The stark reality of the ‘Palestine Papers’ points the way forward

Israel/Palestine
on 68 Comments

I sat around last night thinking of ways to punish Erekat, Abbas and Qurei for treason. It was an exercise in pure fantasy but it had an ameliorative psychological effect.

George Bush made the noose unsexy, and it’s too barbaric besides. But what if Israeli surgeons were contracted to surgically remove every vertebral bone belonging to the three sludges?

I like this one in principle, but it seems costly.

But what if those same surgeons cracked their ribs open, and tattooed their livers yellow or white.

Too literal? Fine.

We can bind their arms akimbo, attach beaks to their snouts, and make them peck one another to the death. We’ll see who the biggest cock in the room is – and the losers will be eulogized with a message on Qurei’s Apartheid Wall: “This fowl creature died for Palestine.”

That seemed charitable and appropriate.

There was one more: Orchestrating the trio’s attack by a pack of jackals in a manic clown circus. But that one struck me as too closely bound to the reality of the past decade to have any comedic value.

—–

After I worked through what many of you were also probably feeling, I began to think about ways to advance our agenda.

Jerusalem will remain undivided. Occupied East Jerusalem is gone, and in its place we have Apartheid East Jerusalem. But East Jerusalem may also provide us with an opportunity for pushing forward.

Against their own best interest, the Israelis annexed East Jerusalem in 1970. Since then the foolish Israelis have provided an opportunity for Palestinian Jerusalemites to gain Israeli citizenship. They must swear allegiance to the state and relinquish other citizenships, along with some other measures to gain it, but they can (at least, as of now they can). But because of their admirable allegiance to their people and a total refusal to accept the legitimacy of the occupation, the Palestinians in Jerusalem have refused to do so.

Now we know for certain that there is no Palestinian leadership. And there will never be a Palestinian citizenship for them to renounce. Therefore, it’s time for Palestinians in East Jerusalem to:

1) Begin voting in municipal elections. It’s their best bet at halting the ethnic cleansing of their neighborhoods;

2) Apply for Israeli citizenship;

We – the justice-seeking community – can only benefit from their increased privilege in the Apartheid state. And those of us committed to the one-state solution can think of this as a step towards political boot-strapping; the Palestinian-Israelis will help to pull the rest of us out of the apartheid muck.

Does a move like this recognize the legitimacy of Israeli occupation? No. Instead, it represents a strategic reappraisal of what’s doable in this environment, and the recognition that the Palestinians (and their activist allies) are basically alone when it comes to halting the ethnic cleansing of Jerusalem.

Jerusalem will be completely Judaized by the time the international community acts (if it does). BDS is a long-term strategy that will succeed, but the ethnic cleansing in Jerusalem is proceeding at a faster pace than we can contend with using BDS alone. Voting for someone other than Nir Barakat is the best short-term stopgap available to us. Likewise, putting Palestinians in the Knesset should be a national priority.

68 Responses

  1. Richard Witty
    January 24, 2011, 9:49 am

    Go back to 1986, is what you are proposing. I guess that is a step forward.

    In a single-state all of Jerusalem will be Judaized.

    Your demand for backbone on the part of the PA, is a false one. It is the demand that statesman have the backbone of a soldier. It was good judgement to renounce the backbone of the soldier, making war everywhere at every opportunity.

    Israel is. Accept that it is. It is not going away, not by BDS, not by active resistance, not by the fear that you will instill in Israeli’s of intentional insurrection on the part of citizens.

    If you are advocating for Palestinians to become Israeli citizens so that they can be full participants in Israeli society, including shifting the demographics so that non-Zionist parties are invited to coalition, wonderful.

    If you are advocating for a deceptive intentional espionage, you will only feed the Israeli right, that loves that sort of theme, as well as cut off your Jerusalem community likely more permanently.

    And, sadly the Israeli right are not as vulnerable as you think, even to international pressure.

    The leadership of PA is more substantive, and as Akiva Eldar described today, demonstrates the PA’s sincere willingness to compromise and reconcile, rather than endless war (that Palestine and Palestinians will lose).

    THAT creates international pressure. The Trojan Horse BDS effort is visible and creates international support for Israel, ironically.

    • seafoid
      January 24, 2011, 11:17 am

      “Israel is. Accept that it is. It is not going away, not by BDS, not by active resistance, not by the fear that you will instill in Israeli’s of intentional insurrection on the part of citizens.”

      Israel is as enduring as apartheid.

      “sadly the Israeli right are not as vulnerable as you think, even to international pressure.”

