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Peace is out. Good.

Opinion
on 62 Comments

With little fanfare, in late 2019 Tel Aviv University shuttered its Tami Steinmetz Center for Peace Research. Two other peace groups – both mostly manned by former Israeli generals and secret policemen – were also closed. Yours truly thinks this is actually good news, and not just because of a slight allergy to former generals. (Or, for that matter, former first lieutenants.)

“Peace” was often a cover phrase, which may well have served to doom normal life in Israel and Palestine. The famous and mythical Israeli quest for “peace”, though responsible for some quite good music, was a chimera.

Assuming the problem of Israel-Palestine is a problem of “peace” required several assumptions:

  1. There is some sort of parity between Israel and the Palestinians.
  2. Both sides were engaged in war, or war-like activities.
  3. What was needed was a Palestinian leader who would be conciliatory enough to agree to peace.

None of these assumptions were true. Oh, certainly there were hostilities galore, chief of them the Israeli invasion of Lebanon in 1982. We bombed Palestinians where we could find them, and were quite ingenious in killing them in various ways. The Palestinian armed groups were as murderous as the IDF, though spectacularly less successful. Israel was never – not even in the horror days of 2001-2002 – facing a military enemy in the Palestinians. There was never a war. War requires some sort of parity. There were Israeli-Egyptian wars, but not an Israeli-Palestinian one.

What we faced was an insurrection. The difference is critical. In war, two sides face one another in battle, often for made-up reasons. Insurrections are different. One side is putting its boot on the other side’s neck. The second side tries to take it off. Often we are speaking of enslavers and those who are enslaved. Each side knows the other intimately, and the fight is fueled by the projection of those carrying out the injustice. Think, for instance, of the Israeli paranoia that THEY “want to throw us into the sea”, while at the same time denying furiously anything unusual happened here in 1947-1948.

The 1982 war’s major goal was to wipe out the PLO as a viable Palestinian national movement. The goal, in fact, was to make the Israeli occupation of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip easier. Break the PLO in Lebanon, thought Ariel Sharon, and you’ll break its ability to serve a national movement. Then it would be easy to atomize the occupied Palestinians, and force down their throat some Bantustan agreement.

The first part actually worked.

That glorious of all Palestinian struggles, the First Intifada, was a true people’s insurrection. It was led from below, by group leaders who lost much of their faith in the “outside” PLO – Arafat and his sycophants in Tunis, a revolutionary force unique in becoming corrupted before it reached power. The local groups played a very delicate game: They couldn’t disown the PLO, because its ideas were popular. So they gave lip-service to Arafat, and on the ground played a rather different game. They refused to turn the struggle into an armed one, because an armed struggle requires specialists, fighters, and you couldn’t run a viable guerrilla campaign in the Gaza Strip and in the West Bank. Far more importantly, they quietly turned the Palestinian struggle on its head. The “outside” PLO was fighting, ostensibly, for diaspora Palestinians; the Intifada shifted the focus to the needs of the Palestinians living under occupation.

And these rebels managed to drag Israel to the table. Fighting an insurrection was eroding the fighting abilities of the IDF, swallowing huge amounts of its manpower, and Rabin – an old-time general – wanted out. So he spoke about “peace”, by which he meant an end to daily IDF activities in the West Bank. (Arafat immediately acted to remove the local rebel group leaders from any positions of authority, but that’s another story.)

But the problem remained: Not hostilities, but the occupation. With a dreadful irony, the occupation became tighter after the Oslo Accords. Rabin’s goal was not peace but separation: “We here, and they over there”, as he said in his 1992 campaign. It was after Oslo that the West Bank became Balkanized; that Palestinians needed permits to move from one part of the West Bank to another, a special permit to enter Jerusalem from the West Bank, and a permit to enter Israel. And, of course, a permit to travel from the West Bank to Gaza. Rabin was blunt about what he wanted: “[An occupation] without the HCJ and B’Tselem.” Arafat’s numerous secret police services were meant to outsource the occupation to the Palestinian Authority. He said it openly, but Israelis didn’t listen. Everyone, after all, was speaking of “peace.”

