How Palestinians Can Finally Achieve Independence

Jeffrey Goldberg’s suggestion:

There is a strategy the Palestinians could implement immediately that would help move them toward independence: They could give up their dream of independence.

It’s a very simple idea. When Abbas goes before the UN, he shouldn’t ask for recognition of an independent state. Instead, he should say the following: “Israel occupied the West Bank and Gaza 45 years ago, and shows no interest in letting go of the West Bank, in particular. We, the Palestinian people, recognize two things: The first is that we are not strong enough to push the Israelis out. Armed resistance is a path to nowhere. The second is that the occupation is permanent. The Israelis are here to stay. So we are giving up our demand for independence. Instead, we are simply asking for the vote. Israel rules our lives. We should be allowed to help pick Israel’s rulers.”

Reaction would be seismic and instantaneous. The demand for voting rights would resonate with people around the world, in particular with American Jews, who pride themselves on support for both Israel and for civil rights at home. Such a demand would also force Israel into an untenable position; if it accedes to such a demand, it would very quickly cease to be the world’s only Jewish-majority state, and instead become the world’s 23rd Arab-majority state. If it were to refuse this demand, Israel would very quickly be painted by former friends as an apartheid state.

Israel’s response, then, can be reasonably predicted: Israeli leaders eager to prevent their country from becoming a pariah would move to negotiate the independence, with security caveats, of a Palestinian state on the West Bank, and later in Gaza, as well. Israel would simply have no choice.

This follows my own train of thought very precisely. Trying to fight the world’s second or third most powerful military with small artillery is a dead end that just kills Palestinians and gives Israel an excuse to continue the blockade of Gaza. Palestinian resistance has just hardened Israelis in their determination to hold onto the land. Violence has failed the Palestinians, and will continue to fail the Palestinians. In order to move forward, Palestinians need to completely reject violence, recognise the reality of the state of Israel and demand voting rights in the state under whose authority they now reside.

Goldberg concludes that none of this will happen because the Palestinians are shortsighted. Maybe, but maybe not. Shortsightedness can easily be corrected.

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91 thoughts on “How Palestinians Can Finally Achieve Independence

  1. One state solution will be resisted with force. Legal experts in Zionist circles are already drawing apartheid laws for those who will not be expelled.

    • There is no other choice. Israel will not let go of the West Bank now. It has the land. There is no way to violently remove Israel from the West Bank. The only way to get independence or equality is to accept the Israelis are here to stay, and then nonviolently demand Knesset votes using Gandhian tactics.

      • What Goldberg and you (and Edward Said and a lot of other people) suggest makes a lot of sense, but the problem is going to be getting the Palestinians to suddenly accept Ghandian tactics. They think Hamas is winning, as do a lot of other people. And violence is fun when you win.

        • The idea that Hamas is winning is the biggest pile of shit I’ve ever heard, and it’s very frustrating that people entertain these delusions. If 150 of your people die, and 5 of their people die, you have lost. And there we go.

  2. Disorder and conflict breeds power. Neither leadership is seeking peace because peace means lost of power. How do you maintain civil order when your economic and social policies fail? You deliver to the masses a foreign evil that can only be stopped by your benevolent leadership.

    Hopefully this delays further aggression against Iran.

  3. “One nation, under God, with liberty and justice for all.” It just sounds right, doesn’t it? But, it is s-o-o-o Un-Jewish! How can the “chosen people” ever accept that Bedouins and Palestinians are equal to them? How can Jews accept the right of return for Palestinian refugees? How could any “just” court not rule again and again in favor of Palestinian claims for property damages and confiscations, and for the pain and suffering inflicted upon them by Jews? The Jews would soon cash in on their “dual” citizenship status, and move back to America or Europe from whence they came.

    I believe that the one-state solution is the best one; but not if in becomes an apartheid state like South Africa, or a segregated state like the “Old South”, in which former slaves lived in subservience to -and fear of- the “superior race”. I know of no Jew -even among those most sympathetic toward the Palestinians- who wants Israel to become fully equality integrated and thus no longer Jewish-controlled..

    • I believe that the one-state solution is the best one; but not if in becomes an apartheid state like South Africa, or a segregated state like the “Old South”, in which former slaves lived in subservience to -and fear of- the “superior race”.

