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What comes next: The future bends toward equal rights

Israel/Palestine
on 35 Comments

whatcomesnexthorizontalThis post is part of “What Comes Next?: A forum on the end of the two-state paradigm.” This series was initiated by Jewish Voice for Peace as an investigation into the current state of thinking about one state and two state solutions, and the collection has been further expanded by Mondoweiss to mark 20 years since the Oslo process. The entire series can be found here.

What comes next?

It’s a big question and one that I haven’t got the answer to. Other writers in the series have done an effective job of highlighting why equal rights is justice and why anything else contributes to the certainty of conflict in Palestine.

Perhaps it’s useful to consider a different question: What can possibly happen next? What are the constraints – structural, moral and material – that bound the political space of Palestine/Israel? In other words, what are the durable trends that steadily bend the future to one path or another?

First, ethnic cleansing. One must acknowledge the searing fact that the Jewish Israelis will successfully ethnically cleanse Area C and East Jerusalem. They will continue to settle North American members of their ethnic group on the surface of the damaged landscape. Foreign diplomats are powerless to stop the program – and the pogroms. And while the Palestinian-led BDS movement will continue to develop, it will continue to do so less quickly than Zionists can raze and demolish. That means that the Palestinians who continue to inhabit the West Bank will live mainly in Area A, and they will rely on the largesse of international donors for their economic livelihoods.

The next trend is related to the first. As Zionist Israelis grow more brazen in their pursuit of total Jewish dominance in Palestine/Israel the BDS movement will grow in force and effectiveness. The cowardice of American political elites notwithstanding the upward momentum of the grassroots will right the keeling institutions trapped by an old allegiance to Zionism (the NYT for instance). But as Obama was so fond of saying in his first term, the ship of state will take longer to move.

BDS or no, the Jewish-privilege state will only grow more isolated with time; normal people in normal countries don’t like apartheid. It’s a trajectory that is being felt to a greater or lesser degree by Jews in Israel. Consequently, the most talented among them are leaving the country – who wants to practice apartheid anyway? – for America, Britain and Germany. Yossi Klein Halevi may find it harder to leave New York; Bernard Avishai may exercise his right of return to Montreal. The Zionists who remain will be those who believe most ardently in Jewish supremacy.

At the same time, the number of Palestinian-Israelis will continue to increase in both absolute and relative terms. The best opportunity that the Jewish-Zionists in the country had for more ethnic cleansing – a catastrophic regional war with Iran – appears to have passed.

The equal rights movement – or the one-state movement – will continue to grow. The recognition of the illegitimacy of Zionism will flourish with it. Or, the legitimacy of Pat Boone’s claim to Palestine/Israel will be recognized by the United Nations. The first proposition is likelier; no one will claim that 3 billion Christians have a right to settle in Palestine.

Young American Jews are increasingly unwilling to publicly identify with Jewish privilege and nonsense claims of “birthright.” Rather, the human rights many of them are actively willing to claim relate to universal healthcare or universal suffrage – both of which are anathema to Zionism. Relatedly, the intellectual resources of the Zionist movement will continue to atrophy and degenerate.

The final, most encouraging and meaningful trend goes to the redemocratization of the authorship of the Palestinian experience. The division between Hamas and Fatah is now a well-established artifact of the Oslo phase of the occupation. But it would be wrong to interpret its power to shape the future as complete or determinative. Instead, the Palestinians – in Palestine and in the Diaspora – are interacting and forging ahead independently of established political parties. They are working to craft and strengthen new institutions and movements despite their geographical isolation from one another.

So in the final analysis the question posed at the top of this post becomes: What can come next in an environment characterized by a growing Palestinian equal rights movement and an increasingly Zionist and isolated Israel?

