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Remember Mandela’s actions, Kerry urges Palestinians and Israelis

Israel/Palestine
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MandelaFrom Israeli Apartheid‘s Facebook page:

A Palestinian man holds a portrait of late South African president Nelson Mandela as he stands in front of Israeli soldiers during clashes between youths and the army following a weekly protest against Israeli occupation in the West Bank village of Bilin on December 6, 2013. US Secretary of State John Kerry urged Israeli and Palestinian leaders to take inspiration from Nelson Mandela in peace talks, as he wrapped up another visit to the region. photo:Issam Rimawi — in Palestine

Here is Kerry’s urging, on Friday at Ben Gurion airport, to Israeli and Palestinian leaders:

So we just think of the lessons that he [Madnela] taught the world which have special significance at this moment in history. He said, “It always seems impossible until it is done.” I think it’s appropriate for us to think about that in the context of the work that I’ve been doing here in the last couple of days and over these last months, and of the hopes and aspirations of the people of this region. That example of Nelson Mandela is an example that we all need to take to heart as we face the challenge of trying to reach a two-state solution.

Over the past two days, I had the opportunity to meet with both Prime Minister Netanyahu and President Abbas. And despite the fact that we are discussing really difficult, complicated issues, I am encouraged by the continued commitment of both leaders to the pursuit of peace. And they both underscored their commitment to continue to work through these difficult issues in the days ahead. As we look to the challenges that we face in the coming months, we need to all be not just reminded of the example of Nelson Mandela’s words, but by his actions. The naysayers are wrong to call peace in this region an impossible goal. It always seems impossible until it’s done.

Kerry invoked Mandela again at the Saban Forum Saturday.

It’s worth remembering that Mandela and the ANC did not just advocate non-violent resistance. Natasha Lennard at Salon:

For Mandela, violence was a tactic. As Christopher Dickey noted, “when it came to the use of violence, as with so much else in his life, Mandela opted for pragmatism over ideology.”..

Crucially, Mandela was open to escalation to terror tactics and guerrilla war. The ANC’s 1982 attack of the Koeberg nuclear plant — yes, crucial infrastructure — killed 19 people. Unsurprisingly, the ANC was listed as a terrorist organization by the United States. Mandela himself was on a U.S. terror watch list until 2008.

 

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10 Responses

  1. seafoid
    seafoid
    December 9, 2013, 1:59 pm

    If I were Kerry I would encourage Israelis to remember the boy who cried wolf. Maybe that could get through to them. Mandela won’t.

  2. Woody Tanaka
    Woody Tanaka
    December 9, 2013, 2:01 pm

    What a piece of work that Kerry is. Invoking Mandela and directing that invocation to “both sides” is such baloney. Mandela’s legacy is important because it can inform liberation movements and give comfort to those suffering under brutal oppression.

    The Palestinians have a liberation movement. The zionists don’t; zionism is a movement of oppression, nothing more.

    Kerry should have directed his comments about Mandela to the Palestinians exclusively. What can Mandela mean to oppressors, thieves and murders like the israeli government?? To those zios, he should have said that they have to have the character of DeKlerk and stop their evil ways, lest they end up in the dustbin of history along side the Nazis, communists and other similar anti-human systems in history.

  3. Kathleen
    Kathleen
    December 9, 2013, 2:11 pm

    Kerry went without saying the apartheid government of Israel is not far from the apartheid government of South Africa which was sent packing. Pay attention Israel the truth is getting out.

  4. W.Jones
    W.Jones
    December 9, 2013, 2:54 pm

    That example of Nelson Mandela is an example that we all need to take to heart as we face the challenge of trying to reach a two-state solution.
    Yes, because Mandela was about the two state solution, and if he wasn’t then his failure to accept it is a good example of why the two state solution is the only “realistic” outcome.

  5. Hostage
    Hostage
    December 9, 2013, 4:00 pm

    So we just think of the lessons that he [Madnela] taught the world which have special significance at this moment in history.

    In his autobiography, Long Walk to Freedom, Mandela pointed out that the conditions in which Martin Luther King struggled were totally different from his own. In the US there was democracy and a Constitution with guarantees of equal rights that protected non-violent demonstrations.

    He said the South African government had publicly offered to release him from jail on at least ten occasions, including a speech delivered by P.W. Botha to the Parliament in 1985 which called upon Mandela to publicly renounce the use of violence in exchange for his release.

    On each occasion Mandela turned down the offers, while explaining that the government only wanted the onus for violence to rest on his shoulders, while he wanted to reaffirm to the world that members of his movement were only responding to violence done to them. There are thousands of Palestinians who have already learned that lesson.

  6. just
    just
    December 9, 2013, 5:27 pm

    I don’t think he can stand on this soapbox much longer……. we’ve been teetering on it for far too long.

    Since we, the US, have been instrumental and hugely complicit in perpetuating the ongoing Nakba, and have given fulsome support to the Apartheid State of Israel, I would suggest he put our money where his mouth is. If not now, when? When will the US call a spade a spade and make a loud and truthful statement of the illegitimacy of Israeli actions past and present, and apologize to the Palestinian people?

    Perhaps then, we can be a broker for justice instead of the HYPOCRITES that we are.

    (PS Mr. Kerry, it is the Israelis who are the “terrorists”. See the IOF thugs above. Did you hear about the Palestinian child who was shot in the back by the IOF? )

    • Woody Tanaka
      Woody Tanaka
      December 9, 2013, 5:42 pm

      “(PS Mr. Kerry, it is the Israelis who are the “terrorists”. See the IOF thugs above. Did you hear about the Palestinian child who was shot in the back by the IOF? )”

      What does he care? Palestinian children don’t give politicians donations. He’s a puppet. The zios who are giving the campaign funds and arranging the votes are pulling the strings.

      • Citizen
        Citizen
        December 10, 2013, 1:25 pm

        @ Woody
        No doubt about it. Kerry’s change of tune reminds me of Obama’s after his Cairo speech–in sequence, both have deduced, yet again, they just can’t really help the Palestinians and keep what they want for themselves, or at least they feel that’s too risky in the face of AIPAC et al. I guess, at best, both Obama and Kerry are hoping to trade Palestinian freedom for some Iranian contract about WMD that will make both of them heroes for the time being, that is, for the rest of their lives. All politics is short-term.

  7. Hostage
    Hostage
    December 10, 2013, 4:45 pm

    they just can’t really help the Palestinians and keep what they want for themselves

    Kerry and his wife are already the heirs to billions of dollars. His wife grew-up in Portugese Mozambique and South Africa. In those days, both countries actively competed for the prize of most repressive white minority regime.

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