      No chance of a one-state solution in the near future, but if Palestinians threaten it via nonviolent Gandhian methods then a viable two state solution where Palestinians are compensated for their losses becomes much, much more likely.

      I know of no Jew -even among those most sympathetic toward the Palestinians- who wants Israel to become fully equality integrated and thus no longer Jewish-controlled..

      Norm Finkelstein, Glenn Greenwald, MJ Rosenberg, (all of) Naturei Karta, and lots of progressive Jews in America. Long list, actually.

      Personally, I see the rationale behind a Jewish state and I support it in principle, but I don’t support it being built on Palestinian dispossession. Palestinians need to be compensated for their loss at the very least.

      • I stand corrected. There are more than a few Jews who are outspoken in their support of Palestinian rights and regard them as equals. I should have qualified my remarks better by stating that I don’t know of any Jew or Jewish organization that wants full integration with the Palestinians or the Bedouins within one nation. Neterei Karta, in particular, appears to prefer the concept of “separate but equal” to full integration, which of course is far more preferable than current circumstances.

    • If your point is that “Palestinian” is a fraudulent concept, and that the Palestinians should leave and go to Egypt and Jordan, then I think that that is an extremely unrealistic expectation.

      The more this idea is pushed, the stronger the Palestinians feel about living in Palestine. This is the same principle as Hamas telling the Jews to go back to Europe.

      The Arab peoples may not have lived in Palestine since the first Jews lived there but there is quite a lot of evidence of genetic similarity between Palestinian Arabs and Jews, (see here — http://epiphenom.fieldofscience.com/2009/01/shared-genetic-heritage-of-jews-and.html) so quite a lot of the Arab’s ancestors may have been Jews (perhaps those who converted to Islam and Christianity during mediaeval period during the successive consquests).

      But really, I think the Israeli claim to Israel is legitimate not because of the Bible, or who was there first. I think the Israeli claim to Israel is legitimate because people alive today believe in it. And that’s the same reason why I think the Palestinian claim to Palestine is legitimate.

      If we don’t make peace now, we will regret it in 30 years. This could get much more violent than it already is.

    • Thank you for the links. It shows the complexity of the problem, and the fact that the Zionist movement and the resulting immigration of Jewish settlers caused angst among the Arab population. It could have been better managed. Less rush (I understand the Pogroms in Russia put much pressure), and more integration and mutual respect for the plight of the Jews and the Arabs (Just compensation would have been warranted).

      I understand the Jews in Israel need an apartheid State, to preserve their culture and way of life. Unfortunately no race in this day and age can preserve its culture. We are heading towards homogenisation in wealthy nations.

      A secular State is a possibility, i.e. citizenship for Palestinians in Israel but unfortunately Islam won’t allow for secular beliefs. So Jeffrey Goldberg’s solution is untenable.

      So it may be a battle of brawn that decides it once and for all.

      Armageddon anyone?

  4. So, let’s say Mexicans want the right of return in the USA. They slowing migrate to the USA and become an influence politically and economically. Eventually, they become a force to be dealt with (like in the last and future elections). And, maybe, they become the majority people in the USA. Not such a big deal because THEY DON’T WANT TO KILL AMERICANS!
    Now – you were saying?

    • Some Palestinians entertain extreme ideas about destroying Israel for a very specific reason — their displacement without compensation in 1948. You can’t just dismiss Palestinians as extreme or insane without looking at the context of their displacement. The creation of Israel in 1948 was necessary, but we’re not going to succeed at quelling Palestinian anger (which is the fuel that fires the extremists) without compensating Palestinians for their loss.

      Anyway, the issue is not what Israel wants. Palestinians can get their state just by dropping the “KILL JEWS” idiots and doing what Goldberg and I and Beinart have talked about, accepting Israel and demanding Knesset votes. This post is criticising their unwillingness to do that, which is exactly what you’re talking about.

        • A lot less than the United States has given Israel to create Iron Dome!

          The compensation I am really talking about is a two state solution and probably some limited route to a right of return with some conditions (conversion to Judaism, OR pledge allegiance to Israel, serve in IDF) to those who want it.

        • We’ll see. Nothing seems to be a bigger fantasy than the Lukidnik-Beitenu idea that apartheid is sustainable.