Ahmed Moor
About Ahmed Moor

Ahmed Moor is a Palestinian-American who was born in the Gaza Strip. He is a PD Soros Fellow, co-editor of After Zionism and co-founder and CEO of liwwa.com. Twitter: @ahmedmoor

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35 Responses

  1. Blaine Coleman
    Blaine Coleman
    November 4, 2013, 11:17 am

    Thank you, Ahmed. I also like to believe that “the BDS movement will grow in force and effectiveness.”

    But here at the University of Michigan campus in Ann Arbor, there is not the slightest demand for boycott against Israel. Or divestment. Or sanctions. Nothing.

    The internet is forever, and out of 40,000 University of Michigan students, not even one is willing to risk their name ever appearing next to even the most symbolic action against Israel. Ever.

    Many of those students just finished attending a lovely BDS conference at Stanford — and they are publicly silent about BDS.

    Last year, those students hosted a lovely BDS conference at Michigan — and they were publicly silent about BDS last year too.

    Remember, those students are acutely aware of Israel’s savage racism. They sincerely hate that racism. They wish somebody would demand boycott against Israel — but not themselves. And this is Michigan, the best-placed campus to make a public plea for a total boycott against Israel.

    The situation is duplicated at thousands of campuses nationwide. No one will make the slightest demand for boycott or even divestment against Israel. Not even one student in the entire nation. And it’s already November. Soon it will be Christmas break.

    Then comes the 2014 BDS conference — and you can bet there will still be no visible BDS movement on any campus.

    Pitiful.

  2. pabelmont
    pabelmont
    November 4, 2013, 11:19 am

    The longest-lasting circumstance which militates against justice is the unwillingness of the international community of nations to act or even to speak (other than ineffectively via UNGA and occasionally via UNSC) for Palestinian rights.

    My own conclusion — and I know no more than anyone else — is that nations decline to act (or speak) because [1] the USA puts general pressure on the nations — look at the silence after issuance of the ICJ July 2004 advisory opinion on Israel’s wall, [2] human rights for (distant) others are not in any nation’s interest enough to repay costly action, [3] most nations have human rights “skeletons” in their own closets, [4] the power of international capital (bribing and thereafter, in effect, “owning” legislators and administrators) is the new international “order” and the Establishment(s) of the world do not prize human rights anywhere, quite the reverse in the case of mineral extraction enterprises.

    So, yes, BDS must continue if only to soothe the consciences of the people who “witness”. And it may bear some fruit of the “S” variety (sanctions by nation-states).

    Onwards soldiers of conscience.

    • mondonut
      mondonut
      November 4, 2013, 1:58 pm

      pabelmont says: My own conclusion…
      ================================
      [5] The International powers do not agree with the Palestinian assessment of “justice”, they have no interest in weakening Israel, and despite their diplomatic doublespeak they do not agree with the Palestinian position regarding refugees and they are OK with the Israelis retaining Jerusalem.

      • Talkback
        Talkback
        November 4, 2013, 6:48 pm

        Sure nut, you only forget to explain that the only reason they vote otherwise regarding refugees and Jerusalem is because of a-a-a-antisemitism.

      • mondonut
        mondonut
        November 4, 2013, 11:24 pm

        Talkback says:… is because of a-a-a-antisemitism.
        ——–
        That makes no sense at all. Who are you accusing of anti-semitism?

      • Talkback
        Talkback
        November 5, 2013, 2:12 pm

        mondonut says: “That makes no sense at all. Who are you accusing of anti-semitism?”

        I have learned from Hasbara that everyone who doesn’t support the expulsion and denationalization of Gentiles but supports their return is somehow an antisemite. I didn’t understand this accusation at first, but then concluded that these crimes must be a Jewish thing to do. Otherwise their rejection couldn’t be antisemitic. Am I correct?

      • talknic
        talknic
        November 4, 2013, 8:09 pm

        @ mondonut “[5] The International powers do not agree with the Palestinian assessment of “justice” … they do not agree with the Palestinian position regarding refugees and they are OK with the Israelis retaining Jerusalem”

        Uh huh The MAJORITY of the International Powers adopted these resolutions which tell us you’re spouting Red Heifer sh*t!