What we needed, what we still need, is not peace. There cannot be peace between a slave holder and the people they enslave. They will be, by nature, mortal enemies. What we need is justice. An end to the secret conflict, to the night raids, to house demolitions, to tortured children, to the secret police atomizing Palestinian society. Jewish Israelis need to start seeing Palestinians as human beings deprived of their basic rights, not as militants being any sort of threat to the IDF. They never were. The phrases of war and peace, of endless “negotiations” and “peace process” never mentioned justice, just de-escalation as Israel deepened its hold on the occupied territories.

And, of course, we’ll need to talk about 1948. This will not be easy to Jewish Israelis, but we won’t get anywhere without it. And we cannot bring it up if we keep speaking of peace instead of justice. So let the old organizations dismantle; we’d do better without the anesthetic phrases which always come with a covered bundles of “security arrangements” devised by generals.

Yossi Gurvitz

Yossi Gurvitz is a journalist and a blogger, and has covered the occupation extensively.

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62 Responses

  1. jon s on January 10, 2020, 1:58 pm

    My view is the opposite: if we can’t have both peace and justice , if we have to choose one or the other – I choose peace.
    Our focus should be on finding a reasonable political agreement to ensure a peaceful future for our children and grandchildren, free of bloodshed and violence and not on chasing some mirage of ultimate “justice”.

    • Talkback on January 10, 2020, 2:07 pm

      How can there be peace without justice?

    • Mooser on January 10, 2020, 2:16 pm

      “My view…” “Jon s”

      I can translate “Jon s” from Zio-speak:
      ‘Israel gets to keep whatever it wants of Palestine, and do whatever it wants with the Palestinians, or there will be no peace. And I am happy to obligate our children and grandchildren to that, and they will love us for it!’

      • Talkback on January 10, 2020, 6:00 pm

        I think that’s quite unfair, Mooser.

        Jon s is clearly thinking about one state for all of its citizens based on equality and including the Palestinian refugees. Because anything short of a Jewish Apartheid state would be unjust to Zionists, but jon s still prefers peace.

      • Mooser on January 15, 2020, 2:38 pm

        “Talkback” to tell you the truth, I don’t think “Jon s” even lives in “Israel”, in Beersheba (that’s just a name he picked out).

      • jon s on January 15, 2020, 3:34 pm

        Talkback
        As you should know by now , I support two states. Partition, two states ,does not contradict equlity.
        Both states can be democratic and ensure equal rights for all citizens.
        I think that pursuing some ideal of perfect justice is futile and counter-productive. Neither side can achieve what they would consider to be “justice”.
        It’s much better to focus on realistic political agreements which both sides can live with. Leave “justice” to the extremists and fanatics. Let’s have peace.
        Once again I recommend the interview with Ayman Odeh that I linked to on another thread.

      • Talkback on January 15, 2020, 4:39 pm

        jon s: “As you should know by now , I support two states.”

        What do you even mean by “two states”? Apartheid Israel in all of Palestine and an Israeli controlled Palestinian Bophuthatswana in a small part of it? We know for sure that this is the Israeli version of “two states”.

        jon s: “Partition, two states ,does not contradict equlity.”

        It doesn’t guarantee it either. Read:

        “Hendrik Verwoerd in Jerusalem

        The “two state solution” for Israel and Palestine will be the culmination of the same political vision that motivated apartheid South Africa.”
        https://africasacountry.com/2017/12/verwoerd-in-jerusalem

        jon s: “I think that pursuing some ideal of perfect justice is futile and counter-productive. Neither side can achieve what they would consider to be “justice”.”

        Spare us your fake symmetry. You know very well whose rights are violated and who violates them. You just want the violator to get away with most of it. Not alll of it, because that would the “perfect justice” of the violater, right?

        jon s: “It’s much better to focus on realistic political agreements which both sides can live with. Leave “justice” to the extremists and fanatics. Let’s have peace.”

        You don’t want peace. You want the oppressed to peacefully surrender to the demands of the oppressor. Your fake symmetries and rejection of the fundamental rights of the oppressed betray you. It’s funny that you actually believe that noone can see through your charade.

        jon s: “Once again I recommend the interview with Ayman Odeh that I linked to on another thread.”