      Let’s see how they like sanctions.

      • hophmi
        January 24, 2011, 11:40 am

        “Let’s see how they like sanctions.”

        It’s not happening, seafoid. You can cry and scream all you want, and invoke South Africa all you want, but boycotting the Jews is a thing of the past.

      • David Samel
        January 24, 2011, 12:30 pm

        hophmi, I’m sure it has been pointed out to you a million times before, but BDS does not “boycott the Jews.” It is sleazy of you to assert otherwise.

      • Citizen
        January 24, 2011, 12:48 pm

        Who’s boycotting the Jews? And where is this happening?

      • eee
        January 24, 2011, 12:52 pm

        David,

        Yes, there is a difference between “boycotting the Jews” and “boycotting the only Jewish state”. You can flog that dead horse as much as you want.

      • hophmi
        January 24, 2011, 1:46 pm

        Hey, listen, you can call it what you want. I call it boycotting the Jews. Because there are a lot of human rights abusers out there, worse than the Jewish state, and you have chosen to focus on the Jewish state.

        You know, the Palestinians often refer to Israelis collectively as “the Jews.” They think they’re boycotting the Jews. They’re your leaders, and yet you don’t adopt their language. Interesting.

        I also see this boycott as a continuation of the Arab League one that started with the founding of the state, which, since the Arab League has never boycotted a Muslim or Arab human rights abuser, despite the presence of many in the world, I call a boycott of the Jews.

        I think it’s just as sleazy to suggest that the motives of BDS are pure and human rights based, when the history suggests that they are far from pure, and the application is highly selective and political.

      • Woody Tanaka
        January 24, 2011, 2:08 pm

        ‘Yes, there is a difference between ‘boycotting the Jews’ and ‘boycotting the only Jewish state’.”

        How about “boycotting the only state getting $3 billion from the US per year”? How about “boycotting the only state engaged in a mulit-generational occupation creating millions of stateless people”?

        Aside from the fact that you don’t get to trot out the fake anti-Semitism, how are those descriptions not more accurate?

      • David Samel
        January 24, 2011, 2:18 pm

        www, to what “dead horse” do you refer? That there is a difference between the Jewish State and the Jewish people? Who killed that horse? As long as hophmi, and you, are going to lie about BDS on this website, there will be people who will point out your lie. If you prefer to get away with such dishonesty, you should communicate privately among yourselves. I have no doubt that each of you will not only swallow each other’s lies but enthusiastically agree. Have fun.

        You think that BDS is anti-Semitic, targeting Israel solely because it is the Jewish State and not because of its actions? Do you believe that all worse actors on the world stage must first be targeted and vanquished before Israel’s misdeeds may also be opposed; or that since the Jewish people in generations and centuries past were mistreated, the Jewish State today should be allowed to get away with any behavior? Or perhaps both?

        I generally avoid Nazi references when describing Israeli conduct, but there are some times when exceptions are appropriate, like when such references are raised by an adversary. That is surely what you are doing by supporting hophmi’s statement that “boycotting the Jews is a thing of the past,” with its unmistakable implication that the BDS movement against Israel is reminiscent of boycotts of Jewish businesses in Nazi-controlled Europe. So what do you think is closer to Nazi conduct? Severely restricting a captive population’s access to food, water, medicine, fuel, building supplies, children’s toys, notebooks and pencils, etc., or refusing to cooperate with the regime that imposes such misery and hardship on that population?

      • Potsherd2
        January 24, 2011, 3:24 pm

        hophmi, you know perfectly well that Israelis call themselves “the Jews,” blackening the name of all the Jews in the world.

      • Potsherd2
        January 24, 2011, 3:26 pm

        boycotting the Jews is a thing of the past.

        And boycotting the Israelis is the thing of the future.

      • eee
        January 24, 2011, 11:48 am

        So much trash talk.
        Fact: In the last few years the EU and Israel have become even closer
        Fact: In the last few years Israeli relations with Russia hugely improved with Russia buying UAV’s from Israel and millions of Russian tourists coming to Israel
        Fact: Even Obama cannot put a dent in the Israeli-American relations

        So you were saying?

      • annie
        January 24, 2011, 11:57 am

        Fact: In the last few years the EU and Israel have become even closer

        source?

      • eee
        January 24, 2011, 12:47 pm

        Israel has forged very close relationships with the Czech Republic and Poland to build on its already excellent relationship with other leading European countries.
        link to guardian.co.uk

        Since everything related to foreign relations needs to be done in the EU by consensus, the EU cannot do anything against Israel.

