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On NPR, two states is still what ‘the solution needs to be’

on 13 Comments
Steve Inskeep

Steve Inskeep

The two-state paradigm is being widely undermined these days. Martin Indyk says that Israel is pushing itself into a binational reality, Mustafa Barghouthi says that nearly 50 years of occupation have created “full-fledged apartheid,” Ali Abunimah says that dialogue without action is just prolonging the suffering of Palestinians, Shibley Telhami says two-thirds of Americans would support one state with equal rights rather than occupation, and Jodi Rudoren of the New York Times reports that young Palestinians don’t believe in partition any more after endless failed negotiation.

But on National Public Radio the other morning, two states were alive and well. Below is host Steven Inskeep questioning Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat and repeatedly stating the “necessary” nature of the two-state solution. In fairness, Erekat says that he is for the two-state solution, and that Palestinian public opinion supports a two-state solution. What I am pointing out is Inskeep’s absolute adherence to the idea of two states. You’d think a journalist would be bringing up the new trend. Nope.

INSKEEP: You’re making two very interesting points that I want to make sure people are clear about. You’re saying that now Palestinians are united under one government or they will be if this agreement is concluded that makes it possible to make a full deal with Israel. That’s one point you’re making….

INSKEEP: The other point you’re making, though, is that you wish to have peace on the basis of recognizing Israel and a two-state solution. Hamas, of course, has rejected any recognition of Israel. Are you saying that you believe you can bring Hamas to recognize Israel?..

INSKEEP: And you believe that Palestinians on the whole would vote for a peace deal that includes recognition of Israel in a two-state solution….

INSKEEP: Israeli officials have said, a number of them, some of them have said to me that they acknowledge that a two-state solution is necessary, that a Palestinian state is actually necessary for the long term survival of Israel. And that makes me…

INSKEEP: Well, let me get to the question here, which is if both sides agree that at two-state solution is necessary, I’m curious when you get away from the rhetoric, when you’re quietly in a room, is there some sense that people on both sides understand what the solution needs to be here?

Philip Weiss

Philip Weiss is Founder and Co-Editor of

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13 Responses

  1. Reds on May 9, 2014, 1:12 pm

    Hi Phil,

    This interview seems to be a poorly attempt at balanced with his previous interview with Ron Dermercwhich was the ambassador spewing talking points and Unskeep nodding along. Once you see that you’ll see why Inskeep focus on Hamas recoginizing Israel’s right to exist little focus settlements on Kerry’s apartheid comment(none)

    • Kay24 on May 9, 2014, 5:04 pm

      Ron Dermer has been able to make the rounds on television, spew the lies, and propaganda, and get away unchallenged. It seems in the zionist media, the Israeli/Palestinian conflict is one sided. The zionist side gets to say any darn thing they want, try to look the victim, justify their violence by the endless whining of having to defend themselves, and there is no one on the other side to dispute it.
      At the end of the interview, they all look smug, because they got away with the lies again.
      It seems the side with the trained army, sophisticated weaponry, supported by the world’s greatest superpower, have been the “victims” for decades, by those they occupy. It seem the zionists are afraid of homemade rockets that hardly hit it’s mark, and rock stones. Aw, poor things.

      • Citizen on May 9, 2014, 5:48 pm

        @ Kay24
        Over the last 70 years, I’ve never head on mainstream TV news, where most Americans get their daily dose, if at all) a single discussion of the Palestinian POV.

  2. Reds on May 9, 2014, 1:18 pm

    Here’s the previous NPR piece

    –DERMER: Yeah, but from there to apartheid is something else. I mean, there’s no connection between Israel and apartheid, not only because it’s not a racial system in Israel, also because virtually all those things that Israel put in place was to protect its own security. So I don’t think there’s any way that you could put the world apartheid – which is a very charged word and has a certain historical meaning – it’s totally inaccurate when it comes to the state of Israel. There is a question of – what you’re raising – that you don’t want to incorporate, whatever the number is, a million and a half, two million Palestinians, who live in the West Bank, Judea and Samaria, who live in these areas and to incorporate them into the state of Israel. We don’t want a binational state. We want Israel to be a Jewish state and a democratic state. And here you have this tension. But at the same time that we’re trying to sort of separate from the Palestinians and give them a state of their own, we also want to make sure that we’re not endangering our security.–

    See it’s not apartheid if it’s in the name of security. Also Judea and Samaria is a red flag for an Greater Israel supporter.

    He pretty much stated Israel wants the land but not the people. Which seems pretty racist and discriminatory

    • seafoid on May 9, 2014, 3:11 pm

      That argument is so hollow now. The goys can see through the fig leaf of security.
      The Israelis made the fatal mistake of getting involved in a peace process that raised overseas expectations of the founding of a Palestinian state . Now it’s clear they never wanted that.
      Just look at the income differentials by religion. That is apartheid.