        Why? Because you want to point out that Israel is a state with a parliament where a Nonjewish politician is called a terrorist or viewed as a foreigner by Russian immigrants?

      • Talkback on January 17, 2020, 3:54 am

        Some questions for jon s:

        What do you mean by “two state solution” in detail?

        Do you endorse human rights and international law for Nonjews?

        Do you think that not the denial of justice, but the call for justice is “extremist”?

        Which fundamental rights of Jews should be violated to achieve peace?

      • Mooser on January 17, 2020, 4:20 am

        ” It’s funny that you actually believe that no one can see through your charade.” “Talkback”

        His ‘Stuart Smalley of Zionism’ schtik wore through a long time ago. Particularly on the day “Jon s” reported to us that an Israeli gang-murder of an Eritrean man in Beersheba was a terrorist attack on Beersheba (Oct. 18, 2015) I’ll say one thing for “Jon s”: His tallit, without a doubt, is made of the whole cloth.

      • eljay on January 17, 2020, 8:38 am

        || jon s: … I think that pursuing some ideal of perfect justice is futile and counter-productive. … ||

        No-one is pursing any “ideal of perfect justice”. That’s just a line you use to deflect from the fact that when it comes to I-P you and your fellow Zionists hypocritically have no desire to see justice applied because not only would it would rob you of your supremacist standing and your ill-gotten gains but some of you might even find yourselves being held accountable for (war) crimes.

      • Talkback on January 17, 2020, 12:13 pm

        @ Mooser.

        He must be confused. A terrorist attack on Beersheba happened in October. But it was in 1948 and it happened outside of Israel.

      • Talkback on January 17, 2020, 12:15 pm

        @ Eljay

        Bingo.

      • RoHa on January 17, 2020, 11:11 pm

        Jon, as Eljay said, no-one is pursing any “ideal of perfect justice”.

        But it would be nice to see something a bit closer even to imperfect justice.

        An admission of fault and an apology would be a good start.

      • Jon66 on January 18, 2020, 6:32 pm

        OG,
        Here’s a more specific quote from MLK about Israel and peace.
        “ I think it is necessary to say that what is basic and what is needed in the Middle East is peace. Peace for Israel is one thing. Peace for the Arab side of that world is another thing. Peace for Israel means security, and we must stand with all of our might to protect its right to exist, its territorial integrity. I see Israel, and never mind saying it, as one of the great outposts of democracy in the world, and a marvelous ex­ ample of what can be done, how desert land almost can be transformed into an oasis of brotherhood and democracy. Peace for Israel means security and that security must be a reality.
        On the other hand, we must see what peace for the Arabs means in a real sense of security on another level. Peace for the Arabs means the kind of economic security that they so desperately need. These na­ tions, as you know, are part of that third world of hunger, of disease, of illiteracy. “

      • oldgeezer on January 18, 2020, 7:50 pm

        @jon66

        It’s not more specific, you just like it more. And I’d say that’s irrelevant as it’s so old. Israel has had it’s security ever since it got nukes and there is no known right to exist. Indeed Israel is now living outside it’s borders and oppressing the people on the land it’s stealing.

      • RoHa on January 18, 2020, 8:17 pm

        Which clearly shows that MLK had been fed a load of baloney about Israel, but which in no way modifies or detracts from his line that “True Peace is not merely the absence of tension it is the presence of justice.”

      • eljay on January 18, 2020, 10:06 pm

        || oldgeezer: To quote MLK

        True Peace is not merely the absence of tension it is the presence of justice. … ||

        Apparently he also said: “We know through painful experience that freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor, it must be demanded by the oppressed.”

        Either he wasn’t aware of just how hateful and immoral Jewish / “Jewish State” supremacism is or – much worse – he was aware and simply (and hypocritically) didn’t care.

      • Jon66 on January 19, 2020, 1:19 pm

        OG,
        Of course it’s more specific. Your quote is general.
        My quote is based upon MLKs analysis of the specific situation – Israel. In this specific analysis, he said what is needed is peace. He does not mention “justice” as “basic” in this case.
        If you think MLK is irrelevant to the situation, than why did you bring him up?