          By the way, wasn’t Herzl dismissed as a dreamer?

        • Aziz’s idea is the only solution to the problem Palestinian Muslims can’t technically convert as Muslims but they can renounce Islam and convert to Judaism. Rabbis would approve as gentically they have Jewish blood. This will foster trust in the eyes of Jews. SO what if theyare infidelsin the eyes of Muslims. Hell I would convert for US residency if I had to go to Church once a week.

      • This will never happen because the Palestinians will insist on 100% control of their borders while the Israelis will insist on an agreement that keeps Palestinians from bringing heavy weapons into Gaza and the West Bank. At the moment Israel tries to monitor the Gaza borders to keep out Iranian missiles and other armaments. It is not 100% successful. Gaza is now a base for Muslims firing rockets and missiles into Israel. Why would Israel allow the West Bank to be able to do this too?

        You also skip past Islamic doctrine, that once a land has been Muslim, no non-Muslims shall be allowed to allowed to take it over and govern it. Osama Bin Laden used to complain how Spain was taken back by the Christians. The Muslims will never stop wanting to return Israel to Muslim rule and dominance. This is a core Muslim belief which is hilarious given the imperialist expansion of Islam ever since Muhammad. All those Arab countries of today were once Christian or pagan. Persia was Zoroastrian. India was Hindu and Buddhist. Israel was Jewish.

        • Actually, the genetic origin of “all those Arab countries” is Semitic. Arabs are semites. The thing that spread is not Arabness but Islam. Arabs are genetically very similar to Jews.

          So the issue is the religion of Islam and its honour code. Yes, many Muslims think that such a plan is dishonourable, and that the “honourable” thing to do is to keep fighting. That’s why Jeff Goldberg calls Palestinians “short-sighted”. But believe me, societies can progress. Southern Europe once lived under the Inquisition. Southern American states once practised slavery. Palestinians will eventually learn that their present course is failing. If Israel had removed Hamas’ leadership from Gaza that would probably have helped with this progression.

          Also, the extreme elements of Islam you are talking about (that I and others call Islamism) are only prominent because the Palestinians had a loss that was never compensated and are still living in refugee camps. Muslims in the West mostly do not believe in Islamism; only a tiny minority do.

      • 1. There are no Palestinians, there are Arabs. There has never been a Palestinian nation. Prior to the PanArab movement in the 1950’s, Palestinians were Jews.
        2. Arabs have been killing Jews in the Arabian Peninsula and the Middle East since the beginning of Islam, long before 1948.
        3. Arabs have only a desire to rid the area of Jews and return it to Islam as called for in their religion.
        4. There is too much benefit to other despotic Arab states to keep Arabs in Palestine as “refugees” to continue waging war against Israel and distracting their citizens from their own domestic problems.
        5. The recommendation which is the basis of this article is just naive and childlike.

        • 1. There are no Palestinians, there are Arabs. There has never been a Palestinian nation. Prior to the PanArab movement in the 1950′s, Palestinians were Jews.

          Palestinian Arab is a real national affiliation and has been so for a long time. Denying reality does not make it go away.

          2. Arabs have been killing Jews in the Arabian Peninsula and the Middle East since the beginning of Islam, long before 1948.

          Lehi and Irgun were killing Muslims prior to 1948. There was hostility between both sides. So what?

          3. Arabs have only a desire to rid the area of Jews and return it to Islam as called for in their religion.

          Absurd nonsensical generalisation, disproven by the fact that I (1/2 Arab Palestinian) do not wish the Jews to leave the region. The Jews are very beneficial for the region, but would be even more so if there was real peace and equality.

          4. There is too much benefit to other despotic Arab states to keep Arabs in Palestine as “refugees” to continue waging war against Israel and distracting their citizens from their own domestic problems.

          This is true.

          5. The recommendation which is the basis of this article is just naive and childlike.

          We’ll see.

  5. They will never be given citizenship and the right to vote. Israel, as a jewish state, would cease to exist in a relatively short time.

    • They will never be given citizenship and the right to vote.

      That’s what they said in South Africa. And that will quickly haemorrhage Israeli support in the West, because that is de facto apartheid.

      The grand bargain is that Israel retreats to the 1967 borders and gets its 70%+ Jewish majority and viable Jewish democracy for the future, and the Palestinians get a Palestinian state. It’s possible tomorrow if the Palestinians wake up to nonviolence.

