Chronicles of rejectionism (and Oxford American English)

Norman Finkelstein frequently mentions in his discussions on Israel/Palestine the fact that Israel and the United States are largely alone (with the exception of a couple of Pacific island nations, plus recently either Canada or Australia) in standing against what he calls an international "consensus" to solving the conflict. That consensus is demonstrated by an annually-passed (since 1975, I believe) UN General Assembly resolution, typically titled “Peaceful Settlement to the Palestine Question,” which calls for Israeli withdrawal to pre-1967 borders, creation of a Palestinian state in the West Bank and Gaza Strip with East Jerusalem as its capital, and a just resolution of the refugee problem in accordance with Resolution 194 (those refugees wishing to return to their homes and live in peace with their neighbors must be allowed to do so; the rest are entitled to compensation).

The most recent iteration of this resolution passed on December 2nd, 2009. Finkelstein posted about it and showed the voting results, and I decided it’s worthwhile to show it here on Mondoweiss:

A/RES/64/19 – ANNEX IV

Vote on Peaceful Settlement

The draft resolution on Peaceful Settlement (document A/64/L.23) was adopted by a recorded vote of 164 in favour to 7 against, with 4 abstentions, as follows:

In favour: Afghanistan, Albania, Algeria, Andorra, Angola, Argentina, Armenia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bahamas, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belarus, Belgium, Belize, Benin, Bhutan, Bolivia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei Darussalam, Bulgaria, Burundi, Cambodia, Cape Verde, Chad, Chile, China, Colombia, Comoros, Costa Rica, Côte d’Ivoire, Croatia, Cuba, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Denmark, Djibouti, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Eritrea, Estonia, Ethiopia, Finland, France, Gabon, Gambia, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Guatemala, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Guyana, Haiti, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Ireland, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Latvia, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Madagascar, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Malta, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mexico, Monaco, Mongolia, Montenegro, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Republic of Korea, Republic of Moldova, Romania, Russian Federation, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Samoa, San Marino, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Serbia, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, Solomon Islands, Somalia, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Suriname, Swaziland, Sweden, Switzerland, Syria, Tajikistan, Thailand, The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Togo, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Uganda, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United Republic of Tanzania, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, Venezuela, Viet Nam, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe.

Against: Australia, Israel, Marshall Islands, Micronesia (Federated States of), Nauru, Palau, United States.

Abstain: Cameroon, Canada, Fiji, Tonga.

Absent: Antigua and Barbuda, Burkina Faso, Central African Republic, Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Grenada, Honduras, Kiribati, Malawi, Panama, Rwanda, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Sao Tome and Principe, Seychelles, Timor-Leste, Tuvalu, Vanuatu.

You can view an official list of voting records on UN resolutions related to Palestine here.

In addition to the consensus at the UN, Finkelstein often talks about the March 2002 Arab League Peace Initiative: “We have the Arab League, all twenty-two members of the Arab League, favoring a two-state settlement on the June 1967 border. We have the Palestinian Authority favoring that two-state settlement on the June 1967 border. We now have Hamas [as shown in recent interviews with its leader Khaled Meshal and as acknowledged to be their compromise position by a former Mossad head] favoring that two-state settlement on the June 1967 border. The one and only obstacle is Israel, backed by the United States. That’s the problem.”

PS: As I typed the title to my post, my Mac red-underlined the word ‘rejectionism’. I decided, for the hell of it, to look up and perhaps use ‘rejectionist’ instead, and this is what Apple’s built-in Dictionary (which is based on the New Oxford American Dictionary, 2nd Edition) listed as its meaning:

rejectionist |riˈjek sh ənist|
noun [often as adj. ]

a person who rejects a proposed policy, esp. an Arab who refuses to accept a negotiated peace with Israel.

The irony could not be more head-spinning.

Posted in Israel/Palestine

{ 34 comments... read them below or add one }

  1. RickB says:

    Apple’s getting an email about that, appalling!

  2. Taxi says:

    I was about to buy an Apple laptop for xmas – FOR-FUCKING-GET IT!!