      • Citizen
        January 24, 2011, 1:01 pm

        Ultimately, there is no root for EU support of Israel right or wrong.

        There is a radical difference in basic culture between the European Union and Israel. The EU is a new, unprecedented type of entity unless one goes back to the Roman or Holy Roman Empire. It eludes the ideas of nationalism, cultural uniqueness, and separate states. This results from two devastating wars that ruined Europe’s culture. Germany, a supposedly highly cultured European country, engaged in unprecedented crimes of which the Shoah was the absolute low.
        European governments focus on their citizens’ welfare while neglecting security risks. Europe supports human rights.

        Israel, on the other hand, is a state devoted to a specific ethnic-religious ideology. It sees itself as eternally surrounded by present and future enemies and is massively armed accordingly. Israel only supports (arguably it’s version of ) Jewish rights.

      • hophmi
        January 24, 2011, 1:21 pm

        Please feel free to hitch your horse to the EU star. Good luck.

        “Ultimately, there is no root for EU support of Israel right or wrong.”

        That’s true. But there is also no EU support for Palestine right or wrong, no EU support for boycotting the Jews, and no EU support for anything other than sticking its finger in the wind, saying publicly whatever it is its Arab allies want to hear, and behind the scenes, supporting whatever is most stable, which is the Israeli state, which is more stable than anything else in the region and has a society that most resembles their own.

        “The EU is a new, unprecedented type of entity unless one goes back to the Roman or Holy Roman Empire. It eludes the ideas of nationalism, cultural uniqueness, and separate states.”

        Kumbaya. Modern trends say otherwise. The EU is still at heart a weak body made up of essentially homogeneous Christian states who ban minarets, refuse to accept anything non-Christian into their society. See the response of France, Holland, Germany, Switzerland, Denmark and Austria to their growing Muslim populations; to quote Chancellor Merkel: “Multiculturalism has failed.”

      • hophmi
        January 24, 2011, 2:25 pm

        The rest of my reply did not come through.

        “Europe supports human rights.”

        C’mon, really? Do you really believe this? The Europeans let the Serbs massacre the Bosnians, and then the Kosovar Albanians in their backyard. They coddle the Russians and the Chinese. They have a poor record of integrating their Muslim minorities, whom they treat as second-class citizens. They facilitate the massive perversion of the HRC at the UN by standing in the corner as the body makes a mockery of human rights enforcement by playing third-world politics. And they bitch every time they are asked to put their own in harm’s way, something they cynically rely on the Americans to do, while of course criticizing America for what it spends on defense.

        And that’s to say nothing about past history and talk about what the Europeans did to the poor Africans, whose continent they destroyed in pursuit of the almighty natural resources, which they stole.

        All you need to do is talk to a European NATO officer to discover how much of the what the Europeans say publicly is nonsense and all you need to do is look at wikileaks to discover that the Americans are quite a bit more honest about their foreign policy than the Europeans are.

      • pjdude
        January 24, 2011, 9:51 pm

        poland’s been wrong before. it the shared thing with the germans. if poland was true to its history it would be for the palestinians

    • RoHa
      January 24, 2011, 7:33 pm

      “Israel is. Accept that it is. It is not going away”

      Tempting fate, there.

  2. Citizen
    January 24, 2011, 9:56 am

    Once they swear allegiance to the state of Israel, can that oath later be used to toss them in jail or otherwise take away any benefits, licenses, etc–basically by saying whatever they did is an act of (at least technical) treason? Or do you assume that they will just mouth the oath words, and things will be honky dory? Israel could treat their oath like the US is treating Private Manning–the cover is he took an oath when he joined the military; we all know Israel’s military is now enmeshed heavily in its civil government.

  3. eee
    January 24, 2011, 10:12 am

    Finally, one or two Palestinians have come to realize what I have been saying all along. I could never figure out why the Palestinians refused to vote in municipal elections. But as usual, your realization is about 20 years too late. The Palestinians are completely out of options at this point in time.

    Why don’t you begin by changing the Palestinian leadership? I hope you realize of course that making Hamas the leaders of the Palestinian people plays into Israel’s hands. So what is your alternative to Fatah?

    • Jim Haygood
      January 24, 2011, 2:36 pm

      Palestinians DID vote to change their leadership in 2006, and Israel arrested many of their elected parliamentarians.

      Next!

      • hophmi
        January 24, 2011, 3:06 pm

        “Palestinians DID vote to change their leadership in 2006, and Israel arrested many of their elected parliamentarians.”