      • Jon66 on January 19, 2020, 1:27 pm

        Eljay,
        “ Either he wasn’t aware of just how hateful and immoral Jewish / “Jewish State” supremacism is or – much worse – he was aware and simply (and hypocritically) didn’t care.”

        Third option, MLK having traveled the world, led the civil rights movement, and won the Nobel Peace Prize, may be better informed and have a more accurate analysis than Eljay. I could be wrong, but your profile didn’t mention you marching in Selma.

      • eljay on January 19, 2020, 3:04 pm

        || Jon66: … Third option, MLK having traveled the world, led the civil rights movement, and won the Nobel Peace Prize, may be better informed and have a more accurate analysis than Eljay. I could be wrong, but your profile didn’t mention you marching in Selma. ||

        I didn’t march in Selma and yet I believe in and advocate the universal and consistent application of justice, accountability and equality.

        MLK “traveled the world, led the civil rights movement, and won the Nobel Peace Prize” but – like all you (pro-)Zionists – when it came to I-P the most he manage was hypocrisy.

        So, yes, Jon66, you are wrong.

      • Talkback on January 19, 2020, 5:42 pm

        jon s: “Third option, MLK having traveled the world, led the civil rights movement, and won the Nobel Peace Prize, may be better informed and have a more accurate analysis than Eljay.”

        Fourth option: One of the ways King reciprocated Jewish American support for desegregation in the United States was by turning a blind eye to the plight of the Palestinians.

        What MLK Actually Thought About Israel and Palestine
        “Some try to paint Martin Luther King Jr as an unswerving supporter of Israel. They’re wrong.”
        https://www.jacobinmag.com/2019/02/martin-luther-king-israel-palestine-occupation

      • Jon66 on January 19, 2020, 6:09 pm

        Eljay,
        Is there any probability. Even a single digit one, that you are wrong and MLK was right?
        Is there a chance that his analysis of the situation differed from yours? That he genuinely believed what he said rather than being hypocritical.

      • MHughes976 on January 19, 2020, 6:14 pm

        MLK had indeed visited Palestine itself in its Jordanian days and he had many people around him with strong and conflicting views. He was also one of the liberal Protestant intellectual class, many of whose distinguished members, led by Reinhold Niebuhr, were in those days moving very strongly towards Zionism – Niebuhr had been advocating that cause for twenty years before King became famous. He therefore had what seemed to him good reasons from a what he would have considered a well-informed and sensible Christian point of view to join in the chorus of approval for Israel when the War came, though he said in private that he had ‘questions of doubt’. Believing in false reasons is not quite the same thing as being a hypocrite. He thus became an early, rather tentative exponent of what Netanyahu was to call economic peace. I don’t see that he thought this a sacrifice of justice but as example of justice in the sense of giving everyone their due. It’s his sense of what was due to the ‘Arabs’ that is morally flawed.

      • eljay on January 19, 2020, 8:26 pm

        || Jon66: Eljay,
        Is there any probability. Even a single digit one, that you are wrong and MLK was right?
        Is there a chance that his analysis of the situation differed from yours? That he genuinely believed what he said rather than being hypocritical. ||

        Jon66,

        There is a 100% chance that his and your analyses differ from mine.

        There is a 100% chance that he genuinely believed in what he said and you genuinely believe in what you say.

        There is a 100% chance that I believe in and advocate the universal and consistent application of justice, accountability and equality and clearly he did not and neither do you.

      • Jon66 on January 19, 2020, 8:30 pm

        Talk,
        “What MLK Actually Thought About Israel and Palestine“
        Did you actually read the article you attached? It didn’t contradict any of the published support of MLK for Israel. It was just a series of conjectures about where the author thought MLK would be today. It was nonsense.

      • Jon66 on January 19, 2020, 8:42 pm

        Hughes,
        I generally agree. But there are some who can’t believe that MLK was both well informed/honest and supportive of Israel. They try to find excuses/rationales for why he took this stance. Sometimes the simplest explanation is the right one. MLK believed in Zionism and supported Israel.

