presented in the book, the Palestinians were offered the following: 100 percent of Gaza, roughly 97 percent of the West Bank. The principles that guided the way the borders should be drawn and determined by the two sides, based on the percentages were: Contiguity of territory for the Palestinians, non-absorption of Palestinians into Israel.



January 2001- MAP: Taba negotiations

Map is adapted from Foundation for Middle East Peace


According to Gush Shalom and Foundation for Middle East Peace, Barak submitted another map in January 2001, as shown at left. Note that the dark and light gray areas are both to be ceded to the Palestinian state, and do not represent "enclaves." This map is similar to the Clinton bridging proposal map of December 2000, but the area around Ma'aleh Edumim that is ceded to Israel is a bit larger. On the other hand, the area ceded to Israel in the north that is shown in Ross's map is not evident in any other maps.

In this map there were no longer any areas of temporary Israeli control and no Palestinian enclaves. A large area between Jericho and Maaleh Edumim, previously claimed by Israel, was included in Palestinian territories. The Palestinians supposedly "accepted" this map "as the basis for further negotiations" but they did not agree to the borders, and  apparently insurmountable problems remained regarding Right of Return of refugees Jerusalem and other issues. On Jan 27, 2001, the sides issued a joint statement saying,

"The sides declare that they have never been closer to reaching an agreement and it is thus our shared belief that the remaining gaps could be bridged with the resumption of negotiations following the Israeli elections."

Barak broke off the negotiations on the next day, reportedly saying,

"There is no point in talking with Arafat. I am cutting off contact with him until after the election."

Right wing critics had considered the negotiations pointless because of the approaching elections, in which Barak was defeated on February 6. The map at left is based on surmise and leaks. No official map was ever released. It is not at all clear that it was accepted by the Palestinians

The "non-paper" of Miguel Moratinos issued after the negotiations fell apart  indicates that there was in fact no agreement:

"According to the document, Israel gave up all the Jordan Valley settlements, focusing instead on its security interests in that area. The dispute centered around the large stretch of territory between Ma'aleh Adumim and Givat Ze'ev, which contains both a fairly large Palestinian population and East Jerusalem's most important land reserves. The Palestinians retracted their earlier readiness to include these two settlements in the settlement blocs to be annexed to Israel after realizing that Israel also insisted on annexing the large tract that joins them - which would mean that Palestinian citizens would suddenly find themselves in sovereign Israeli territory. Barak instructed his chief negotiator, Gilad Sher, to tell the Palestinians that the map presented by then foreign minister Shlomo Ben-Ami, which reduced the area of the settlement bloc (including the Ma'aleh Adumim-Givat Ze'ev tract) to only 5 percent of the West Bank, had no validity."

In the map at left, Givat Zeev and Ma'ale Edumim are part of the territories to be kept by Israel. It is not clear if this is the map that Barak rescinded, or the map that the Palestinians objected to. 

Map showing the Israeli offer   made in May, 2000, prior to the Camp David 2 Summit.

Map showing the current division of land

Orient House Maps of the Camp David 2 Offer

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