A defense of ‘respectful separation’ from 1955 and today

Consider this a sequel to the post “A defense of ‘Separate but Equal’ from 1950 and today.”

Mira Sucharov writing for Open Zion:

The agunah metaphor to which Jerry Haber likens the conflict—the Palestinians as a wife forever chained to a husband who refuses to grant her a Jewish divorce—is actually more apt for liberal Zionism than it is for BDS. It is leftist-Zionist Amos Oz who has long called the two-state solution a much-needed “divorce.” But in the world according to BDS, the husband is not only being asked to grant the divorce, he is also being asked to remarry the estranged wife—and change his sexual orientation.

In the Venn diagram of where the region sits today, it is not difficult to see where the overlap lies. It lies in respectful separation—not in an endless remarriage where core collective identities will be forever challenged. It lies in a two-state solution where the branches of each side’s subjectivity can grow and be nurtured—rather than be forever clipped by the Bonzai-sheers of existence under perpetual mutual siege.

From Emmett Till and the Mississippi Press (p. 110) on responses to the verdict which found Emmett Till’s killers innocent:

Across the state, a straight shot east from Natchez, editors at the Laurel Leader-Call also invoked segregation, but not as a comparative judicial calculus: “We hear a lot of talk about preserving our ‘way of life’ in the south. By this most of us mean a segregated society, for the ‘way of life’ that has been the southern pattern is a thing of the past, but a segregated society can and should be preserved.” Adopting the posture of white paternalism, the Leader-Call looked to the short term future: “We think that, as time passes and the colored people become more aware of what integrity of race means and pride in their tradition and in their people, they’ll want segregation too.” Brown [vs the Board of Education] would be rendered largely meaningless since both races would voluntarily choose to remain separate. But the Brown decision was not the impetus for the Leader-Call‘s editorial, not was it brought into a faulty comparison, as it was in the Natchez Democrat; rather both “the trial at Sumner” and the “incident” at Brookhaven suggested to the Leader-Call‘s editors that a peaceful future between the races required a respectful separation.

About Adam Horowitz

Adam Horowitz is Co-Editor of Mondoweiss.net.
Posted in Israel/Palestine

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

  1. akayani says:

    65 years of no damn effort to create 2 states. Anyone in that mindset is dreaming. Soft Zionism is about as good as being a heroin addict that has mostly given up. The can be only one outcome, a single democratic state and an end to the fussing with the Jewish demographic.

    It’s either given (not likely) or it is ‘destroy the joint’. So it is destroy the joint with prosecutions in the ICC for crimes against humanity. “That’s never going to happen”, I’ve heard it said… and it was said in the case of South Africa too. And we manage to end that version of apartheid without the internet. Any legitimacy that Zionism once had it has destroyed and the final insult to the international community was in November with the outrageous bombing of Gaza. It’s clear who the terrorist organization is, Israel!

  2. pabelmont says:

    Israel’s demise, if such should occur, cannot be laid at the feet of the BDS program. It would be squarely the result of Zionist over-reaching.

    Zionism: Israel the husband? In the old and horrible way in which all the rights and property resided in the husband. (English law in the past: “the husband and wife are one person, and the husband is that person”.) And in the case of Zionism, a vastly abusive husband.

    BDS asks only to end the abuse. ALL OTHER QUESTIONS are open (as far as BDS is concerned).

    End the abuse of Palestinians living West Bank and Gaza by ending the settlements, settlers, wall, siege, and occupation altogether. End the abuse of Palestinians living as citizens of Israel by ending legal discrimination against them. End the abuse of the exiles (refugees and their progeny) from 1948 (and, I’d imagine, from 1967) by allowing them readmission to their country of origin (the territory, not the state).

    Nothing in this program requires Israel to become less overwhelmingly Jewish in population. Israel need merely reduce its territory and bring all those Jews “home” to the smaller territory. That way, exiles returning to “their country” would for the most part return outside this new, smaller Israel. They would presumably return to a larger (new) Palestine.

    Oh! Israel doesn’t want to get smaller? Not smaller than pre-1967? Not smaller than today (all of Mandatory Palestine)? The divorce is OK, but the “wife” must leave all the property with the abusive husband? Well, that’s an old story. But it is not a fault arising from BDS or its goals.

  3. Thought-provoking comparison Adam- liberal Zionist paternalism in 2013 vs. white paternalism in the 1950′s US South–> keep the sequels coming!

  4. hophmi says:

    A stupid comparison that is itself highly paternalistic. Israel is not the United States, and the West Bank is not the South.

  5. thetumta says:

    What 1950s southern American could have foreseen that the Confederacy would arise again not in Alabama, but Palestine? From the viewpoint of many current Christians of the south, Israel is indeed “Dixie”.
    Hej!