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Poll: If two-states collapse, Americans overwhelmingly favor ‘democracy’

Israel/Palestine
on 89 Comments
Shibley Telhami

Shibley Telhami

This is huge. If the two-state paradigm collapses, an overwhelming majority of Americans would support one democratic state.

Shibley Telhami of the University of Maryland commissioned a poll that he reports today in Foreign Policy, with this headline and the graph below:

America Has a Plan. And, No, It Isn’t One That Israel Would Like.

Telhami poll

Telhami poll

Telhami explains that American politicians are wed to the two-state solution, but the public is more free-thinking.

A public opinion survey I commissioned, which was conducted by the polling firm GfK, found that U.S. popular support for a two-state solution is surprisingly tepid. What’s more, if the option is taken off the table, Americans support the creation of a single democratic state — in what is now Israel and the Palestinian territories — in which Jews and Arabs are granted equal rights. The GfK survey consisted of 1,000 interviews conducted through an Internet panel and was weighted to ensure that the results were consistent with several demographic variables, such as age, education, and income.

The Obama administration’s focus on mediating an end to the conflict has been predicated on two assumptions — that a two-state solution is in the national security interest of the United States, and that the current diplomatic efforts may be the last chance to achieve it. Americans themselves, however, are more lukewarm on the possibility of Israeli and Palestinian states living side by side: fewer than four in 10 survey respondents preferred a two-state solution…

Telhami’s numbers are a bit complex: When Americans are asked what solution they favor, they go for the two-state outcome over a one-state paradigm by 39-24 (with another 24 percent supporting occupation/annexation). But if the two-state solution is not available, Telhami found that nearly two-thirds of those two-staters turned to a one-state option; and overall Americans would be for a single democracy by roughly two-to-one.

Without addressing the lobby directly, Telhami says that politicians will be in “paralyzing” crisis, unable to embrace a one-state model despite the people’s support. “At the moment, it is not politically feasible to advocate for a one-state solution with equal citizenship,” he writes.

So what does it all mean? It means that if the two-state solution fails, the conversation among the American public might shift to that of a one-state solution as the next-best thing. If American officials feel pressured to respond to this, it will likely create tension in U.S.-Israeli relations….

For U.S. officials, the effect would be paralyzing — American leaders simply wouldn’t know what to advocate if two states were not on the table. …

This dilemma may partially be driving Washington’s current diplomatic push. And if the Obama administration’s efforts fail, it is unlikely that American leaders would do anything but pretend that the two-state solution was still on the table. No American politician wants to choose between Israel’s democracy and its Jewishness — even if the polls show that the choice is clear to the American people.

Pretending neatly rationalizes paralysis, but it would not hide the naked truth for most people….The American people are clear about their views: Occupation and unequal citizenship are a losing cause.

This poll is fascinating because, whether or not the polled Americans are sophisticated about these issues, it reveals how backward the US political conversation and the American Jewish conversation are. Max Blumenthal can go out and endorse liberal American views— that we now see to be widespread– and his book is ignored by the New York Times, and he’s denounced by Israel lobbyists. Norman Finkelstein outlined this conservative reality 18 months ago: he said that the only political reality is the two-state solution because American Jews will not support the end of the Jewish state. The Telhami poll suggests the fierce urgency of the Blumenthal position: communicating liberal American attitudes to the Jewish community, and getting American Jews to abandon their support for Jewish nationalism in a discriminatory society that they don’t want to live in themselves. So that the politicians can begin to reflect American attitudes amid the rubble of the two-state solution.

This is also a rebuke to Michael Oren and David Brooks and the other hasbarists who say that Americans love Israel. They seem to love democracy more.

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89 Responses

  1. peterfeld
    peterfeld
    March 3, 2014, 1:34 pm

    If you combine the two one-state views they beat 2SS by 48%-39%. Only four in ten support 2ss, there’s another headline.

    • ritzl
      ritzl
      March 3, 2014, 2:06 pm

      Yep. Thanks, peterfeld.

    • Sibiriak
      Sibiriak
      March 3, 2014, 9:14 pm

      When Americans are asked what solution they favor, they go for the two-state outcome over a one-state paradigm by 39-24 (with another 24 percent supporting occupation/annexation).

      If you combine the 39% 2SS + 24% occupation/annexation, you get 63% opposed to a democratic 1SS.

    • Sibiriak
      Sibiriak
      March 3, 2014, 9:22 pm

      What’s more, if the option is taken off the table…

      And how would that actually happen? Would Abbas/Palestine/PLO have to renounce Palestine’s current UN statehood status and officially demand the legal merger of Israel, Gaza and the West Bank?

  2. annie
    annie
    March 3, 2014, 1:35 pm

    of course! this is a no brainer. we’ve been lied to.

    • Citizen
      Citizen
      March 3, 2014, 2:22 pm

      More yellow cake? Too bad such a large share of Americans still don’t get it that we were lied into the Iraq war Shrub Jr launched. They still think it was just a case of well-intended but misinformed leaders trying to act in US best interest…

      • James Canning
        James Canning
        March 3, 2014, 7:06 pm

        Most Americans simply do not care (that an illegal war was set up by deliberate campaign of lies etc etc etc).

      • Kathleen
        Kathleen
        March 3, 2014, 11:40 pm

        And the MSM helps keep them willfully ignorant

      • James Canning
        James Canning
        March 6, 2014, 7:02 pm

        There does seem an organised effort to conceal the conspiracy (to set up illegal invasion of Iraq). For what you and I can agree are obvious reasons.

  3. mondonut
    mondonut
    March 3, 2014, 1:48 pm

    It appears that if the 2SS solution collapses most Americans would prefer that a single state emerge. Of course, that single state would be Israel from the river to the sea excluding both Gaza and Palestinians not currently residing within. Non-Israeli residents would presumably be offered citizenship if they were interested in becoming loyal Israelis.

    • Sibiriak
      Sibiriak
      March 3, 2014, 8:51 pm

      mondonut

      Of course, that single state would be Israel from the river to the sea excluding both Gaza Of course, that single state would be Israel from the river to the sea excluding both Gaza.

      Yep. Excluding Gaza and refugees is a big problem for the “one-staters”.

      Would Americans support the forced merger of Gaza and Israel?

      • JeffB
        JeffB
        March 4, 2014, 10:11 am

        @Sibiriak

        Would Americans support the forced merger of Gaza and Israel?

        Nope. The moment you go beyond supporting “democracy” in the abstract to concrete measures to create a “democracy” support will collapse. Rephrase the question as “would you like to see the United States with its allies engage in a regime change operation in Israel to replace the current Jewish government with a Palestinians government” and I doubt you would get 5%. The support is paper thin. Americans adore Israel and don’t like the Palestinians.

        Moreover and more importantly such a poll doesn’t measure intensity. Among people who are likely to have their vote swayed based on this issue the support for Israel is even more lopsided.

