AIPAC removes two-state solution talking point from its website

US Politics
on 19 Comments

It has long been said that the so-called two-state solution in Israel-Palestine is dead. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was in fact re-elected on the promise that Palestinians would never have their own independent state.

Now, even the most powerful pro-Israel organization in the U.S. appears to be changing its rhetoric on the two-state solution, which for decades was at the heart of the status quo in peace negotiations.

The American Israel Public Affairs Committee, or AIPAC, scrubbed a reference to the two-state solution from the “peace process” talking points on its website. AIPAC told Mondoweiss that it still supports a two-state solution, but this change may indicate a shift in rhetorical strategy.

The website alteration was noticed by activist Daniel Sieradski.

An archived version of the peace process page on AIPAC’s website from July had three talking points. At the top of the list was the following:

Two states for two people.
AIPAC strongly supports a two-state solution and works tirelessly to bring peace to the region. A two-state solution – a Jewish state of Israel living in peace with a demilitarized Palestinian state – with an end to all claims is the clear path to resolving this generations-old conflict.

The present version of the page no longer has any references to the two-state solution. Otherwise, the talking points are similar — calling for direct and bilateral talks and compromise.

AIPAC does still however say on its mission page that it “urges all members of Congress to support … a negotiated two-state solution – a Jewish state of Israel and a demilitarized Palestinian state.”

Mondoweiss reached out to AIPAC for comment. A spokesperson said, “Our position has not changed – we continue to support a two-state solution.”

The spokesperson linked to references to the two-state solution on AIPAC’s website, including on its legislative agenda page.

While AIPAC’s rhetoric might have shifted a bit, its policies appear to have stayed the same. This is not true of the right wing in the U.S. and Israel, which have become increasingly hostile to the idea.

The Republican Party removed a call for the two-state solution from its platform. After meeting with Netanyahu, Donald Trump backed away from the longtime policy.

Prominent members of the far-right Trump camp, such as former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani, have also insisted the U.S. should drop its call for an independent Palestinian state. Giuliani has been tapped as a potential attorney general in Trump’s extreme-right administration.

Even more mainstream conservative politicians like former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee are now openly expressing opposition to the two-state solution.

Action is also being taken within the Israeli government to pound the final nails into the two-state coffin. Israel’s Ministerial Committee for Legislation unanimously approved a bill on November 13 that would retroactively “legalize” settlements in the occupied West Bank, which are illegal under international law. The bill will have to pass several readings in the Knesset to become law, but this is the first step.

From the perspective of Palestinian human rights, a one-state solution is not necessarily a bad thing. The question is of course what kind of state would be created, and what it would look like.

For decades, some influential Palestinians have called for a single, democratic, pluralist, non-sectarian state. In “The Fascist Tide and the Arab Revolution,” a chapter in her autobiography “My People Shall Live: The Autobiography of a Revolutionary,” Leila Khaled wrote that “the supreme objective of the Palestinian liberation movement” is “the construction of a socialist society in which both Arabs and Jews can live in peace and harmony.”

Khaled, however, is a leader in the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, or PFLP, a revolutionary Marxist organization. Today, those calling for official Israeli annexation of the occupied Palestinian territories are on the polar opposite side of the spectrum.

The politicians inside Israel and the U.S. pushing for a one-state solution are overwhelmingly on the far right. The kind of state they are on the path of creating would change the situation in Israel-Palestine from de facto apartheid to de jure apartheid.

About Ben Norton

Ben is a journalist and writer based in New York City. His work has been featured in a variety of publications, and he is presently a politics staff writer at Salon. His website can be found at BenNorton.com. Follow him on Twitter at @BenjaminNorton.

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19 Responses

  1. Annie Robbins
    November 14, 2016, 12:59 pm

    AIPAC does still however say on its mission page that it “urges all members of Congress to support … a negotiated two-state solution – a Jewish state of Israel and a demilitarized Palestinian state.”

    funny, when i read about the change earlier the very three words dropped from the quote i thought were the most revealing. they are “the promotion of”. it’s a slight technicality, but supporting a 2 state solution is a little different than supporting the promotion of one.

  2. eljay
    November 14, 2016, 1:25 pm

    Zio-supremacists are funny:

    … the only viable path to enduring peace is direct, bilateral negotiations between both parties. …

    And what do “direct, bilateral negotiations” look like?

    Talking Points
    1. Talks must be direct and bilateral.
    2. A solution cannot be imposed on the parties.
    3. Both sides must be willing to make key compromises.
    4. Disagreements should be resolved privately. …

    Gosh, that seems awfully reasonable, right? But wait, there’s a fifth point:

    5. The United States must support and work closely with Israel.

    And there’s the “f*ck you” to the Palestinians.

    The only viable path to the victim’s freedom is direct, bilateral negotiations between her and the rapist. The police must support and work closely with the rapist.

  3. Jackdaw
    November 14, 2016, 1:52 pm

    AIPAC supports the American government that is holding power.

    While Obama was President, AIPAC supported the ‘two state solution’, and forcefully opposed the efforts of some Republicans to drop the ‘two state solution’ from the Republican platform (2012 Republican Convention).