      By the way, if Israel chooses to annex the West Bank the One State Solution becomes a fact on the ground. And unless the Palestinians can vote it’s not a democracy….

        • And how are those so-called democracies doing? Well? No so bad? Or, are they in the toilet?
          Dream on, Aziz…..

        • Re Aziz’s list of democracies in the ME: Egypt, along with many Americans duped by Obama’s bias, is finding out that the Muslim Brotherhood ain’t into democracy. Does formerly prosperous and democratic Lebanon even exist today? Can Turkey be both Muslim and democratic? Iraq had democracy imposed on it, but will it stick? (I don’t know about Tunisia).

      • Obviously I’d like to see a solution to the conflict in my lifetime. But, 1967 borders? No. Right of return? No. Two states – yes – peacefully coexsiting.

        • How do you propose the border issue be dealt with? Ariel Sharon nearly did it unilaterally, but his illness prevented him completing his unilateral solution. Who in Israel has the respect and the self-belief to get the settlers back behind a line? Netanyahu is now looking like a moderate (!) in a party and coalition full of people who will not give up an inch of the West Bank and treat the two state solution with disdain.

          Personally I think the only statesmanlike leader the Israelis have now with the will to really seek out a solution to this issue is Ehud Olmert (and perhaps Meir Dagan, although he is not in politics). I wrote this article criticising the Palestinians, but I think ultimately the onus is on Israel to push for a two state solution and that means withdrawing lots and lots of West Bank settlers. There are so many in Israel who will not give an inch of Judea and Samaria (in his heart, I think Netanyahu may hold this view too), creating de facto apartheid. It is critical for Israel’s survival as a Jewish state that these people do not get their way.

  6. The other point that you are avoiding – the only western-friendly country in the middle east is who? Do you think the western governments are going to back a solution that leaves the entire middle east un-friendly?
    Or, how about China whose new friend, Israel, is being groomed as a new oil source and a source for new technology? What do you think their opinion is?
    Wake up and see what’s real, Aziz. You remind of people who start believing their own BS.

    • Do you think the western governments are going to back a solution that leaves the entire middle east un-friendly?

      More arguments used in South Africa. Once the ANC got their act together with a nonviolent campaign for democracy, all of this melted away. Apartheid is unsustainable.

      • Not quite the same. S.A. was an undivided country except for the homelands. The white populace was very small compared to the non-white populace. But, they all lived under the same flag. That is not the case with Israel.

      • “The grand bargain is that Israel retreats to the 1967 borders and gets its 70%+ Jewish majority and viable Jewish democracy for the future, and the Palestinians get a Palestinian state. It’s possible tomorrow if the Palestinians wake up to nonviolence.”

        And the Palestinians get to make and import all the missiles they want and fire them into this new diminished Israel of yours in the 1967 borders. This is not land for peace. Your plan is land for war.

        • I think the idea that Palestinians cannot turn away from violence is quite shortsighted. Catholics turned away from the Inquisition (eventually).

    • Israel is not the only pro-US country in the Middle East. Jordan is pro-US, Kuwait is pro-US, and don’t forget about Saudi Arabia, and the various other states in the Gulf Cooperation Council.

  7. Shortsightedness can indeed be corrected, but WW II demonstrated that the familiar combination of hate, blame, charismatic leaders and gullible followers is far more resistant, bloody and destructive. I’m afraid Obama, Soros, et al have succeeded in installing this in the USA, along with apartheid.

    BTW: Is Goldberg’s hypothesis, that a unified Israel would be an Arab-majority state, correct?

  8. Former Tunisienne president Bourguiba suggested this decades ago and was labeled a traitor by all arabs for the mere suggestion, especially by Hafaz Al Assad if memory serves.

    • Former Tunisienne president Bourguiba suggested this decades ago and was labeled a traitor by all arabs for the mere suggestion, especially by Hafaz Al Assad if memory serves.

      All Arabs is an extremely strong phrase… that’s like saying that all Jews support the blockade of Gaza… obviously untrue. Yes, the honour code is a big part of Arab and Muslim society and this kind of bargain would be seen by many Muslims and Islamists as dishonourable. But all societies can progress.