        What this poll shows is that the word “democracy” polls well, nothing more.

      • James Canning
        James Canning
        March 4, 2014, 7:55 pm

        There are in fact quite a few Palestinians living in the US, where they tend to do well.

      • JeffB
        JeffB
        March 5, 2014, 6:52 am

        @James

        There are in fact quite a few Palestinians living in the US, where they tend to do well.

        I agree. When I lived in Los Angeles there was a large Palestinian population that not only were good Americans they got along with Los Angeles’ Jewish population well. There is nothing intrinsically wrong with the Palestinians in the West Bank that prevents them from being good Israelis. They just have chosen to collectively reject the country of their birth. The Israeli Arabs particularly the progress they made 1949-1980 show that assimilation would have been possible had the Palestinians not decided on this other course.

      • James Canning
        James Canning
        March 6, 2014, 7:25 pm

        Thanks. I remember decades ago, when many if not most of the small grocery stores in San Francisco were owned by Palestinians from one place in the West Bank.
        And I think Jews in the WB could make good Palestinians.

      • talknic
        talknic
        March 6, 2014, 11:03 pm

        JeffB “There is nothing intrinsically wrong with the Palestinians in the West Bank that prevents them from being good Israelis. “

        Oh? How about the West Bank IS NOT IN ISRAEL

        ” They just have chosen to collectively reject the country of their birth.”

        Israel ISN’T the country of a Palestinian’s birth

        You appear to be quite insane

      • James Canning
        James Canning
        March 7, 2014, 2:31 pm

        Is JeffB claiming the West Bank is part of Israel?

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        March 4, 2014, 2:29 pm

        Nope. The moment you go beyond supporting “democracy” in the abstract to concrete measures to create a “democracy” support will collapse. Rephrase the question as . . .

        Any proposition that denies minorities full equality under the law and support for the Jewish Disneyland evaporates. That’s why Zionists spend whatever it takes on failing propaganda campaigns.

      • JeffB
        JeffB
        March 4, 2014, 5:04 pm

        @Hostage

        Israel has full legal equality for minorities. It doesn’t for hostile populations that are enemies of the state.

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        March 4, 2014, 6:48 pm

        @Hostage

        Israel has full legal equality for minorities. It doesn’t for hostile populations that are enemies of the state.

        No it doesn’t. The minority protection plan in resolution 181(II) required the State to make full legal equality the fundamental law of the land and to enshrine it in a formal constitution prior to independence. But the right of equality has been deliberately omitted from Israel’s fundamental laws and there are no plans to include it in the future constitution because it is incompatible with Judaism. See:
        * MKs debate protection of ‘equality’ in future constitution: Religious MKs reject inclusion of ensurance of equality, saying it would contradict Judaism. http://www.haaretz.com/news/mks-debate-protection-of-equality-in-future-constitution-1.234565
        * Lapid: Israel’s definition as Jewish and democratic is an unsolvable contradiction http://www.jpost.com/Diplomacy-and-Politics/Lapid-Israels-definition-as-Jewish-and-democratic-is-an-unsolvable-contradiction-330067

        Here is the lastest report from the ICERD treaty monitoring body:

        13. As mentioned in its previous concluding observations (CERD/C/ISR/CO/13, para. 16), the Committee is concerned that no general provision for equality and the prohibition of racial discrimination has been included in the Basic Law: Human Dignity and Liberty (1992), which serves as Israel’s bill of rights; neither does Israeli legislation contain a definition of racial discrimination in accordance with Article 1 of the Convention. These lacunae seriously undermine the protection afforded to all persons under the jurisdiction of the State party for equal access to human rights (Article 2 of the Convention).
        The Committee reiterates its previous concluding observations (CERD/C/ISR/CO/13, para. 16) and recommends that the State party ensure that the prohibition of racial discrimination and the principle of equality are included in the Basic Law and that a definition of racial discrimination is duly incorporated into the Law.

        — (.pdf) page 3 0f 9 http://www2.ohchr.org/english/bodies/cerd/docs/CERD.C.ISR.CO.14-16.pdf

      • Woody Tanaka
        Woody Tanaka
        March 4, 2014, 7:00 pm

        “Israel has full legal equality for minorities. It doesn’t for hostile populations that are enemies of the state.”

        LMAO. And isn’t it AMAZING that the “hostile populations that are enemies of the state” just happens to coincide exactly with the non-Jewish population of the zionist entity. What a coincedence!

    • Sumud
      Sumud
      March 4, 2014, 4:39 pm

      Of course, that single state would be Israel from the river to the sea excluding both Gaza and Palestinians not currently residing within.

      Why “of course”? Because that is your (and Sharon’s) fantasy?

      There are no such qualifiers in the polling questions, they do mention “occupied territories”, plural.

      Gaza remains under military occupation by Israel. I can’t see one state occurring while Israel gets to continue to keep Gaza under siege. A final settlement that seeks to exclude Gaza is not a final settlement.

    • JeffB
      JeffB
      March 5, 2014, 6:54 am

      @Woody

      LMAO. And isn’t it AMAZING that the “hostile populations that are enemies of the state” just happens to coincide exactly with the non-Jewish population of the zionist entity. What a coincedence!

      Except they don’t. See the Russian Christians for example for a non-Jewish population that are terrific supporters of the state and thus easily and fully integrated.

      • James Canning
        James Canning
        March 6, 2014, 7:26 pm

        Do they build Russian Othodox churches in Israel?

      • gamal
        gamal
        March 7, 2014, 12:15 am

        “Do they build Russian Othodox churches in Israel?” I have read that they do.
        Of course they are fervent supporters of the state which privileges them over the Palestinians, even the Orthodox Christian Palestinians, who have so recently become the objects of the solicitude of that same state, yes settlers are of course fantastic citizens of settler states, they are only ones it really likes whatever their religion or lack thereof.

      • James Canning
        James Canning
        March 7, 2014, 6:26 pm

        Very interesting points.

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        March 6, 2014, 9:53 pm

        Except they don’t. See the Russian Christians for example for a non-Jewish population that are terrific supporters of the state and thus easily and fully integrated.

        What a crock of shit. The racists in Israel can’t even integrate the Russian Jews that the Rabbinate refuses to recognize as Jewish, much less the Russian Christians. Small Jewish communal settlements, like Foreign Minister Lieberman’s, have barred many of those same unlucky Russian-Israeli families from buying housing or systematically discriminate against them in other ways. See Lieberman’s settlement bars Russian-Israeli families from buying homes: Settlers in Nokdim, home to Russian-born FM, fear new residents not classified as Jewish by halakhic law could corrupt local morals. http://www.haaretz.com/print-edition/news/lieberman-s-settlement-bars-russian-israeli-families-from-buying-homes-1.301170

  4. James Canning
    James Canning
    March 3, 2014, 1:51 pm

    Excellent leader in today’s Financial Times: “Obama must get real with Netanyahu”.
    Numerous Aipac stooges in US Congress will likely ensure this does not happen.