        252 (1968) of 21 May 1968, 267 (1969) of 3 July 1969, 271 (1969) of 15 September 1969, 298 (1971) of 25 September 1971, 446 (1979) of 22 March 1979, 452 (1979) 20 July 1979, 465 (1980) of 1 March 1980, 476 June 30 1980 and 478 August 20 1980

      • mondonut
        mondonut
        November 4, 2013, 11:33 pm

        talknic says: Uh huh The MAJORITY of the International Powers …
        ———–
        None of which disputes anything I said. It is in fact the very doublespeak I mentioned. The UN has never assigned Jerusalem to the Palestinians and they could not care less if the Israelis retained it in a settlement.

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        November 5, 2013, 5:05 am

        Wrong again.

        The UN just tecignized Palestine along the 1967 borders.

      • talknic
        talknic
        November 5, 2013, 5:50 am

        @ mondonut “None of which disputes anything I said. “

        Israel’s apologist denial is legendary

        “The UN has never assigned Jerusalem to the Palestinians..”

        Are you insane? Blind? Stupid?

        UNSC res 465 (1980) of 1 March 1980

        Affirming once more that the Fourth Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War of 12 August 1949 is applicable to the Arab territories occupied by Israel since 1967,including Jerusalem

        Deploring the decision of the Government of Israel to officially support Israeli settlement in the Palestinian and other Arab territories occupied since 1967,

        The UN has no need to assign Jerusalem to the Palestinians, it was never separated from what remained of Palestine after Israel was declared. corpus separatum was never instituted and Israel has never legally acquired any territory since being ” proclaimed as an independent republic within frontiers approved by the General Assembly of the United Nations in its Resolution of November 29, 1947″ http://www.trumanlibrary.org/whistlestop/study_collections/israel/large/documents/newPDF/49.pdf

        ” and they could not care less if the Israelis retained it in a settlement”

        There is yet to be a settlement and until there is, it ain’t Israeli.

      • mondonut
        mondonut
        November 5, 2013, 9:17 am

        Shingo says: The UN just tecignized Palestine along the 1967 borders.
        =======================================
        That is ridiculous. Source?

      • mondonut
        mondonut
        November 5, 2013, 9:19 am

        talknic says: There is yet to be a settlement and until there is, it ain’t Israeli.
        ===================================================
        And it sure as hell is not Palestinian.

      • Talkback
        Talkback
        November 5, 2013, 2:02 pm

        Palestine redeclared it statehood in 1988 within 1967 lines. And the UN recognized Palestine’s statehood in 2012. In 1988 the UN had allready affirmed the “need to enable the Palestinian people to exercise their sovereignty over their territory occupied since 1967;”
        http://unispal.un.org/UNISPAL.NSF/0/146E6838D505833F852560D600471E25

      • mondonut
        mondonut
        November 5, 2013, 2:26 pm

        Talkback says: In 1988 the UN had allready affirmed the “need to enable the Palestinian people to exercise their sovereignty over their territory occupied since 1967;
        ==================================
        The UN’s recognition of Palestine did not include an endorsement of their territorial claims. The same goes for the nonsensical GA resolution you linked to. There was no such thing as “their territory” to affirm.

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        November 5, 2013, 4:07 pm

        That is ridiculous. Source?

        Palestine was recognized last year by the UNGA. Talknic has already provided the relevant passages from UNSC 465.

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        November 5, 2013, 4:08 pm

        And it sure as hell is not Palestinian.

        Actually it is, because it is Palestine unless the Palestinians agree to allow Israel to have it.

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        November 5, 2013, 4:40 pm

        The UN’s recognition of Palestine did not include an endorsement of their territorial claims.

        Wrong. The UN did not endorse anyone, they recognized the state of Pakestine, which they can only do with recognized borders.

      • Talkback
        Talkback
        November 6, 2013, 10:08 am

        mondonut says: “The UN’s recognition of Palestine did not include an endorsement of their territorial claims.”