      • I’m sorry, what I should have said was that all the arab leadership was against the idea. But truth be told, even the vast majority of arabic public opinion was fiercely against any such idea at the time. That being said, it may be that arabs are slowly but surely changing and waking up to certain facts.

    • Aziz,
      Everybody is talking about Jews not wanting the inclusion of Arabs into Israel…
      First, there are close to 2 million Arabs, living in Israel, having Israel citizenship and voting and having reps the Knesset…
      Do you know any Arabic/Muslim state, where Jews have the same rights as members of it’s majority ? (De facto)
      Do you really believe, that Arabs would seek genuine equality with the Jews in the common democratic entity ?
      Jews, and I think you know it, wanted 2-state solution from the very beginning ( from 1947…)
      It was the Arabs, who rejected several times such a solution. Last was Mr. Arafat, during B.Clinton administration.
      Jews know very well, from experience, that persecutions will follow immediately , once Jews become a minority.
      So, all the talks about apartheid boil down to the talks about destroying the only Jewish country in the world. Only one or two countries in the world, where Jewish population feels safe and equal on the same level as the other people, let alone the Middle East.
      Jews created a shelter for themselves, – yes that was their the only choice.
      You can blame people trying to save their life, that they are racist because they did not invite their enemies into this shelter.
      There were 850,000 Jewish refuges from ME, not from Europe. Nobody talks about them. Almost all people in Israel are refugees.
      Israel got it’s land in the fight. And she returned huge amount of land to Egypt to have a peace.
      Does anybody talking about lands, which Germany lost during the WW2? Does anybody call these lands occupied by the Russia, Poland,,,,,No! Germany lost them.
      Should Germany go to UN and demand this land back, and demand return of their people into these lands?

      Greg.

      • I think that the main reason that Islamists are dominating the Arabic elements is for economic and social reasons, e.g. Palestinians remaining in refugee camps, the blockade, the fact they haven’t been compensated. There are extremist elements on both sides who call for intolerance, separation, hatred and death. Look at what Gilad Sharon wrote: http://www.jpost.com/Opinion/Op-EdContributors/Article.aspx?id=292466

        Economic improvement and compensation for the Palestinians would marginalise the Islamists. This seems unbelievable right now, but 99% of Arabs who have moved to the West have rejected Islamism and many especially of the younger generation live secular lives.

        Anyway, apartheid will be a fact on the ground unless Israel withdraws to a Jewish-majority border. That is the reality that Israel will have to deal with. I do not believe that the hasbara sellers will be able to sell it to a Western audience. Jeff Goldberg, Peter Beninart, etc, agree with me.

        In my honest opinion creating an apartheid situation is a greater danger to Israel’s existence than the things you mention. The Arabs aren’t going away.

      • I totally agree with your insights.

        The Jews need a homeland. Period. Every Country that allows duel citizenship with Israeli citizens should offer citizenship to Palestinians. The Palestinians will leave, leaving the lands to the Jews. Zealot Nationalist Palestinians, can then be dealt with to placate them.

        Islamicism is an evangelical religion and here lies the problem. It is imperialist. It seeks new lands and converts. If it can’t leave some land to the Jews, that have a historical right that goes well before the time of Mohamed, then they are very very unreasonable. The world has to deal with them with the same zeal we dealt the Nazis.

        If we appease the Islamists, then do we appease Nazis seeking a White homeland?

  9. Your ignorance is appalling. There is no such thing as an Arab Palestinian. The word comes from Philistine[Goliath was not Arab or muslim] The PLO leaders themselves have stated that they concocted the concept to apply to Arabs in order to destroy Israel. Read “From Time Immemorial” by gentile writer Joan Peters ,wherein you will receive a sorely required education. Bob Unger

  10. I believe the Goldberg solution is the correct one, Aziz. With a wholehearted effort, it would eventually work.

    However, there is a BIGGER problem that I think everyone subsconsciously recognizes. Governments, democracies, and states, in general, do NOT work. It’s basically a charade that favors the most monstrous, sociopathic personalities, who lack a basic conscience, and function with the modus operandi of Divide and Rule. In essence, down to the basic ingredients, this is a war between the cult of personalities.

    At one point, you mentioned Gandhian tactics. It should be eminenetly noted that Gandhi believed in a worldwide return to the Golden Age of peace for all of humanity.