    • seafoid
      seafoid
      March 3, 2014, 5:10 pm

      http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/ded23fe6-a07a-11e3-8557-00144feab7de.html

      “Obama must get real with Netanyahu
      A just deal on Palestine is vital to Israel’s future

      When Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel’s prime minister, meets Barack Obama, the US president, at the White House on Monday, the electricity behind the paint-on smiles should be crackling.

      The Israeli premier would normally arrive in Washington to the all but unanimous applause of the US Congress and the adulation of the most powerful pro-Israel lobby, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (Aipac). And if Mr Netanyahu were to fall out with Mr Obama, as he did in the president’s first term, he would still get to snub him by going round the White House to a Congress where he has the sort of wraparound, wall-to-wall support he can only dream of in the Knesset, Israel’s parliament. That is how it used to work – but it may have changed.

      Attempts by Mr Netanyahu’s radical right government and Aipac to get new sanctions enacted against Iran, which would sabotage current negotiations to defang Tehran’s nuclear ambitions, have failed – so far. The White House successfully cast this sanctions push as part of a “march towards war”. That confronts senators and congressmen seeking re-election with the contradiction between their Israel-influenced bellicosity over Iran and the war-weariness of Americans after Iraq and Afghanistan, clearly visible in US reluctance to get involved in Syria’s conflict.

      Yet high on the agenda will be Washington’s attempt to get Mr Netanyahu to endorse a “framework” agreement between Israel and the Palestinians, drawn up by John Kerry, the secretary of state. Mr Obama plans to meet Mahmoud Abbas, president of the interim Palestinian Authority, for the same purpose on March 17.

      After Mr Kerry took heavy flak from Mr Netanyahu’s allies – who have accused him of being “messianic” and stoking a boycott of Israel – the White House has indicated that Mr Obama is returning to the fray. Yet there are reasons to doubt whether this latest attempt to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is going anywhere.

      First, the framework idea is fudging as long as it can the substance of the two-state solution, meant to give Palestinians an independent state on the occupied West Bank and Gaza with Arab East Jerusalem as its capital. This is beginning to look like another Middle East peace shaggy-dog story. Second, while Mr Obama looks as if he is going to bat on the Iran negotiations, he blinked first in his bruising encounters with Mr Netanyahu over Israeli settlements in 2009-11. Third, there is no indication whatsoever that this or any other Israeli coalition is willing or able to roll back the occupation to boundaries that would make a Palestinian state viable.

      If leaked reports about what Mr Kerry envisages are even half accurate, however, Mr Netanyahu’s main challenge will be how to disguise his smirk. True, he faces rebellion within government ranks at home. But pressure from the irredentist right forces Washington to pitch its compromise somewhere between the Israeli hard right and ultra-right – rather than between Israel and the Palestinians. It looks, therefore, as though the US is planning to hand Israel: almost all the settlement blocs colonising Palestinian land; about three-quarters of occupied East Jerusalem; and the Jordan Valley.

      Perhaps Mr Kerry is managing expectations with great acuity. If not, any such prospectus would put an end to the two-state proposition and expose the US as Israel’s crooked lawyer rather than an honest broker. Mr Abbas is pliant, but not obviously suicidal. Unless there is a real compromise, leading to a real state of Palestine, Israel’s future will be bleak. As not only Mr Kerry but also Israeli and European leaders have warned, failure now will open the door to an international boycott movement that will chip away at Israel’s legitimacy – a much greater threat than Iran or the Palestinians.

      • James Canning
        James Canning
        March 3, 2014, 5:56 pm

        Yes, Seafoid: a strong warning from the FT today.

  5. Krauss
    Krauss
    March 3, 2014, 2:03 pm

    Norman Finkelstein outlined this conservative reality 18 months ago: he said that the only political reality is the two-state solution because American Jews will not support the end of the Jewish state.

    Ugh, Phil, are you endorsing Finkelstein’s thinly-disguised Zionism?
    That argument is, ultimately, the same as an argument appealing to white Afrikaaners, if they are not willing to let up on Apartheid we cannot do anything.

    Change happened in despite of their wishes, not because of it.

    Reality is malleable. If it wasn’t, no change would ever be possible.

    Understand what Finkelstein says: he says the privileged group must eradicate the system that it built and nurtures to enhance its own position over the bodies – literally – of the Palestinians and their land. And until they do – and of course, Finkelstein understands that they never will – we must tie our hands. This is a naked appeal to do nothing under the guise of tactics.

    That’s Finkelstein’s poisoned chalice. And you endorse this as a hard-headed truthtelling? My god, Phil. Are you turning into the next Finkelstein/Chomsky now?

    As you should well know: power cedes nothing without a demand. And you often have to go against the wishes of the group that has the powers, not wait/cajole it to go along, because it will not do that.

    Honestly, shocking that you endorse Finkelstein like this.

    • philweiss
      philweiss
      March 3, 2014, 3:08 pm

      No

    • Hostage
      Hostage
      March 3, 2014, 3:51 pm

      That argument is, ultimately, the same as an argument appealing to white Afrikaaners, if they are not willing to let up on Apartheid we cannot do anything.

      I don’t think that’s a fair description of what Finkelstein proposed in the first place, but you’ve got your head up your ass if you think he’s a Zionist.

      • W.Jones
        W.Jones
        March 3, 2014, 8:04 pm

        Hostage,

        Finkelstein says Chomsky is a primary mentor for him after he left Maoism. His position on Zionism is multifaceted. He says he opposes nation states in general. He also emphasizes that the state exists and is a fact that should be adjusted to and recognized, and that Zionism is not something to be debated as a public issue but is what he considers an intra-family discussion. At the University of Michigan, he said he would not say directly his position on the topic.
        The case can be made that he sees the ideal as equality, but that in practice his position is that of the State’s strong liberal supporters. However, he is an effective and inspiring speaker who took a severe blow to his career for speaking out for human rights. It’s a pity that he has become a bit despondent lately.

        It would be interesting to hear about his thesis: “An Essay on the Theory of Zionism”.

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        March 4, 2014, 4:23 am

        Hostage,

        Finkelstein says Chomsky is a primary mentor for him after he left Maoism.

        Abbas is more likely to recognize Israel as the national home or state of the Jewish people than either Chomsky or Finkelstein.

        It would be interesting to hear about his thesis: “An Essay on the Theory of Zionism”.

        Here’s what he said about Israel before he decided to stop criticizing it publicly:

        Q: Why have you been barred from entering Israel for 10 years? As the son of Holocaust survivors, you cannot enter Israel.