        Yes, in another great leadership pick, they elected a terrorist organization to run their government. Israel did what Fatah wanted to and couldn’t.

        Great point. Anything else? You’re not helping them.

      • pjdude
        January 24, 2011, 9:52 pm

        hamas hasn’t committed a single act of terrorism. acts of reprehensible violence yes but not terrorism

      • Potsherd2
        January 24, 2011, 3:28 pm

        eee knows this. eee is proud of it. So is hophmi.

        Israelis are quite shameless. They aren’t even slightly apologetic for their crimes. Instead, they brag about them.

        “Yeah, today I stomped two Arab babies to death! I’m on a roll!”

  4. seafoid
    January 24, 2011, 10:22 am

    An oath of allegiance to Israel is meaningless. Israel is a tyranny just as Tunisia was.

    • Woody Tanaka
      January 24, 2011, 2:10 pm

      Israel is worse than Tunisia. Tunisia’s evil was limited.

      • hophmi
        January 24, 2011, 4:20 pm

        “Israel is worse than Tunisia.”

        Ah, a new entry for my “Funniest Activist Hyperbole on the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict” book.

        Of course, it’s no “Israel is worse than Nazi Germany.”

        Try harder, Woody!

      • Woody Tanaka
        January 24, 2011, 4:55 pm

        “Ah, a new entry for my ‘Funniest Activist Hyperbole on the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict’ book.”

        It’s not hyperbole. The Tunisians were on the road to easing their oppression by running out one man. The Palestinians’ foes number in the millions, many of whom are ideological fanatics.

        The fact that you can’t see this explains a lot.

      • pjdude
        January 24, 2011, 9:53 pm

        it is. there were some germans trying to stop the criminals at the top levels of government there is no such parallel in Israel

  5. Walid
    January 24, 2011, 11:04 am

    Mustafa Barghoutti would make a good clean President; the rest including Fayad and Ashraoui belong on the same list of Erekat, Abbas and Qurei. The “Palestinian Papers” didn’t reveal anything we didn’t already know. One has only to remember Abbas suspending action on the Goldstone U.N. report on Gaza war crimes and that was over a year ago and the funny stuff with the WB cellular licensing by Israel. Everything else is more of the same.

    • annie
      January 24, 2011, 11:18 am

      yeah, i wondered how fayyed wasn’t on that list. he’s their favorite.

    • seafoid
      January 24, 2011, 11:19 am

      President of what, Walid? The Sultah is called the Salatah in the West Bank, isn’t it?

      The PA is an institution for a land that doesn’t currently exist.

      • hophmi
        January 24, 2011, 11:46 am

        Mustafa Barghouti ran. What’d he get, 2 percent?

        Ralph Nader isn’t going to win either.

        The fact of the matter is that the lot of you have no political program outside of criticizing the status quo, and your opposition is a terrorist organization in a time where the world has stopped negotiating with terrorist organizations.

        Salaam Fayyad is the best thing that could have happened to your movement, but most of you are too drunk on self-righteous self-indulgence to realize it. You’ll revel in vain dogmatism to the last Palestinian.

      • David Samel
        January 24, 2011, 12:33 pm

        hophmi, Mustafa Barghouti got 20%, not 2. Before you publicly commented, you should have spent the extra 30 seconds necessary to check that fact. If Israel allowed full and fair elections, and freedom of movement for MB and all other candidates, his chances would be considerably greater than Nader’s. Fayyad may or may not be “the best thing” for the Palestinian people. I guess that choice should be up to them, not you.

      • eee
        January 24, 2011, 12:51 pm

        David,

        Who is stopping the Palestinians from organizing free and fair elections at least in Gaza?

      • Citizen
        January 24, 2011, 1:08 pm

        The Palestinians had a free and fair election in Gaza. What they need is one in the rest of their land. Who’s stopping them?

      • hophmi
        January 24, 2011, 1:18 pm

        “hophmi, Mustafa Barghouti got 20%, not 2. Before you publicly commented, you should have spent the extra 30 seconds necessary to check that fact.”

        20%, 2%, it makes no difference to me in an election where Hamas did not participate, and the only candidate was unpopular to begin with. He’s not winning an election, and if he did win, you’d probably call him a traitor once he advocated giving up.

        I was thinking of the 2006 PLC elections, where his list got 2.7 percent.

        By the way, he’s a two-stater, so I guess that means he should be tried for treason.

        “Fayyad may or may not be “the best thing” for the Palestinian people. I guess that choice should be up to them, not you.”