      • oldgeezer on January 19, 2020, 9:16 pm

        @jon66

        I never said MLK was irrelevant. Are all zionists deficient in reading comprehension skills? Or is it just the two jons that post here

      • echinococcus on January 19, 2020, 10:35 pm

        Orright, the Zionist whinery “66” is into overproduction again, this time with the interminable rehabilitation of MLK by an avowed arch-racist. Won’t stop before its 158th issue, or thereabouts. Limpets got a lot to learn from him about their job.

      • Talkback on January 20, 2020, 4:55 am

        jon s: “It was nonsense.”

        Why ? Because you say so? And why did you ignore my fouth option? Is that “nonsense”, too?

        I can understand why MLK supported Israel as long as he thought that it was just about giving Jews some space. Back in those days he didn’t know about the expulsion of Nonjews or that the Nonjews of Israel were living under martial law. He wasn’t aware that Zionism was all about taking all of Palestine and colonizing it. He didn’t see what followed with Israel’s 67 conquest, following illegal annexations and illegal coloonization to understand the full picture of Zionism. He thought it was a democracy without realising that Israel’s denial of the right of return to maintain Jewish domination was blatant apartheid. He didn’t know that Israel one day would officially declare that Nonjews do not belong to the nation of the state of Israel. And of course, he was fighting along Jews in the US when Jews were mainly fighting for equality and against racism.

        So it is up to you to make the argument that MLK today would have the same position.

      • Talkback on January 20, 2020, 5:06 am

        @ jon s

        I’m still waiting for answers:

        What do you mean by “two state solution” in detail?
        Do you endorse human rights and international law for Nonjews?
        Do you think that not the denial of justice, but the call for justice is “extremist”?
        Which fundamental rights of Jews should be violated to achieve peace?

        I guess it’s going to be the usual cowardism we allready know from other Zionist clones, sorry clowns, whenever they don’t want to admit that they are just pretending to want peace.

        And suddenly the other jon pops in with MLK. How convenient. how about quoting someone who suffered from Apartheid? They should know what they are talking about, not MLK.

        “I fought South African apartheid. I see the same brutal policies in Israel
        Ronnie Kasrils”

        “The parallels with South Africa are many. The Israeli prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, recently said: “Israel is not a state of all its citizens … Israel is the nation state of the Jewish people – and them alone.”

        Similar racist utterances were common in apartheid South Africa. We argued that a just peace could be reached, and that white people would find security only in a unitary, non-racist, democratic society after ending the oppression of black South Africans and providing freedom and equality for all.”
        https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/apr/03/israel-treatment-palestinians-apartheid-south-africa

      • eljay on January 20, 2020, 7:31 am

        || Jon66: … Sometimes the simplest explanation is the right one. MLK believed in Zionism and supported Israel. ||

        That’s absolutely right. He was a Zionist who – despite having advocated, marched and fought for equality, freedom and justice in the U.S. – supported the “right” of people who cho(o)se to embrace the religion-based identity of Jewish:
        – to be supremacists;
        – to carve out of geographic Palestine as large as possible a religion-supremacist “Jewish State”; and
        – to do “necessary evil” unto others.

      • Jon66 on January 20, 2020, 9:32 am

        Talk,
        “ So it is up to you to make the argument that MLK today would have the same position.”

        I don’t know for certain what his position would be today. Neither do you or the author of the article you linked to. What we do know for certain is his position while he was alive. The rest is as all guesswork and irrelevant to a factual discussion.

      • Jon66 on January 20, 2020, 9:37 am

        OG,
        I said, “ And I’d say that’s irrelevant as it’s so old. “

        To which you responded, “ I never said MLK was irrelevant. Are all zionists deficient in reading comprehension skills? Or is it just the two jons that post here“

        So, I, Jon66, said that I thought the quote you used was irrelevant. I did NOT say that you OG said that MLK was irrelevant. I believe that you are the one who seems to be “deficient in reading comprehension skills”. But when reason fails, it’s the usual ad hominems from this crowd.

