‘We cannot divide the land’: Israeli academic Yehouda Shenhav on bridging the gap between Israelis and Palestinians through Arabic literature

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Yehouda Shenhav is an Israeli professor of sociology at Tel Aviv University, a theorist of bureaucracy, management, and capitalism, and a writer of the Israel-Palestinian conflict. He has taught in the United States at Stanford University, Princeton University, University of Wisconsin—Madison, and Columbia University. His critical essay, “Beyond the Two State Solution” (2012) argued that the world’s fixation on Israel’s Green Line (the 1949 ceasefire line) and Israeli settlements beyond the Green Line since 1967, is counter-productive and offers no long-term solution.

See reviews of his position by Alex Kane Here and Here.

Gilad Halpern and Dahlia Scheindlin, now co-hosts of the podcast series The Tel Aviv Review, interviewed him on their most recent program.

Yehouda Shenhav. (Photo: Tel Aviv University)

Shenhav has lost faith in the ability of academic scholarship to bridge the gap between Israeli and Palestinian society, and so he is turning to literature. With the support of the Van Leer Jerusalem Institute, he is translating novels written by Palestinians about the Palestinian condition, from Arabic to Hebrew. The first book in the series, Salman Natur’s Walking on the Wind, will be launched at the Van Leer Jerusalem Institute on Wednesday, Feb. 15, 2017.

Translation of literature is needed, said Shenhav, because the number of Jewish-Israelis who speak Arabic, outside of the security services, is approximately “zero.” The translation of Arabic literature, he hopes, will help bridge the gap between these languages and cultures. Literature, he said, can help forge a common language and that might represent a tentative step towards a shared society.

Literature, said Shenhav, can approach topics that our political discourse can not:

“I think that literature is a better battlefield than academia. To be honest, I lost some faith in academia and in research.”

Then, Shenhav used the example of himself and colleagues in the academe in explaining how their different ethnic and religious identities shaped how their academic discourse was received.

“First of all, it has to do with my identity. We were three or four good friends. One of them was Adi Ophir and Hanan Chever who are a very prominent, a philosopher and a literary researcher who say very, very nasty things against the Jewish state, or the Zionist state. Then comes me, who says similar things. Then comes Azmi Bishara [a Palestinian citizen of Israel and public intellectual] who says lenient–more lenient arguments. I mean, he is not as critical.”

Gild Halpern injected in the interview, “Would you say that you are more radical than Azmi Bishara?”

“Not now, in the time when he was here, I could as a Jew say more harsh things[…] he would say hard things, the interpretation of what he says is mediated by his position in a society, and this is my first point to your question Dahlia.  If you are an Ashkenazi Jew, if you are a European, the compartment of what you can say is larger or wider. When you are Mizrahi [a Jew with origins in the Middle East] it narrows down. When you’re an Arab, you know, it can go to hell.”

Shenhav added more:

“I always told him [Azmi Bishara] if I say what you have said, nothing would have happened. And now I go back to your question and I compare myself and to my position as a Mizrahi, who is potentially an Arab Jew, is much more alerting than if my friend, my dear friend Hanan Chever agrees with me. […] So he is the black sheep of the family. I am…, Azmi Bishara is beyond the pale and I am in between. So I think identity mediates very much what you say.  This is A.”

He continued:

“This B is, I don’t think this whole project of the two-state-solution and this idea of dividing [the land is viable]. I think that the left in Israel is not less fascist than the right winger is, and sometimes more.”

“The nakbah, which I call, painfully so, ‘the ethnic cleansing of Palestine,’ was done by the Israeli Left. By the Jewish Left. Hashomer Hatzair, the most radical leftist (a Zionist-socialist movement], swallowed the most of the Palestinian lands and the story as if 48—à la guerre comme à la guerre—This is bullshit because most of the Palestinians were kicked out prior to ’48. I say that painfully. I could have been an ardent Zionist. I was. I was. But I feel as a Jew, an Israeli Jew who grew up here—I’m from the ’73 cohort, that’s when I was in the army—I was betrayed by, I wouldn’t say by this country, but by this [left-Zionist] ideology. And I realized that this is not actually what we were taught all these years. And you know, somebody who feels that he was cheated thinks twice afterward. And where we were cheated, and why we were cheated—we—the Sabra—the Israeli-Jews who were really, really…you know what I wanted to do in 1973, I really wanted to die. I really wanted to die […] for the country. I didn’t have a gram of fear.”

And, Shenhav trailed off into a shared, traumatic, memory; memories best left to literature.

Halpern prodded him: “The whole outlook that you now paint is very bleak. Do you have any hope whatsoever in the future? [..] You said you lost faith in the ability of academia to change [the dialogue] and now you’re engaged in this cultural/literary project.”