        Yeah, because if there’s one thing the Palestinian people are great at, it’s picking good leaders. 63 years of refugeedom is a great calling card for them. I know, it’s all someone else’s fault. In any event, yes, it should be up to them, and them is not electing Mustafa Barghouti. Them elected Hamas. Hamas, of course, is a group whose views are closest to those here.

      • Walid
        January 24, 2011, 1:42 pm

        Yes, Hophmi, as David said, Barghoutti got 20% of the vote and came in second in a field of 7 candidates, not counting Israel working to trip him to help Abbas.

        Stephen Lendman wrote a bit about it on his blog:

        “Mahmoud Abbas – A Treacherous Illegitimate Leader

        In an August 31 article, Jeffrey Blankfort called Abbas a “double agent,” saying he serves “his Israeli and US masters in plain sight,” at least since Oslo when as chief Palestinian negotiator, he “played Neville Chamberlain for Tel Aviv, agreeing to surrender occupied Palestinian land” and end legitimate resistance. As “emergency” PA leader (20 months after his term expired), he’s now “Israel’s sheriff,” suppressing peaceful demonstrations, arresting Hamas members and supporters, serving Israel, not his own people, an illegitimate Quisling head of state.

        On June 19, 2003, in the London Review of Books, Edward Said discussed him in an article titled “A Road Map to Where,?” saying:

        He first met him in March 1977 at a Cairo National Council meeting where he gave “by far the longest speech.” In retrospect, it launched secret PLO-Israeli meetings “that made Oslo possible.”

        During the PLO’s 1971 – 1982 Beirut years, Abbas was in Damascus, later joining Arafat in Tunis, exiled for the next decade. After the 1991 Madrid conference, he, PLO officials, and independent European intellectuals formed teams “to prepare negotiating files on subjects such as water, refugees, demography and boundaries” ahead of secret Oslo meetings, “although to the best of my knowledge, none” of it was used. Other Palestinians were excluded from talks. In the end, no tangible results “influenced the final documents that emerged.”

        “In Oslo, the Israelis fielded an array of experts supported by maps, documents, statistics, and at least 17 prior drafts of what Palestinians” finally signed. They, however, were allowed only “three PLO men, not one of whom knew English or had a background in international (or any other kind of) law.” The outcome was predictable, a one-sided agreement for Israel, Palestinians getting nothing besides annointment as “Israel’s sheriff.”

        In his 1995 memoir, “Through Secret Channels: The Road to Oslo,” Abbas took credit as its “architect,” though he never left Tunis. In fact, “Arafat was pulling all the strings,” arranging his own capitulation. “No wonder then that the Oslo negotiations made the overall situation of the Palestinians a good deal worse.”

        Thereafter, Abbas became known for his “flexibility” toward Israel, “his subservience to Arafat, and his lack of an organized political base (until made prime minister in 2003, then president in 2005), although he is one of Fatah’s founders and a longstanding member and secretary general of its Central Committee.”

        America and Israel were delighted with his elevation, a man seen as “colorless, moderately corrupt, and without any clear ideas of his own, except that he wants to please the white man,” his masters in Washington and Tel Aviv. As a result, his “authenticity is what seems so lacking in the path cut out for” him, a stooge made president in a managed 2005 election.

        Israel controlled the process, elevating him by imprisoning leading opposition candidate Marwan Barghouti on bogus murder charges, and obstructing Mustafa Barghouti for “demand(ing) total and complete reform, (ending all) form(s) of corruption, (and) mismanagement, and (working to) consolidate the rule of law.”

        As a result, Israeli forces arrested him during the campaign, then expelled him from East Jerusalem to prevent his planned campaign speech. He was also excluded from Nablus and Gaza, harassed and intimidated in a process rigged for Abbas, boycotted by Hamas and Islamic Jihad. In a field of seven candidates, Barghouti finished second, far behind his majority. He hasn’t disappointed, gets White House photo-op rewards, and his son, a millionaire businessman, admits to “collaborat(ing) with Israel.” His father does it tacitly against his own people.”

      • marc b.
        January 24, 2011, 2:28 pm

        yes, hopmeee, 2%, 20%, 200% what’s the difference really, just a zero or two. don’t let the facts interfere with your argument. and, i agree, the israelis are much better leader pickers than palestinians, which is why they have volunteered to select leaders for them, and why they graciously bomb the palestinians who have chosen unwisely. a master must always apply positive and negative reinforcement when training the servants.