        A: Let’s be clear on a certain point. I was not entering Israel; I have no interest in going to Israel. I was going to see my friends in the occupied Palestinian territories. And Israel blocked me to go and see my friends in the West Bank. Under international law, I do not think they have any right to do that! I was not posing any security threat to Israel. The day after I was denied entering Israel, the editorial of Haaretz was asking, “Who is afraid of Norman Finkelstein?” They were also saying that I was not a security threat. I do not have any particular interest to go and visit that lunatic state.


        It has been a long time since I felt any emotional connection with the state of Israel, which relentlessly and brutally and inhumanly keeps these vicious, murderous wars. It is a vandal state. There is a Russian writer who once described vandal states as Genghis Khan with a telegraph. Israel is Genghis Khan with a computer. I feel no emotion of affinity with that state. I have some good friends and their families there, and of course I would not want any of them to be hurt. That said, sometimes I feel that Israel has come out of the boils of the hell, a satanic state. Ninety percent of the population continues to cheer, to exalt and feel proud and heroic. They send a Sherman tank to a playground and torch children. Is this heroism? Is this courage?

        http://web.archive.org/web/20090302082500/http://todayszaman.com/tz-web/detaylar.do?load=detay&link=164483

      • W.Jones
        W.Jones
        March 4, 2014, 8:08 pm

        Hostage:

        I highly doubt that neither would recognize Israel as a Jewish state. They both support the two state solution, which would be be two states for two “peoples”. Anyway, Chomsky compared denying Palestinians a state to denying a Jewish homeland:
        http://news.rapgenius.com/Noam-chomsky-israel-and-palestine-after-disengagement-annotated

        Rather Chomsky’s position has been that he doesn’t see the Palestinians recognizing a Jewish state to be a needed requirement of a peace deal, nor does he see a Jewish state to be the ultimate ideal, as he prefers a binational state. I do think that Chomsky, as an anarchist Zionist, does see the land as a national homeland, but one that is also a Palestinian homeland.

        You did a good job showing with your quote Finkelstein’s emotional detachment from the state. Do you have any guesses why he stopped criticizing it? Fatigue and burnout?

        Regards.

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        March 5, 2014, 5:07 am

        I highly doubt that neither would recognize Israel as a Jewish state.

        Chomsky only supports a two state solution because his preferred solution became unobtainable. He has refused to recognize Israel as a Jewish state and only backs a two state proposal on pragmatic grounds conditioned on guarantees that both Jews and Palestinians have equal rights in the whole territory of Mandate Palestine and that the extent to which either state is allowed to depart from the democratic principle and is either “Jewish” or “Arab” in some respects be kept marginal and merely symbolic. He notes that if either is allowed to be Jewish or Arab in any significant respect he would consider that a severe problem. http://www.nybooks.com/articles/archives/1975/jul/17/an-exchange-on-the-jewish-state/?pagination=false

      • W.Jones
        W.Jones
        March 5, 2014, 4:57 pm

        Hostage,

        Can you please tell me what is the deal with Finkelstein now? Did he have a breakdown over the Solidarity movement’s moderate sympathy for the right of return, or were people harassing him too much from the other side?

      • LeaNder
        LeaNder
        March 4, 2014, 5:24 am

        It would be interesting to hear about his thesis: “An Essay on the Theory of Zionism”.

        W.Jones, he approaches it via “nationalism”, an ideology out of which it obviously grew. There is only one microfiche edition available over here in Frankfurt and it was pretty hard to look at it more than cursorily, due to only one or two devises to read still available here in Cologne. It’s a slim book anyway.

        Ugh, Phil, are you endorsing Finkelstein’s thinly-disguised Zionism?

        Absolute nonsense, Krauss.

      • W.Jones
        W.Jones
        March 4, 2014, 8:10 pm

        You are having such a hard time reading them because of the microfiche devices? There are a few available in the US. I suppose I could get them if it’s really important.

    • Sibiriak
      Sibiriak
      March 3, 2014, 8:54 pm

      Krauss:

      Understand what Finkelstein says: he says the privileged group must eradicate the system that it built and nurtures

      Where does Finkelstein say that?

  6. American
    American
    March 3, 2014, 2:06 pm

    ”This poll is fascinating because, whether or not the polled Americans are sophisticated about these issues”….>>>>

    Its not that mysterious and no real sophistication is needed.
    Posted on MW several times is the most credible University of Maryland Kennedy Center sponsored poll the World Public Opinion Poll–which showed that 71% of Americans believed that the US *should be even handed* in I/P–favor *neither* Israel nor Palestine.
    I sometime wonder where the people who say they live in America and dont understand this attitude among Americans actually live in this country. They have to live in some very narrow enclave communities if they dont get this basic US street attitude.
    Despite all the quirks and preudices among Americans *fairness* is probably the one thing 99% respond to and believe in. And not just Americans, I would say All people, everywhere have a basic desire for and respect for ‘fair treatment’ because they believe and want to believe it also applies to how they should be treated.
    Fairness is not some complicated subject that needs to be studied or explained–its already built into most people because its a personal ‘feeling’ about how they want to be treated.
    And people know ‘unfairness’ when they see it also.

  7. ritzl
    ritzl
    March 3, 2014, 2:13 pm

    Great news! Mildly but pleasantly surprising results. And the questions are actually worded meaningfully enough to provide indicative and not readily dismissable insight.

    Excellent.

    I hope this becomes an annual tracking poll.

  8. Krauss
    Krauss
    March 3, 2014, 2:17 pm

    I have a suspicion that this isn’t the first poll done on the subject, but that most other polls have probably been by the lobby’s various outlets/groups and in private.

    It’s great that we get one in public.

    This is also why the Likudnik right has accepted the 2SS paradigm, not because they are somehow dovish as the idiotic “liberal” Zionist narrative claims(Avigdor Lieberman, a changed man!), but because they understand the genuine purpose of the 2SS; a vehicle to colonize indefinitely under the auspices of an unending negotiation.

    This poll also confirms that the “liberal” Zionists of the NYT and elsewhere will never accept the 2SS to die, the same is true with Jeremy Ben-Ami’s AIPAC-lite outfit.

    Get ready for a new “peace process” with Hillary in 2017.
    Hopefully, the liberal grassroots will start to attack the Times and other “liberal” newspapers from the left and savage them.

  9. American
    American
    March 3, 2014, 2:21 pm

    ” The Telhami poll suggests the fierce urgency of the Blumenthal position: communicating liberal American attitudes to the Jewish community, and getting American Jews to abandon their support for Jewish nationalism in a discriminatory society that they don’t want to live in themselves. So that the politicians can begin to reflect American attitudes amid the rubble of the two-state solution.”>>>.