    Now, it is a fate accompli, since the Republicans already have dropped the ‘two state solution’ from their platform (2016 Republican Convention).

  4. Kay24
    November 14, 2016, 5:34 pm

    AIPAC is simply echoing what the occupier has shown us by action. Israel is not interesting even the slightest bit about a 2SS. It simply prefers the status quo, and they have so much more land to steal, so a 2SS is not convenient, never was. AIPAC is doing what the mothership orders it to do, and it is time they dropped the “A” from it’s title name. It is simply a farce.

  5. Ossinev
    November 15, 2016, 7:25 am

    @Jackdaw
    “Now, it is a fate accompli”
    It may be just that your French is not up to scratch ( it should be fait accompli ) but I will give you the benefit of the doubt and credit you with a clever play on words. Yes Israel`s fate is sealed . The 2SS illusion/delusion/collusion is dead and buried and Zionia is heading irrevocably for temporary Apartheid status followed by international isolation on a scale far greater than Apartheid South Africa followed by guess what a multi national equal rights / citizenship status for Jews/Arabs/Christians. et al. Just a question of time and I suspect during that time a significant proportion of the relatively sane Israeli Jewish community will have grabbed their second passports and abandoned ship.

    • rosross
      November 15, 2016, 12:35 pm

      Yes, and anyone with a modicum of reason could have worked this out long ago. Then again, reason is not a common quality in Israel and the outcome is an ‘own goal.’

  6. Talkback
    November 15, 2016, 8:25 am

    AIPAC: “a negotiated two-state solution – a Jewish state of Israel and a demilitarized Palestinian state.”

    A demilitarized Palestinian state? ROFL. After all Zionist wars, expulsions, dispossesions, military conquests and attempts since 1948 and illegal settling in occupied territories …

  7. Michael Rabb
    November 15, 2016, 9:07 am

    Trump’s green light to Israel

    I think that concerning Palestine, the election of Donald Trump as President, could turn out to be a good thing. Here’s how:

    Donald Trump will give a “green light” to Netanyahu and Israel to move forward with the total annexation of the West Bank and East Jerusalem. Some would argue his election has already worked to this effect with the Knesset immediately passing laws that will allow unrestricted building of settlements on Palestinian land. And at least his election and his statements during the campaign have emboldened the Jewish State to annex all of the remaining Palestinian territory.

    So why is this a good thing ?

    The reason, I think so, is that it seals the fate of the “Two-State Solution”.

    The two-state solution has been dead for a long time; but the USA and most recently, France, continue to pretend that somehow a “peace process” can be resurrected and the parties can negotiate a solution for a Palestinian state “alongside” the Jewish state. With the election of Trump and his green light, Jews in Israel will become even more aggressive in taking Palestinian land and expanding the settlements, and will hasten the incorporation of all of Palestine as “Israel”.

    This will have two very important effects: 1) it will make the the PA go away. There won’t be anymore “occupation” and so there will be no need for a Quisling government/contractor to administer the Palestinian Territories (there won’t be any Palestinian Territories to administer). And 2) with the elimination of the PA and the alignment of both the West-Bankers/East-Jerusalemites and the Palestinian population of Israel (pre-1967 boundaries) there will be a much greater chance for unification in the Palestinian struggle. Gaza and Hamas might actually come along !!

    When this happens, the Palestinian struggle, unified within Israel becomes more potent. Just like with South Africa and the blacks’ struggle against the white apartheid regime, Palestinians will be able to unite and focus their struggle. The character of the struggle will change from a war against settler colonialists engaged in genocide and ethnic cleansing to an internal struggle for human and civil rights for an oppressed majority ! The BDS movement will have an obvious and clear target: the overthrow of the Jewish apartheid state of Israel.

    • rosross
      November 15, 2016, 12:33 pm

      @ Michael Rabb,

      Well said. The irony is that Zionists and Jewish Israelis do not realise that they have made a Jewish State impossible and guaranteed the Palestinians, who will be a majority, will get their country back.

      While a Jewish State of Israel, as a non-democratic theocracy would always have been doomed, the two state solution was the only way it could happen.

      This way Israel is forced to do what every other coloniser has, rightly, had to do. Say sorry to the indigenous people whose land you have taken, make redress and give them full and equal rights as citizens.

  8. rosross
    November 15, 2016, 12:30 pm

    Since a one-state solution with equality for all, colonised and coloniser alike, is now the only outcome the sooner the two-state scenario is dropped the better.

    Israel can only reject a one-state outcome on the basis of religious bigotry and that is no more acceptable than South Africa’s racial bigotry.

    • Mooser
      November 15, 2016, 1:27 pm

      “Israel can only reject a one-state outcome on the basis of religious bigotry”

      Thank God there’s never been any evidence that religious bigotry holds sway in Israel. It might give people the wrong idea.

      • rosross
        November 15, 2016, 3:16 pm

        Of course you are right, but it is the world at large which will not tolerate religious bigotry forever, even if Israelis and their supporters will.