And Scheindlein chimed: “I think this is very clear—for everything you have lost faith in, you have something to replace it: you’ve lost faith in academia, but you replaced it with literature; you’ve lost faith in the two-state-solution, and you have replaced it with–?”

Shenhav gives it a try: we cannot divide the land!

“I would say without dividing the land. There is no way we can divide the land because the Palestinians and the Jews are like Siamese twins. You cannot, you cannot separate them.  You know how they [try to] separate them here: they call them Palestinians in the West Bank, and Israeli-Arabs here. But this is bullshit–you know, we all know this is bullshit. This is like in South Africa, they had 14 definitions of blacks just to divide them and rule.”

Jews and Muslims cannot be separated from their close embrace in the small land that is Israel-Palestine, which is not much larger than Los Angeles. We may as well learn each other’s language, read each other’s literature, suggested Shenhav.

“I remember, Dahlia, that we met, we bumped into each other in New York once, and I was after the debate with […] Peter Beinart […] We were all going out to this Korean restaurant […] Peter Beinart, if you, you know, put a gun to his head and ask him, ‘so at the end, at the end, what do you want?’  [Beinart answered] ‘A Jewish state.’

There is not enough Arab literature in that, suggested Shenhav. It will never work.

In the 1990s, with Yitzhak Rabin and the peace process, Shenhav believed in the two-state solution. He protested against the settlements, “all these kind of things,” he said. But today his views have changed.

“I believe today that you should not kick out people, expel people from their homes, even if, even if—it’s a bad practice, it’s a bad practice. And I think we should be very careful with those kinds of practices.”

What Shenhav was referencing, was in 2005 Israel withdrew its troops from inside of Gaza, while it continued to control passage in and out of Gaza for both goods and people. The disengagement was a mistake, contended Shenhav:

“Had it been today, I would protest against the government with the settlers. However, however, I also believe in the [Palestinian refugees’] right of return. I think it’s possible. I think it is desirable, and I think that to some extent it will happen,” he said.

“So you’re saying there is going to be a law of return for Jews, for Palestinians and for Jews who want to go back to settlements—is that what you’re saying—in Gaza,” asked Scheindlin. “Why not?” Shenhav said. In other words, giving up Gaza was a mistake, but not for the usual reasons.

“Why not? I don’t have anything against settlements[…]OK, let me end with a non-provocative statement.  There is no single settlement that caused so much trouble to that Palestinians like Natzrat Illit and Karmiel [“two Jewish cities inside Israel,” clarified Scheindlin].  There are 19 years that separate between ’67 and ’48. What is the difference [between] those settlements and those settlements? So we cannot object [to] settlements [as such].  The funny decision that the Green Line has become [a border for what constitutes a “settlement.”]

Non-provocative, perhaps only in literature…

The interview concluded when Dahlia Scheindlin recalled attending a demonstration by Palestinians at Tel Aviv University some years ago…(“I think it was probably Nakba Day,” she said.) There, she observed Baruch Marzel [head of the extremist Kach movement of settlers) wearing a blue T-shirt with the words “Sheikh Muwannis.” That was the name of the old Palestinian village where Tel Aviv University sits today.  Surely he wore the T-shirt sarcastically, Scheindlin suggested.

Members of Harel Brigade, Sheikh Muwannis, 1948. (Photo: Avid Carmon/Palmach archive/Wikipedia Commons)

“No. No,” said Shenhav. “You are going to talk about settlements, they want to speak of the old places as well. They want this idea [that there is no difference between pre-48 and post-67 Israel] to trickle down as well.  And I say the same. So my students went out from class when they saw that, and they protested with him against the Meretz [left wing] voters, who denied [that Tel Aviv was once a Palestinian village].”

“This is the paradox, that the Meretz voters denied that this was an Arab village, and Baruch Marzel acknowledged [it]. So you know that something is crooked here. You know that something is upside down here. You know that something is not right here. So let’s explore, what is this?” Through literature,

Through literature, Shenhav explored.

Listen to the program at TLV1 HERE.

This article was originally published on Roland Nikles’ blog here. 

About Roland Nikles

Roland Nikles is a Bay Area writer and attorney. He blogs here: rolandnikles.blogspot.com. And you can follow him on twitter @RolandNikles

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50 Responses

  1. gamal
    February 14, 2017, 1:32 pm

    Muhammad Izzat Darwarzah “al malak wal simsar” the angel and the broker

    Ishak Musa Husseini ” mudhakirat dadjadjah” hen memoirs

    of course Kanafani “the land of sad oranges”

    halim barakat “return of the flying dutchman to the sea”

    anything by muin basisu and the other original Palestinian one staters.