    I hate to keep popping this bubble but they arent going to do it. If they were going to do it en mass (which is what it would take–a million man march like) they would have already done it.
    Besides which, if you subscribe to the belief that Zio money speaks louder to politicians than anything else then that likely wouldnt have enough impact either.
    What might work in terms of just Jews or at least help is some crisis re Israel where you could get political offices really flooded with calls as Americans did over the bombing Syria issue.
    I dont see huge numbers of Jews getting involved until there is some outstanding clear cut crisis they cant ignore.
    Maybe Netanyahu will give them one.

  10. Philip Munger
    Philip Munger
    March 3, 2014, 2:27 pm

    Phil,

    I see you will be a participant in the First National Summit to Reassess the U.S.—Israel Special Relationship, at the end of the week. Hopefully, they can adjust the topic agenda to include the results of this somewhat surprising poll.

    http://natsummit.org

  11. W.Jones
    W.Jones
    March 3, 2014, 2:28 pm

    You are still stuck with the problem though of the politicians saying for the next 20 + years that the 2SS is urgent and they are fiercely and hopefully negotiating it. Meanwhile the Settlements increase and it becomes less and less realistic that the Pals would have real sovereignty, and anyway the Israeli idea of a 2SS is not sovereign anyway.

    In other words, the politicians can keep doing this like before, possibly, even when the 2ss has not been realistic.

    Meanwhile, AIPAC’s conference gets 14,000 Attendees. It shows they are strong in numbers, resources, and zealousness. Are you going to expect AIPAC to take active steps to stop the expansion against the wishes of the State?

    You are talking about one of the world’s expanding superpowers closely allied to the US vs. some conquered guys in trapped villages.

    • Hostage
      Hostage
      March 3, 2014, 4:04 pm

      In other words, the politicians can keep doing this like before, possibly, even when the 2ss has not been realistic.

      I’ve always said that the USA and Israel have opted for more of the status quo, rather than a 2ss or 1ss. But I don’t think that will fly with our allies – and definitely not if Obama keeps making comments like those in the Time is Running Out Article http://www.bloombergview.com/articles/2014-03-02/obama-to-israel-time-is-running-out

      • James Canning
        James Canning
        March 3, 2014, 6:27 pm

        I think EU is getting tired of the Israeli occupation of the West Bank.

      • Blownaway
        Blownaway
        March 3, 2014, 8:42 pm

        Kerry’s speech to AIPAC says it all. His only concern is Israeli security and maintaining the Jewish state. The Palestinians have Abbas to negotiate with the two most powerful countries in the world. They are being set up like pins Ina bowling alley. Obama will say he prevailed on Netanyahu to accept the difficult choices in the framework(everything they want) and the Palestinians said no

      • Sibiriak
        Sibiriak
        March 3, 2014, 9:30 pm

        Blownaway:

        Obama will say he prevailed on Netanyahu to accept the difficult choices in the framework(everything they want) and the Palestinians said no.

        Of course, that’s a likely possibility.

        And then, suppose (after some time) Israel unilaterally declares its borders, annexing major settlement blocs and leaving the remainder +Gaza for the Palestinian “state”.

        What would be the poll question options at that point?

      • Blownaway
        Blownaway
        March 4, 2014, 12:59 am

        Not gonna happen because they don’t want pieces of the West Bank they want it all. Do you think those intermingled settlers are just going to leave? Or the Palestinians are just going to acquiesce to some rump state? Oren’s plan is a non starter too. It won’t change the direction the world is taking

      • Sibiriak
        Sibiriak
        March 4, 2014, 1:49 am

        Blownaway:

        they don’t want pieces of the West Bank they want it all.

        I disagree. Only a few on the extreme right support annexing the entire West Bank. Jewish Home party chairman Naftali Bennett called for Israel to annex only Area C, leaving out the majority of the Palestinian population in the West Bank.

        Netanyahu, following Sharon, Barak et al.–the mainstream of Zionist expansionist thinking, exemplified by the Apartheid Wall–supports annexing the major settlement blocks etc. and giving the Palestinians a small, demilitarized, dependent statelet, i.e., taking the maximum amount of land with the minimum number of Palestinians .

        In any case, none of them are considering annexing Gaza, which holds some 1.8 million Palestinians.

        How do you see “the world” forcing Gaza into a single Israeli/Palestinian state, assuming “the world” could get Palestine to dissolve itself, and West Bank Palestinians to give up their national aspirations, not to mention Israeli forced acceptance?

      • James Canning
        James Canning
        March 6, 2014, 6:59 pm

        I agree Israel is highly unlikely to be willing to annex areas of the West Bank with too many non-Jews.

      • RoHa
        RoHa
        March 4, 2014, 4:55 am

        @Siberiak (I will be really glad when the reply buttons get fixed.)

        “West Bank Palestinians to give up their national aspirations,”

        I am not yet convinced that the West Bank Palestinians have any strongly-felt national aspirations. My guess (and I will set it aside in the face of solid evidence) is that the aspirations are for full and equal citizenship in a state on the territory of Palestine. The movement for a West Bank state was simply a desperate bid to free themselves from Israeli oppression.

      • James Canning
        James Canning
        March 6, 2014, 6:50 pm

        In a way, you are arguing what Israeli hardliners claim: that the Palestinians refuse to accept the existence of Israel.

      • Sibiriak
        Sibiriak
        March 4, 2014, 6:31 am

        RoHa:

        I am not yet convinced that the West Bank Palestinians have any strongly-felt national aspirations.

        Palestinians in the West Bank, as far as I can tell, do not see themselves as a national group separate from Palestinians in Gaza and elsewhere. So…

        My guess (and I will set it aside in the face of solid evidence) is that the aspirations are for full and equal citizenship in a state on the territory of Palestine.

        Even if true, those aspirations would be for ALL Palestinians who would want to be citizens of such a Palestine–and those would be national aspirations.

        I have seen no evidence that West Bank Palestinians have expressed the desire to become citizens of a Greater Israel (Palestine) in which Gazans would be excluded, not to mention refugees, and in which they would be subject to Jewish majority rule. Have you?

        The movement for a West Bank state was simply a desperate bid to free themselves from Israeli oppression.

        There IS NO “movement for a West Bank state”. All the main Palestinian two-state conceptions include Gaza , afaik.

        Historically, Palestinians wanted a single state in mandatory Palestine. The PLO dropped that concept decades ago and opted for the “two states for two peoples” paradigm, recognizing Israel as a separate state. It’s yet to bee seen if Palestinians will give up the 2-state idea and return to a single-state paradigm. And yes, the idea was to end Israel occupation and oppression.

      • RoHa
        RoHa
        March 4, 2014, 10:03 pm

        @Siberiak
        “Even if true, those aspirations would be for ALL Palestinians who would want to be citizens of such a Palestine–and those would be national aspirations.”

        But not aspirations for a specifically Palestinian Arab State, as distinct from an inclusive state in all Palestine. It is those aspirations that I doubt.

