Why I support a one state solution and still consider myself a Zionist

Israel/Palestine
on 152 Comments

I told my friends the other day that I don’t believe in a two-state solution; our Peoples, cultures, economy, ‘borders’ and identities are intertwined, and we can’t separate them. One friend responded by asking what I do believe in. I am still formulating my idea of end to the conflict and a political solution, but I believe in some form of a one-state solution.

Yet, I haven’t given up completely on Zionism.

People in Israel rarely ask if you are a Zionist because it is assumed that, if you live here, you are one. Abroad, however, I have been asked that question many times, especially after I express my left-leaning opinions. I am never quite sure how to answer because they are usually asking if I believe in the validity of the Jewish state as it is structured today. I don’t. However, that doesn’t mean I am against Jewish self-determination.

Pre-state Zionist thinkers had a plurality of views on how Zionism could and should be carried out. Some believed in the creation of an autonomous Jewish state, which is what we have today, but many actually saw the potential perils of such a plan. Martin Buber, Asher Hirsch Ginsberg (Ahad Ha’am) and, of course, Theodor Herzl did not plan or imagine the Israel we know today. While Herzl would have been happy to settle another land, Ginsberg preferred to stress ‘cultural Zionism’ over an autonomous state and promoted the gradual building of a state. He also warned early settlers not to mistreat the local population.

In essence, Zionism as we know it, in the form of the State of Israel, is only one path that Zionist ideology could have taken. It is, I believe, the most oppressive path.

Over the years, I have come to realize something greater: I don’t believe that nation-states are a sustainable form of governance. They exist right now, but they will not exist forever, nor do I think that they are the best way to organize societies. Israel, as nation-state, is no exception.

Even so, as long as nation-states exist, I do believe that Jewish self-determination is just as legitimate as other peoples’ desire to self-determine. However, a legitimate need for self-determination and a belief in the sanctity of the land of Israel does not necessitate the creation of a Jewish state on this land. Even so, since we are already in Israel and since many Jews came to pre-state Israel after the Holocaust, with Europe and other nations closing their doors on them, I do see value in the realization of Jewish self-determination here on this land. It’s 2016, and the reality is that millions of Jews live here. Where would we go? Nations aren’t exactly opening their doors to refugees.

Jews did not come to an empty land. When we created the state in 1948, we kicked people out of their homes and villages (and yes, some fled on their own accord, but they were still not allowed by Israel to return). This event in known in Palestinian history and society as the Nakba, and Israeli government officials have discouraged teaching about it and have removed the word from some textbooks in the Israeli school system (though some officials have supported adding it to the official curriculum). I can’t ignore this history, and I can’t support a state that exiled hundreds of thousands in order to build itself and to create a majority.

But I can believe in a place that allows for semi-autonomy for the Jewish people, as long as the same system and rights are in place for the Palestinian people and other minorities living on this land. I believe in free movement between what is currently Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories. Both peoples consider Jerusalem to be holy, and so both people should be able to freely move within its city limits. In essence, I believe in a bi-national state, which could allow for both people to live on this land but to enjoy semi-autonomous representation. Today, we live in a state in which a different set of laws apply to Israeli citizens (mostly Jewish) and Palestinians. A Jewish person with citizenship and a Palestinian from the West Bank who both live in Area C (Israeli-controlled West Bank) are subject to a completely separate set of laws and judicial procedures. In order to create a just bi-national state, both peoples would need to be subject to the same laws and rights.

So no, I don’t believe in Zionism as it exists in the State of Israel today because it favors Jews over others. But yes, I believe in the possibility of Jewish self-determination that exists in partnership with Palestinian self-determination on this land. That is not the Zionism most people discuss, but it is my Zionism.

About Becca Strober

Becca Strober moved from Philadelphia to Israel at age 18. She is a former soldier turned activist and is involved in queer, anti-racism and anti-occupation movements. She Previously worked at Gisha- Legal Center for Freedom of Movement and is now the communications coordinator at an internional refugee organization. You can read about her experiences, struggles, and reflections at www.beccastrober.com and follow her on twitter at @BeccaStrober

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152 Responses

  1. edwin
    March 3, 2016, 4:41 pm

    “Jewish self-determination is just as legitimate as other peoples’ desire to self-determine…”

    The idea that “Jews” are the same as “Americans” or “British” is not true. British is a descriptive of people living in Britain. It includes people of any faith or no faith. It includes people of any ethnic identity. It includes people of any culture. A person who is British is a person from Britain. Jewish self determination effectively denies the right of some people to be American or British. It also denies people to join “Jews”, hence Israel’s denial of the existence Israeli citizenship.

    “A group of Jews and Arabs are fighting in the Israeli courts to be recognized as “Israelis,” a nationality currently denied them, in a case that officials fear may threaten the country’s self-declared status as a Jewish state.” https://electronicintifada.net/content/lawsuit-challenges-israels-discriminatory-citizenship-definition/8767

    Jewish self-determination is not just as legitimate, and the supreme court of Israel agrees. Jewish self-determination is a mix of ethnic, religious, and cultural expectations, and is not a description of location. It is a combination of the white South Africa and Saudi Arabia – an attempt at all of racial purity, cultural purity, and ethnic purity. That is not the foundation of western nation states. Jewish self-determination demands conformity of the younger generations. In that sense those who jump up and down and scream antisemitism whenever someone criticizes Israel are more correct than you are. Jewish self-determination comes at the price of individuality. You can’t have a cohesive ethnic, racial, and religious state and have an open vibrant multi-ethnic multi cultural state at the same time. The crimes of Israel are absolutely necessary to the foundation of Jewish self-determination. More crimes of similar nature will be required to keep the dream on track.

    If your vision of Jewish self-determination is a community center and weekly pot-lucks then go for it. Otherwise, it is not the same as other people’s desire to self-determine, and it is no more legitimate than any other theocracy or racist state.

    The invasion of North America started off as a desire of people of various religious groups to self-determine. Over time the extreme oppressive nature of this stance has given way to what we hope is a post colonial world founded on the notion that religion, culture, and ethnicity are private matters of no interest to the nation state. That is what makes Trump so deeply offensive.

    • Krauss
      March 4, 2016, 4:27 am

      You raise many good points, but I disagree. I don’t think it’s problematic to have ethnic nationalism. Look at Japan or Korea. Both are plenty democratic but, yes, exclusionary in their preferences.

      The problem with Israel is that there was already people living there, and in this sense, Israel shares more with the colonisation of the Americans by Europeans. That project is today de-legitimised(and for good reasons), hence why American citizenship today and its identity is multi-ethnic and not tied to any religion.

      Thus, the theory of ethnic nationalism within a democratic contex, is plausible only in a case where there has been no ethnic expulsions or genocide, such as in Japan. That’s not the case in America – or Palestine.

      That’s why I agree with you on the Palestinian question, because it’d be like white Americans claiming that they want an ethno-state in America on the broken lands of native Americans. Granted, there are some who want that but they are marginalised. This woman and her ilk don’t want to face this, because Israel is precisely like this, but only in the Middle East.

      Unlike white America, Jewish Israelis have not had the moral awakening and turned away from their previous colonising ways.

      • RoHa
        March 4, 2016, 6:17 am

        “Thus, the theory of ethnic nationalism within a democratic contex, is plausible only in a case where there has been no ethnic expulsions or genocide, such as in Japan.”

        The Ainu might object to the “no genocide” part of that sentence. Nor do I expect you would find excessive enthusiasm for Japanese ethnic nationalism among the people born in Japan of Korean ancestry. And the various people who enjoyed the benefits of the Co-Prosperity Sphere frequently express only the minimum gratitude.

        I, of course, object to the comma after the subject clause. Why do people do that?

      • edwin
        March 4, 2016, 8:20 am

        I think you may wish to use another example other than Japan. I rather suspect that the nationals of Japan are not the majority of citizens one normally sees.

        I think that there is a subtle difference between ethnic nationalism and a society with a very hight amount of ethnic/cultural/religious similarity. If a country is open to ethnic/cultural/religious change as the population changes then it is not the same thing as the Zionist project and what Becca Strober seems to be getting at. I don’t know for sure, but I suspect Japan is open to change as the population changes – though I don’t know what their relationship with their native population is, other than from small bits that I have read.

      • HRK
        March 4, 2016, 12:16 pm

        “That’s why I agree with you on the Palestinian question, because it’d be like white Americans claiming that they want an ethno-state in America on the broken lands of native Americans.”

        I’m interested in what you think about ethnic nationalism in places (in Europe) where Europeans are the indigenous peoples.

        Personally, I think one of the problems we have today is the fetishization of multiculturalism–as if being multicultural makes one a holy, pure person. And it’s crazy that this group of pro-multis tends to think of themselves as very vanguard. Crazy because: At the high school in the small city in which I live there is a painted sign above the main door: “Diversity is our greatest strength.” No kidding. I saw it myself. And this is high school in a small city in a very non-hip place. So how vanguard are we talking about?

        I’m not sure exactly what the ramifications of ethnic nationalism would be–probably different things to different people. But why not have this type of society?: Minorities should be treated well but a society is under no compunction to make itself more diverse to prove some sort of point or to strike a supposedly morally heroic pose or because it “quite clearly just makes economic sense.”

      • diasp0ra
        March 4, 2016, 12:26 pm

        @HRK

        “Minorities should be treated well but a society is under no compunction to make itself more diverse to prove some sort of point or to strike a supposedly morally heroic pose”

        Societies don’t make themselves more diverse. Societies, for the most part, are already diverse.

      • Mooser
        March 4, 2016, 12:36 pm

        “Minorities should be treated well but a society is under no compunction…

        To give people every person equal right under the law? Civil rights are not a gift doled out to “minorities”. Every one of us, BTW, is a minority of one.

        Are you an American? Is this what we have come to?

      • HRK
        March 4, 2016, 2:38 pm

        I can’t seem to respond to the comments under the comment I just posted–not sure why the program won’t let me do this.

        As for the point that societies don’t make themselves more diverse, they’re already diverse.

        So, if that’s the case, no society is more diverse than any other society. Japan is just as diverse as American, right? Most people don’t think this is the case. A society can become more or less diverse. Policies can move it in one direction or the other.

        Also, Mooser is suggesting something about what I wrote that I didn’t mean.

      • gamal
        March 4, 2016, 3:55 pm

        “Societies don’t make themselves more diverse. Societies, for the most part, are already diverse.”

        yes the Hairy Ainu, the Okinawans and Stewart agree

        https://youtu.be/Ft338yltVLE

      • RoHa
        March 4, 2016, 4:20 pm

        HRK, one can reject the fashionable fetishisation of multiculturalism (as I do) without supporting ethnic nationalism.

      • gamal
        March 4, 2016, 6:16 pm

        ” one can reject the fashionable fetishisation of multiculturalism (as I do)”

        I have been involved in this stuff for forty years and have no idea what is meant by the “fetishation of multiculturalism”, an example of such would help.

        I have a problem with the implication of the word, foreigness and ersatzness. Its probably best to use a concrete example, lets take London,

        I am English, not “British”, but I am not just English I am Southerner, not just a Southerner but a Londoner, not just a Londoner I am a West Londoner, and I have one culture which evolved in London it has English, Jamaican, Arab, Indian, Greek, Filipino, we have our own inflections and other compononents but it is 100% British in that it exists nowhere else, its an English culture,

        the last speech i gave at an integration conference in 2011, mainly addressed the host governments problem in allowing people to be Irish, in their own way, because thats what they are in the same way that I am English, in my own way whats the problem?