      • David Samel
        January 24, 2011, 2:31 pm

        hophmi, I did not say that the Palestinians are any better or worse than anyone else at picking leaders, only that they deserve the same rights. You think Israelis have a stellar record at picking leaders? Do you think they should be deprived of that right because many of Israel’s leaders have been involved in financial scandals? And when you say, “I know, it’s all someone else’s fault” about Palestinians enduring refugee status for many decades, you’re really opening up a can of worms. What would you say to someone who suggested that Jewish people shouldn’t have the right to vote, because their record of picking leaders is horrendous. Maybe this person would say, mimicking you, “Yeah, the Jewish people are great at picking good leaders. Hundreds of years of discrimination and murderous pogroms culminating in the Holocaust is a great calling card for them. I know, it’s all someone else’s fault.” I’d call this person a raving anti-Semite, and I suspect you’d agree. But what does that make you?

      • Jim Haygood
        January 24, 2011, 2:46 pm

        ‘Hamas, of course, is a group whose views are closest to those here.’

        BS. Most here subscribe to the Anglo-American notion of due process, fair play, rule of law, whatever you wish to call it.

        It means that the winner of an election is entitled to take office, whether one agrees with them or not.

        On the other hand, most here have little in common with Israel’s ethnocentric, racist values, which are anathema to most of the developed world.

      • hophmi
        January 24, 2011, 3:24 pm

        “yes, hopmeee, 2%, 20%, 200% what’s the difference really, just a zero or two. don’t let the facts interfere with your argument. ”

        And don’t let the difference between 2 and 20 substitute for a rejoinder. My point was that the guy will not be elected. If you can prove otherwise, please do.

        “Yes, Hophmi, as David said, Barghoutti got 20% of the vote and came in second in a field of 7 candidates, not counting Israel working to trip him to help Abbas.”

        5 of whom no one had ever heard of. The sixth got 62%, and the main opposition didn’t participate. But again, refer above for my main point, which is that Barghouti is not electable.

        As far the obstruction argument, there wasn’t much obstruction in 2006. Jimmy Carter said it was a great election. Mustafa Barghouti list = 2.7 percent.

        “You think Israelis have a stellar record at picking leaders? ”

        Yeah, I do. Israel’s got a state, lots of security, is financially relatively well-off, and remains in the drivers seat when it comes to making peace. David Ben-Gurion got them a state. Moshe Sharrett argued their case successfully at the UN. Levi Eshkol fought the ’67 War. Golda Meir and Abba Eban defended the 1967 war, though Golda fell asleep at the switch in 1973. Menachem Begin made peace with the Egyptians. Yitzchak Rabin improved Israel’s image in the international community and nearly made peace with the Palestinians. Ariel Sharon got Israel out of Gaza, fought off Intifada 2, and got unprecedented concessions from the Americans on settlements.

        That’s a damn good record.

        “Do you think they should be deprived of that right because many of Israel’s leaders have been involved in financial scandals?”

        What, you mean like Olmert? Where are you David? Olmert is hounded by investigators. Moshe Katsav is going to jail. Eli Yishai went to jail. Israel threw Rabin out of office once because his wife had a US bank account she forgot to close. You really want to compare corruption records? Yeah, there are plenty of corrupt leaders in Israel. No question. But the PA in the past has been a true blue kleptocracy. There’s no comparison here.

        “Yeah, the Jewish people are great at picking good leaders. Hundreds of years of discrimination and murderous pogroms culminating in the Holocaust is a great calling card for them. ”

        Very true, very true. That’s why we stopped all of that and founded Israel. We CHANGED, David. And, of course, the comparison is ridiculous. Jews didn’t have the option of negotiating their way out of persecution nor the political support of large swaths of the world when we were persecuted and put in ghettos for hundreds of years. Palestinians have had all of that, and they still don’t have a state.

      • Potsherd2
        January 24, 2011, 3:31 pm

        Maybe the UN ought to step in, arrest the entire Knesset and appoint a caretaker government to take its place. That would probably be the best thing that could happen to Israel. If it’s good enough for the Palestinians, why not?

      • Walid
        January 24, 2011, 3:57 pm

        “… That’s a damn good record. ”

        Hophmi, a record of continued terrorism, theft, assassinations and dispossession of the Palestinians and of building a state on the ruins of another. I’d be ashamed of such a record if this is what is in my country’s history, but for you, it’s a matter of pride. Thankfully not all Jews are like Israelis.