  3. [Laughs] Taxi, don’t blame Apple for this! It’s whoever authored the entry in the Oxford dictionary company.
    But, seriously, when I saw this I had to do a double-take—I could not believe what I was reading!

  4. Taxi says:

    Apple PAYS these zionist culture-thugs to come up with their own Apple effing dictionary!

    They PUBLISHED it!

    They ENABLED it!

    APPLE MANAGEMENT SHOULD FIRE THIS EDITOR IMMEDIATELY and redresses the disgusting racism by changing the word Arab to zionist!


    • Chaos4700 says:

      To be fair, who you should be boycotting is the writers of the New Oxford American Dictionary. They authored this.

    • kylebisme says:

      I highly doubt Apple proofreads the dictionary.

    • they could bring it to the attention of the SEAI, Office to Monitor and Combat Anti-Iranianism, attn. : Special Arab desk: link to

      no, wait,
      it’s not just Apple that has a certain bias;
      it’s the entire f*%&king US govt:

      link to

      If you’re a Jew, the full force of the US government and her 300-odd million taxpayers will bring the full force of the law against any harsh words that may chance past your tender ears.

      If you’re an Arab, an Iranian, a Muslim?
      Only in parody.
      The worm in the Apple.

      • Citizen says:

        Definitions of rejectionist on the Web:

        Such a person or organization; Having a tendency to reject the plans or proposals of others
        The Rejectionists are an insurgent group operating within Iraq. As defined by the United States Army, the group is comprised of members of the …
        rejectionism – The political position of rejecting a nation’s right to exist, usually specifically the right of Israel to exist
        rejectionists – Arab countries and Palestinian groups who totally reject any possibility of accommodation with Israel.
        link to

  5. You truly believe that Hamas FAVORS the two-state solution?

    Then why haven’t they firmly reconciled with the PA?

    • SimoHurtta says:

      Hamas has clearly several times said that 67 borders are OK for them. Do you Witty truly believe that Israel favours a two-state solution? Israel favours a two state model where the other state has no land or that the other state is Jordan.

      zionist rejectionist
      a person who rejects a a policy demanded by the majority of the world, esp. a Jew or Israel supporter who refuses to accept peace with Palestinians and Arabs using old religious claims that God promised the land to them.

    • Chaos4700 says:

      Witty, sweetheart? Read the fucking vote count and then tell me which countries actually reject peace and justice.

    • Chaos4700 says:

      Also, what does reconciling with the PA have to do with the two-state solution? You really are just parroting yet more Israeli Foreign Ministry talking points at us without bothering to cognitively process them for logic, aren’t you?

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  7. David Samel says:

    Does anyone have any idea what incentivesor threats was used to get these Pacific Island nations on board? It’s just bizarre, isn’t it? If memory serves, either Grenada or Dominica has on occasion voted with Israel and the US as well. Any significance to the fact that Tuvalu and Vanuatu, which usually join the nay group (I think), were absent on this vote?

    • Chaos4700 says:

      Not so much threats as bribes. Well, and intensely hegemonic relationships. Since World War II and thereabouts, we’ve been Big Daddy to the islands of the South Pacific for quite some time.

      If you really want to see how perverse that relationship is, take a close look at our economic relationship with the Mariana Islands, and where infamous lobbyist and Republican fixture Jack Abramoff factors into US legislation regarding said relationship.

    • are they the islands where the US tests nuclear missiles?

  8. syvanen says:

    Good find Phil. Moving a little ot:

    Just heard Terry Gross’s interview with Jeremy Schahil on Blackwater. Basically it was about what appeared to be some serious war crimes committed by Blackwater mercenaries which consist mostly of retired American military men from a variety of special forces. It was quite powerful. Painful to hear. About these terrible crimes that are being committed by Americans in Iraq and Afghanistan. This story elicited anger and the feeling that justice should be brought to bear against those who are responsible.

    Terry is good at revealing American war crimes. Why can’t she interview Israeli soldiers who fought last year in Gaza who speak out through Breaking the Silence about Israeli war crimes?