      • German Lefty
        German Lefty
        March 7, 2014, 6:03 pm

        @ James Canning (no reply button)

        In a way, you are arguing what Israeli hardliners claim: that the Palestinians refuse to accept the existence of Israel.

        Not true. Palestinians don’t necessarily refuse to accept the existence of Israel, i.e. Israeli statehood. They merely reject the existence of Israel as a Jewish state or in its current form. If Israel were a state with equal rights for all citizens and with a right of return for all Palestinian refugees and their descendants, then this would be a kind of Israeli state that Palestinians could accept.

    • American
      American
      March 3, 2014, 7:54 pm

      That is why W. Jones , a crisis event is needed…..and I have no doubt there will be one….how long till is the only question.

  12. ritzl
    ritzl
    March 3, 2014, 2:36 pm

    And with these results, watch BDS really accelerate when the current 2ss charade ends.

    They show that the whole “complex” I/P mess has already been distilled down to democracy and equal rights v. NO democracy and equal rights, by a 2-1 margin. That REALLY simplifies (no more “settlements-only” qualifiers) and amplifies (familiar, catchy, and highly repeatable tagline) the BDS discussion.

  13. Woody Tanaka
    Woody Tanaka
    March 3, 2014, 2:45 pm

    This is good. However, the US government is in thrall to the zio-supremacist Apartheid-favoring faction, so the interests of the American people will not be favored; the desires of those oppressive bigots will carry the day, for a while, at least.

  14. hophmi
    hophmi
    March 3, 2014, 2:59 pm

    “This is huge. If the two-state paradigm collapses, an overwhelming majority of Americans would support one democratic state.”

    You really should drop the “this is huge” nonsense from your vocabulary. Every time you say it, I know you’re exaggerating for political purposes. And you’re deluding yourself here.

    Far, far more Americans favor Israel than favor the Palestinians. I know you think it doesn’t matter, but it does, because in foreign policy, the activists are most important, not general public opinion.

    “So what does it all mean? It means that if the two-state solution fails, the conversation among the American public might shift to that of a one-state solution as the next-best thing.”

    There is no conversation going on amongst the American public on this issue. Most Americans have no clue what the “two-state solution” means, and no clue what the “one-state solution” is. So there isn’t going to be some shift in conversation, because there is no conversation going on. Like most niche issues, the activists are the ones who will most influence policy.

    Like a lot of simplistic public opinion polls, this one is largely about perceptions, not facts, and it is so error-laden, that it says nothing. In the abstract, Americans will choose democracy over a system of unequal rights.

    But they will not choose to negotiate with a party that has not renounced the use the violence.

    They will not choose a democracy between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River if they realize that it’s quite unlikely, and will probably turn into another version of Lebanon.

    Don’t assume, either, that the United States will start pushing for a one-state solution if a two-state solution collapses. The US pushes for the two-state solution because it’s in our national interest. The one-state solution, which would be inherently unstable and cost us a strong ally, is not. If there is no two-state solution, the likely scenario is that we’ll simply withdraw from the region.

    “If the peace talks fail, no number of assurances from the White House could stop the inevitable sense of resignation at home and abroad.”

    Yeah, everyone is saying this; it’s a sort of threat to get the parties to agree. It’s just that it’s been close to 80 years of this now, and everyone has said this before, and it is always the same thing; as long as it’s in the US national interest to push for two states, the US will continue to try, because the conventional knowledge is that you don’t replace a stable situation with an unstable one. That, and in the real world, Israel is still a strong ally.

    “The American people are clear about their views: Occupation and unequal citizenship are a losing cause.”

    I think that’s just fundamentally dishonest. Everybody favors democracy over occupation. But it doesn’t mean squat if you have no context and have no clue what you’re talking about. You can’t berate American ignorance out of one side of your mouth, and then argue that we should rely on it from the other side.

    • German Lefty
      German Lefty
      March 3, 2014, 3:31 pm

      Everybody favors democracy over occupation. But it doesn’t mean squat if you have no context and have no clue what you’re talking about. You can’t berate American ignorance out of one side of your mouth, and then argue that we should rely on it from the other side.

      True! However, I would substitute “everybody” by “everybody in their right mind”.

    • Woody Tanaka
      Woody Tanaka
      March 3, 2014, 3:36 pm

      “The US pushes for the two-state solution because it’s in our national interest. ”

      Nope, it’s because of zionist money.

      “The one-state solution, which would be inherently unstable…”

      It needn’t be, if the Jews there give up the judeo-supremacism.

      “That, and in the real world, Israel is still a strong ally. ”

      Nonsense. It pulls no water in international affairs and costs the US much in the way of international support. This is not to mention the lives of American soldiers, whose lives are pissed away to remove Saddam Hussein and other perceived threats to the zionist state. This zionist thing is not a strong ally, but a millstone around the neck of the United States, placed there by zionist donors who put the interest of this alien state about the interests of their supposed country.

      “Everybody favors democracy over occupation.”

      No, sadly a very large number of very evil people favor the zionist ideology which makes a racist requirement that the Jews control and destroy the lives of the Palestinians.

      • James Canning
        James Canning
        March 3, 2014, 6:23 pm

        “Zionist money” has been trying to block a “two-state” solution.

      • hophmi
        hophmi
        March 4, 2014, 10:47 am

        “Nope, it’s because of zionist money.”

        No, Woody, it’s because it’s in our national interest. In case you forgot, the two-state solution remains the preferred outcome of the international community. So your line about Zionist money is silly.

        “[The one-state soluition] needn’t be [unstable], if the Jews there give up the judeo-supremacism.”

        That’s not why it’s unstable. I’m quite sure that the Jews will not be the ones to make it unstable.

        “This is not to mention the lives of American soldiers, whose lives are pissed away to remove Saddam Hussein and other perceived threats to the zionist state.”

        Oh please. This is abject nonsense. There is zero proof to support his ridiculous, antisemitic conspiracy theory that the US fought the Iraq War to protect Israel. Zero.

        “No, sadly a very large number of very evil people favor the zionist ideology which makes a racist requirement that the Jews control and destroy the lives of the Palestinians.”

        And of course, history shows that the Arabs love democracy and minorities. You’re bullshitting yourself, Woody. You have one standard for the Jews, and another for everybody else.

      • Woody Tanaka
        Woody Tanaka
        March 4, 2014, 5:34 pm

        “No, Woody, it’s because it’s in our national interest.”

        LMAO. Yeah, right. Our policy is contrary to the preferences of the American people to be more even handed in the conflict, and completely in line with what the Lobby and the zionist donors want, which wants the US to be puppets of israel, and you don’t believe it’s the zionist money?? Sure.

        “In case you forgot, the two-state solution remains the preferred outcome of the international community.”

        Yes, on the assumption that there is fair dealing. But the israelis have never acted in good faith, so the international community is part of the problem.