      • Mooser on January 20, 2020, 12:08 pm

        Look, I didn’t need MLK to tell me that civil rights are right. And I don’t need MLK to tell me that Zionism is wrong.

      • Talkback on January 20, 2020, 2:05 pm

        jon66: “I don’t know for certain what his position would be today.”

        Well, this is what he thought about Apartheid:
        https://kinginstitute.stanford.edu/encyclopedia/apartheid

        But you do know that you are still ignoring my fourth option and that you haven’t explained yet, why the article was nonsense.

        And you are also ignoring that MLK probably didn’t know enough about what happpened between in Palestine from 1948 until his death.

        Jon66: “What we do know for certain is his position while he was alive. ”

        Yes, in this case it was pretty naive, if not propaganda.

      • Jon66 on January 20, 2020, 6:53 pm

        Talk,
        The article is nonsense because it is sheer conjecture. It is not based upon his thoughts actually related to the issue, but is the equivalent of alternative history. He ignores MLKs actual thoughts and then guesses where he would be today. He then concludes definitively MLKs position from his own guesswork.

      • oldgeezer on January 20, 2020, 8:12 pm

        @jon66

        There is a world of difference between saying that a person is irrelevant versus saying something that was said by them is irrelevant.

        Shaking my head,….. don’t you claim to be a doctor? lol

      • echinococcus on January 21, 2020, 1:07 am

        Old Geezer,

        “….. don’t you claim to be a doctor?”

        Well, considering the remarkable capacity of the subject under discussion to keep sticking to any random, irrelevant absurdity for an incredibly long time, pill-pulling the life’s blood out of anyone unwary enough to play his silly game, never letting go, remember that a medieval physician used to be called a leech.

      • Talkback on January 21, 2020, 9:01 am

        Jon66: “Talk,
        The article is nonsense because it is sheer conjecture.”

        Since when is a conjecture nonsense per se? The author explained his conjectures on what MLK “actually thought”, too, as you put it.

        I also linked an article in which we can read MLKs “actual thoughts” about Apartheid. But you choose to ignore it, too.

        Is this claim of yours anything else than a conjecture: “Third option, MLK […] may be better informed and have a more accurate analysis than Eljay.”?

        Or this one: “In this specific analysis, he said what is needed is peace. He does not mention “justice” as “basic” in this case.” What makes you think that MLK envisioned peace without justice, because he doesn’t mention justice? This from his Nobel Prize acceptance speech:
        “Old systems of exploitation and oppression are passing away, and out of the womb of a frail world new systems of justice and equality are being born. ”

        When MLK talks about “Israel’s security”, it’s “right to exist” and being an “outpost of democracy” while talking about “[Arab nations] are part of that third world of hunger, of disease, of illiteracy” sounds nothing short than blatant Hasbara.

        And that brings me to the fourth option you still choose to ignore:
        One of the ways MLK reciprocated Jewish American support for desegregation in the United States was by turning a blind eye to the plight of the Palestinians and parroting Hasbara.

        Otherwise he would NEVER accepted Israel’s Hafraheid and segregational policies. If he would have known that Nonjews in Israel lived until 1966 under martial law and the same enclave and permit system as they have been living since 1967 under Israel’s occupation and that a quarter of Israel nonjews were (and are still) internally displaced with no right to return or access to their property he would have not endorsed this kind of Israel, let alone Zionism. To claim otherwise one has to quote him out of context and his over all fundamental views about peace, equality and justice.

      • Mooser on January 21, 2020, 1:36 pm

        “I am a husband, father, and surgeon. I was raised in a Zionist household and am interested in a peaceful solution.” “Jon66”

        If I didn’t know “Jon66” is lying about all of that, I might be scared to go to the doctor.

        And this is where “Jon66 ” practices.

      • Mooser on January 21, 2020, 6:47 pm

        “physician used to be called a leech.”

        That reminds me, I’d like to ask “Jon66” if he thinks Zionism needs help from MLKjr. more than civil rights in the US needs help from American Jews?

      • oldgeezer on January 21, 2020, 7:43 pm

        @jon66

        “So, I, Jon66, said that I thought the quote you used was irrelevant.”