  2. talknic
    February 14, 2017, 5:42 pm

    Even better. Have Israel adhere to International Law, withdraw from all non-Israeli territory illegally acquired by war since 00:01 May 15th 1948 when Israel’s borders were proclaimed effective and subsequently recognized.

    • Mooser
      February 14, 2017, 7:50 pm

      “. Have Israel adhere to International Law, withdraw from all non-Israeli territory illegally acquired by war since 00:01 May 15th 1948”

      Back to the good ol briar patch. Nobody could touch them there, safe behind their legal lines.
      I wonder why they won’t go?

      • rosross
        February 15, 2017, 10:54 pm

        They won’t go because they want all of Palestine. There is no safe place for colonisers unless they give justice to the indigenous people whose land they have stolen.

        Israel either returns to UN mandated borders and sucks it up, or creates one state shared equally by all.

        If Jewish colonists could not figure out that being outnumbered by the indigenous people of the land they planned to steal might be problematic then they were pretty dumb.

      • Maghlawatan
        February 16, 2017, 6:30 am

        Pretty dumb plus Groupthink in Hebrew plus no historical awareness plus messianism

    • echinococcus
      February 14, 2017, 8:50 pm

      Israel’s borders were proclaimed

      by the invading pirates and murderers themselves. Big, fat, hairy deal.

      So who cares? It’s totally worthless.

      and subsequently recognized

      by states who had signed the US Charter and had no right at all to “recognize” such theft.

      Big deal again. It’s totally worthless.
      We know you personally “recognize” it, too. Looks like some of Palestine is yours, too, to give away to pirates.

      • echinococcus
        February 15, 2017, 2:27 am

        edit: the UN Charter, not US Charter

      • Maghlawatan
        February 15, 2017, 4:29 am

        Israel’s borders were defined by force and will be amended by force. Israel is trauma and trauma is irrational. It will all end in a big mess.

    • Talkback
      February 15, 2017, 8:50 am

      Talknic: “Have Israel adhere to International Law, withdraw from all non-Israeli territory illegally acquired by war since 00:01 May 15th 1948 when Israel’s borders were proclaimed effective and subsequently recognized.”

      What territory was legally acquired (besides 3% private property and another 3% by the JNF)??? And according to what international law/principle? The Zionist Terror Agency had allready occupied most of the 78% before 15th May.

      • talknic
        February 15, 2017, 10:41 am

        @ Talkback

        “What territory was legally acquired”

        The territory declared and recognized as Israeli in accordance with the Montevideo Convention on the Rights and Duties of States 1932, which by 1948 had been codified in the UN Charter

        ” (besides 3% private property and another 3% by the JNF)??? “

        In both instances, you’re talking about the ownership of real estate. The ownership of real estate by people, organizations or foreign Governments does not give them rights to territories. The territory of states is owned by all its legitimate inhabitants, whether they own/rent/lease real estate or are homeless living under a bridge. JNF is not a citizen BTW

        ” And according to what international law/principle?”

        Montevideo Convention on the Rights and Duties of States 1932

        “The Zionist Terror Agency had allready occupied most of the 78% before 15th May”

        Indeed. However, prior to 00:01 May 15th 1948 it was a civil war. On declaring its borders effective, the civil war became a war by the State of Israel on what remained of Palestine

        The Israeli Government didn’t proclaim all of the territories it occupied as Israeli, which gave the other Regional Powers the right to attempt to expel Israeli/Jewish forces from the non-Israeli territories.

        If you’re going to talk about Israel, it is a state. States have defined territories. The Israeli Government proclaimed Israel’s territories, the majority of the International Comity of Nations recognized Israel within those borders. Only one state, Palestine, has recognized any further territories as Israeli. However, Israel has not agreed to that recognition, so its borders remain those of 00:01 May 15th 1948

        ———————————

        @ echinococcus February 14, 2017, 8:50 pm

        Israel, the state exists whether we agree with its existence, how or why it came about.

        ————
        Maghlawatan February 15, 2017, 4:29 am

        “Israel’s borders were defined by force and will be amended by force. “

        Israel’s borders were defined by proclamation. Borders are amended by agreement. Israel might eventually be forced to agree

      • MHughes976
        February 15, 2017, 10:58 am

        I would be pleased and relieved to see Israel make way for a sovereign Palestine in WB/Gaza – in that event things would get better and there would be much less oppression. Perhaps it would be maximum compliance with international law, though it would still be screamingly unfair considered as a parcelling-out of traditional Palestine. However, this is rather like the pleasure of finding a gold hoard in my garden – it’s not going to happen, at least not soon. That is because Plalestine, once given the strength that would come from sovereignty, would be able to, and would, undermine the screamingly unfair settlement here a little, there a little, precept upon precept, line upon line. Even more important, it is of the essence of Zionism to claim, as of absolute moral validity, special rights for people who are Jewish in the entirety, not just in part, of Palestine. People don’t compromise on sacred things until they really have to, and that hour has not come.