        “That’s not why it’s unstable”

        To the extent it would unstable, it’s because about 100 years ago a horde of alien Jews from Europe decided to invade and steal the land of Palestine from the Palestinians. The resulting instability is about what you’d expect if the Nazis had been able to continue their occupation of France.

        “I’m quite sure that the Jews will not be the ones to make it unstable.”

        No need. they’re responsible for any instability already.

        “There is zero proof to support his ridiculous, antisemitic conspiracy theory that the US fought the Iraq War to protect Israel. Zero.”

        Oh, horseshit. You may like to pretend that the neocons who engineered the war and the fact that they’re by and large zionists is coincidental, but that doesn’t make so (and your ridiculous “antisemitism” libel is patent nonsense). And you might like to pretend that the policies which these neocons pursued, which just happened to benefit israel, was just another coincidence, but that’s simply nonsense. And finally, your fantasy that these same neocons were acting purely for the interest of the US and that the benefit accruing to israel by removing a regional threat to them was purely collateral to their flag-waving American patriotism is stupidly naive, if you acually believe it, which I don’t believe you do.

        “And of course, history shows that the Arabs love democracy and minorities. ”

        Ahh, the typical racism that we’ve all come to expect from you, hoppy.

        “You have one standard for the Jews, and another for everybody else.”

        Nope, not even close. But seeing as how you’re a supporter of an ethnoreligious Apartheid state which is discriminatory by its founding ideology, I expect nothing less than this nonsesne from you.

    • Donald
      Donald
      March 3, 2014, 3:55 pm

      “When Americans are asked what solution they favor, they go for the two-state outcome over a one-state paradigm by 39-24 (with another 24 percent supporting occupation/annexation). But if the two-state solution is not available, Telhami found that nearly two-thirds of those two-staters turned to a one-state option; and overall Americans would be for a single democracy by roughly two-to-one.”

      Unless I’m misunderstanding, what this suggests is that, as is often the case, if you do man-on-the-street polling questions with typical Americans on foreign policy questions you’ll get some deeply confused responses. So 39 percent favor a 2ss, 24 percent favor a 1ss, 24 percent favor annexation or occupation, and yet if a 2ss is taken off the table, 2/3 favor a democracy? Okay, whatever.

      Reminds me of a survey I once saw. Check 1 if you agree, 2 if you disagree, and 3 if you aren’t sure. The survey conductor then averaged the numbers.

      I see I put this in as a reply to hophmi. I thought it was going to stand on its own. I do have a reply to hophmi, but that comes next.

      • Donald
        Donald
        March 3, 2014, 4:34 pm

        Actually, on second thought I guess the results make sense–Americans favor a 2ss first, democracy second, and apartheid third. I wonder what their reasons would be for this ranking.

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        March 4, 2014, 5:37 am

        I wonder what their reasons would be for this ranking.

        I think that they favor independence and democracy, and just assume that both are implied in the 2ss.

    • Donald
      Donald
      March 3, 2014, 4:01 pm

      “But they will not choose to negotiate with a party that has not renounced the use the violence. ”

      I don’t know if it is you or “they” which is confused here, but Israel never renounced violence. Its whole existence as a Jewish state depended on ethnic cleansing.

      I agree with some of what you say, though. I don’t put a lot of stock in polls. ManyAmericans tend to be deeply confused about foreign policy. Many, though not all, get their views simply from whatever prejudices they’ve picked up, so they might well agree with your ludicrous contention that Palestinians need to renounce violence, while Israelis can inflict it whenever they choose. It would be a typical Western attitude.

      That said, I think people on the left, and some on the right, are increasingly able to see through the pro-Israel propaganda. They might not go as far as the majority here at Mondoweiss, but I think that to the extent people do pay attention to the I/P conflict, fewer and fewer buy into the hasbara narrative. But how many people pay attention?

      • seafoid
        seafoid
        March 3, 2014, 5:03 pm

        “but I think that to the extent people do pay attention to the I/P conflict, fewer and fewer buy into the hasbara narrative. But how many people pay attention?”

        I think you only need 10% popular support before an idea takes off as “common sense”.

      • James Canning
        James Canning
        March 3, 2014, 6:25 pm

        Sound estimate.

    • Hostage
      Hostage
      March 3, 2014, 4:07 pm

      Far, far more Americans favor Israel than favor the Palestinians.

      You obviously aren’t very good at math. The poll shows that far, far more Americans favor equality over either Israel or Palestine.

      • hophmi
        hophmi
        March 4, 2014, 11:01 am

        “You obviously aren’t very good at math. The poll shows that far, far more Americans favor equality over either Israel or Palestine.”

        The poll shows that when read a question about democracy versus unequal rights in the abstract, Americans will favor democracy. That’s about it. You can delude yourself into thinking otherwise, and pretend that there’s some groundswell of American support for your point of view. That’s your gambit.

        The latest Gallup poll shows that 72% of Americans have a favorable impression of Israel, higher than last year. The same poll showed that 19% of Americans have a favorable impression of the Palestinian Authority.

        When asked last year whether they consider Israel an ally, friendly but not an ally, unfriendly, or an enemy, 46% answered “ally” and 32 percent answered “friendly”. Those numbers are historically consistent with polling over the last 15 years.

        In a 2013 Pew poll, when asked “In the dispute between Israel and the Palestinians, which side do you sympathize with more: Israel or the Palestinians?”

        49% said Israel, and 12% said the Palestinians. In the ABC poll, it was 55-9.

        When asked in the WSJ poll which side the US should favor, 31% said the Israelis, and 4% said the Palestinians. 31-4. 55 percent said they should be treated the same, but let’s be honest. Those 55 percent are probably not very active on the issue, and a person that says “treat them the same” is not a person who says “boycott Israel.” So you have nearly eight times the number of Americans who say that the US should favor Israel as you do the number of American who say that the US should favor the Palestinians.

        So you can tell yourself that Telhami’s poll means that Americans “favor equality.” Americans in certain states favor anti-democratic voter ID laws and anti-democratic laws preventing convicted felons from voting. Ask the question right, and you’ll find that they don’t support the Fourth Amendment or the First or the Fifth or the Sixth. So I’m not very interested in simplistic polls like Telhami’s.

        http://www.pollingreport.com/israel.htm

    • Woody Tanaka
      Woody Tanaka
      March 3, 2014, 4:22 pm

      “But they will not choose to negotiate with a party that has not renounced the use the violence.”

      And have the zionists renounced the use of violence?? Or is violence only okay in your mind when a Jew does it and not when a non-Jew does it?

    • RoHa
      RoHa
      March 4, 2014, 12:22 am

      “Far, far more Americans favor Israel than favor the Palestinians. I know you think it doesn’t matter, but it does, because in foreign policy, the activists are most important, not general public opinion.”

      But if general opinion is not important, then surely it doesn’t matter that far more Americans favour Israel than favour the Palestinians.

