My colleague Bob Kaplan considers whether the Palestinians actually want a state, because statelessness has its benefits:
[T]he most tempting aspect of statelessness is that it permits a people to savor the pleasures of religious zeal, extremist ideologies, and moral absolutes, without having to make the kinds of messy, mundane compromises that accompany the work of looking after a geographical space.
Statehood would mean openly compromising with Israel, and, because of the dictates of geography, living in an intimate political and economic relationship with it. Better the glory of victimhood, combined with the power of radical abstractions! As a stateless people, Palestinians can lob rockets into Israel, but not be wholly blamed in the eyes of the international community. Statehood would, perforce, put an end to such license.
Bradley Burston asked a similiar question a while back:
Today, the question of whether the Palestinians can take the steps necessary to maintain a state - that is to say, whether they really do want a state, rather than just the flag they already have and the representative at the United Nations they already have, and the righteous indignation that they have in spades - remains an open question.
If they would rather demand the right of return until the end of time, rather than accepting some formula that amounts to a lesser gain, and with it, a Palestinian state, then the question is answered.
If they would rather insist on the right to violent resistance against Israel - allying themselves in the minds of others, if not in their own, with terrorist movements that bedevil civilized countries worldwide - rather than a renunciation of armed struggle and entrance into the community of nations, then we have their answer. If they insist on a one-state solution, then it is a one-state solution that they will get, and that state will be Israel.