      • stephenjones on May 9, 2014, 9:21 pm

        Seafoid: I’m glad you have pointed out – and it’s starting to dawn on others at Mondoweiss too – that merely creating a single plurinational, multiconfessional polity will not bring about justice. No doubt it would allow some very shallow people to “reclaim a clean Jewish identity” unsullied with overt and deadly racism, and no doubt it would give the human rights NGOs are reason to pat themselves on the back. But we have to ask ourselves what the real agenda is here. One often reads – “Where is the Palestinian Nelson Mandela?” A Palestinian Mandela would be a Godsend to Israeli Jews, the small number of wealthy Palestinians, and white liberals everywhere frightened of generations of bloody revenge, but it would be the kiss of death for most Palestinians.

        I invite all MWers to compare every quantifiable signifier for political economic status (housing, healthcare, labor rights, education, etc) for black South Africans before and after the end of Apartheid. Compare this to whites over the same period. Then compare the differential between blacks and whites. What you’ll see is that whites started with an advantageous position vis-a-vis international capital and labor markets, and skyrocketed into unprecedented heights (THEY benefitted mightily from the end of Apartheid and the end of sanctions)… while blacks, as a group, fell backwards in so many ways. Blacks – and blacks vis-a-vis whites – have done WORSE as a group by many measurable standards. And the ANC doesn’t care. Just as would-be Palestinian rulers and their Arab allies wouldn’t care.

        Delivering a people from legal racist Apartheid dogma into the hands of the International Monetary Fund is best characterized as “out of the frying pan and into the wood chipper”. To those whose rallying cry is “Justice for Palestine” or “Palestinian Solidarity,” take heed.

      • seafoid on May 10, 2014, 12:51 am

        “that merely creating a single plurinational, multiconfessional polity will not bring about justice”

        I wouldn’t be surprised to see reparations and big lawsuits. Israel doesn’t have a leg to stand on.
        A lot of poorer Jews will be shafted. Zionism doesn’t look after its people very well and the mess is enormous.
        Lots of insight from south Africa as well.

      • Keith on May 10, 2014, 5:35 pm

        STEPHENJONES- “A Palestinian Mandela would be a Godsend to Israeli Jews….”

        I’m glad that you pointed this out as it highlights a certain Mondo blind spot. We continue to hear about Mandela and Gandhi as if they represented some sort of true liberation. They did not. The illusion of political freedom camouflaged the reality of ongoing economic servitude. Both countries remain essentially imprisoned within the global capitalist system. This system bleeds the Third World dry for the benefit of the transnational corporations and the local business elites/oligarchs. At this stage of the game, the matrix of global financial/market control is so overwhelming that I doubt that either South Africa or India can break free. Of course, the local fat cats who profit from the systemic injustice are all too eager to support ongoing neoliberalism.

    • Citizen on May 9, 2014, 5:55 pm

      @ Reds
      OK, now you can justify what the American government has done in the name of security since 9/11. What regime, ever, has not justified what it did, or does, in the name of security? Chump change.

  3. doug on May 9, 2014, 1:43 pm

    The implications of no two state solution are unthinkable therefor reality shall not intervene in the discussions but facts on the ground proceed apace.

  4. Boomer on May 9, 2014, 5:46 pm

    Unfortunately, NPR’s failures in objective reporting regarding I/P go far, far beyond this.

  5. piotr on May 10, 2014, 9:01 am

    also because virtually all those things that Israel put in place was to protect its own security

    Indeed. For security is a zealous god. The most sinister organizations in history were devoted to security, like Extraordinary Commission for Internal Security (and successors), Secret State Police and so on. Apartheid South Africa did a lot for security too.

    Mind you, security of a nation means more than physical survival of the members and their asset, they must also survive as a nation and a culture (and perhaps as a religion). This requires to eliminate threats like internal traitors (self-hating Jews ??), threats to the purity of national DNA (non-Jews who date Jews or worse, this threat is particularly dire in the Exile, but even in Israel the threat from foreign and Arab brides and grooms is very much a matter of concern), threats against the martial spirit of the nation and so on and so on.

  6. ramzijaber on May 10, 2014, 9:01 am

    Zionists, christian zionists, and neocons are chasing dust of the past, oblivious to the fact that the future has already arrived and the 2SS is not part of it.

    And to answer your question Inskeep on whether people on both sides understand what the 2SS solution needs to be here, that is no longer a relevant question. it has already been forcibly answered by the zionists with all their illegal and criminal activities on Palestinian land and Palestinian people.

    2SS is now relegated to the dustbin of history. 1S1P1V is the only path forward.

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