      • echinococcus
        February 15, 2017, 11:56 am

        Talknic

        Israel, the state exists whether we agree with its existence, how or why it came about.

        So what? Empty words. The same can be said of a rattlesnake. Has to made unexist by those who agree to that –once they gather force past a critical mass.

      • echinococcus
        February 15, 2017, 3:42 pm

        Hughes,

        Even more important, it is of the essence of Zionism to claim, as of absolute moral validity, special rights for people who are Jewish in the entirety, not just in part, of Palestine. People don’t compromise on sacred things until they really have to, and that hour has not come.

        I would edit that for my profane self as: brainless indoctrinated people don’t give up their pet absurdity, period –even to save their lives. The hour may come in the form of US impotence and the consequent rise of Palestinian resistance and its possible allies but I would be extremely surprised if the Zionist sicarii didn’t reenact Massada v2, ad majorem Dei gloriam.

      • Talkback
        February 15, 2017, 4:50 pm

        Talknic: “The territory declared and recognized as Israeli in accordance with the Montevideo Convention on the Rights and Duties of States 1932, …”

        The Montevideo Concention is not a law/principle to aquire territory.

        “… which by 1948 had been codified in the UN Charter.”

        Nope. It hasn’t been “codified in the UN Charter”. It has become customary law to recognize states according to the criterias for statehood which are mentioned in this convention.

        “In both instances, you’re talking about the ownership of real estate.”

        I’m talking about examples of legal acquisition.

      • talknic
        February 15, 2017, 5:04 pm

        @ echinococcus February 15, 2017, 11:56 am

        // Israel, the state exists whether we agree with its existence, how or why it came about. //

        “So what? “

        So that’s the entity with whom we must now deal. The State of Israel, the Occupying Power over non-Israeli territories acquired by war, led by war criminals since its establishment, currently a rogue, pariah state, in breach of its legal obligations

        “Empty words.”

        So who is your argument with? Rid the world of Zionism and Israel will still exist unless removed by other means, willing or not.

        “The same can be said of a rattlesnake. Has to made unexist by those who agree to that –once they gather force past a critical mass.”

        Until someone gets bitten by one, then where’s your theory?

      • talknic
        February 16, 2017, 2:37 am

        @ Talkback February 15, 2017, 4:50 pm

        “The Montevideo Concention is not a law/principle to aquire territory.”

        Correct. It is the normal method by which states come into existence. Article 11 tells us it is illegal for states to recognize territory acquired by war

        ” It hasn’t been “codified in the UN Charter”. “

        The inadmissibility of acquiring territory by war/force, is codification of Article 11 of the Montevideo Convention

        “It has become customary law to recognize states according to the criterias for statehood which are mentioned in this convention”

        Indeed, and all UN Member states are obliged to adhere to Customary International Law

        //“In both instances, you’re talking about the ownership of real estate.”//

        “I’m talking about examples of legal acquisition”

        The examples you gave are about the acquisition of real estate. Not the same as the legal acquisition of territory by secession, partition or thru legal annexation by agreement.

        Israel seceded from Palestine which was a State with provisional recognition in 1922 and a Nation State as of the adoption of Palestine Nationality Law in 1925 per the LON Mandate Article 7

      • echinococcus
        February 16, 2017, 3:03 am

        Talknic,

        Rid the world of Zionism and Israel will still exist unless removed by other means, willing or not.

        The other means don’t include asserting the legitimacy of the Zionist partition. Logic says they start with rejecting it and working to destroy, not enforce it.

  3. echinococcus
    February 14, 2017, 8:43 pm

    We cannot divide the land

    No need to divide: get the hell out, back to wherever you came from. No need for any literature or even talks to do that. Occasional Zionists without a second passport have been guaranteed US residency.

    No need to invoke any bullshit about partition, 48 borders or anything you got from colonials, who don’t have any right to give away any part of Palestine.

    • Sibiriak
      February 15, 2017, 12:59 am

      echinococcus: …get the hell out, back to wherever you came from.
      —————

      Exhortation. Not backed by any feasible strategy/ power to carry it out. Not good for much. Except virtue signaling, perhaps.

      • echinococcus
        February 15, 2017, 9:29 am

        The Reich said the same thing in the 40s. The main thing is to keep trying and avoid listening to vicious, defeatist nonsense like yours. It’s essential to remind all of the necessary goals, even at the start.

        How else do you think resistance is organized? By thanking your murderer as benefactor and pulling down your pants?