        The UN recognized the State of Palestine which has been declared within 1967 lines. To complicated for you?

        “The same goes for the nonsensical GA resolution you linked to. There was no such thing as “their territory” to affirm.”

        LOL. SEC resolution 476 from 1980:
        “1. Reaffirms the overriding necessity to end the prolonged occupation of Arab territories occupied by Israel since 1967, including Jerusalem; …”
        http://unispal.un.org/UNISPAL.NSF/0/6DE6DA8A650B4C3B852560DF00663826

        I guess for a mondonut this resolution is nonsensical, too, because to him there’s no such thing as a “prolonged occupation of Arab territories occupied by Israel since 1967, including Jerusalem”, right?

      • talknic
        talknic
        November 6, 2013, 10:58 am

        mondonut “The UN’s recognition of Palestine did not include an endorsement of their territorial claims.”

        FAIL. The UN doesn’t recognize states. It admits already recognized states into its institutions. At best the UN “acknowledges the proclamation of the State”

        “The same goes for the nonsensical GA resolution you linked to. There was no such thing as “their territory” to affirm”

        It affirms UNSC resolutions. Try UNSC res 476 (if you dare read UNSC resolutions)

      • talknic
        talknic
        November 6, 2013, 11:03 am

        mondonut “And it sure as hell is not Palestinian”

        Uh huh. UNSC res 476 says you’re spouting Red Heifer sh*te. Arab territories including Jerusalem. The Arabs decided to proclaim a state called Palestine which has been recognized by the majority of the Community of Nations

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        November 6, 2013, 1:14 pm

        Shingo says: The UN just tecignized Palestine along the 1967 borders.
        =======================================
        That is ridiculous. Source?

        1) Several years ago an Emergency Session of the General Assembly convened under the Uniting for Peace resolution demanded that Israel immediately and unconditionally withdraw from the occupied Arab territories and subsequently declared Israel’s continued occupation in violation of UN resolutions an illegal act of aggression in line with its Definition of Aggression (14 December 1974) A/RES/3314 (XXIX). See:
        *General Assembly Resolution ES-9/1 link to un.org
        *General Assembly resolution 39/146 link to un.org

        The Security Council had long-since declared the annexations and settlements flagrant violations of international law.

        2) Pending Palestine’s full membership, the General Assembly Credentials Committee voted to allow representatives of the permanent observer mission of “Palestine” to participate in the business of the UN without presenting credentials from either the “PLO” or “PNA”. The UN reports and resolutions about that also mention “their State, Palestine”. They describe the Palestinian territory occupied by Israel since 1967 as “their territory” and say that “the credentials of the delegation of Israel do not cover that territory”, which has recently been formally admitted to UNESCO as a full member state. See A/58/L.48, 15 December 2003; General Assembly resolution, A/RES/58/292, 17 May 2004 and the discussion of those resolutions on page 192 of John Quigley, “The Statehood of Palestine”. The verbatim record of the General Assembly discussion of the resolution indictes the words “pre-1967 borders” had been chosen deliberately to replace the words “Armistice Line of 1949”. link to un.org and A/RES/67/19 4 December 2012.

        3) After the Oslo Accords expired, the General Assembly adopted a resolution which clarified that the option of a Palestinian state was not subject to any veto or to the peace process negotiations. http://www.un.org/ga/search/view_doc.asp?symbol=A/RES/55/87

        The recent application for membership in the United Nations and the General Assembly resolution on the Status of Palestine in the United Nations were both based upon the 1967 borders:

        Reaffirming also its resolutions 43/176 of 15 December 1988 and 66/17 of 30 November 2011 and all relevant resolutions regarding the Peaceful settlement of the question of Palestine, which, inter alia, stress the need for the withdrawal of Israel from the Palestinian territory occupied since 1967, including East Jerusalem, the realization of the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people, primarily the right to self-determination and the right to their independent State, a just resolution of the problem of the Palestine refugees in conformity with resolution 194 (III) of 11 December 1948 and the complete cessation of all Israeli settlement activities in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem,