        Scoucers and Geordies are as foreign to me as Moroccans, there was a ghetto anthem years ago celebrating Black Britishness, this is English music, not Jamaican, if you understood it in context you would realize how sophisticated these young womens idea of identity and culture is and the breadth of their awareness, this is really clever and only English, a new Englishness proclaims itself.

        what does it threaten?

        https://youtu.be/joh37lrvf-s

      • gamal
        March 4, 2016, 6:33 pm

        this is a far better version where their charm and intelligence comes through

        https://youtu.be/KVBmeWAsRAA

      • Annie Robbins
        March 4, 2016, 7:36 pm

        do you know what year this was recorded gamal?

      • gamal
        March 4, 2016, 7:52 pm

        “what year this was recorded”

        1977

      • Mooser
        March 4, 2016, 8:18 pm

        Althea and Donna are intelligent, and charming, and I like the performance. But we need some real Palestinian-solidarity music like (oh, just shoot me, I deserve it) ‘Yasser, I can Boogie’

      • gamal
        March 4, 2016, 9:05 pm

        “oh, just shoot me,”

        what is it with you Americans, in English we say “I’ll get my coat”, with no implication of murder in the car park, I have to be honest I occasionally have intense attacks of Englishness, particularly over the issue of queuing, that shit was drilled into me in terms of waiting your turn the English are zero tolerance totalitarian, but you are unlikely to get shot for any social infraction in England, but you will be corrected.

      • diasp0ra
        March 5, 2016, 9:08 am

        @HRK

        “So, if that’s the case, no society is more diverse than any other society. Japan is just as diverse as American, right? Most people don’t think this is the case. A society can become more or less diverse. Policies can move it in one direction or the other.”

        I don’t understand this leap of logic. I said societies for the most part are diverse, I didn’t say every society on earth is exactly as diverse as the other.

        What you are overlooking is that culture is not attached to ethnicity. Aside from that, when you say a society has no obligation to make itself more diverse I don’t understand what this actually means.

        If you have different cultures living in a society, isn’t it already diverse? Isn’t it already multicultural?

        Or do you mean the dominant culture and narrative has no obligation?

        It almost sounds like the others are merely guests to the society and not part of it. If the multiple cultures that make up part of the US all want to leave imprints on society, is this a society making itself more diverse? Or is it that groups that wants to have more representation in a society they already live in, therefore being part of it?

      • Mooser
        March 5, 2016, 10:12 am

        “what is it with you Americans, in English we say “I’ll get my coat”, with no implication of murder in the car park”

        “Gamal” you are right, that is a better, less disturbing expression, and I’ll adopt it. Thanks. I’d tip my hat to you but I haven’t got a hat. Or even a “Republican cloth coat”! (Remember that?)

      • RoHa
        March 5, 2016, 1:25 pm

        “Aside from that, when you say a society has no obligation to make itself more diverse I don’t understand what this actually means.”

        It means that, no matter how diverse a society is, or how many or how few different cultures live in that society, there is no moral obligation to make that society more diverse, or to add more cultures.

        By “the fetishisation of multiculturalism” I mean the idea that multiculturalism is a good thing with no downsides, that diversity is always beneficial, all happy music and exciting food, and that societies have a moral obligation to promote it.

        “What you are overlooking is that culture is not attached to ethnicity. ”

        Actually, this seems to have been a belief of the promoters of multiculturalism, at least in respect of immigrants. They gave me the impression that they thought the browner variety of immigrant would be incapable of cultural change. (And totally ignored the large numbers of immigrants of all shades who proved them wrong.)

      • diasp0ra
        March 5, 2016, 3:14 pm

        @Roha

        “It means that, no matter how diverse a society is, or how many or how few different cultures live in that society, there is no moral obligation to make that society more diverse, or to add more cultures.”

        But when does this ever happen?

        It’s usually cultures that already exist within a society asking for more representation/visibility.

        It’s not like saying Palestinians should add Chinese holidays to their calendar when there is no Chinese community living in Palestine. Usually the people are already there. It makes 0 sense otherwise. Since they are already there, they are already part of society.

        So society isn’t just trying to appease random cultures, it’s just the people already there wanting more visibility.

        This also brings up the idea that people of different (out) cultures are guests and that a dominant culture exists and should be maintained, rather than the dominant culture of a society reflecting all shades of the people making up that society.

      • Annie Robbins
        March 5, 2016, 4:26 pm

        diasp0ra, i have had this conversation w/RoHa before and come to understand the term ‘multi culturalism’ means different things to european/UK vs american culture. there’s a political dimension to it’s application in other parts of the world. what wiki references as “Two different and seemingly inconsistent strategies have developed through different government policies and strategies. ”

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Multiculturalism maybe see the “In different countries” section — and skip down to australia vs the section on the US where, unlike australia “In the United States, multiculturalism is not clearly established in policy at the federal level”

        anyway, the term means different things to different people depending on where you live and i found in my earlier arguments w/RoHa, that he insists it means what it means in australia everywhere. just thought i’d mention.

      • Elliot
        March 5, 2016, 5:45 pm

        Krauss:
        “Thus, the theory of ethnic nationalism within a democratic contex, is plausible only in a case where there has been no ethnic expulsions or genocide, such as in Japan. That’s not the case in America – or Palestine.”

        Thank you for this.

      • gamal
        March 6, 2016, 12:25 pm

        What are these “Multicultural” laws or policies, they don’t exist, Multicultutralism is a funding mechanism for local councils and grant mining organizations in the UK and Ireland it is content free, outside statements pro or anti it entails nothing.

        I learned from the English a loathing for state sanctioned centrally generated municipal “culture”,

        I am English me and we hate the fucking state and its sick culture, am I a downside? honestly, do I look bothered,

        “that multiculturalism is a good thing with no downsides, that diversity is always beneficial, all happy music and exciting food, and that societies have a moral obligation to promote it.”

        they dont promote it, in the UK there is an endless litany of moral panics about the imminent collapse of society because of black youth, Islam, working class boys, teenage mothers ( young women getting pregnant, how can this be happening, when did it start, what is causing it, what a catastrophe), the whole vicious why oh why daily mirror bleating.

        you know where i live now, hyper-white, if you mention the Magdalene laundry and say the wrong thing you run the risk of getting your head kicked in, the state and church are deeply distrusted, I know many casualties of the industrial schools and the hated Brothers, Irish people round here are utterly cynical as regards the “potato republic”, fuck the state.

        Multicultural is not a thing its people like me, a complete misnomer, there are so many of us, just like everybody else products of the environments we grew up in, we did nothing, we ate the food and danced to the music, society is still standing, we have no plan, I am not going to any re-education “Britishing” camp, whatever the downside.

        Australian immigrants raped Willesden at the turn of the century and drove out the Irish, The Spotted Dog became the Anzac, where Australians drank like the wild semi-barbarian colonials that they are, also they bought a lot of weed forging amicable relations with local Indian and Jamaican youth, we generously integrated them, despite the public drunkeness. Look here is,

        The Traditional British View of the State and the precious culture it contains, you simple colonials are bound to misconstrue with your quaint notions of Queen and country, neither blacks nor Indians or Arabs got to Ewan he is pure British, has only ever eaten ploughmans lunches and this isnt “happy music”

        I dont owe any body anything to stand on the ground I grew on nor within the nameless culture I have always been enveloped by, “downside” what? you always expect to win?

        Timmy Healy and “Toss the Feathers” used to a great version, up in Baby Hayes’s in Glandore looking out to Adam and Eve in the cold Atlantic

        https://youtu.be/blgWfAc7A_A

      • Keith
        March 6, 2016, 4:45 pm

        GAMAL- “What are these “Multicultural” laws or policies….”

        Multiculturalism is the sea in which Jewish tribalists swim.

      • Mooser
        March 6, 2016, 6:35 pm

        “In the United States, multiculturalism is not clearly established in policy at the federal level”

        Hopefully, what is written into Federal law is the civil rights of all individual American citizens, and equality under the law.
        And to some degree, consideration for the culture of a person may be regarded as a civil right in their interaction with the Gov. or society. While compromises and adjustments may be necessary, “rights” are hardly a zero-sum thing.

  2. Steve Macklevore
    March 3, 2016, 5:30 pm

    Maybe Ms Strober could go back to Philadelphia. She wouldn’t be displacing a soul there, and could concentrate on other forms of activism.

    • YoniFalic
      March 7, 2016, 12:40 pm

      After gender reassignment surgery Strober may have found it easier to live in Israel than in the city where she grew up, but I have read that Iran is much friendlier to gender reassignment than the State of Israel, which considers transsexuals traitors in the demographic war, which is being waged against Palestinians.

      • W.Jones
        January 14, 2017, 9:23 pm

        “gender reassignment surgery “?
        Are you insulting the author?

  3. MHughes976
    March 3, 2016, 5:54 pm

    Very interesting! But I don’t entirely see what rights Zionism as you believe in it ascribes to Jewish and to other people. Is self-determination the right to be subject to laws made with the general consent of people of your own kind (however defined) without having to involve, except perhaps as members of a recognised minority, people of other kinds? And for those laws to govern the armed forces used to defend the territory where you live?
    However, the idea of semi-autonomy seems to limit the scope of the laws made by this procedure: would the military and diplomatic affairs of all the semi-autonomous groups have to be conducted in common, so that no one group was fully self-determining in these respects? Ought Zionists to be content with what might be a minority voice in these matters? I have always thought that one of the motivations of Zionism is the belief that people who are Jewish cannot reasonably be expected to trust others with their defence and security.

  4. rugal_b
    March 3, 2016, 6:19 pm

    Who made you write this BS? Even by MW relatively lax standards, this was a thoroughly pointless article of little intellectual merit. You think there is this magical connection between black Jews from Ethiopia, white Jews from Russia and Persian Jews from Iran, based on I don’t know what, that calls for them to unite and struggle for their collective self determination. Where have you been in the past 50 years, to still believe in such Zionist myth?

    Why would an Arab Jew want to forsake his culture, language, ancestry and his familial ties with fellow Christian and Muslim Arabs, to join forces with a bunch of East European Jews who don’t even acknowledge his Arab identity? Instead of just admitting Zionism was an all around bad idea made worse by bad circumstances, you come up with this nonsense. Even weirder is you doing this in a time where people including those who had fought wars for Israel, are steadily coming out to speak against Zionism.

    • Fred Schlomka
      March 5, 2016, 6:33 am

      Rugal_b,
      lots of reasons. One could equally ask why a Cambodian might want to depart his/her ancestral homeland and become your neighbour. ie: a better economic future – deteriorating relations with their Arab neighbours. You should check on the status of non-Muslims in the Muslim countries surrounding Israel. It hasn’t been a very Jew-friendly environment since the Nakbah. That’s reason enough to leave.

      Also – your general remark is generally untrue – Israelis who have fought wars for Israel do not speak against Zionism but more commonly speak out against the excesses of Zionism – the war crimes and oppression. They usually remain a Zionist of the liberal persuasion.

      • rugal_b
        March 5, 2016, 1:20 pm

        Cambodians who move to the US, a de jure ethnically and racially neutral country for economic reasons are a bit different from Arabs moving to a staunchly anti-Arab state and pledging allegiance to the state’s racist values and principles, for vague religious slash ideological reasons. There’s only two major reason I could think why would they do so, and both are quite negative.

        Firstly, they were invited into joining under false pretense, where their ignorance and short sightedness may have played a major role for them to end up as Israeli citizens. Secondly, they were problematic individuals with flawed psychology, carrying complexes such as the house Negro syndrome, self hatred and internalized anti-Arab racism and found the Israeli state ideology to be uniquely validating and thus, attractive for them to join and pledge allegiance to.

      • Mooser
        March 6, 2016, 6:36 pm

        ” It hasn’t been a very Jew-friendly environment since the Nakbah.”

        Very surprising.