        Next time don’t get out of the house if you don’t have it all guaranteed.

    • Talkback
      February 15, 2017, 8:52 am

      echinococcus: “get the hell out, back to wherever you came from.”

      I consider this to be as inhumane as not allowing Palestinian refugees to return.

      • echinococcus
        February 15, 2017, 9:26 am

        Inhumane? Come on, make me cry.

        They are totally illegally there. They have two three citizenships each, or the right thereto. The rare ones who don’t (wonder if any) have automatically guaranteed acceptance to the US. They are rich, or they have guaranteed US and Jewish subsidies. They are genocidal for up to 90% or so.

        Also, if they agree to let the Palestinians (not the Zionist puppets) decide in a real plebiscite, those could well decide to give citizenship to some of the ex-Meistervolk; you never know.

        Compare to the owners of the country.

      • talknic
        February 15, 2017, 10:50 am

        @ Talkback February 15, 2017, 8:52 am

        // echinococcus: “get the hell out, back to wherever you came from.” //

        “I consider this to be as inhumane as not allowing Palestinian refugees to return”

        Uh? Jewish folk and their lineal descendants even have RoR to Germany regardless of whether they have citizenship in Israel or elsewhere. If they have citizenship elsewhere other than Israel, US, UK, Australia, Japan, Canada, China, Germany, Russia etc they can return to the country where they hold citizenship.

      • Mooser
        February 15, 2017, 1:04 pm

        “I consider this to be as inhumane as not allowing Palestinian refugees to return.”

        And unnecessary.
        Even a hint of an accounting, investigation and criminal charges and reparations will send the Zionists fleeing in their thousands (ROTFLMSJAO). That will re-adjust things without any inhumanity.

        Or were you thinking of offering the Zionists an amnesty, and saying ‘please, go on as you have been, and intend to continue’?

        “Talknic” do you really think there is any real association between today’s Jewish people and Palestine which would compel them to live there under any circumstances except complete immunity and impunity?

      • Talkback
        February 15, 2017, 4:56 pm

        Welcome to reality.

      • talknic
        February 16, 2017, 2:57 am

        @ Mooser February 15, 2017, 1:04 pm

        ““Talknic” do you really think there is any real association between today’s Jewish people and Palestine which would compel them to live there under any circumstances except complete immunity and impunity?”

        Sure. There are Jewish families who have lived there all along.

    • DaBakr
      February 15, 2017, 9:20 pm

      So compelling is the simplicity of US senator Cotton

      “Go back to”:

      Japan where Japanese came from

      China, where Chinese came from

      Iran were Iranians came from

      Judea, where Jews came from

      • DaBakr
        February 15, 2017, 11:17 pm

        Uh-oh. must have taken a super dose of Zio-meth to come up with such a simple concept so easily ridiculed on these here in-tel-ek-chew-al Israel/zionist hating sites. I’ll bet in response to the 4 word sentence of where Jews come from could illicit over 2billion pages of argument from some of the funnier people here.
        .
        There is no more ‘get out’ for either Jews or Palestinians in Israel or Judea and Samaria. We are here. They are here. The 5billion hereditary Palestine refugees are not coming back. Some will return but most will either except compensation and be given citizenship in the yellow Arab nation’s where they have lived for generations. Or, if they refuse, then ??.
        . When they get over their falsely inspired dream of eventually gaining sovereignty from’river to sea’ and start negotiating with Israel rather then continue to try to win back 48 through asst means of international sympathy, lawfare, incitement, terror they can begin to put together a realistic concept of their own sovereign land.

        . And as Netanyahu stated clearly today there is no way in the world-unless It’s an all out Armageddon killing Israeli Jew and Palestinian, Arabs and Persians alike- that Israel would cede any security control west of Jordan and the reasons are too obvious to explain. That could change in coming decades, maybe, but first things first. Believing that some type of decree by an already diminished’world court’ would force our hand is as foolish as the idea that Israel can keep Iran from building a bomb eventually. Wether the mullahs would ever use one depends on how much of the tyrants are really “rational” actors. Now Iran had killed more Arabs and fellow Muslims in Syria and Iraq then Israel has ever killed I its entire existence. So much for the Iranian apologists crying about Iran never attacking anybody in many years or decades. Right.

      • talknic
        February 15, 2017, 11:49 pm

        DaBakr shows us how stupid is done and how to talk nonsense

        @ February 15, 2017, 9:20 pm

        “So compelling is the simplicity of US senator Cotton

        “Go back to”:

        Japan where Japanese came from”

        Does that include Japanese Jewish converts who look nothing like M Eastern Jews?

        “China, where Chinese came from”

        Same

        “Iran were Iranians came from”

        Iran’s remaining Jews recently refused to go to Israel.