      • hophmi
        January 24, 2011, 4:17 pm

        “Hophmi, a record of continued terrorism, theft, assassinations and dispossession of the Palestinians and of building a state on the ruins of another. I’d be ashamed of such a record if this is what is in my country’s history”

        Yeah, the Palestinian history is real pure. Killing school children, blowing up kids in a pizzeria, blowing up old people at a seder, shooting over the border of Gaza for 6 decades, it’s a great record.

      • marc b.
        January 24, 2011, 4:34 pm

        “yes, hopmeee, 2%, 20%, 200% what’s the difference really, just a zero or two. don’t let the facts interfere with your argument. ”

        And don’t let the difference between 2 and 20 substitute for a rejoinder. My point was that the guy will not be elected. If you can prove otherwise, please do.

        well, nostradamus, you really have no idea who would be elected under the current circumstances. i imagine that abu mazen’s stock has fallen in the past few hours.

      • Woody Tanaka
        January 24, 2011, 4:57 pm

        “Yeah, the Palestinian history is real pure. Killing school children, blowing up kids in a pizzeria, blowing up old people at a seder, shooting over the border of Gaza for 6 decades, it’s a great record.”

        Maybe this is just a “small evil” in an attempt to bring about a “greater good.” Ask you buddy eee where that comes from.

      • Walid
        January 24, 2011, 1:34 pm

        Seafoid, I wasn’t thinking of the PA when I suggested Mustafa Barghoutti. He’d be good at anything, even as a rep for Palestinians in a binational state.

  6. seafoid
    January 24, 2011, 11:08 am

    “In a single-state all of Jerusalem will be Judaized2

    In a single state the first action of the Palestinian majority parliament will be the legalisation of the Right of Return. End of story.

    • Citizen
      January 24, 2011, 1:10 pm

      That’s the least they should get considering there’s already a right of return for Jews in the state–no matter when or where born.

      • yonira
        January 24, 2011, 1:56 pm

        It’s this mentality which will prevent a one-state solution. Jews in Israel will never accept one-state where they know their rights will be trampled by the “Palestinian Majority government”

        This civil war will make Lebanon look like day camp.

      • Jim Haygood
        January 24, 2011, 2:56 pm

        Amazing — Palestinians getting the same right of return as Jews translates into Jews getting ‘their rights trampled’ in yonira’s perception.

        What rights are those, exactly — the right to permanent rule, the right to ethnic supremacy, the right to demographic engineering to ensure dominance?

        Sorry, no other civilized country recognizes these rights.

      • seafoid
        January 24, 2011, 3:11 pm

        They will accept whatever is going when their economy breaks down.
        When they default on their debts and nobody will lend.
        Theywere never going to leave Yamit either, as I recall.

      • hophmi
        January 24, 2011, 3:58 pm

        “They will accept whatever is going when their economy breaks down.
        When they default on their debts and nobody will lend.
        Theywere never going to leave Yamit either, as I recall.”

        When the sun burns out, the Earth will freeze.

        The Palestinians will get their state by the power of magical thinking, huzzah!

        Isn’t it funny how tthe Israelis were willing to trade the entire Sinai for peace with their strongest enemy when they felt that their partner was actually credible?

        It’s funny, because everybody here says they’re not interested in making peace. Oh well, another one of life’s paradoxes, I guess.

      • Woody Tanaka
        January 24, 2011, 4:25 pm

        “Isn’t it funny how tthe Israelis were willing to trade the entire Sinai for peace with their strongest enemy when they felt that their partner was actually credible?”

        I think the $3 B-B-B-Billion per year by Uncle Sucker, plus $2 billion to your Egyptian co-conspirators, plus the fact that the nutcases who believed that the Sinai was Israel’s/the Jews’ land, as of right, are fewer than the nutcases who believe that of the West Bank, Gaza, and the rest of Palestine, are all more important factors than some question about “credibility” of partners, especially given these revelations which has shown the GOI to be the criminally non-credible partner in this.

      • hophmi
        January 24, 2011, 4:38 pm

        “I think the $3 B-B-B-Billion per year by Uncle Sucker, plus $2 billion to your Egyptian co-conspirators, plus the fact that the nutcases who believed that the Sinai was Israel’s/the Jews’ land, as of right, are fewer than the nutcases who believe that of the West Bank, Gaza, and the rest of Palestine, are all more important factors than some question about “credibility” of partners, especially given these revelations which has shown the GOI to be the criminally non-credible partner in this.”

        You’re very silly if you think the $3 billion dollars is the reason Israel made peace with Egypt. Of course, to head off a possible cold war hotspot, this was a cheap deal for the US. But if Israel had not had some confidence that there would be no more war with Egypt, it would not have happened for any money.