  5. yourstruly
    March 3, 2016, 6:23 pm

    The proper name for an endeavor by which one people occupy a native people’s homeland, rename it & cleanse it of its natives is settler colonialism, not self-determination. Self-determination is what Palestinians have been struggling for – that along with freedom and independence – ever since their homeland was taken over by European Jews. It’s nice that the author visualizes Jewish self-determination co-existing in partnership with Palestinian self-determination, but he should realize by now that such an arrangement has to be up to the native (ie Palestinian) people. Anything less will amount to handing colonialism a lifeline.

    • MHughes976
      March 4, 2016, 5:54 am

      It does seem that several people wh happened to be Jewish asserted themselves strongly and determined their own affairs and situation in ways that they wanted: it must make a degree of sense to call this ‘self-determination’. One of the many things that puzzles me about this idea is the way in which it seems to have such a good name, when it seems very little different to ‘doing what you like’, which is surely quite suspect – and indeed amounts in this case to the biblical ‘killing and taking possession’.
      Settlements and colonies, for their part, do not necessarily involve expulsions and renamings.

      • Mooser
        March 4, 2016, 1:48 pm

        “Settlements and colonies, for their part, do not necessarily involve expulsions and renamings.”

        Okay, I’m a Native American or anything else. Very peaceful colonists settle (heck, we don’t even see them til…)on a bunch of uncleared forest land where we hunt in certain years or seasons clear it for farms. They keep the native name tho, it’s cute.

      • MHughes976
        March 4, 2016, 3:43 pm

        The Roman colonists did my British ancestors a whole heap of good , I think – no one got expelled and the name stayed the same.

      • RoHa
        March 4, 2016, 3:56 pm

        I think it’s anti-Britannic to say that.

      • straightline
        March 4, 2016, 5:07 pm

        I think RoHa has been waiting for someone to post this:

      • Mooser
        March 4, 2016, 6:27 pm

        “The Roman colonists did my British ancestors a whole heap of good , I think – no one got expelled and the name stayed the same.”

        Oh, the name has always been the same: collaboraters!

  6. eljay
    March 3, 2016, 6:30 pm

    … I do believe that Jewish self-determination is just as legitimate as other peoples’ desire to self-determine. …

    I agree: The right of a person to choose to be Jewish is just as legitimate as the right of a person to choose to be something other than Jewish.

    … However, a legitimate need for self-determination and a belief in the sanctity of the land of Israel does not necessitate the creation of a Jewish state on this land. …

    I agree. The right to choose to be Jewish or not Jewish does not include a right to a supremacist state of any kind.

    … I can believe in a place that allows for semi-autonomy for the Jewish people, as long as the same system and rights are in place for the Palestinian people and other minorities living on this land. …

    If all people in the territory have the same rights, what defines “semi-autonomy for the Jewish people” and “semi-autonomy for the non-Jewish people”, and how and by whom will these semi-autonomies be regulated to ensure that they remain equal?

    Last question (for now, anyway): What happens to existing refugees from Israel? Do they get to return to their homes and lands?
    – If ‘no’, why not?
    – If ‘yes’, how will the “semi-autonomy for the Jewish people” apply to these non-Jews?

  7. RoHa
    March 3, 2016, 6:56 pm

    What does “Jewish self-determination” mean here? It seems a far more restricted “self-determination” than that which is usually peddled by Zionists, since it seems to make Palestinians equal partners in sovereignty. And does it only apply to the Jews of Israel, or to all Jews everywhere?

    • Mooser
      March 7, 2016, 1:00 pm

      “What does “Jewish self-determination” mean here?”

      “RoHa” in order to understand it, you must consider that the Jews, from the very days of the American colonies were denied self-determination, and forcibly assimilated by America.
      This tragedy was so sudden and complete (a complete loss of ” Jewish self-determination” and involuntary assimilation), that by the time of its writing, the rights of Jews as a people, and the rights of Judaism as a religion were not even mentioned in the Constitution! Yes, they freed the African American slaves, but never did anything for us!

      And thanks to the complete extermination of Jewish self-determination and the forced assimilation of Jews in America, we now have the money, freedom and power to pursue Zionism “Jewish self-determination” in Palestine, and the means to prevent assimilation in Palestine. It was the only possible way to respond to the American Jewish tragedy.

  8. YoniFalic
    March 3, 2016, 7:44 pm

    As an ethnic E. European, whose ancestors practiced Jewish religion and whose family does not do so today, I am totally offended that Becca Strober is trying to force a bogus and perverted ethnic identity on me.

    Where can the millions of invaders go? They can hop on a plane and go to another country as I did so that Palestine can be returned to the natives. At least 3/4s of the invaders are eligible for citizenship elsewhere.

    I had a weak excuse to be a resident invader. I was born in Israel. I don’t understand how Strober as an American can consider herself to be a decent ethical human being and emigrate to the State of Israel.

    It is shameful to have been an IDF soldier. I will never atone for the crimes I committed in uniform.

    • rugal_b
      March 4, 2016, 3:04 am

      “I don’t understand how Strober as an American can consider herself to be a decent ethical human being and emigrate to the State of Israel. ” – Yonifalci

      I don’t think there is an ethical issue for people to emigrate anywhere as means to pursuit happiness and peace…after all that’s what millions of diaspora Palestinians are fighting for every single day. The right for them to live in a place that gives them the maximum amount of peace and tranquility, and highest quality of life, which of course would the the land that sustained their forefathers and nurtured their people into existence.

      The core issue here though is the author wanting to emigrate to Palestine for problematic and potentially devious reasons, such as setting up a state for the purpose of Jewish self-determination. What the hell… Do Jews need special air to breath and special water to drink for them to need their own state to be able to live happily? What exactly would happen if a Jew decide to become a Christian or Muslim, or vice versa? Would they lose (or gain) their right for self-determination just then?

      • Annie Robbins
        March 4, 2016, 4:52 am

        The right for them to live in a place that gives them the maximum amount of peace and tranquility, and highest quality of life, which of course would the the land that sustained their forefathers and nurtured their people into existence.

        gag me w/a friggin spoon. if this is the case – that “of course [!!!]” people find “the maximum amount of peace and tranquility…highest quality of life” where their forefathers lived thousands of years ago — the majority of mankind would have to dig up roots and move back to friggin africa or whatever. this is insane. do you even listen to yourself?

        do you really think i have a “right” to move to some place a dna map said my ancestors came from 2-3000 years ago? seriously? what right is that? does it have a name or a title? and do you really think it would provide me with the “highest quality of life”? all this jargon is just too much.

      • rugal_b
        March 4, 2016, 5:12 am

        “if this is the case – that “of course..” people find “the maximum amount of peace and tranquility…highest quality of life” where their forefathers lived thousands of years ago — the majority of mankind would have to dig up roots and move back to friggin africa”

        Except moving back to Africa would absolutely not be a happy thing for white people. I doubt they would last 5 generations in Africa’s climate, with their frail cancer prone white skin and light eyes, inefficient narrow nose and overall bad evolutionary adaptation to the African sun. What a nonsensical argument to make.

        Hey, Palestinians both in the diaspora as well as those living in Palestine themselves claim as being able to live in their ancestral land is the most important facet of their existence. It’s not my claim…it’s theirs. This is the whole foundation of their resistance to Israel’s appropriation of their land. Since you’re a invader/settler-colonialist yourself, I don’t really expect you to understand the value of having a homeland of your own.

      • Annie Robbins
        March 4, 2016, 6:38 am

        Palestinians both in the diaspora as well as those living in Palestine themselves claim as being able to live in their ancestral land is the most important facet of their existence.

        how on earth is that related to european/american colonialist jews moving back to a place their forefathers allegedly lived thousands of years ago? please! divert alert.

        Since you’re a invader/settler-colonialist yourself, I don’t really expect you to understand the value of having a homeland of your own.

        way to move the goal posts. your argument, in case you forgot, is that you don’t think there is an “ethical issue” for “Strober as an American” to “emigrate anywhere as means to pursuit happiness and peace”….The right for her to live in a place that gives her the maximum amount of peace and tranquility, and highest quality of life, which of course would the the land that sustained her forefathers and nurtured their people into existence..

        earth to rugal, stober is no less an invader/settler-colonialist than myself, arguably much more than myself because unlike me, she has actively immigrated as a settler colonialist — something my forefathers did over 9 generations ago. she chose, and is currently an active participant, in a colonial expansionist enterprise.

        don’t try turning the tables here. your words were not inspired here defending palestinians, you were defending stober. for your review:

        “I don’t understand how Strober as an American can consider herself to be a decent ethical human being and emigrate to the State of Israel. ” – Yonifalci

        I don’t think there is an ethical issue for people to emigrate anywhere as means to pursuit happiness and peace

        yeah, there is kind of an ethical issue for people to immigrate as colonialists. even if they can prove their great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great greatg reat great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great grandparents lived there.

        moving back to Africa would absolutely not be a happy thing for white people. I doubt they would last 5 generations in Africa’s climate

        so in other words, you’re retracting your original ‘logic’? you no longer think people have the maximum amount of peace and tranquility, and highest quality of life “of course” in the “land that sustained their forefathers and nurtured their people into existence” THOUSANDS of years ago? because last i heard the human race originated in africa.

        or maybe you’ve got a time limit. why don’t you enlighten us to what that is — before the so called “right” evaporates.

      • Kay24
        March 4, 2016, 6:15 am

        I suggest for now stay within the 1967 borders, and do not steal an inch from the indigenous people who lived there before you. If you want tranquility (which you do not seem to want for the victims of your occupation) end that occupation, give back the lands, water, and other resources, you keep stealing from them. You realize I am sure that such crimes warrant violent retaliation from the victims? As Annie says international laws do not recognize what some old Holy book states about a people (some do not even exist today) who lived there centuries ago. Besides, that Holy book is not recognized nor followed by the zionists, and no one can claim ancient lands.
        It is as delusional as thinking you are God’s chosen.

      • echinococcus
        March 4, 2016, 7:31 am

        Kay,

        The 1967 “borders” being totally illegal, immigrating there and taking citizenship is an act of aggression against he Palestinian people. She can play the bleeding heart in Philadelphia.
        The 1967 border thing is a diplomatic boundary to discuss people born there or armistices, etc. Not to excuse criminals who go to work and fight for genocidal pirates.

      • eljay
        March 4, 2016, 7:39 am

        || Annie Robbins: … how on earth is that related to european/american colonialist jews moving back to a place their forefathers allegedly lived thousands of years ago? … ||

        Perhaps I misread rugal_b’s comment, but I thought the “forefathers” reference was to “what millions of diaspora Palestinians are fighting for every single day”.

        That said, IMO the only people entitled to live in the geographic region of (Mandate) Palestine are its current inhabitants, refugees driven from it, legal immigrants and people up to n-generations (“n-gens”) removed from it.

        Israel / Palestine (two states or one) should prioritize immigration for all n-gens equally. This would be just and fair, unlike Israel’s purely supremacist “Law of Return” that prioritizes immigration based on a person’s religious-based identity (regardless of any tangible ties to the territory).

      • Annie Robbins
        March 4, 2016, 8:15 am

        I thought the “forefathers” reference was to “what millions of diaspora Palestinians are fighting for every single day”

        that’s because he did a bait and switch — essentially making a moral equivalence. the preface:

        “I don’t understand how Strober as an American can consider herself to be a decent ethical human being and emigrate to the State of Israel. ” – Yonifalci

        I don’t think there is an ethical issue for people to emigrate anywhere as means to pursuit happiness and peace…after all that’s what millions of diaspora Palestinians are fighting for every single day.

        and then he/she launched into “The right.. to live in a place that gives them the maximum amount of peace and tranquility, and highest quality of life, which of course would the the land that sustained their forefathers and nurtured their people into existence.

        so this was in response to yoni saying he didn’t “understand how Strober as an American can consider herself to be a decent ethical human being and emigrate to the State of Israel”.

