While Bernie is a long way from where I would like him to be on questions related to Palestinian rights, I believe he will get there if the left gives him a chance. I am reminded of Obama’s stance on same sex marriage. Obama went from being opposed, to apologizing for his previous opposition in six years.
In recent years I have already seen Bernie evolve. Not long ago you would have been hard put to find daylight between his position on Israel and AIPAC’s. However the 2014 Gaza incursion seems to have caused a shift in his thinkking. He said at the time,
“the Israeli attacks that killed hundreds of innocent people – including many women and children,” calling the bombings “disproportionate” and “completely unacceptable.”
By 2017 he was comparing the Nakba to the Trail of Tears. In a speech to J-Street he said,
“Like our own country, the founding of Israel involved the displacement of hundreds of thousands of people already living there, the Palestinian people. Over 700,000 people were made refugees,” Sanders said. “To acknowledge this painful historical fact does not delegitimize Israel, any more than acknowledging the Trail of Tears delegitimizes the United States of America.”
This statement indicates to me that the blinders are starting to fall off. It also puts him significantly to the left of any of the other Democratic presidential contenders. One of things I admire about Sanders is that he can be trusted to say what he really believes and does not often bend to political expediency. Like myself, Bernie came to age steeped in Zionist mythology. The Israeli narrative is deeply ingrained in many of us who should be able to see through the b.s. Bernie should be applauded for how far he has come not disparaged for not completely rejecting the kool aide.