    In addition, it should also be noted that the Founding Fathers of America did not recognize their nascent Republic as a guarantee for the “voting rights” of all, but rather for members of the land-owning classes, who were also deemed to be the most productive members of society. Perhaps today the more appropriate way to replicate this would be to allow individuals who pay more taxes to have more shares of the vote.

    Finally, even very seemingly well-educated individuals often forget that every so-called democracy of ancient Greece was always an abject failure.

    Thus, this entire discussion, in my opinion, does one thing and one thing only: expose the utter hypocrisy of the notion of “democracy” and “government” as it is currently understood. In truth, it is the bastion of gangsters, thieves, liars, gropers, killers, and other sundry scumbags.

  11. It’s stunning how many people’s comments here reflect the politically correct bias about Palestinians being entitled to this land in the West Bank. this land was given to the Jewish people through the Abrahamic covenant. You can’t screw with god’s wishes. Man intervenes to his peril. Anyone who makes Jerusalem a burdensome stone with be cut to pieces, so says the scripture. The problem is we have way too many secularists and many progressive Jews among them who are blinded to this unchanging truth. God gave plenty to the Arabs. They reside in most of the Middle East whereas Israel is as tiny as New Jersey. God gave the Arab people great blessing and wealth with the oil they’ve had and enjoyed but the Arab people seem to not be satisfied and don’t forget the League of Nations (now the UN) declared Israel their own nation and when the British had forsaken the land back in the early part of the 20th century, neither the Palestinians nor any other Arab peoples wanted the land. You historically illiterate and politically correct people better research the real facts.

    • Personally, I think that Jewish claims to Israel are legitimate not because of what it says in an old book but because how Jewish people feel today about their connection to the land. Palestinians alive today have a similar feeling toward what they call Palestine.

      And neither of these people are going to suddenly drop their claim, because their claim is an intrinsic part of their identity.

    • You make an interesting point. I don’t know where in the Koran that says Palestine/Israel is the land of Muslims, but it does say it in the Bible as belonging to Jews.

      So, as Muslims respect Abraham, the Jews should use this angle to convince devout Muslims to leave these lands.

      It is very convenient that the Dome on the Rock was created as a story. I guess Mohammad forgot about this message from Allah? His followers were incorrect to choose this site. It will be the curse of the Muslims to not listen to the Koran, but the stories concocted by “misguided” followers.

      “The Dome of the Rock is not a mosque, but a Muslim shrine. Like the Ka’ba in Mecca, it is built over a sacred stone. This stone is believed to be the place from which the Prophet Muhammad ascended into heaven during his Night Journey to heaven.

      The Dome of the Rock is the oldest Islamic monument that stands today and certainly one of the most beautiful. It also boasts the oldest surviving mihrab (niche indicating the direction of Mecca) in the world.”

      http://www.sacred-destinations.com/israel/jerusalem-dome-of-the-rock

    • It seems only reasonable to me to suppose that the creator of the universe, an omnisicient, omnipotent being, would not have much trouble straightening out everything in Israel-Palestine instantly if he, she or it so desired. The fact that everything has not been straightened out instantly leads immediately to the inescapable conclusion that:

      1. There is no such God; or,

      2. God does not care what happens in or to Israel-Palestine; or

      3. God likes what we’re doing there — fighting and killing one another directly or by proxy — and wants us to keep right on doing it.

      Therefore, the addition of God to the discursive mix does nothing to answer anyone’s questions or refute anyone’s assertions.

      Ringing in God on political issues is always vulnerable to attacks of reason.

      • “Bringing in God” might help, but so far the politicians are just bringing in their religious beliefs, traditions, animosities, etc.

        • We don’t have an IQ threshold but due to compulsory voting people who don’t care about Politics throw a “donkey” vote i.e. they donot fill in correctly or write Mickey Mouse etc so does not count so technically speaking idiots do not get to vote.

      • I agree, but when you have universal suffrage, and these people can vote, you need to bring in their “belief” system. As we don’t allow people with a certain IQ threshold and common knowledge bank to vote, you have to appeal to their “belief” system. That was the point of my argument.