      • rugal_b
        March 4, 2016, 8:17 am

        Annie – “how on earth is that related to european/american colonialist jews moving back to a place their forefathers allegedly lived thousands of years ago? please! divert alert”

        Where did I say anything about Euro-Jews moving back to the ancestral homeland in Palestine? I specifically implied that it is Palestinians, including those within the diaspora, are fighting for their right of return, because they would like being able to live in their ancestral home where their forefathers lived. They are doing so, even after acquiring citizenship in many Western countries, because having access to their homeland is a priceless privilege that defines their existence wherever they are.

        As an European-American with unrestricted access to England or Ireland or wherever your ancestral home is, I imagine it is hard for you to understand what it is like when that privilege is forcibly, maliciously taken away from you.

        “stober is no less an invader/settler-colonialist than myself, arguably much more than myself because unlike me, she has actively immigrated as a settler colonialist — something my forefathers did over 9 generations ago”

        Absolutely not…there is no statute of limitations for invading someone else’s homeland and participating in the national movement that lead to the destruction of the indigenous way of life, culture, living and working space and wiping out religious system and languages developed over thousands of years of living on the land. Whether you are just fresh off the boat from France or UK, or you are the 9th generation of European born onto the land, you are a colonial-settler all the same. Only difference would be acknowledging who you are and your status on the land, and shaping your behaviors and thoughts accordingly. How shameless and arrogant of you to claim moral superiority simply from the fact that your forefathers committed their crime a bit earlier than the Zionist in Palestine.

        Anyhow, you are blatantly misconstruing what I wrote, in a really lame way to boot. Freedom of movement, i.e. to emigrate to wherever the hell you want, is a universal human right for all humans. Countries with meaningly political borders may deny this right for whatever purpose, but it doesn’t negate or invalidate the fundamental human right of movement. The only ethical issue arises when you move to places and cause trouble to the people who were already living there, especially when it is done with malicious intent such as bigotry or racism.

      • Annie Robbins
        March 4, 2016, 3:39 pm

        As an European-American with unrestricted access to England or Ireland or wherever your ancestral home is, I imagine it is hard for you to understand what it is like when that privilege is forcibly, maliciously taken away from you.

        y’know rugal, let me first apologize for not recognizing the first time in this conversation you ever so graciously tried to make this all about me (“Since you’re a invader/settler-colonialist yourself, I don’t really expect you to understand the value of having a homeland of your own.“)i get get it. now, with your permission of course, let’s get back on topic:

        Where did I say anything about Euro-Jews moving back to the ancestral homeland in Palestine?

        ah, when you (March 4, 2016, 3:04 am) responded to Yonifalci’s comment about how Strober (“As an ethnic E. European, whose ancestors practiced Jewish religion and whose family does not do so today…trying to force a bogus and perverted ethnic identity on me.“) an American can consider herself to be a “decent ethical human being and emigrate to the State of Israel”. you even copy/pasted his comment to make it clear that’s what you were responding to. that’s where you said something about Euro-Jews immigrating to Israel. and as i have repeated for the 3rd or 4th time on this thread you followed it up with:

        I don’t think there is an ethical issue for people to emigrate anywhere as means to pursuit happiness and peace

        and then to support your opinion, to use as an example why you thought it was ethical for Strober to immigrate to israel, you said:

        after all that’s what millions of diaspora Palestinians are fighting for every single day.

        iow, you directly linked the so called struggle of american jews to immigrate to their so called homeland of israel w/the palestinian diaspora.

      • Annie Robbins
        March 4, 2016, 3:55 pm

        They are doing so, even after acquiring citizenship in many Western countries, because having access to their homeland is a priceless privilege that defines their existence wherever they are.

        where we would all be without your lectures rugal. after 10 years of blogging about palestine this would never have occurred to me without reading this just now. startling! we should all get down on our knees and pray to you for articulating this for us idiots — because like palestinians never speak for themselves or people such as myself can’t hear them. it really does take a person of your stature to hammer it into our heads (NOT).

        . The only ethical issue arises when you move to places and cause trouble to the people who were already living there

        then why, pray tell, when you responded to yoni’s queries about stober, did you say I don’t think there is an ethical issue for people to emigrate anywhere KNOWING that where stober immigrated very much “cause[s] trouble to the people who were already living there”?

        or perhaps you are unaware israel is a colonialist project.

        there is no statute of limitations for invading someone else’s homeland and participating in the national movement that lead to the destruction of the indigenous way of life, culture, living and working space and wiping out religious system and languages developed over thousands of years of living on the land.

        you’re as pure as the driven snow no doubt. what would we do without your lovely scorn to keep us in check.

      • Mooser
        March 4, 2016, 1:10 pm

        “Since you’re a invader/settler-colonialist yourself…”

        Absolutely not! I was a ‘red diaper baby’. Our parents encouraged us to play Bolsheviks-and-Monarchists instead of ‘cowboys-and-Indians’.

      • Mooser
        March 4, 2016, 2:01 pm

        “Except moving back to Africa would absolutely not be a happy thing for white people. I doubt they would last 5 generations in Africa’s climate, with their frail cancer prone white skin and light eyes, inefficient narrow nose and overall bad evolutionary adaptation to the African sun.”

        Yeah? Yeah? It’s that old “Whiter Shade of Fail” again, huh? Okay, buddy, you wanna go ‘racing’, let’s go! Okay Emperor Norton, I contend that if you took a bunch of Africans to the North or South poles, in winter, they would freeze to death! And it wouldn’t take five generations, only a few hours, or less if hypothermia occurs in frigid water.

      • Mooser
        March 4, 2016, 2:04 pm

        “Since you’re a…”

        And you are?

      • Mooser
        March 4, 2016, 3:12 pm

        “The right for them to live in a place that gives them the maximum amount of peace and tranquility, and highest quality of life, which of course would the the land that sustained their forefathers and nurtured their people into existence.”

        There’s my problem. I sprung (well, clambered or crawled, can’t jump) from Piltdown Man, and if I was on the right side of history, I would have had Get-down Man for an ancestor.

      • mariapalestina
        March 4, 2016, 5:49 pm

        @Rugal “As an European-American with unrestricted access to England or Ireland or wherever your ancestral home is…”

        Don’t know where Annie was born, but if she’s anything other than a first generation American it’s unlikely she has unrestricted access to England or Ireland or anywhere else. I have unrestricted access to England because I was born there. My grandchildren have no such access. Only Israel, it seems, gives unrestricted access to people (Jews) based on their claims they descended from people who lived in Palestine thousands of years ago.

      • Annie Robbins
        March 4, 2016, 6:20 pm

        i have no idea why he keeps humping on about my so called ancestral home. because if i go back all those generations to pre revolutionary war (on both sides) and jump over the atlantic whatever so called ancestral home i’d have there would only have been temporary anyway. as i mentioned, all humanity supposedly came from the african continent — so what difference does it make where i randomly stop time and claim my ancestors originated? it’s silly from my perspective. and why should i care? all the indigenous americans one could likewise say came over the bering straits, so by this crazy standard they should have unrestricted access to asia!

        Only Israel, it seems, gives unrestricted access to people (Jews) based on their claims they descended from people who lived in Palestine thousands of years ago.

        exactly, and all of this is a ruse to justify their colonialism in the name of “ancestral home”. pff. btw, has everyone read the awesome report on pappe’s lecture phil attended?

        We have come to a critical moment in the conflict. We need to forsake the historical paradigms that deny that it is settler colonialism. It is important for westerners to insist that it is a settler colonialist project so that a new understanding arises in the mainstream of how to fix the problem, ending Zionism. Great pressure needs to be brought to bear on Israeli society so that radical anti-Zionists emerge. Western professors and students and journalists and activists have great roles to play here. Support Boycott Divestment and sanctions, Pappe said. Talk about apartheid and genocide. When he held a conference at his school, the University of Exeter in the U.K., on settler colonialism, the Israeli embassy and the board of deputies of the Jewish community and even the prime minister’s office all called the university within twelve hours to say they would not allow the “anti-semitic and pro-Nazi” event to take place. The school held firm. – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/2016/03/we-wasted-40-years-talking-about-nothing-doing-nothing-pappe-demolishes-the-peace-process/#sthash.LwI3BI63.dpuf

      • Mooser
        March 4, 2016, 6:38 pm

        “i have no idea why he keeps humping on about my so called ancestral home.”

        I’m pretty sure “rugal b” does it in hopes you will say something bad about his presumed, assumed, or ostensible “ancestral home”.
        It’s supposed to go like this; he says we’re all a “pathetic, problematic” bunch a “white folks” (without of course, ever really saying who those “white folks” is).

        He’s hoping to draw a response like “Yeah, well the people in Africa run around in their underwear all day” or something, you get the idea.

        Then he flings aside the mask, and declares he has caught us and proven that anti-Zionism is racism! He’s persistent, I’ll give him that. If he keeps workin’ this schtik, he’ll get somebody to bite sooner or later, if only out of pique. He’s had only a few teensy nibbles, so far, (and such nachos it is to see that!)

      • Annie Robbins
        March 4, 2016, 7:34 pm

        ;) you make me smile mooser. all those fancy traps to side step around.

      • Mooser
        March 4, 2016, 6:43 pm

        “Where did I say anything about…” “rugal b”

        Hilarious!! Where, indeed?

      • Mooser
        March 4, 2016, 7:19 pm

        ” ancestral home , ancestors, ancestral home”

        Could you people dial it back a bit. Makin’ me feel bad. I have no idea who my “ancestors”, are, if I did, they would probably deny it. (Well, I did some genealogy, and I know they would deny it! ) My family tree got Dutch Elm disease, and couldn’t turn over a new leaf, apparently.
        We did have an “ancestral home” But it was repossessed generations ago for failure to pay the mortgage. Probably sold at auction, eventually, to pay back taxes. And demolished.
        It’s not like I didn’t try to find out! I asked my Dad “who are my ancestors, Daddy” and he said: “What, you think I’m made of money? We can’t afford ancestors, they’re very expensive! Besides, what’s wrong with your Mother and I, you ungrateful, rotten kid? Ancestors, you want now?”
        But I wouldn’t give up: “No really, Dad, I want to know where I came from” He gave me the strangest look, and said, through clenched teeth: “Oh yeah, well, go ask your Mom!, you little…”
        Young, impetuous fool that I was, I did ask my Mom. “Boychik,You’re a real live nephew of your Uncle Sam!” she swore as she took another pour.
        Wasn’t easy growing up with that kind of gender confusion. And my Uncle Sam was a creep, I kept away from him.

      • Mooser
        March 4, 2016, 8:07 pm

        “all those fancy traps to side step around.”

        Oh, it wasn’t so bad. As long as I didn’t bring that up again, (never again!) and tried not to get trapped alone in a room with my Uncle Sam. Real fresh-air nut, Sam. He was always opening windows and creating a draft back then.

      • Mooser
        March 4, 2016, 10:36 pm

        “Don’t know where Annie was born, but if she’s anything other than a first generation American…”

        She is. While certainly not the first or the only one, she’s a first-generation person!

      • RoHa
        March 5, 2016, 5:46 am

        As Gilbert pointed out, not only can ancestors be very expensive, they also bring responsibilities with them.

        GENERAL.
        Why do I sit here? To escape from the pirates’
        clutches, I described myself as an orphan; and, heaven
        help me, I am no orphan! I come here to humble myself
        before the tombs of my ancestors, and to implore their
        pardon for having brought dishonour on the family
        escutcheon.

        FREDERIC.
        But you forget, sir, you only bought the property a
        year ago, and the stucco on your baronial castle is
        scarcely dry.

        GENERAL.
        Frederic, in this chapel are ancestors: you cannot deny
        that. With the estate, I bought the chapel and its
        contents. I don’t know whose ancestors they were, but
        I know whose ancestors they are, and I shudder to think
        that their descendant by purchase (if I may so describe
        myself) should have brought disgrace upon what, I have
        no doubt, was an unstained escutcheon.