        Yeah yeah, except you didn’t say that. I did and I said in reference to your quoting him on Israel. It’s clear from the comments posted. Steal much/often?

        “I did NOT say that you OG said that MLK was irrelevant. ”

        Yeah you did. You said “If you think MLK is irrelevant to the situation, than why did you bring him up?”

        If you need a good referral to a special ed teacher I’ll contact some friends in the education field to track someone down for you.

        I’m with mooser and would be very scared at the thought of you practicing medicine. Especially surgery.

        And ech is spot on as well.

        @jon s

        You asked me to provide examples to you. For better or worse they let my original post through but not my response. Shrug. I don’t care enough to rewrite in order to please them at this point in time. I did respond though.

      • echinococcus on January 22, 2020, 7:01 am

        Old Geezer,

        “I’m with mooser and would be very scared at the thought of you practicing medicine. Especially surgery.”

        Medicine, the most powerful means of your-life-or-your-purse holdup, has always attracted more bandits than philanthropists, and more blind order-takers than thinking people. So you should all be very afraid anyway.

    • eljay on January 10, 2020, 5:47 pm

      || jon s: My view is the opposite: if we can’t have both peace and justice , if we have to choose one or the other – I choose peace. … ||

      Of course you do. Justice would require Israel:
      – to reform from a religion-supremacist “Jewish State” primarily of and for Jewish Israelis and non-Israeli Jews into a secular and democratic Israeli state of and for all of its citizens, immigrants, expats and refugees, equally;
      – to relinquish most (if not all) of what it has stolen, occupied and colonized;
      – to honour its obligations under international law; and
      – to accept responsibility and accountability for its past and on-going (war) crimes.

      Your Zionist “peace” is nothing but a big, hypocritical “f*ck you” to justice (and accountability and equality) and the real peace that would result from it.

      • oldgeezer on January 17, 2020, 12:01 am

        jon s has expressed his concern for his kids and grandkids on many occassions.

        jon s is just your run of the mill venal murder supporting racist who prefers peace as long as his family gets to retain it’s ill gotten gains built upon the blood and crushed lives of others.

      • Mooser on January 17, 2020, 4:41 pm

        “jon s is just your run of the mill venal murder supporting racist”

        That’s the way the matzoh crumbles… And why, why, would a commentor hang around at a site for years after it’s obvious he has no credibility or (and especially) likability? And gets every point refuted, and told he doesn’t deserve the benefit of any doubts.

        You would have to pay me to do that.

      • oldgeezer on January 18, 2020, 1:55 am

        To quote MLK

        True Peace is not merely the absence of tension it is the presence of justice.

        Jon s is not a leftist. Not someone who accepts the equality of all peoples. He certainly doesn’t desire peace enough to do anything to achieve it.

      • jon s on January 19, 2020, 10:43 am

        old geezer,
        So, if I seek peace and reconciliation- that makes me a racist. Not just a racist but a “venal murder supporting racist”. ( I wonder if you have an example of my support for murder. )
        And according to your upside-down logic, I’m not even a Leftist, though I’ve advocated and worked for the ideals of the Left for most of my life.
        I see that now you need to resort to cursing me (and my offspring! my kids and grandkids!)
        I almost feel sorry for somone with so much hatred in his soul.

      • jon s on January 19, 2020, 2:56 pm

        I also note that old geezer seems to be in violation of rule 4 in the Comments Policy which refers to “vicious personal attack”. I think that cursing another commenters kids and grandkids (ages of 3 and of 2 months) is way over the line.

      • Mooser on January 19, 2020, 5:26 pm

        “I also note that old geezer seems to be in violation of rule 4”

        Oy such cheesy nachos “Jon s” gets, from reprising his role as the classroom snitch. Extra cheesy.

      • Talkback on January 19, 2020, 5:31 pm

        jon s: “I think that cursing another commenters kids and grandkids (ages of 3 and of 2 months) is way over the line.”

        I think that accusing him of cursing your kids and grandkids is way over the line.