  15. German Lefty
    German Lefty
    March 3, 2014, 3:05 pm

    I find the choice of words a bit problematic.

    There are two kinds of a two-state solution:
    – a Zionist two-state solution (liberal Zionist goal)
    – a non-Zionist two-state solution (BDS goal)

    There are two kinds of a one-state solution:
    – a Zionist one-state solution (conservative Zionist goal)
    – a non-Zionist one-state solution (BDS goal)

    What the poll results show is that US citizens favour democracy (i.e. a non-Zionist solution) over Israel’s Jewishness (i.e. a Zionist solution). It’s a clear rejection of Zionism.

    I think that these findings can also be applied to the state of Israel within a two-state solution. Given their preference for democracy, one can conclude that US citizens would choose a non-Zionist two-state solution over a Zionist two-state solution.

    • Sibiriak
      Sibiriak
      March 3, 2014, 9:02 pm

      German Lefty:

      I find the choice of words a bit problematic.

      There are two kinds of a two-state solution:
      – a Zionist two-state solution (liberal Zionist goal)
      – a non-Zionist two-state solution (BDS goal)

      There are two kinds of a one-state solution:
      – a Zionist one-state solution (conservative Zionist goal)
      – a non-Zionist one-state solution (BDS goal)

      Excellent point.

  16. seafoid
    seafoid
    March 3, 2014, 5:01 pm

    Without addressing the lobby directly, Telhami says that politicians will be in “paralyzing” crisis, unable to embrace a one-state model despite the people’s support.

    “The essence of dramatic tragedy is not unhappiness. It resides in the solemnity of the remorseless working of things.” Alfred North Whitehead

    “Two things are infinite,” Albert Einstein said. “The universe and human stupidity, and I’m not sure about the universe.”

    J. K. Galbraith:“The conventional wisdom”gives way not so much to new ideas as to “the massive onslaught of circumstances with which it cannot contend”.

    World’s most intractable conflict my ass.

  17. anthonybellchambers
    anthonybellchambers
    March 3, 2014, 7:02 pm

    Given that US foreign policy is determined by AIPAC, an Israel lobby that is a de facto agency acting for a foreign power, in Washington, and that this organisation operates in concert with the Israeli government to influence Congress – is it not now beyond time that the president of the United States commenced acting in that capacity and not merely like an intern with speaking skills?

    Barack Obama is without doubt a huge disappointment for all those who mistakenly believed in him, around the world. As for Binyamin Netanyahu and his continuing policy of illegal settlements – he should be brought before the International Court on charges of inducing Israeli citizens to break the law in their thousands in contempt of the ruling of the United Nations and the ICJ.

    Either America and its client state of Israel conform to international agreements and conventions or they must be judged guilty of criminal conduct on an international level. The status quo cannot last much longer. It supports global instability and ignores human rights on a grand scale. A paradigm shift is required, hopefully before the next US election. If not, then there is considerable danger for the West.

    • JeffB
      JeffB
      March 4, 2014, 5:10 pm

      @anthonybellchambers

      Either America and its client state of Israel conform to international agreements and conventions or they must be judged guilty of criminal conduct on an international level. The status quo cannot last much longer. It supports global instability and ignores human rights on a grand scale

      Let me let you in on a little secret. America does not support international human rights agreements. When it desires it supports instability and is perfectly willing to ignore human rights. It is unquestionably guilty of criminal conduct. This has been true since the time the UN was being founded and the USA was massively violating human rights in the Greek civil war. It has been true ever since. The status quo lasts fine.

      The UN exists as a meeting place for the great powers and when they come to an agreement it becomes a useful vehicle for minor actions. It is however not a world government. The only paradigm shift required is realizing the obvious.

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        March 4, 2014, 6:26 pm

        Let me let you in on a little secret.

        You aren’t letting anyone in on a secret. Jus cogens norms of customary international law are accepted by so many people across different cultures that there is an objective moral consensus — or the closest thing to it — that violating them is not merely wrong, but also criminal.

        Even when the United States and other countries try to avoid their customary or conventional obligations, they still implicitly acknowledge international law by attempting to find a legal pretext for their actions that can serve as a fig leaf. For example, Chris Borgen has noted that Russia (and states, in general) cloak their actions in “law talk” to foster reputation of being a lawful actor, even-or perhaps especially-when they are not. http://opiniojuris.org/2014/03/02/russias-intervention-ukraine-legal-rhetoric-military-tactic/

        Israel’s national pastime is engaging in supercilious, quasi-legal arguments that can easily be deconstructed by anyone familiar with the subject of international law and the historical record. Gershom Gorenberg once noted that the arguments are considered so quirky that the government of Israel won’t even consider using them when it’s arguing cases in its own Courts. He noted that only “useful idiots” employ them for PR purposes. See On Settlement Legality, With Thanks to Our Readers http://southjerusalem.com/2008/11/on-settlement-legality-with-thanks-to-our-readers/

    • James Canning
      James Canning
      March 6, 2014, 7:04 pm

      One wonders whether Obama was primarily bamboozled by the Israel lobby (and Israel), or if he was essentially blackmailed by Aipac stooges in his own party.

  18. seafoid
    seafoid
    March 4, 2014, 9:14 am

    “Poll: If two-states collapse, Americans overwhelmingly favor ‘democracy’”

    They should have asked the question in HEBREW
    Why didn’t they?
    Because they are ANTISEMITIC.

  19. brenda
    brenda
    March 7, 2014, 3:19 pm

    Phil, you are right. This IS huge. I picked up the piece from Ha’aretz the day after it appeared in Foreign Policy — G-d forbid it should ever be published here in a mainstream newspaper, but no matter. It’s already being used to fight back against the hasbara in US mainstream newspaper threads. For a really deft hasbara fighter, look at the commentary at the end of the FP piece, Shingo lights up the board. He brings tears to your eyes if you are into that kind of thing….

    Annie’s comment “we’ve been lied to” is pretty much on the money, but also more complicated than that. “We’ve been successfully propagandized” would be more precise. A few weeks ago I began wondering about the opinion polls regularly cited by hasbara online, the polls showing how overwhelmingly the American public loves and supports Israel — “so where are they? How come the Israel-loving American public isn’t on this thread, supporting Israel against those few outlier Americans who are criticizing Israel?”

    All I can see on these mainstream newspaper threads are Americans critical of Israel who are then answered by Israelis. If the news is particularly bad (progress in the Kerry mission) the thread will be overwhelmed by defensive Israelis. There is the very, very occasional comment from the American Christian fundamentalist community threatening damnation to those who oppose Israel but that’s about it.

    Yeah, Annie, yer right. We’ve been had. The general American public may overwhelmingly support Israel, but that support is exceedingly thin.

    The firm which did the survey has an interesting provenance. Europe-based business marketing, not particularly “political” or “American”. Gives the results more cred for me. Wikipedia has a good write-up.

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