        Reaffirming its resolution 58/292 of 6 May 2004, affirming, inter alia, that the status of the Palestinian territory occupied since 1967, including East Jerusalem, remains one of military occupation and that, in accordance with international law and relevant United Nations resolutions, the Palestinian people have the right to self-determination and to sovereignty over their territory,

        Recalling also the Arab Peace Initiative adopted in March 2002 by the Council of the League of Arab States,

        Reaffirming its commitment, in accordance with international law, to the two-State solution of an independent, sovereign, democratic, viable and contiguous State of Palestine living side by side with Israel in peace and security on the basis of the pre-1967 borders,

        1. Reaffirms the right of the Palestinian people to self-determination and to independence in their State of Palestine on the Palestinian territory occupied since 1967;

        2. Decides to accord to Palestine non-member observer State status in the United Nations, without prejudice to the acquired rights, privileges and role of the Palestine Liberation Organization in the United Nations as the representative of the Palestinian people, in accordance with the relevant resolutions and practice;

        4. Affirms its determination to contribute to the achievement of the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people and the attainment of a peaceful settlement in the Middle East that ends the occupation that began in 1967 and fulfils the vision of two States: an independent, sovereign, democratic, contiguous and viable State of Palestine living side by side in peace and security with Israel on the basis of the pre-1967 borders;

        Status of Palestine in the United Nations
        http://www.un.org/ga/search/view_doc.asp?symbol=A/RES/67/19

        If you need any more help in educating yourself on this subject, just ask.

  3. seafoid
    seafoid
    November 4, 2013, 11:24 am

    “normal people in normal countries don’t like apartheid”.

    Normal people everywhere ABHOR apartheid.
    And even if you dress it up in the Shoah it won’t wash.

  4. hophmi
    hophmi
    November 4, 2013, 11:35 am

    “Normal people everywhere ABHOR apartheid.”

    Really. Have you been to the inner city of a large American municipality? We are not an integrated country, my friend, and people of different races are not treated equally under the law. We have a long way to go.

    I abhor apartheid. But the idea that normal people abhor it to the point of selectively prosecuting Israel for some shadow of it in a tribal region like the Middle East is silly.

    • Talkback
      Talkback
      November 4, 2013, 6:50 pm

      Shadow of it Hophmi? South Africans tell us that your oligarchy is worse than their Apartheid ever was.

    • talknic
      talknic
      November 4, 2013, 8:12 pm

      @ hophmi “Have you been to the inner city of a large American municipality? We are not an integrated country, my friend, and people of different races are not treated equally under the law”

      FAIL : Not being treated equally under the law is not quite the same as having different laws for people of different races

    • Hostage
      Hostage
      November 7, 2013, 10:24 am

      Hophmi normal people in this country put on their military uniforms and went to Little Rock to desegregate the school system. They elected representatives who adopted the civil rights acts. You’re defending a system that’s still using its military to kill or arrest little Palestinian kids and bomb their schools. Israel still has racially segregated schools with separate funding of the Jewish and Arab sectors and a fascist legal system that forces Arabs into ethnic enclaves. Stop pretending there is some sort of equivalency.

  5. Ludwig
    Ludwig
    November 4, 2013, 11:42 am

    He is dead right about Area C. However what must be internalized is any removal of Jews from Areas B or A is also ethnic cleansing.

    • Talkback
      Talkback
      November 4, 2013, 6:51 pm

      Since when is the removal of illegal settlers ethnic cleansing? You have lost your mind, haven’t you Ludwig?

    • talknic
      talknic
      November 4, 2013, 8:03 pm

      Ludwig ” any removal of Jews from Areas B or A is also ethnic cleansing”

      If they’re Israeli Jews illegally settling it’s not. It is NORMAL to deport non-citizens from a country where they are illegally settling.