    • Chaos4700 says:

      I heard that interview too and there were two very painful realizations I got out of it:

      A) What was done to those Blackwater mercenaries who were killed in Fallujah, as grotesque as it was, was an act of self defense by the Iraqis against people who were literally slaughtering them like animals. And we responded to that self defense by waging a full out assault against that city. Twice. Not only will the Iraqi people never trust the Americans, they will hate us — legitimately — for generations.

      B) In bankrolling, employing and protecting Erik Prince and his company, we have become the jihadists. I do not say that lightly. We are the real jihadists. We are the army that is terrorizing the rest of the world and telling them, “Convert or die!” We are the ones who are punishing civilians by the dozen, the hundred, the thousand… at this point, the million, with terror and ruin and death if they don’t bow down to our will. We are the torturers and the rapists — and we have photos to prove it.

      In short… we are the bad guys they said we were. Erik Prince isn’t some anomaly, some pariah — even today, Blackwater/Xe is still the guards, of all things, of our State Department.

      I fear that the United States I was taught about, the United States that I love… is dead. I kind of wish I know how long it’s been dead, because part of me is starting to doubt whether it even existed at all in the first place.

      • Citizen says:

        Yes it’s dead. Blackwater (now under a new name) is the model Hessian force; it’s leader is a Christian Zionist. The USA you admired existed until they killed JFK, and it tried to live for awhile under Carter.

  9. I guess it would be a conspiracy theory to posit that the forces of Zionism had anything to do with the incendiary OED definition.

    Still, the phenomenon requires an explanation.

    • Chaos4700 says:

      Not deliberately, I’m sure, but it’s pretty painfully obvious how much Zionist propaganda has infected American discourse to the point that elected officials such as Presidents Ahmedinejad of Iran and Chavez of Venezuela are made out to be totalitarian dictators because they don’t carry the Israeli stamp of approval.

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  12. Memphis says:

    I’m Canadian and have seen Norman Finkelstein speak numerous times, and he does bring this up. I also frequent his website and saw this a week or so back. And I saw that Canada had abstained. Could someone please tell me exactly what that means?

    • edwin says:

      No one can tell you exactly what that means. That is the point.

      It probably means that Canada has some sympathy to the topic but will remain silent because supporting Israel is more important than justice. It may mean that Canada has some level of embarrassment about looking like the barbarian and colonial puppet that it is. Perhaps it means that the latest blackmail/bribe has not been delivered in a timely way.

    • David Howard Goldberg wrote an interesting book a few years back, titled, “Foreign Policy and Ethnic Interest Groups: American and Canadian Jews Lobby for Israel.”

      In introductory paragraphs, Goldberg explains that the lobbies emerged as a result of the failure of Jews to migrate to Israel, thus misaligning the intended zionist relationship between Israeli Jews and diaspora Jews. To reaffirm that alignment, the lobbies enjoin philanthropy and political action within the diaspora countries to favor Israel through several tactics including “the aggressive promotion of hasbara.

      The purpose of Goldberg’s book is to describe and compare AIPAC and CIC (Canada-Israel Committee) and their relative impact on the presidential/congressional system and the parliamentary system of their respective target nations.

      In other words, Canada is a very close second to the US as a tool for zionists to work out their utopian vision.

      Canada has been suitably “hasbaraed” and “educated” as to the “strategic importance of Israel” and the “threats posed” by Israel’s neighbors; that is to say, Canada has been brought to heel.

      And to abstain.

  13. Memphis says:

    Thanks for the response guys. Canada is becoming more similar to the U.S everyday with the Cons in power. The one glimmer of hope I had for this country was that they would not vote along with the U.S on this matter.

    lobby groups up here fought hard to prevent AJE from being licensed to broadcast. Thanks to CJPME and its effort that is no longer the case. Now I don’t have to watch it on my iphone

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  15. Iraqi Mojo says: has a similar definition:

    1. an Arab leader or country that opposes accommodation or compromise in negotiations with Israel.
    2. any person or group that refuses to compromise in a dispute.

    3. of or pertaining to rejectionists.
    1975–80; rejection + -ist
    link to

    I think it shows how biased, or not entirely informed some western academics were, and in the 70s!

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