        :)

      • Mooser
        November 15, 2016, 3:59 pm

        “but it is the world at large which will not tolerate religious bigotry forever”

        That is the end to be hoped for, prayed for, and worked for. I join my hopes to yours.

  9. James Canning
    November 15, 2016, 1:18 pm

    Will Aipac now propose the expulsion of non-Jews from the occupied West Bank?

    • rosross
      November 15, 2016, 3:19 pm

      Perhaps and perhaps not because in order to expel the Palestinians from Occupied Palestine – the name West Bank is just a label Israel uses to pretend it is not Occupied Palestine – they will first have to remove all of the illegal settlers in their Jew-only enclaves, connected by Jew-only roads, so they are not killed or injured in the military process of seeking to drive out millions of Palestinian men, women and children.

      Israel is a tad caught on its own petard because having created so much illegal settlement in Palestine, it cannot attack the Palestinians without removing first the Jewish settlers. It is one thing to bomb the Gaza prison, although even there they would be hard put to kill all of the nearly two million men, women and children, but quite another to attack the Palestinians elsewhere without causing such horrendous carnage that even the Americans would have to develop a conscience and some spine and demand an end to it and justice for the Palestinians.

      Unless of course Israel arms the settlers to attack the Palestinians although that would also be very messy.

      • echinococcus
        November 15, 2016, 4:11 pm

        Unless of course Israel arms the settlers to attack the Palestinians although that would also be very messy.

        Thanks for realizing how it is already being done. Not messy, either.

        they will first have to remove all of the illegal settlers in their Jew-only enclaves, connected by Jew-only roads, so they are not killed or injured in the military process…

        Once again, that was not a problem in similar operations and you haven’t answered why it would be in this case. In fact, in this case the two populations do not even live together, they are as highly segregated as possible.
        In fact, they thought of it very well; why do you think Gaza was evacuated and besieged?
        Not a problem for organizing genocide.
        Which is already ongoing, by the way.

        such horrendous carnage that even the Americans would have to develop a conscience and some spine and demand an end to it and justice for the Palestinians.

        Nah. They demanded that in 1915. You could hear the protestations from the Moon. Nobody listened. And imagine that the Americans were not at all committed in favor of the Sultan, and there was a massive amount of sympathy for the Armenians, Christian and whatnot, while in this here case they are fairly besotten with the Zionists and partial to their government. We won’t even discuss the level of sympathy with the Palestinian people.

      • rosross
        November 15, 2016, 5:06 pm

        @ echinoccus,

        But it is not already being done or millions of Palestinians would be on the march. They are not.

        My point was that if Israel seriously attempted to kill or remove nearly six million Palestinians there would be carnage and it would not be tolerated.

        The ongoing murdering, imprisoning and dispossessing has minimal impact on the presence of the indigenous Palestinians in their own country.

        And yes, I understand that removing settlers from Gaza meant it could be turned into a prison, but even in the latest slaughter they killed over a thousand, but they did not kill hundreds of thousands or a million or more which would be required to empty the Gaza concentration camp.

        There is no way Israel can kill millions of Palestinians or drive them out, that is the point, without such horror that the world would have to act.

        And even if Israel killed nearly six million Palestinians in UN mandated Israel and Occupied Palestine there are another 8 million in the diaspora who would then return home on the boat of international guilt.

      • echinococcus
        November 15, 2016, 6:05 pm

        Ros Ross,

        You aren’t answering. First, read the goddam convention; it was written by Lemkin with the aim of recognizing genocide while it was being enacted, not after the completed fact.

        Second, when you say

        if Israel seriously attempted to kill or remove nearly six million Palestinians there would be carnage and it would not be tolerated.

        you ignore having been called to observe the daily carnage going on, and the historical (and too easy) arguments to many similar situations having been repeatedly tolerated.

        Once more: the murder rate / speed is not of the essence. The murderers can (and, historically did) accelerate or delay that according to the international situation. The ongoing mass processing with trains and ovens is not a sine qua non. As noted in the consensus.

        Your objecting on the grounds of military considerations about populations living at close quarters is also nonsense: the greatest genocides were and are being perpetrated on populations cohabiting intimately enmeshed with the master race –the Zionists in occupied Palestine have prepared the terrain admirably by geographic segregation and the implantation of akrites, i.e. soldier-colonists.

        So your statement:

        There is no way Israel can kill millions of Palestinians or drive them out, that is the point, without such horror that the world would have to act.

        sounds to me as wishful magical thinking.

        We have to do something as soon as possible, and it won’t be peaceful or gentle. We’ll have to first fight friends –for such of as who are connected to the tribe, we’ll have to fight family. We can’t afford to be relaxed and over-optimistic about it.

      • echinococcus
        November 15, 2016, 6:14 pm

        PS

        But it is not already being done or millions of Palestinians would be on the march. They are not.

        They are not, because:
        a) nobody wants them,
        b) most have decided to stay and push roots and resist, imitating their olive trees.
        These babies are the toughest you can imagine. They know they are not only occupied but also marked for annihilation –even many of those who could get out remain and resist.

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