    • Cliff
      Cliff
      November 4, 2013, 8:15 pm

      Removing Jewish colonists from the PALESTINIAN territories is not ethnic cleansing.

      What you Jewish terrorists did in 1948 was ethnic cleansing.

  6. HarryLaw
    HarryLaw
    November 4, 2013, 1:22 pm

    “First, ethnic cleansing. One must acknowledge the searing fact that the Jewish Israelis will successfully ethnically cleanse Area C and East Jerusalem”.
    If you accept that reality, then what is to stop the Zionists achieving everything they want, they want a greater Israel with as few Palestinians as possible, they are achieving this aim in the only way possible at this time by a series of small steps, building new settlements everyday, ethnically cleansing small communities but never in the numbers that would bring sufficient opprobrium to force them to stop, then having complete control and sufficient numbers of settlers in area C, they can de facto annex it, there goes 60% of the West Bank, then surround the remaining Palestinians with settlements and the proposed wall along the Jordan valley, and imprison the remaining Palestinians, then treat them so badly that they hopefully will go quietly into the night, the US and Europe are acquiescing in this, to their shame, but given the relative power between the two sides and the West’s reluctance to confront Israel, this will continue. Also there is no resistance whatsoever from the Palestinian leadership, the latest from a spokesman for Abbas saying they might complain to the UNSC about the new settlement announcements, this is pathetic, do they really expect the US to do anything, when they have spent the last 40 years backing up Israel in everything they have done, including war crimes. The only options they have left is to push for greater recognition of Palestine through the UN Agencies, and really pressure the ICC to investigate the ongoing war crimes in Palestine, until that’s done and the ICC Prosecutor say’s yay or nay to an investigation it is pointless to speculate.

  7. FreddyV
    FreddyV
    November 4, 2013, 2:47 pm

    Looks like Israel are actually creating their own bantustan in the Middle East.

    ‘Or, the legitimacy of Pat Boone’s claim to Palestine/Israel will be recognized by the United Nations. The first proposition is likelier; no one will claim that 3 billion Christians have a right to settle in Palestine.’

    This is one of my personal faves when challenging the Jewish historic claim to Palestine.

    ‘I’m a Christian’ I say. ‘And I can trace my line back to John The Baptist’. This is usually followed by peels of laughter.

    I then ask why are people laughing. Jews claim to be directly from Abraham’s lineage, so how is my claim any less outrageous?

  8. RoHa
    RoHa
    November 4, 2013, 9:53 pm

    “What can come next in an environment characterized by a growing Palestinian equal rights movement and an increasingly Zionist and isolated Israel?”

    Naught for your comfort, I suspect.

  9. wondering jew
    wondering jew
    November 4, 2013, 10:25 pm

    I have not read the complete essay. Until now this series has been devoted to solutions. This essay is devoted to “trends” and in furthering one trend- “propaganda”. Why the insistence in emphasizing North American Jews (Yossi Klein Halevi and Bernard Avishai)? Because this is a propaganda ploy and apparently one whose trend is positive.

    And then this sentence: “the human rights many of them are actively willing to claim relate to universal healthcare or universal suffrage – both of which are anathema to Zionism.”

    I will concede that Zionists are opposed to universal suffrage. But they are not opposed to universal healthcare. Offer the Zionists to annex the West Bank with the proviso that the Palestinians will not be able to vote, but will be covered by Israeli healthcare and they will jump at the opportunity. But Mister Moor’s propaganda would not tolerate even that kind of nuance.

    • SQ Debris
      SQ Debris
      November 5, 2013, 1:44 pm

      Nuance-shmooance. Palestinians are actually people. Like everyone else they yearn to breath free. And equal. Sooner or later those two blue lines on the flag of Israel are shrink into an eqauls sign. The country won’t be “Jewish” until, like Hillel said, it stops treating people in ways that Jews wouldn’t want to be treated themselves.

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