        “Judea, where Jews came from”

        So the Jewish scriptures are wrong. Our Jewish forefathers didn’t invade or conquer anyone. Glad we got that sorted.

        BTW Judea no longer exists except in the diseased minds of really stupid war mongering Zionist land thieves. Judea and Samaria were officially renamed the West Bank when it was officially under Jordanian Sovereignty, which is why the UN now considers it to be occupied. It was part of Jordan in 1967, a UN Member state and High Contracting Party

        Try absorbing something other than Ziopoop

      • Talkback
        February 16, 2017, 8:03 am

        According to DaBakr Zio-psychosis, Jews who came from Judea still live after two thousand of years and are returning to Judea.

      • talknic
        February 16, 2017, 12:20 pm

        @ DaBakr February 15, 2017, 11:17 pm

        “When they get over their falsely inspired dream of eventually gaining sovereignty from’river to sea’ and start negotiating with Israel rather then continue to try to win back 48 through asst means of international sympathy, lawfare, incitement, terror they can begin to put together a realistic concept of their own sovereign land.”

        Oh FFS catch up instead of regurgitating inane ZioDrivel.
        The Palestinians have voiced to the world that they’re willing to cede 78% of their territory for peace with Israel. http://pages.citebite.com/e9p5s8u2yhcd
        In 1988 they recognized Israel in far more territory than Israel proclaimed or recognized as Israeli.
        The Arab Peace Initiative has been on the table for over a decade.

        Israel has done absolutely NO THING towards peace. NOTHING!

        ” And as Netanyahu stated clearly today there is no way in the world-unless It’s an all out Armageddon killing Israeli Jew and Palestinian, Arabs and Persians alike- that Israel would cede any security control west of Jordan and the reasons are too obvious to explain”

        Netanyahu is a warmongering liar. A) No state has more right to security than its neighbors especially by illegally acquiring, illegally settling or illegally occupying their neighbors territory. B) Israel has never been invaded. No Israeli territories have ever been taken. Israel’s proclaimed borders have been secure from day one

        ” Now Iran had killed more Arabs and fellow Muslims in Syria and Iraq then Israel has ever killed I its entire existence.”

        Less murder is OK ? You really are quite insane

      • Mooser
        February 16, 2017, 4:45 pm

        So, let’s get down to cases, “dabakr”. You still won’t say how many Jews you can guarantee will follow Zionism over the cliff, and how many fewer you expect to have over the coming years.

        You can round it off to the nearest billion.

        You keep on telling us there are lots of Muslims. That’s very true.

      • Mooser
        February 16, 2017, 5:37 pm

        “dabakr”, may I give you a friendly reminder? Strictly between us Lantzmanns , of course.
        “dabakr” you are doing it again; installing yourself in a corner of the room, looking daggers at each person, while your hand is furiously working in your pocket, and muttering, muttering, muttering,

  4. echinococcus
    February 15, 2017, 2:54 am

    This is the paradox, that the Meretz voters denied that this was an Arab village, and Baruch Marzel acknowledged [it]. So you know that something is crooked here. You know that something is upside down here. You know that something is not right here.

    All right, to say it yet another way again, you know that Meretz voters aka liberal Zios are a little more genocidal than you guys are. They want to have their genocide complete: destroy any trace of the owners of the country. And keep talking all the while about talks on the subject of talks.

    Proud murderers of the Genghis Khan school are too stupid to care about public opinion, while the Meretzes and Beinarts want to appear like normal humans and keep their ovens smokeless. They are concerned with the loss of traction of your daddy, American imperialism.

  5. echinococcus
    February 15, 2017, 3:05 am

    Translation of literature is needed, said Shenhav, because the number of Jewish-Israelis who speak Arabic, outside of the security services, is approximately “zero.”

    If this is true, it looks like even in nationalism we in the US are more moderate than the naZionists. We have occasional speakers of tortured Spanish, beside the torturers of course.

    But it’s not entirely true, of course. With a sizable proportion of their population being Jewish Arabs, the Zionists are bound to understand and speak Arabic at a much higher level.

  6. diasp0ra
    February 15, 2017, 6:05 am

    ” [Beinart answered] ‘A Jewish state.’”

    Beinart is the very best liberal Zionism has to offer. And he still thinks of states based on ethnic lines and outmoded ideas of ethnic nationalism that has caused immense damage all over the world. Not even beginning to mention Israel’s colonial genesis.

    I understand Shehnav’s position, Academia is not some neutral science produced in a vacuum, it’s shaped and affected by a person’s ideology, context and goals. We see this through Israeli professors who scream about freedom of academia when it comes to BDS but are completely silent as Palestinian universities are bombed or closed down by the occupation.