      • Mooser on January 19, 2020, 6:47 pm

        ” I think that accusing him of cursing your kids and grandkids is way over the line. “

        Oh, you know how “Jon s” is. He’s such a big Israeli-left guy that he’d rather blame “old geezer” instead of the Israeli religious right for what is going to happen to his kids and grandkids.

      • Mooser on January 19, 2020, 6:52 pm

        “And according to…/… in his soul.”

        “Jon s”, why do you whine about perfectly predictable, and perfectly understandable, consequences of Zionism? Is that your only plan for dealing with it?

        And try to present yourself as an object of pity because somebody said something you don’t like? “Jon s”, your Zionism has ‘looser’ written all over it.

  2. bcg on January 10, 2020, 3:11 pm

    Various Israeli think tanks – Commanders For Israel’s Security, The Institute For National Security Studies, to name two – envision the future as a kind of apartheid-lite, a soft-ish occupation, Bantustans with wi-fi. If you look at their position papers actual negotiations with the Palestinians is not in the cards, instead they envision some kind of “separation” but with all Palestinian land, airspace, and movement controlled by Israel.

  3. echinococcus on January 11, 2020, 10:13 am

    Very good, Gurvitz, thank you. Finally a realistic appraisal of the PA and Oslo.

    I hope you realize, though, that no part of justice allows continued occupation of anywhere in Palestine by the Zionists or their offspring, in the absence of a general Palestinian plebiscite — without occupation or otherwise duress.

  4. Elizabeth Block on January 11, 2020, 1:08 pm

    I’m afraid I agree with Yossi Gurwitz. The peace camp, such as it is, is mostly “soft Zionists,” who are still Zionists.
    I’m reminded of the woman who saw my “Jews Against the Occupation,” asked me what it was about, and finally said, “Why can’t they just get along?” I said, “Because the Jews want all of the land with none of the people.” That would be peace. And that’s what most Zionists, I think, mean by peace.

  5. James Canning on January 12, 2020, 11:18 am

    Yes indeed: Israel invaded Lebanon in 1982 to facilitate its occupation of the West Bank and Gaza (and the Golan Heights).

  6. shawsg on January 13, 2020, 8:46 am

    I fully agree with this piece and am grateful to the author insofar as the target remains the “peace” groups cited above. The idea of separating peace and justice is simply spurious. Justice is the paramount virtue. Groups like JVP, (though maybe ill named in this context) do not fall into this trap for me and it would be sad if they disbanded. JVP’s clarion call today is for Justice, not peace in Zionist language.

  7. Lewis Elbinger on January 14, 2020, 10:19 pm

    Thank you, Yossi Gurvitz, for an excellent article.

    I have been studying the Israeli/Palestinian conflict for 50 years and have come to this conclusion:
    Israelis say they want peace. Palestinians say they want justice.
    When Israelis work for justice and Palestinians work for peace, we will have both.

    Palestinian Kabbalists and Israeli Sufis are living the peace and can show us the way.

    • Eva Smagacz on January 17, 2020, 12:50 pm

      Lewis Elbinger, you said:

      “Israelis say they want peace. Palestinians say they want justice.
      When Israelis work for justice and Palestinians work for peace, we will have both”

      Do you think peace is pre-requisite of justice, or in your understanding is justice pre-requisite of peace?

      Because I believe that peace is simply a facilitator of ongoing injustice and as soon there is peace (and quiet), nobody in Israel will lift a finger to fight for rights of those belonging to incorrect ethno-religious category.

      Of to say it simply:
      If there is peace, Zionists will assume that Palestinian spirit has been broken and the injustice will reach stratosphere.

      • Mooser on January 17, 2020, 4:50 pm

        “When Israelis work for justice and Palestinians work for peace, we will have both”

        And it will all be done to music, the Israelis singing “Good Golly Miss Molly, you sure love Kaballah“, and Palestinians singing plaintively “Do you love me, do you, Sufi girl, Sufi girl, my little Sufi girl”

  8. Steve Macklevore on January 20, 2020, 3:46 pm

    Jon says “As you should know by now , I support two states. ”

    Jon, what form has this support taken, and how effective has it been?

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