      • Mooser
        March 5, 2016, 10:22 am

        “Do Jews need special air to breath and special water to drink for them to need their own state to be able to live happily?”

        “rugal, whatever you do, don’t go to Florida!. When you see all the retirees with their Inogens or Mada Medical in one hand, and a Perrier in the other, you’ll flip your lid.

      • Mooser
        March 6, 2016, 6:41 pm

        “Except moving back to Africa would absolutely not be a happy thing for white people. I doubt they would last 5 generations in Africa’s climate, with their frail cancer prone white skin and light eyes, inefficient narrow nose and overall bad evolutionary adaptation to the African sun.”

        Okay “rugal b” lemme just ask you one question: “Who invented sun-screen?” Ha!

      • eljay
        March 6, 2016, 8:31 pm

        || Mooser: … “Who invented sun-screen?” … ||

        Israel?

      • Mooser
        March 7, 2016, 1:12 pm

        ‘As Gilbert pointed out, not only can ancestors be very expensive, they also bring responsibilities with them.”

        Ah yes. Remember the General’s last words to the Pirates? (Who were, as I remember “all Nobleman, who have gone wrong”)

        “Resume your ranks, and legislative duties, and marry my daughters, all of whom are beauties!”

    • W.Jones
      January 14, 2017, 9:26 pm

      ” I will never atone for the crimes I committed in uniform.”

      Live a life of repentance.

  9. chocopie
    March 3, 2016, 9:14 pm

    But I can believe in a place that allows for semi-autonomy for the Jewish people, as long as the same system and rights are in place for the Palestinian people and other minorities living on this land – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/2016/03/why-i-support-a-one-state-solution-and-still-consider-myself-a-zionist/#sthash.Co1xbEMb.dpuf

    If a one-state entity were to come into being, with equal rights for all, “the Palestinian people and other minorities” would no longer be a minority. They would assuredly be the majority, and Jewish people would be the minority. I wonder if this fact changes the author’s calculations.

    Can’t quite put my finger on it, but something in this essay makes me feel the author has a sort of noblesse-oblige thing going on and envisions a Jewish majority magnanimously offering equal rights to a Palestinian minority. I could be wrong, since the essay is very short on details. I guess I’m just wondering how deeply she has thought this through.

    I’m not arguing against one state. Just pointing out Palestinians are not a minority now and if they had equal rights, their numbers would swell.

    If Catholics decided overnight that they were a Nation or a People, that would be OK with me. But how could they practice “self-determination” without trampling everyone around them? Not sure how that works.

    • BeccaStrober
      March 7, 2016, 8:18 am

      To clarify (and I should have written it differently), I imagine that in any one state reality, including a bi-national state, Jews would be the minority, not Palestinians. There would be some other minorities as well.

      • Mooser
        March 7, 2016, 1:15 pm

        , “Jews would be the minority”

        Uh-oh, sounds like “ethnic cleansing”. Which Jews you plan to get rid of. Gonna pay them to leave, or just make things too horrible for them to stay? I’ve got relatives in Israel! Exactly what is it you plan to do to them?

  10. echinococcus
    March 4, 2016, 1:13 am

    Mondoweiss, these last years, was a relatively good place to read about Palestine. The discussion is also stimulating up to a point. Not sure that the ceaseless flow of almost daily open Zionist propaganda posts will allow it to keep itself different from mainstream Zionist sites, though.

    • Mooser
      March 4, 2016, 3:47 pm

      “Not sure that the ceaseless flow of almost daily open Zionist propaganda posts will allow it to keep itself different from mainstream Zionist sites, though.”

      Weeel, you don’t think maybe there’s just a skosh difference in how the articles are received here vs. how they would be received at “mainstream Zionist sites”? Just a little?

  11. echinococcus
    March 4, 2016, 1:21 am

    The author is an illegal immigrant to Palestine, against the express wishes of the owners of the country. Instead of yakking about the future of a country she has no right at all to decide anything about, she should advised to get her person back to Philly PDQ. Once back there, she can grace any number of mainstream sites with her Zionist prose. She sure as hell wouldn’t need Mondoweiss to get that nonsense published.

  12. rugal_b
    March 4, 2016, 1:25 am

    Two things the author needs to understand: 1. One state solution doesn’t need your support or approval. It is the only solution to the conflict, if you don’t support it because you support something else, then you are an active conspirator against Palestinian rights.

    Secondly, you are free to live anywhere and embrace any form of self determination. Just don’t infringe upon the rights of others whilst doing so.

  13. W.Jones
    March 4, 2016, 2:00 am

    Hello, Becca and thanks for your essay.

    Zionism as I understand it means a movement for the world’s Jewish population to make aliyah/return to Zion. Is this your position, and if so why?

    You also support Jewish self-determination in Palestine. I am fine with this idea and support peoples’ self determination.

    You write:

    In essence, I believe in a bi-national state, which could allow for both people to live on this land but to enjoy semi-autonomous representation. Today, we live in a state in which a different set of laws apply to Israeli citizens (mostly Jewish) and Palestinians. A Jewish person with citizenship and a Palestinian from the West Bank who both live in Area C (Israeli-controlled West Bank) are subject to a completely separate set of laws and judicial procedures. In order to create a just bi-national state, both peoples would need to be subject to the same laws and rights.

    The main risk I see with a “binational” state with semi-autonomy for both groups is that it could create a situation of “separate but equal” on paper, but not in reality, like in the 1950’s US South. If one of the two autonomous groups has major political and economic power, then using its autonomous status and separate institutions of political, social, and economic clout there could in fact be massive disparity. I think that this inherent disparity existed even in the binational model that Chomsky and others proposed with parallel nationalist social and economic institutions.

    If we divided the US based on race into two autonomous groups, I think that the same kind of thing would happen.

    • YoniFalic
      March 4, 2016, 4:22 am

      I don’t understand any ethical system that gives a bunch of murderous E. European racists (like my grandfather) the right to steal a country to which they have only fictional connection and to destroy or to drive out the native population.

      I call such an ethical system evil, and so is the state created under such an ethical system.

      In any case, the whole concept of a Jewish people is completely bogus, and the belief in it is a delusion based on certain questionable linguistic usage in German/Yiddish and Russian.

      In point of fact there is no Jewish ethnonational group on which a state can be based. My family has not practiced Jewish religion for at least four generations, and I have nothing ethnically in common with N. Africans, Mesopotamians, and S. Arabians, whose ancestors practiced Jewish religion — and even less with Ethiopians whose ancestors practiced a totally different Judaic religion.

  14. Peter in SF
    March 4, 2016, 3:35 am

    The people who run this blog live in the United States, as do most of its readers. I wish the author of this piece had made some comparisons between Israel and the U.S., where she herself grew up, because the shared reference would have helped her readers to understand just what she’s talking about. For instance:

    But I can believe in a place that allows for semi-autonomy for the Jewish people, as long as the same system and rights are in place for the Palestinian people and other minorities living on this land.

    Is it the writer’s intention that we should read that statement as being analogous to a white American saying, “I can believe in a place that allows for semi-autonomy for white Americans, as long as the same system and rights are in place for Native Americans and African-Americans and other minorities living on this land”?

    Or, looking in a different way at that same statement by the writer, does she see the U.S. as being “a place that allows for semi-autonomy for the Jewish people” as one of the “minorities living on this land”? Maybe she doesn’t, or didn’t, and so she gave up and moved to Israel? She shouldn’t make her readers have to try to guess her answers to these questions.

    • Mooser
      March 4, 2016, 1:19 pm

      Chances are she does not even understand her political status as an an American citizen who identifies as Jewish.

  15. Annie Robbins
    March 4, 2016, 4:21 am

    So no, I don’t believe in Zionism as it exists in the State of Israel today because it favors Jews over others. But yes, I believe in the possibility of Jewish self-determination that exists in partnership with Palestinian self-determination on this land. That is not the Zionism most people discuss, but it is my Zionism.

    you sound confused. ‘your zionsim’ exists only in your mind. the “Zionism as it exists in the State of Israel today ” is the only zionism in existence, and it’s ugly. every other kind of zionism, is a pipedream.

    you sound reluctant to embrace who you are. you say things like “where would we go”. you have a place to go. it’s called philly. or stay there and embrace a binational state, which is not zionist. mentally you’ve got one foot in the door of zionism in some space called “jewish self determination”. it’s stupid. jew in america have self determination right here in the same place i do. you don’t need some zionist state to have self determination. this is brainwashing. you’ve been drinking too much koolaid. you can’t have it both ways.

    • echinococcus
      March 4, 2016, 5:23 am

      or stay there and embrace a binational state

      Are you sure that’s kosher as a suggestion?
      In fact two suggestions. Stay, with what right? Weigh in on a state form, with what right

    • MHughes976
      March 4, 2016, 5:58 am

      How do we manage to think of an ideology as both ‘Zionist’ and also ‘not favouring people who are Jewish’?

      • Mooser
        March 4, 2016, 1:24 pm

        “How do we manage to think of an ideology as both ‘Zionist’ and also ‘not favouring people who are Jewish’?”

        Are you kidding? That’s as easy as falling off a log. All you have to do is put the possibility of gain (country, power, land, money) in front of people and they will think of something to justify it. Or they will get God to make an announcement in their behalf. The ideology is the easy part.

  16. just
    March 4, 2016, 6:04 am

    “Becca Strober moved from Philadelphia to Israel at age 18. She is a former soldier turned activist and is involved in queer, anti-racism and anti-occupation movements.”

    Are you kidding me? Say it’s a joke, please.

    Oh, the agony of being a self- confessed ‘liberal Zionist’ dual citizen who served in the IOF and continues to serve the “nation- state” of Apartheid Israel!

    (It’s one heckuva resume for “liberal Zionists” everywhere… apply to J Street next!)

    • echinococcus
      March 4, 2016, 6:17 am

      It’s precisely because Zionism is incompatible by definition with coexistence on an equal basis with any peoples who don’t describe themselves as “Jewish” that the only just and implementable solution is not just any “single state”, but Palestine.

  17. Citizen
    March 4, 2016, 6:31 am

    Self is an individual person’s essential being that distinguishes them from others, especially considered as the object of introspection or reflexive action.

    Usage of the term “self-determination” applied to “of a people” is a phrase figure of speech, an example of figurative language. (A sort of reverse anthropomorphism in that it personifies an entire group of humans as one, reversing, e.g., describing “the one God” by using collective human features and conduct.)

    No man is an island. Is a group of people an island? Or also “part of the main”?
    How sovereign is a person subject to civil and criminal law and peer pressure?
    How sovereign is a town, a state, a corporation (legal “person”)?
    What is the derivation of rights? Do all rights have corresponding duties?
    Wall, or bridge? Wall and bridge? Contract with fine print and “weasel words”?
    Does a serial killer have the right to self-determination?
    Remember the Roman concept of “citizen”?
    Did the Nuremberg Trials, the Tokyo Trials, Geneva mean anything?
    Was Goering (at Nuremberg) astute?

    • echinococcus
      March 4, 2016, 7:26 am

      Citizen,
      Just as a reminder (but you know it anyway), self-determination of peoples has a very precise meaning and describes a defined procedure in international law.

      The law that was grossly violated by the Partition Proposal that preceded the Zionist armed aggression of 11/1947, still ongoing.

      • MHughes976
        March 4, 2016, 12:35 pm

        Seeing your remarks, echino, I looked to see what the lawyers had done with the concept of self-determination and found an article on s-d in the Encyclopaedia Princetoniensis, which did not all confirm the idea that the lawyers have got the matter sorted out or well-defined. Perhaps it’s a bad article. I have never found a definition of s-d which seemed morally satisfactory.

      • echinococcus
        March 4, 2016, 1:12 pm

        Oh sure –as if lawyers could ever let international law alone. Anyway, as long as they get on anything they only can muddy it up. There is, however, a legal framework to the self-determination rights of colonized or minority peoples, with a consensus minimum requirement that it is within geographic limits of the already established settlement area of populations, not only a racial/religious basis; that the self-determination interest questions like joining or seceding from state/national entities; that a general plebiscite be conducted interesting the entire legitimate population of the area in the absence of intimidation/duress, etc. Of course the lawyers will introduce thousands of devils in the thousands of details. Best would be to try a mondoweiss search of the Hostage archive (I’ll try that soon as I feel like it –I hope), as there were a number of very good lectures in there.
        Anyway, my only point was that it isn’t just loose street talk but that these are technical terms.

  18. diasp0ra
    March 4, 2016, 7:02 am

    I am still having trouble understanding your definition/idea of Zionism. Words have meanings, and today there is only one manifestation of Zionism on the ground, and it is the oppressive kind that has been since its inception.

    Your brand of Zionism -from what I gathered- seems to challenge the very notion of Zionism as it exists, so I must ask, why hold onto it? Why name your belief a kind of Zionism when it has nothing to do with it? Why taint it with this bloody legacy?

    Why is naming your belief a kind of Zionism so important to you?

    Forgive me, but it sounds like you are a bit torn.

    • MHughes976
      March 4, 2016, 12:45 pm

      I define Zionism as the belief that people who are Jewish, and they only, have an inherent right – now commonly called birthright – to a share of sovereignty (enfranchisement) in the Holy Land, others having a share only by the grace and generosity of the true heirs. At that rate, Zionism necessarily is about favouring Jewish persons over others. No-one owns words and I don’t own ‘Zionism’ – I would be happy to work with Ms.Strober’s definition if she would provide it but I find it hard to see how Zionism under a more gentle definition would even begin to justify what has been done in its name.

    • chocopie
      March 4, 2016, 3:03 pm

      She’s calling her belief “Zionism” because everyone she cares about is a Zionist, and now that she sees what Zionism really is, she decided to change the meaning of the word to make herself more comfortable.

      Her Zionism is the big tent Zionism where everyone fits. She can be in there with her progressive ideas, right along with the people bulldozing Palestinian homes. She doesn’t want to give up on the arsonists, the murderers, the squatters, the child abductors. They’re her people.

      • echinococcus
        March 4, 2016, 4:11 pm

        Well worded, but she’s not the only one. Many others, who call themselves anti-Zionist, continue to see the enemy riffraff as “their people”, too, as most of us well know.
        But this lady here hasn’t given up any of “her ideology” Zionism, as she also continues to see it as her right to remain in Palestine without Palestinian permission and decide to keep a right to part of Palestine –jut because a Philadelphian has a natural right to Palestine. If that isn’t Zionism, what is?

    • BeccaStrober
      March 7, 2016, 8:28 am

      Yes, of course I am partially torn, which is why I start off by saying these are all ideas I am still forming. I don’t agree with the state as it is today. I prefer any sort of one-state over what we have. I don’t though agree with kicking all the Jews out. It’s hard for me to understand how that would bring any justice back. I am for Palestinians returning.
      I guess I could give it a different name, but I don’t have one for it? My point is that as long as there is self-determination in the world and different peoples self-determine, I am for Jews also self-determining. I originally wrote this (not for Mondoweiss) as a way to explain to my friends and peers why I don’t call myself a Zionist anymore. I agree the word is tainted.

      • eljay
        March 7, 2016, 10:09 am

        || BeccaStrober: … My point is that as long as there is self-determination in the world and different peoples self-determine, I am for Jews also self-determining. … ||

        If by “self-determine” you mean “decide to be someone”, self-determination already exists for any person who wishes to become Jewish. The self-determination to be Jewish does not require a state.

        If by “self-determine” you mean “decide to form an autonomous state of and for all people within a given geographic region”, that’s not remotely what Zionism – Jewish supremacism in/and a religion-supremacist “Jewish State” in as much as possible of Palestine – was or is about. The sharing of a religion-based identity does not entitle any group of people to a state.

      • Mooser
        March 7, 2016, 11:20 am

        “It’s hard for me to understand how that would bring any justice back.”

        I agree! After all, who invented justice? Who invented peace, too? Without Zionists, those things just ain’t happening.

      • Mooser
        March 7, 2016, 11:23 am

        “I originally wrote this (not for Mondoweiss) as a way to explain to my friends and peers why I don’t call myself a Zionist anymore.”

        One explanation for you “friends and peers”, another explanation for everybody else, and one more for the Palestinians, and another for…
        Sure, you just sell that load of clams.

      • echinococcus
        March 7, 2016, 11:33 am

        My point is that as long as there is self-determination in the world and different peoples self-determine, I am for Jews also self-determining

        Nonsense. “Jews” are not a people. They are people from very many different countries, each with their own home country, who practice a given religion. Some call themselves “Jewish” by heredity, considering the religion presumably practiced by ancestors. This does not “a people” make. There is absolutely nothing in common among the different populations who practice the religion, or who did practice the religion in old times, apart from the strictly religious-liturgical practice.

        Your nonsense is no different than asking for “self-determination” of Catholics, no matter if they are Irish, Italian or Patagonian… and requesting Hong Kong as the place to do it.

      • MHughes976
        March 7, 2016, 12:01 pm

        So the headline, ‘still consider myself a Zionisr’, was rather misleading since you do not call yourself that any more and consider the word tainted.
        I am sure that all of us on MW who do not consider ourselves Zionists believe that there should be absolutely equal rights for Jewish and for other people. If you were confronted with the kind of self-determination practised by the Zionists, involving exclusion and disfranchisement, in some other part of the world you would surely condemn and reject it, not say ‘So long as it happens elsewhere let it happen here’?
        If you believe in 1ss and RoR I think that you are anti-Zionist by most people’s standards. You are near the front line and I am not, so it seems presumptuous for me to welcome you but it’s good to see people of your information and experience on or at least very near our side.

      • YoniFalic
        March 7, 2016, 1:02 pm

        @echinococcus
        Nonsense. “Jews” are not a people.

        I would assert that @echinococcus is correct and that the problem is semantic.

        In historic Poland there was an unnamed ethnic group that spoke Yiddish and whose members practiced Jewish religion. They were called Żydzi, and the estate system in historic Poland was based primarily in religion. Religiously Jewish Tatars were only erratically considered Żydzi even if they had all the rights of Żydzi.

        The term Żydzi seemed to the members of the unnamed ethnic group to suggest an unhistorical ethnic group of the sort for which Żydzi had total contempt.

        When Poland collapsed and the Czarist government took power in a large part of Polish territory, the Żydzi lobbied for the use of the term евреи (Russian for Hebrew) instead of the term жид (Russian for Jew and equivalent to Polish Żyd).

        As a consequence, secularizing Żydzi began to think of themselves as secular Hebrews with a legitimate claim to Palestine even though Żydzi like members of my family and all descendants of Yiddish speaking communities descend completely from local pagan Slavic, Germanic, Turkic and Greek populations that converted to Judaism since late antiquity.

        Thus, there is an indigenous ethnic group in Eastern Europe that corresponds to Żydzi but calling it Jewish or Hebrew is misleading. Tel Aviv University Professor Paul Wexler has proposed describing the ethnic group with name Slavo-Turk, but this term has received no traction even if I would happily call myself Slavo-Turk and bury all the “Jewish” crap.

      • yonah fredman
        March 7, 2016, 9:55 pm

        yonifalic: “In historic Poland there was an unnamed ethnic group that spoke Yiddish and whose members practiced Jewish religion”. – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/2016/03/why-i-support-a-one-state-solution-and-still-consider-myself-a-zionist/#comment-828766 Unnamed by whom? Unnamed by the anthropologists of the 21st century. They certain had a name for themselves. They called themselves “yidden” or Yehudim.

        a ph.d. is no reason to act stupid.

      • Mooser
        March 7, 2016, 10:48 pm

        “They certain had a name for themselves. They called themselves “yidden” or Yehudim.”

        “Yonah” you read what “Yoni Falic” said. Frankly, refusing to consider it could be antisemantic.

        “Yiddish speaking communities descend completely from local pagan Slavic, Germanic, Turkic and Greek populations that converted to Judaism since late antiquity.”

        Parvenus!

        “a ph.d. is no reason to act stupid.”

        “Yonah” did you ever think of treating an IDF vet with a little bit of respect? You could give people the wrong ideas about the rewards of making sacrifices for Zionism if you don’t.

      • YoniFalic
        March 8, 2016, 12:09 am

        But what is a yid/Żyd called after he stops practicing Judaism? In Spain he became a Spanish Christiano (nuevo). In the Arabic speaking world he became an Arab Muslim (jadid) because these were places with no place for secular atheists.

        In Commonwealth Poland if he converted to Catholicism, he became a szlachcic/nobleman because in the religion-based Estate system of Commonwealth Poland religious Jews formed an untitled stratum within the 2nd Estate (the nobles) and upon conversion received at title.

        In Commonwealth Poland did the religious Jewish communities accept atheists as yidn/yehudi/yisroel? Never.

        In Commonwealth Poland where privilege and status attached to religion, a secular atheist former religious Jew had none, and the former religious Jew had to create a new sort of bogus secular Jewish identity in order to claim a right to continued privilege.

        So what happened in 19th century Poland especially in Russian Poland, where Estate/privilege no longer clearly attached to religion, and a religious Jew was no longer a Żyd/жид but a еврей/Hebrew. When 20% to 30% of a Jewish community ceased to practice Judaism and possibly switched to Polish or to Russian as primary language, they did not become secular Slavs, for whom generally extremely prejudiced E. European Yiddish-speakers usually had total contempt.

        The non-religious еврей/Hebrew continued to call himself an еврей, and later the Soviets accommodated by using еврей as a secular identity but only rarely applied it to a descendant of non-Yiddish speaking communities. Birobidzhan was only for Yiddish speakers and not for religious Jews belonging to other ethnicities. Jewish Tatars, Jewish Tadjiks (Persians), and Jewish Georgians were encouraged (including by the Yiddish controlled Yevsektsiya — Jewish Section of the Communist Party) to become secular and to identify as Tatars, Persians, or Georgians respectively.

        Wexler is completely correct. There was and is a Slavo-Turk ethnicity, and Jews of non-Slavo-Turk ethnicity are not welcomed into it as certainly has been the experience of Jewish N. Africans, Mesopotamians, and S. Arabians in the racist genocidal State of Israel.

        In high school my girlfriend Mazal came from an Algerian Jewish community, which had been transplanted to Israel. I as an ethnic E. European and she as an ethnic N. African/Algerian had absolutely nothing in common ethnically. My parents considered her and her family to be primitives not equal to us. My grandfather to his ambiguous credit did not consider E. Europeans much less primitive than N. Africans. He spoke perfect German as well as Yiddish, Russian, Polish, and Ukrainian and came from Lemberg formerly in Austrian Poland nowadays Lviv in the Ukraine. With some conceit and quite dubiously, he tried to consider himself a superior Central European “Jew”.

      • YoniFalic
        March 8, 2016, 12:27 am

        @Mooser, I am not particularly proud to have been an IDF soldier and believe IDF soldiers deserve scorn not respect.

        Your comments about me are always quite positive possibly because we agree on most issues even though you use humor whereas I am probably overly pedantic — something I probably get from my grandfather, who participated without shame in the genocide of 1947-8. He could pedantically justify driving out or killing Palestinians.

        Just a note to help you understand that I do not really deserve respect and was certainly no hero.