    I liked that he brought attention to the “holy” status the green line has assumed, as if everything built behind it isn’t colonial and is completely legal, even though a large part of it was acquired in a war and ethnic cleansing.

    I believe he is leaning towards the idea of one state for all, with the return of refugees. If this is the case then I have no problem with settlements staying where they are, if they become demilitarized and are open for anyone to live in them. They would become just other villages. With the white house dropping the two state solution officially, I honestly don’t see what other solution we have left to pursue. The battle for equal rights will be unwinnable for Israel.

    • DaBakr
      February 15, 2017, 9:32 pm

      If Jews came from Judea, even after being banished by titus and chased across Africa through Spain and up and into eastern Europe they still come from Judea which must absolutely cause caustic ulcers among the anti-zionist/israel crowds so intent on proving Jews from eastern Europe are not from Judea and are really from someplace else. Of course this theory is not only recent and totally bogus but pathetic in its denial of what is so obvious only the most mediocre minded true believers would even entertain the idea in the first place.

      It would be as absurd and bigoted as claiming a totally assimilated first nations souix who works in a high rise in NYC, dresses like every other million dollar banker and lives on long island in a mansion is not really a Souix or first nation person. And now I can just imagine all the cries of ‘hasbara , stupid meaningless term, whataboutism and how anything preWW2 is irrelevant.

      Sure it is. So by that logic, Balfour is far too old to even reconsider at all. Lol

      • Mooser
        February 15, 2017, 10:30 pm

        Who cares where our legends say Jews come from? That cuts no ice with anybody. Where do we register our claim?

        Unless, of course, you have enough Jews to make it stick. I think 180 million Jews can do it, and there’s not much the world could say about it.

        So, how many you got, “dabakr”? Enough to fill one fair-sized city, and mostly aging?
        Got any way to compel the next generation to commit suicide with you? Tell me about it.

      • talknic
        February 16, 2017, 12:04 am

        @ DaBakr February 15, 2017, 9:32 pm

        “If Jews came from Judea, “

        Not according to Jewish scripture. Our Jewish forefathers invaded and conquered those who were there before them

        “even after being banished by titus and chased across Africa through Spain and up and into eastern Europe they still come from Judea”

        Not according to the scriptures. Our Jewish forefathers invaded and conquered those who were there before them

        ” which must absolutely cause caustic ulcers among the anti-zionist/israel crowds so intent on proving Jews from eastern Europe are not from Judea and are really from someplace else”

        Laughter isn’t a cause of ulcers AFAIK

        “It would be as absurd and bigoted as claiming a totally assimilated first nations souix who works in a high rise in NYC, dresses like every other million dollar banker and lives on long island in a mansion is not really a Souix or first nation person.”

        Indeed it would. However, no one but you has suggested it. BTW they were invaded and colonized. The analogy is fitting for the Palestinians you stupid stupid person

        ” And now I can just imagine all the cries of ‘hasbara , stupid meaningless term, whataboutism”

        No need to imagine, your illogical drivel deserves fitting epithets

        ” and how anything preWW2 is irrelevant”

        No. What ever occurred before Israel proclaimed it’s borders effective at 00:01 May 15th 1948 is irrelevant to the current status of Israel’s actual borders and Israel’s illegal activities outside of its borders since and even as they were being proclaimed and recognized

      • diasp0ra
        February 16, 2017, 6:27 am

        @DaBakr

        I’m not sure how your comment is relevant to what I wrote?

        Never did I say the Jewish people don’t belong in Palestine or don’t have history in Palestine. The point is nothing justifies ethnic cleansing and colonialism. Judaism and Zionism are not interchangeable, and Palestinian and Jewish are not mutually exclusive.

        As far as I’m concerned, the Zionists can be from Mars. If we all live in a secular egalitarian one state I will embrace them as co-citizens. The issue isn’t with where a group comes from, it’s the practices that they took to marginalize me and dispossess me. There is no doubt about Zionism’s colonial beginnings, just read Herzl or Nordau and you will see how much it was influenced by it.

        Again, I’m not sure what this has to do with my comment. Ethnic nationalism needs to go the way of the dodo.

      • eljay
        February 16, 2017, 7:25 am

        || @Br: If Jews came from Judea, even after being banished by titus and chased across Africa through Spain and up and into eastern Europe they still come from Judea which must absolutely cause caustic ulcers among the anti-zionist/israel crowds so intent on proving Jews from eastern Europe are not from Judea and are really from someplace else. … ||

        Some people who were Jewish came from geographic Palestine. (And many more people who were not Jewish also came from geographic Palestine.) The Jewish people of Easter Europe came from Eastern Europe.

