Israeli settlers al-Shuhada street, Hebron (Photo:Hazem Bader/AFP/Getty)
I'm ecstatic about this new post by Andrew Sullivan. He's got a firm grip on the main artery of of Israel's relentless expansion and he's not backing down, he's doubling down, driving it home and not letting go. He clenches their argument by the throat, shakes it til the bones starts to rattle, and then strangles unmercifully. In this must-read 25-plus paragraph piece, he takes it all the way.
Let's pick up where we left off a few days ago Sullivan unmasks Goldberg:
I repeat: What would be a very good way to remove those settlements?
And now in his favorable review of Peter Beinart's book, the Crisis of Zionism, titled Why Continue To Build The Settlements? Sullivan continues to place the settlements center stage, where they belong. In his previous interrogation of Goldberg he didn't use
Netanyahu's Goldberg's own analysis to make his points, this time he does several times over:
The answer is that the settlements are there because the current Israeli government has no intention of ever dividing the land between Arabs and Jews in a way that would give the Palestinians anything like their own state; and have every intention of holding Judea and Samaria for ever. Netanyahu is, as Beinart rightly calls him, a Monist. He is the son of his father, Ben Zion, as Jeffrey Goldberg has also insisted on. But what Peter does is spell out one side of the Netanyahu vision that Goldberg elides.
Vladimir Jabotinsky was a huge influence on Netanyahu's father and Netanyahu himself. He's a complicated figure, as Beinart readily concedes. For Jabotinsky, what it all came down to in the end was "the single ideal: a Jewish minority on both sides of the Jordan as a first step towards the establishment of the State, That is what we call 'monism'." My italics. The Revisionist Zionists (whence eventually Likud) envisaged a Jewish state that would not only include the West Bank but the East Bank as well, i.e. Jordan.
Ben Zion Netanyahu followed Jabotinsky's vision, and his willingness, even eagerness, to use violence to achieve it: "We should conquer any disputed territory in the land of Israel. Conquer and hold it, even if it brings us years of war ... You don't return land." Ben Zion Netanyahu even favored the "transfer" of Arabs living in Palestine to other Arab countries.In 2009, Netanyahu Sr, put his position this way to Maariv:
"The Jews and the Arabs are like two goats faing each other on a narrow bridge. One must jump into the river." "What does the Arab's jump mean?" asked the interviewer, trying to decipher the metaphor. Netanyahu explained: "That they won't be able to face the war with us, which will include withholding food from Arab cities, preventing education, terminating electrical power and more. They won't be able to exist and they will run away from here."
Suddenly, the situation in Gaza and much of the West Bank makes more sense, doesn't it? It's a conscious relentless assault on the lives of Palestinians to immiserate them to such an extent that they flee. And if you do not think that Bibi Netanyahu's father isn't easily the biggest influence on his life and worldview, read Jeffrey Goldberg. Money quote:
By all means do read the money quote. Sullivan's taking on the rotten core of Zionism using Netanyahu's dad to drive home the argument:
"withholding food.... preventing education, terminating electrical power ....They won't be able to exist".
Sounding very very ugly indeed.
So yes, it's a review of Beinart's book. But more importantly it's an evisceration of Israel's expansion policies, a further unmasking of Zionism, via Goldberg. The very same Goldberg who's assured us that he will be getting back to us very shortly on two fronts:
b) Having accused Sully of being a "scapegoater of Jews" and claiming he would disengage from the spat, Goldberg changed his mind (cornered) and promised readers he would provide them with: "the specific examples" of Sully's intransigence.
Goldberg is traveling, he hasn't written a stitch since then, nothing I've run across anyway. And since the war's off til next year, filling us in on Bibi's perspective of why an Iran strike would be successful is a moot point.
Sullivan is not on holiday though, we're very certain of that. He's got Goldberg boxed in.
The best part of all this is the placement of settlements on the front burner during an election cycle. Americans need to understand the ugliness of Israel's expansion policy, they need to fully grok how the ethnic cleansing of Palestine is happening every single day.