        During Operation Cast Lead, like all members of my unit I shot and killed men, women, and children who were unarmed and trying under a white flag to leave their homes, which had become part of a battlefield. After my service I began to have dreams in which I was a Palestinian sniper, and I was in my gun sight. I became incoherent and was in psychological treatment for three months. I still break down in tears spontaneously even though I know this is not my web persona.

      • YoniFalic
        March 8, 2016, 2:10 am

        I like the neologism “antisemantic”.

        Because the Civil War is being discussed on Mondoweiss, I refer to the truism that the Civil War was fought over whether the United States should be treated as a singular or as a plural noun.

        http://io9.gizmodo.com/when-did-the-united-states-become-a-singular-noun-949771685

      • YoniFalic
        March 8, 2016, 2:40 am

        BTW, one could likewise argue that the secular descendants of religious Żydzi committed genocide in Palestine in order to establish semantically that they were not members of an unhistorical Slavo-Turk ethnic group but were really the secular descendants of the еврейский/Hebraic population of ancient Palestine and thus had practically noble lineage.

      • eljay
        March 8, 2016, 7:36 am

        || yonah fredman: … Unnamed by whom? Unnamed by the anthropologists of the 21st century. They certain had a name for themselves. They called themselves “yidden” or Yehudim. a ph.d. is no reason to act stupid. ||

        Boy, won’t you look like someone who acted stupid if it turns out that by “unnamed” YoniFalic meant “unnamed by people other than members of the group itself”. You should have waited for an answer to your question before scoffing* at him. You must not have a Ph.D.
        _____________________
        (*yonah fredman: “Scoffing is the first step towards dialogue? I don’t think so.”)

      • Mooser
        March 8, 2016, 12:07 pm

        “@Mooser, I am not particularly proud to have been an IDF soldier and believe IDF soldiers deserve scorn not respect.”

        “Yoni” I’d be the last person to ever tell you how you should feel about your military service, or the country you grew up in. You know what happened, you were there, I wasn’t. You saw a side of Zionism I can only thank God I never did, growing up. The real thing.

        But I do find very telling the absolute contempt the Zionist-supporters show for IDF vets.

      • Mooser
        March 8, 2016, 12:17 pm

        “But what is a yid/Żyd called after he stops practicing Judaism?”

        “Yoni” I was already smiling by the end of that sentence, ready to burst into laughter. Then I read the entire thing, and although it was interesting, I couldn’t find the punch-line.

      • Mooser
        March 8, 2016, 12:48 pm

        “Just a note to help you understand that I do not really deserve respect and was certainly no hero.”

        As I understand it, successful service in the IDF is one of the prerequisites for advancement in Israel. Am I right? You rejected this pay-off for your service and conformity, and accepted, as an individual, some of the moral consequences.
        You’re a hero to me. A real Jew. A mensch! (Sorry, sorry, got carried away.)
        I grew up in the US, I was hit over the head, almost concussed, with choices (a lot of them not of my choosing, too, and those are the best kind.) and possibilities.
        But it was obvious early on I would be of very little use to Zionism. What might have been if I had any potential or intelligence, I don’t like to think about. Somebody might have taken an interest in me (ptoo,ptoo,ptoo)! And we didn’t have any money, and couldn’t afford Zionism, and I hate farmwork!

      • Annie Robbins
        March 8, 2016, 8:22 pm

        i appreciate your efforts to communicate and come to terms with all of this becca. i visited your blog and read about some of your struggle w/your identity/israeliness vs american. i think you’re on a path, an optimist and an idealist who has yet to arrive at a certain aha moment that i predict you will have.

        hang in there and good luck.

      • eljay
        March 9, 2016, 7:23 am

        || Annie Robbins: i appreciate your efforts to communicate and come to terms with all of this becca. … i think you’re on a path, an optimist and an idealist who has yet to arrive at a certain aha moment that i predict you will have. hang in there and good luck. ||

        I second Annie’s sentiment. :-)

  19. olive52
    March 4, 2016, 7:08 am

    There are many Jews and Palestinians who want to coexist, work together, and just get along trouble free. Sharing of the same land could have been, if there would just be an end to the violence and commitment from here on to have a concerted effort to not see each other as enemies.

    • Annie Robbins
      March 4, 2016, 7:44 am

      Sharing of the same land could have been, if there would just be an end to the violence and commitment from here on to have a concerted effort to not see each other as enemies.

      i don’t think that reflects reality. there is the issue of the zionist colonial project. unfortunately israel wants all the land with no palestinians on it. they had no intention of sharing when they destroyed 500 villages. it’s against human nature to be ok with having your home stolen. how does one colonize someone else’s land nonviolently? sure,they could not see palestinians as enemies, but as long as they want their homes and land, how can there be an end to violence? you have to stop the crime at it’s source. you have to stop the expansion — the theft and destruction.

      stuff like this, what people would be ok with this even if they made a commitment to not see israelis as enemies?:

      https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/news/middle-east/24314-un-israels-demolitions-displacement-of-palestinians-at-highest-level-in-seven-years

      Israel’s demolitions, displacement of Palestinians at highest level in seven years

      Israeli occupation forces demolished 41 structures in Khirbet Tana near Nablus on Wednesday, according to a UN statement on March 4.

      The demolition displaced ten families with 36 members, including 11 children, and affected the livelihoods of five additional families.

      nothing will change until israel stops thieving the land and killing/imprisoning the people whose land they covet. that’s the commitment that’s required. they are the powerful oppressors. framing this as a both sides are equal thing is a delusion that perpetuates the status quo.

      • Froggy
        March 7, 2016, 3:12 pm

        Annie :: ‘it’s against human nature to be ok with having your home stolen. how does one colonize someone else’s land nonviolently? sure,they could not see palestinians as enemies, but as long as they want their homes and land, how can there be an end to violence?

        That is the crux of the matter.

        It’s nobody’s business to decide what portion of the land or any other property that is already owned by an individual, family, or self-determined collective the owners will be allowed to keep.

        The way I read it, Becca Strober is telling the Palestinians that she, a foreigner and immigrant who is now living on their land, is willing to share a portion of what is rightfully their property with them.

        You can’t create a ‘just society’ on other people’s land.

    • eljay
      March 4, 2016, 7:57 am

      || olive52: … Sharing of the same land could have been … ||

      …if hateful and immoral Zio-supremacists hadn’t:
      – desired to establish a religion-supremacist “Jewish State” in as much of the land as possible; and then
      – used terrorism, ethnic cleansing, occupation, colonization, destruction, oppression, torture and murder to realize, expand and maintain their “Jewish State”.

      But they did and they still do.

      But I get what you’re saying: Like the victim in the rapist’s basement, the Palestinians should just “lie back and enjoy it” so that there can be “peace”.

      • MHughes976
        March 4, 2016, 12:50 pm

        A commitment to share the same land under a system of equal rights for all (which would be contrary to the idea of rights in the Holy Land exclusively for people who are Jewish, which I understand is the defining claim of Zionism) would indeed be a step forward.

      • Mooser
        March 4, 2016, 1:31 pm

        “A commitment to share the same land under a system of equal rights for all”?

        That “commitment” may come, but it can’t, by Zionism’s very self-definition, come from Zionists.

  20. Ossinev
    March 4, 2016, 7:43 am

    “Forgive me,but it sounds like you are a bit torn”

    Having looked at her website/blogsite I think she is a classic example of the guilty Zionist who has been brainwashed throughout her childhood in the Chosen People/Chosen Land belief and having embarked on her “Zion” dream is consistently averting her eyes from the mirror – can`t quite pick up the courage to look into it and acknowledge the ugly brutal reality of this dream ” Zion”.

    Her meanderings do not reflect deep compassionate concerns for the lives , the health and the welfare of non -Jews in Israel / the OPT be they native Palestinians or asylum seekers. Instead she is quite simply tinkering with a form of activism – lite to assuage her own guilt, her own confusion and ultimately the destruction of her longed for aliyah dream life.

  21. lyn117
    March 4, 2016, 10:04 am

    I am willing to forgive some Zionists who went to Palestine in the past because of misguided ideas about the Zionist project, or especially as refugees, but who now ascribe to equal rights in particular the right of return and compensation for Palestinian refugees and their descendants. It’s not clear Becca believes in that right, it’s possible she still believes in exclusivity for Jews. And I’m not Palestinian, I really have nothing to forgive anyway.

    That being said, “self-determination” is a right in particular of indigenous peoples to be free of colonizers and colonizing authorities, and to rule themselves. In this case, Zionist Jews are the colonizers and colonizing authorities, they aren’t the indigenous people of Israel/Palestine, they have no right to form their own governmental structures there in the absence of freely given permission by the majority of it people which would include all exiled Palestinians and their descendants.

    As with the usual Zionist Orwellian perversion of language, “Jewish self-determination” is in fact, nothing more than the Zionist claim that Jews have some right to colonize and ethnically cleanse to create a Jewish state where they aren’t the native people.

  22. Theo
    March 4, 2016, 11:57 am

    ” I am a zionist, however I support a one state solution”.

    Great, and naturally that state is called Israel, or Eretz Israel, where all will have the same rights, as long as they are jews! Is this a joke?

    We could continue with this farce, “I am a nazi, but love the jews”, or “I am a communist, however believe in a capitalistic system”! Or “I am the pope, therefore I never beat my wife”.

    Dear Ms. Strober, there is no such thing as a jewish nation, as there is no catholic nation, moslem nation, hindu nation, etc., all those are religions and states are political entities.
    Jews are made up from 100 different nationalities, (I did not count them), who sometime converted to judaism, the real hebrews are so rare, that together they would not make up a decent city, never mind a nation.
    You had the privilage to be born an american, however you decided to become a colonist subjugating ethnic majorities with modern weapons, (IDF). What you now do is, after beating up a person, you give him a bandaid. How kind of you, I wish we had laws to take away your american citizenship and declare you persona non grata in the country.

    • Stephen Shenfield
      March 4, 2016, 4:46 pm

      Theo: “I wish we had laws to take away your american citizenship and declare you persona non grata in the country.”

      Well, assuming for the sake of argument that she (like so many others) has dual American and Israeli citizenship, would you sooner deny her the right to live in the US and force her to live in Israel-Palestine or deny her the right to live in I-P and tolerate her presence in the US? Or perhaps send her to live in Antarctica?

      • Mooser
        March 4, 2016, 10:23 pm

        “dual American and Israeli citizenship, would you sooner deny her the right to live in the US”

        Depends. Is she a war criminal? Did she serve in the IDF? Has it been investigated? Don’t need any more potential violent people (especially those with military training and experience in illegal military activities) Was she involved in the occupation? Illegal settlement activity?
        I do believe the US tries to exclude criminals, and that may be a good idea.

        Or she could be a very nice woman.

      • Annie Robbins
        March 4, 2016, 11:45 pm

        yes, she was in the idf here’s an interesting op ed by the author that sheds some light on her identity issues:

        http://blogs.timesofisrael.com/why-i-am-going-to-susiya/

        “Since this internal revolution, my biggest fear has been losing my Israeli identity. I thought that if becoming more Israeli meant becoming less American, then becoming less Israeli must equal becoming more American.

        So I have tried my hardest to maintain the identity I worked so diligently to build. Working at an organization that focuses on freedom of movement in Gaza, I often explain to my fellow Israelis why a change in policy will benefit us (leaving out the reasons why current policies are hurting Palestinians in Gaza).

        I make a point to let everyone know that I, too, served in the army, which I know gives my voice value. I adapt the meaning of Zionism to fit whomever I am addressing at that moment. These methods of communication and justification enable me to continue participating in acceptable Israeli dialogue.Maybe not proper, I thought, but at least I have remained an Israeli.”

      • MHughes976
        March 5, 2016, 7:29 pm

        If she uses different definitions for different audiences perhaps she could tell us which is suited to us and perhaps give a list of those used for others. The procedure seems very questionable.