        • Buddy: does Australia really require an “IQ threshold and common knowledge bank” for voting? If the US did, we would have avoided a now-inevitable collapse of quality of life — in material comforts, culture and individual liberty. Returning minimum voting age to 21 (or higher) would have helped.

  12. What are your thoughts on Argentina, Aziz? http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/0/11558dc6-3888-11e2-bd7d-00144feabdc0.html#axzz2CvrfwixN Could citizens self-form a coalition through lawyers to enter into (more) direct negotiations with creditors to establish a payment plan of sorts that is bound to pay in full but based on a voluntary agreement that’s stretched out far over time? Do (indebted) citizens absolutely require a government between themselves and their creditors to facilitate transactions?

    • I think the fallout from this will be that countries won’t denominate debt in a foreign currency they can’t inflate away anymore.

      In terms of Argentina, I think they’ll continue to be frozen out of American/dollar-denominated credit markets. Broadly, I’d say that’s mostly a good thing. I think they would be wise to look eastward instead.

  13. Sounds simple, but you failed to include the most important thing–money! The only way Abbas might be able to do what you suggest is if he is not in on the money, and he keeps his speech secret. If he is on the take then it would be stupid of him to deliver that speech. If his fingers are not being buttered, and If he doesn’t keep it secret he won’t live to deliver it. Do you think those who are raking in money by the billions on the Palestinian issue are going to risk losing it?

    • My impression is that most of Fatah seems reasonably content with the status quo. The only element that is open to the things I am talking about is that led by Marwan Barghouti.

    • Having to go through Israeli army checkpoints in the West Bank isn’t “occupation”? Having Israeli settlements and over a million settlers isn’t “occupation”? Having Israeli military rule in the West Bank isn’t “occupation”? Gaza is not “occupied”
      per se (although the blockade is a very big and legitimate grievance), but by no reasonable definition nor standard can you say the West Bank isn’t occupied.

  14. The conclusion of the 1967 War was actually the greatest Pyrrhic Victory of the 20th Century, as it lead to the occupation of the West Bank by the Israelis. This occupation is a militarily and politically untenable position in the long term. The Israeli lack of vision and understanding at the time, took what was Jordan’s problem and turned it into a living nightmare for Israel. (Not a good move). The Israelis should give the West Bank back to Jordan, keep Jerusalem and build a Chinese Wall/DMZ along the1967 borders. I don’t think there will ever be a “Formal” peace treaty in the middle east, but a ceasefire along the lines of the two Koreas might actually work.

    One more thing, the Israelis need to think outside the box to achieve lasting peace. Treaties are violated all the time, so at a practical level, they need to adopt policies that promote long term stability. Economic development and prosperity in the Palestinian territories is one of the most important keys to the problem. Prosperous people are much less likely to go to war than people who are completely disenfranchised and have nothing left to lose.

    • I agree. http://www.adl.org/israel/record/after67.asp

      If you go back to the period after or before WW1, the Arabs had picked up their hostilities to Jewish resettlement of Israel. For example the Ottomans used heavy security as various festivals to keep “emotion” in check.

      It seems that rule by tyrants is the only form of GOVERNANCE they understand.

      I understand there are hostilities towards all immigrant groups. Perhaps the Zionist founders could have made the transition a little more reassuring to the local “indigenous” population. From the Arab point of view this would have been unsettling, if zealous Zionists used rhetoric and zeal to push their agenda. The British could have done a better job too.

      Is this lack of planning just human ignorance or detailed planning to cause perpetual tension leading to biblical prophecy fulfillment?

  15. Ernie, you are a true clown and Aziz it seems is having you for breakfast.

    Ernie incase you miss it tomorrow, Palestine will increase it’s UN member status because it is what the world wants and what the majority of the general assembly will vote for (you should be familiar with democracy).

    The U.S, Israel, Canada, Germany, UK all will be on the wrong side of history.

    After Palestine increase their membership status they may even pursue ICC jurisdiction and place increased pressure on Israel’s illegal settlements, murders, blockades etc…..

    A great step for human rights and about bloody time.

    One more thing Ernie, when is your next performance at the Israeli Circus????

    • Whether it’s “might makes right” or “right makes might”, the UN General Assembly has neither, nor any respect or influence. Nor does it deserve any. The sooner that US, UK and other peace loving democracies disavow and defund the UN, the better for the world.

  16. I’ve been saying this for years. