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Nusseibeh: After 40 years of meaningless 2-state talk, Israelis remain colonial ‘outsiders’

Israel/Palestine
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Sari Nusseibeh, the president of Al-Quds University and longtime two-state pusher, in Le Figaro interview:

In 1967, one of the first advocates of the two-state solution was Uri Avnery. He had no support at that time. Four decades later, his ideas have been immensely successful, as they are shared today by the entire world, even Bush. But in the meantime, the possibility of creating two states has faded away. Even if I do not rule out the possibility of a miracle, I do not personally believe anymore that the prospect is achievable.

Is that because of the Israeli policy of settlement?

The Israelis have applied the same policy to the West Bank as to Jerusalem.  This extraordinary colonial ingenuity was carried out at the expense of the people. The Zionists have succeeded in terms of concrete and tarmac; in this respect, they exist. But in terms of flesh and blood, they remain outsiders. The more they succeed in laying concrete, the less they manage to create a real democracy and have it take root in the region.

What will happen to the Palestinians without a state?

 

We are still there, and that’s the paradox: in 1948, the Israelis wanted to create a state without Palestinians, and they almost succeeded in driving them out.  In 1967, their victory reunited the refugees with those who had remained in Israel. We were scattered, they brought us back together. The Israelis are sowing their own failure by their success. The colonization of Jerusalem and the West Bank, which makes impossible a two-state solution, will force Israel to live with a sizeable Arab population and to reconsider its democratic system.
Today, the Israeli dynamic goes against any concession. They no longer see the need for a compromise. The Israelis think more than ever in a Machiavellian way, believing that force is the only thing that matters, that it is the only guarantee of survival. Why would they be interested in negotiations?…
 
My next proposal will be to ask Israel to annex us, accepting us as third class citizens. The Palestinians would enjoy basic rights, movement, work, health, education, but would have no political rights. We would not be citizens, only subjects.
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Philip Weiss is Founder and Co-Editor of Mondoweiss.net.

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