        This must absolutely cause caustic ulcers among the Zionist / pro-Jewish-supremacism crowd so intent on proving that the religion-based identity of “Jewish” comprises a right to a religion-supremacist “Jewish State” in geographic Palestine.

        || … Of course this theory is not only recent and totally bogus but pathetic in its denial of what is so obvious only the most mediocre minded true believers would even entertain the idea in the first place. ||

        Only the most mediocre minded true believers would argue that every person who…
        – undergoes a religious conversion to Judaism; or
        – is descended from someone who underwent a religious conversion to Judaism,
        …comes from geographic Palestine.

      • RoHa
        February 16, 2017, 7:53 am

        Catch up. The scientific consensus used to be that stress causes ulcers.

        Warren and Marshall proved the consensus wrong.

        http://www.nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/medicine/laureates/2005/press.html

        http://www.cdd.com.au/pages/disease_info/heliobacter_pylori.html

      • Mooser
        February 16, 2017, 5:39 pm

        “As far as I’m concerned, the Zionists can be from Mars. If we all live in a secular egalitarian one state I will embrace them as co-citizens.”

        That is a generous, loving and beautiful offer.

  7. Sibiriak
    February 15, 2017, 9:04 am

    There is no way we can divide the land because the Palestinians and the Jews are like Siamese twins.
    ———–

    Siamese twins?

  8. Sibiriak
    February 15, 2017, 9:09 am

    bridging the gap between Israelis and Palestinians through Arabic literature
    ———————–

    Literature can bridge the gap in rights, freedom, power, wealth, life-opportunities?

  9. talknic
    February 16, 2017, 3:04 am

    To the article.

    Should peace break out from under the vile corrosive muck of Zionism, I see a place for dialogue in literature as suggested as part of the healing process. I’d also see a role for sport, cuisine, theatre, comedy etc

    However there’s not much hope for peace while the US maintains the veto vote on behalf of the Zionist state

  10. Jane Porter
    February 16, 2017, 8:34 am

    To DAbakr. “Of course this theory is not only recent and totally bogus but pathetic in its denial of what is so obvious only the most mediocre minded true believers would even entertain the idea in the first place.”
    No this theory is not recent. In the time of the Dreyfus affair,at the very beginning of the 20th century, Anatole France, mentioned the Askenazi came from a country near the Caspian sea.He was very involved as a Dreyfusard, and got physically attacked by the anti-Deyfusards. His publisher, Calmann-Levy and Mrs de Caillavet, the woman he shared most of his life with, were Jewish.He was thus a real ‘phylo semite’ Some of my jewish friends informed me about this theory and rejoiced it, as they had traveled to Iran and Afghanistan, discovered that most of them resembled a lot the people of these countries and were proud of that. Maybe the sephardic Jews who came to Spain with the Arabs could maybe claim to be from Judea, but not really as they lived in the whole Near-East from Baghdad and Damascus And further some Tunisian jews claim to be Judaised Berbers. They recognized as real jews from Judea, the small jewish community of the Island of Djerba. So the claim of the first not-religious socialists Zionists that God promised them the land is very dubious. Uri Avnery wrote once that Hertzel would have preferred to get some land for the Jews in Argentina, as he couldn’t stand the climate in Palestine’.

    • MHughes976
      February 16, 2017, 11:42 am

      Most people have quite mixed ancestry. I’m sure that most people who now call themselves Jewish had at least some ancestors who lived in Judaea two thousand years ago, but of very few can it be true that all their ancestors alive 2,000 years ago were living in Judaea at that time. Of not many can it be true that most of their ancestors then alive were living there. Conversely, I’d be very surprised if none of the quite large set of my ancestors then alive were Judaeans. I like to think that they became Christians and emigrated to Britain with Joseph of Arimathaea, had prophetic powers and foresaw the glories of the Church of England. In any event, I can’t see what difference all those things make to anyone’s rights.
      As to being indigenous: in an obvious and important sense a family of Uzbeks all born in London are a group indigenous to Britain and have political rights here equivalent to mine even if they sing Uzbek songs every Friday night. Their melodious voices and deeply felt words might be very beautiful but would not be enough to give them rights in Uzbekistan.
      We have been sometimes offered the idea that ‘indigenous’ means ‘belonging to a place where at least one important subset of one’s ancestors first recognised themselves as a political unit’. It should be noted that several groups could be indigenous to the same place, both because different groups may have formed that idea at different times in the same place and also because the relevant places may overlap. One Group could be indigenous to many places through different sets of ancestors. It’s not an easy basis for assigning political rights.

      • Mooser
        February 16, 2017, 6:17 pm

        “Most people have quite mixed ancestry. I’m sure that…rights”

        “MHughes976”, you are begging for the question: “What is grey, and always carries a trunk?”

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