      • Mooser
        March 6, 2016, 6:56 pm

        Ah, that Becca has everything she needs to be effective. She’s an opportunist, who never lets the truth stand in her way as long as somebody else is paying the price.

      • Froggy
        March 6, 2016, 11:00 pm

        Mooser :: “Ah, that Becca has everything she needs to be effective. She’s an opportunist, who never lets the truth stand in her way as long as somebody else is paying the price.

        Indeed.

      • Mooser
        March 8, 2016, 12:10 pm

        “Indeed.”

        I think we will be seeing lots of that. As I’m sure you know, colonial projects are rife with it. Especially as they fail.
        It’s a very tough spot, and people try to do the best they can, according to their lights.

    • yonah fredman
      March 4, 2016, 5:07 pm

      Theo- “I wish we had laws to take away your american citizenship and declare you persona non grata in the country.” – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/2016/03/why-i-support-a-one-state-solution-and-still-consider-myself-a-zionist/#comment-828309. I’m sure that in Theo’s wishes the laws that would be enacted would not be enacted ex post facto but would declare the future rules rather than rules based on the past. How precisely would you word the law? Dual citizenship is no longer allowed? Living in a foreign country is no longer allowed? Declaring loyalty to another country is no longer allowed and punishable by taking away one’s citizenship? Aren’t you afraid that this would open a can of worms. But i fear that Theo really wants to have the power of Congress to say, I take away your citizenship pronto without explanation, because I Theo the lawmaker wish it so.

      • Mooser
        March 4, 2016, 7:51 pm

        “But i fear that Theo really wants to have the power of Congress to say, I take away your citizenship pronto without explanation, because I Theo the lawmaker wish it so.”

        That’s because you are “paranoid”, “Yonah”. Having completely unreasonable, yet feels-like-the-real-thing fear of people you don’t even know doing things to you that no one can do. You know, “Yonah” – feeling like you can no longer depend on the kindness of strangers!
        BTW, if you are so frightened, why did you promote him to “Theo the lawmaker”? Why make trouble for yourself by promoting him?

      • rosross
        March 4, 2016, 8:42 pm

        @ yonah,

        You do realise that Judaism was invented in Mesopotamia, what is now modern-day Iraq and that the Hebrews who wandered into Canaan were colonists even then?

        Jews comprise all races and dozens of nationalities and do not a people or nation make, beyond religious metaphor, and never did.

      • rosross
        March 4, 2016, 8:46 pm

        @ yonah,

        You keep making the same mistake – confusing religious affiliation with nationality.

        Jews are a religion they have no rights as a nation, people or State. Never did and never will.

        The analogy you want is if the US decided that only Christians should have full rights and that as a Christian State, superior status went to Christians and non-Christians were subjugated and denied their rights.

        This is what Jewish Israelis do in UN mandated Israel and Occupied Palestine.

        No member of any religion has or has ever had any rights to any land anywhere.

      • Mooser
        March 4, 2016, 10:45 pm

        “You do realise that Judaism was invented in Mesopotamia”

        Say what? This stuff was made in Mesopotamia? Get some palm-fibre and palm-leaf!

      • yonah fredman
        March 5, 2016, 1:57 am

        rosross- I take it that you agree with theo regarding ex post facto changing of the law. do you wish to take away the writer’s citizenship as we speak, or merely to change the law from this time forward?

        i made no assertions whatsoever regarding the validity of the dual citizenship that seems to be the root of the problem here. so rosross- i must assume that you are making assumptions based upon reading my opinion elsewhere.

        some jews consider being jewish something other than “religious”. this goes from the relatively innocent ethnic identification of someone like nora ephron (z’l) who in “heartburn” talks continually and comedically about Jewish identity with nary a religious element mentioned. to the issue at hand the zionism of jabotinsky. so do you feel that jabotinsky should have told the jews of poland. hey, dudes, stop being religious and it will solve your problems? you think that would solve the past.

        since 45 with most jews located in the lands of the west: england, US, australia and france, and only a minority in eastern europe. (leaving aside those who live in Israel). the assimilation of the Jews into the populations has proceeded entirely differently than the lack of assimilation or the “we’re into nationalism and you are jews and do not fit into our nationalism” which dominated middle Europe and eastern europe between the 1873 economic depression in germany until the end of world war II. it is possible that the jews were one time a nation and no longer are a nation. it is also possible that the jews between 1873 and 1945 were a nation largely against their will and the present tense of most young jews in america demonstrates that the national identity problem of the jews between 1873 and 1945 was a coerced situation and not one of free will and self identity. but you are being anachronistic to apply today’s facts to a century ago and if your facts only apply to today and not to a century ago i would consider that you need a few more paragraphs to your spiel to make yourself sound historically astute rather than dogmatic.

        the right of the Jews to a land is a different question and not what I am asserting. but in fact by self assertion or the rule of the peoples of the lands of Europe, the Jews were very much considered “a separate nation” that posed a question or a problem, just a hundred years ago and your blanket statements are really some construct of some Marxism or some theory of history or another and are not backed up by the facts of the period that I have mentioned.

      • Theo
        March 5, 2016, 11:26 am

        There is a proverb “You cannot serve TWO masters at the same time”, or “You cannot dance on two weddings simultaneously”, they are centuries old and I think both express my feelings about dual citizenship!
        I made my home in Germany over 40 years ago, however I will always keep my US citizenship, and only that one, because it is not like an underwear that you can change if needed.

        Becca says: “I am an american. I am an israeli”, meaning she is serving the interests of two nations simultaneously! Since american interests are not the same as the israelis, how can she do this spagat? If she decided to be an israeli citizen, then she should surrender her US passport and forfeit on US citizenship.
        She, a born american, served not in the US armed forces, but of a foreign country, and as we follow the deeds of the IDF since many years, she must have commited crimes against humanity, as they do it every single day. Did she shoot an unarmed palestinian child or woman? Or a few old men? We will never know, however being a member of a criminal organisation is already a crime, according to US laws!

        Thousands of europeans served with the ISIS in Syria and Iraq, and as they return to their home countries, they are charged with crimes and jailed. We should do the same with all american jews, who will not serve in their own armed forces, but go to Israel to join the IDF. We should have laws that forbids serving the interests of a foreign nation, in the military or any other way. Most countries have such laws.

        Our government, think tanks, CIA, NSA, HSD, Pentagon, etc. are full of double citizen Israel firsters, how can we run a country and feel safe when foreign agents sit at all important points? How could our country sink that far?

      • Froggy
        March 6, 2016, 11:37 pm

        Yonah ::

        FYI : dual citizenship used to be illegal for an American citizen, but in 1967 the US Supreme Court struck down most laws forbidding dual citizenship.

        The citizenship thing is no biggie as most countries have permanent visa arrangements for non-citizens who want to (and are qualified to) make a permanent home in a country other than the one where they are citizens.

        E.g. , a foreign national who wants to make a permanent home in the UK is required to get ILR status (Indefinite Leave to Remain) in order to remain in the UK for life, with (almost) all the rights and obligations of a British Citizen. (This is an arduous and expensive process.) The next step after the ILR is to go through the formal ceremony of becoming a citizen, but that is optional.

    • rosross
      March 4, 2016, 8:43 pm

      @ Theo,

      Well said.

  23. Stephen Shenfield
    March 4, 2016, 4:39 pm

    “(Semi-)autonomy” and “self-determination” sound nice. The problems accumulate when you consider what specific institutions are to embody these principles. How will they work? Who will run them in practice? What about the rights of those who are opposed to the way “their” group institutions are run — not to mention those who do not belong and/or do not want to belong to any of the recognized groups? Will people have the right to join groups to which they do not belong by birth or upbringing or switch from one group to another? Consider, for instance, the position of African refugees or immigrant workers from Romania or Thailand together with their Israel-born children. These are only some of the conflicts between the self-determination of individuals and the self-determination of groups. Which takes precedence?

  24. Roberto
    March 4, 2016, 7:15 pm

    “fled on their own accord” isn’t an oxymoron?

    • chocopie
      March 4, 2016, 7:51 pm

      They just went out one day for a brisk family run–took the grandparents and the baby– and didn’t stop until they got to Lebanon?

  25. Mooser
    March 4, 2016, 7:52 pm

    “fled on their own accord” isn’t an oxymoron?”

    Heck no. It gets much better mileage and goes further on a tank of gas than the SUV or pickup.

  26. rosross
    March 4, 2016, 8:22 pm

    Jews are no more entitled to self-determination than are Christians, Muslims, Hindus or any other religion.

    Jews are not a race, not a people, not a nation they are members of a religion and like all religions comprise all races and dozens of nationalities.

    The first Jew was a convert when Judaism was invented just as the first Christian was a convert when Christianity was invented. No-one is racially or nationally born a Jew or a Christian or any other religion.

    If you convert to Judaism you don’t change race or nationality and if you drop Judaism and become an atheist or agnostic, or convert to another religion you do not change race or nationality.

    Being Jewish is a religious label, just as being Christian is a religious label. One may be a non-practising Jew or Christian but one cannot be an atheist or secular Jew or Christian because then the religious label is superfluous and one has no religion. Retaining the label of Jew, Christian or of any religion means one remains a member of the religion even if one does not practice.

    What gives Judaism the right to demand as a religion something that other religions do not have? If Jews did have a right to self-determination then so would every other religion on the planet, for the same reason that the principle would have to be applied equally.

    Thankfully religions do not constitute States, peoples, nations and do not have rights to homelands, Statehood or nationality and have absolutely no right to self-determination.

    Beyond which, most Jews do not live in UN mandated Israel and never did and never will and instead are citizens of dozens of countries around the world, practising their religion in security and peace, as do members of any other religion, in the main.

    • MHughes976
      March 6, 2016, 12:56 pm

      Are you sure of this, ros? If you were to follow the Renan-style idea of Nation in which a nation is a group with a special loyalty to a set of stories it would possible that those stories, and therefore the nation, had a religious character. What does ‘nation’ mean to you?

      • rugal_b
        March 6, 2016, 1:13 pm

        As a Marxist, I wholly reject the notion of “nation-states” which I believe was invented purely as a way to preserve the capitalist power structure in the most efficient manner during pre-Industrial Europe. The goal of the Westphalian nation-states were never about maximising social cohesion and preserving local culture and religion(s), though it was definitely marketed as such. My view on a nation echoes the philosophy and ideology of many indigenous cultures, whereby a nation is dynamic in size and reach, with the family being the most fundamental structural unit from which the nation expands, or contracts into depending on the various external factors.

      • Sibiriak
        March 7, 2016, 12:15 am

        rugal_b: As a Marxist….

        ——————–

        Right. The need for “race pride” being a fundamental Marxist concept.

  27. rosross
    March 4, 2016, 8:40 pm

    @rugal,

    Those who support the Zionist colonial venture in Palestine overlook some very important points:

    1. Jews are a miniscule minority in the world and even if they were a majority their religious writings/teachings would not be relevant and have no credence in a court of law.

    2. If Jewish religious writings – myth, fantasy, fiction in the main – are taken as literal then so must all religious writings. Ergo, if there is something in Jewish writing which links them to a bit of this planet then other religions must have exactly the same right to demand that land back. Wow, that would be fun, Not!

    3. No religious book or teaching has any relevance or substance in international law.

    4. No religion has any right to a homeland.

    5. No religion has any right to colonise and subjugate others.

    6. No religion in a civilized world has any right to entrench religious bigotry within an apartheid system.

    So, by all means, hold to your religious beliefs for your own private life, but end religious bigotry and recognise that the only outcome for the Jewish/Zionist colonial venture in Palestine, and the only outcome which ever existed, is one State with equal rights for all – a democracy where no race, religion, culture takes precedence and where indigenous Palestinians share with Israeli colonists just as every other nation founded in colonisation has had to do.

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