      • NorthOfFortyNine
        January 24, 2011, 4:58 pm

        Jews in Israel will never accept one-state where they know their rights will be trampled by the “Palestinian Majority government”

        Why can’t you imagine a federal state with strong minority rights provisions? Ethnocentricism acts on you like horse tranq.

      • Woody Tanaka
        January 24, 2011, 5:01 pm

        The reason that Israel had some confidence that there would be no more war with Egypt was precisely because of the support by the Americans and the promise of military superiority to Israel, promised by AIPAC and the Israel lobby’s pet politicians.

      • eee
        January 24, 2011, 5:19 pm

        “Why can’t you imagine a federal state with strong minority rights provisions? Ethnocentricism acts on you like horse tranq.”

        While I can imagine anything, I have to live in an actual state, and over my dead body will I live in an Arab state. Not because I dislike Arabs as people, just because I have zero faith in their ability as a society to sustain a liberal democracy. Idle talk will not convince me either. Let’s see a 10 year period of liberal democracy in one Arab country with peaceful changes of regime. Then let’s talk again. Imagining blue unicorns is something anyone can do.

        Yes, yes, it the US, colonialism, the Jews, Israel, aliens etc. fault. I really don’t care. All these excuses were stale 40 years ago. Show me actual results, don’t try selling something that may happen in 50 years. Do you really think I would be willing to risk my children’s future on such nonsense?

      • RoHa
        January 24, 2011, 7:40 pm

        “over my dead body will I live in an Arab state. Not because I dislike Arabs as people, just because I have zero faith in their ability as a society to sustain a liberal democracy.”

        The proposed state will not be an “Arab state”. It will be a state of Arabs and Jews. And if you are so worried that Arab society is not capable of sustaining a liberal democracy, why not put some effort into supporting those members of Arab society that are inclined to liberal democracy?

        At the moment, most Arabs see that the countries that loudly proclaim liberal democracy are those that are trying to bomb them to oblivion.

      • annie
        January 24, 2011, 8:15 pm

        Let’s see a 10 year period of liberal democracy in one Arab country with peaceful changes of regime.

        try showing me on arab county we’re not proping up a dictator or some royalty and we’ll have something to talk about. you can’t make racist claims about people we’ve been making war on and funding in wars for decades.

        how would you like it if i said jews were incapable of a liberal democracy because there isn’t one jewish state that has ever existed in centuries with out denying half the population they control rights?

        stop w/this racist crap.

      • eee
        January 24, 2011, 8:24 pm

        “try showing me on arab county we’re not proping up a dictator or some royalty and we’ll have something to talk about.”

        Here are a few examples:
        1) Syria
        2) Iraq
        3) Libya
        4) Morocco

        There are 22 Arab countries. Not one is an example of good governance. You can bad mouth Jews as much as you want, I really don’t care and it doesn’t change the facts about government in Arab countries. And if the US does not support a dictator, he is only replaced by another one, not by democracy. Hey, let’s give Tunisia a chance and see who is right.

      • pjdude
        January 25, 2011, 6:47 am

        Isn’t it funny how tthe Israelis were willing to trade the entire Sinai for peace with their strongest enemy when they felt that their partner was actually credible?

        well except for the fact they weren’t as usual an Israeli supporter lies. they made peace not because they had a credible partner but because they were worried about losing british, french, and american support

      • pjdude
        January 25, 2011, 6:50 am

        true those arab states are in bad shape but before you attack arabs you need to look at the history. compartively where screwed by colonialism they are doing the best

  7. hophmi
    January 24, 2011, 4:00 pm

    “What rights are those, exactly — the right to permanent rule, the right to ethnic supremacy, the right to demographic engineering to ensure dominance?

    Sorry, no other civilized country recognizes these rights.”

    The Israelis are not interested in permanent rule or ethnic supremacy. The last one on the list is hilarious, particularly if you’ve ever been to Europe. There’s like, white Christian people everywhere, man. You can’t escape them.

    • Woody Tanaka
      January 24, 2011, 4:27 pm

      “The Israelis are not interested in permanent rule or ethnic supremacy.”

      So all this talk about the state of Israel being and remaining “Jewish” by is all a performance art piece??

  8. DICKERSON3870
    January 24, 2011, 6:56 pm

    RE: “It was an exercise in pure fantasy but it had an ameliorative psychological effect.” – Ahmed Moor
    MY COMMENT: What a wonderful example of constructive introspection and self-awareness!

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