Israel’s threat of annexation is a crisis for liberal Zionists because it makes them confront a reality: There is not going to be a two-state solution. Yesterday Jeremy Ben-Ami of J Street warned supporters: “Members of the Trump administration are opening the door to a one-state scenario where Palestinians will live as second-class citizens.” But that scenario exists right now, and liberal Zionists have done precious little to oppose it.
Tag Archives: Bernie Sanders
When J Street advocates for “Israel’s future as a democratic and Jewish homeland,” it is supporting a concept that has been a contradiction-in-terms since Israel’s establishment. Abba Solomon argues that J Street and Bernie Sanders too cannot face the fact that political Zionism means perpetual Jewish domination, or at best custody, of Palestinian lives.
“Antisemitism is not some abstract idea to me. It is very personal. It destroyed a good part of my family,” Bernie Sanders tells the American Jewish Committee, and says that history leads him to fight Israel’s military occupation, which has “crushed” Palestinans for over 50 years in pain and humiliation and denies them freedom of movement.
Israelis are the innocents, while Gaza militants are “terrorists” in countless statements about the weekend’s violence from U.S. Democrats and liberal Zionist groups. That makes Bernie Sanders’s call for an “evenhanded” policy and concern about human rights violations in Gaza remarkable for political courage. Sanders says he has been “criticized over and over again” for his stance.
Asked, “will you actually hold Israel accountable for its continued human rights violations?” Senator Elizabeth Warren affirmed the two-state solution and criticized Netanyahu. A leftwinger on economic justice issues, Warren is echoing a safe Democratic Party consensus, clearly fearful that the issue could divide the party’s base.
At a recent CNN town hall, Bernie Sanders courageously asserted that “Israel is run by a racist government” and called for “a level playing field” between Israel and the Palestinians. Hamzah Reza writes that while such rhetoric is a breath of fresh air, the reality is that Sanders has refused to take the tangible actions that a plurality of rank-and-file Democratic voters want him to take.
Presidential candidate Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) told a room full of students last night during CNN’s marathon town hall in New Hampshire that Israel is headed by a “racist government,” and vowed to “level the playing field” between disparate American support for Israel and the Palestinians.
Five Democratic presidential candidates criticized Netanyahu for his election tactics, and Israel lobbyists have jumped into the breach to prevent the two countries from dividing politically. Elliott Abrams calls on Democratic Party leaders to break bread with Netanyahu if he wins. And you thought Abrams was a Republican!
Netanyahu’s latest ad bashing President Obama is making liberal Zionists angry, but it’s a reminder of a simple truth: Israelis dislike Obama and love Donald Trump. So there is good reason that the bipartisan consensus on Israel is breaking up here.
Many Democratic candidates for president are skipping the AIPAC conference because it’s offering a red carpet to a racist, Benjamin Netanyahu. The Israel prime minister’s explicit slurs of Arabs have alarmed American progressives. But Nancy Pelosi, Chuck Schumer, Bill de Blasio and the New York Times haven’t noticed.
A new Bernie Sanders ad highlights his criticism of Israel. Just as Sanders spoke out against South African apartheid ahead of others, says activist Shaun King, “today he speaks out against apartheid-like conditions in Palestine even though it’s not popular.” The progressive base wants that message.
Robert Fantina asked the Bernie Sanders campaign for his position on Palestine and was told the candidate supports “diplomatic efforts to end the occupation and broker a two-state solution.” Fantina says that as Sanders continues to ride his populist wave across the dismal political landscape of the United States, he will continue to burnish his credentials as being progressive except on Palestine.
On Wednesday, Senator Bernie Sanders sent a one-page letter to David Friedman, President Donald Trump’s pick for U.S. ambassador to Israel, asking the envoy-designee to explain his funding of a West Bank settlement and to consider repealing the tax-exempt status for charities financing settlements, like the one Friedman runs.
Yesterday the Bernie Sanders campaign released the speech Sanders would have given to AIPAC had the presidential hopeful been allowed to show a pre-recorded message at the pro-Israel lobby’s annual policy conference. The speech includes harsh words for Israel on settlements, Gaza and occupation.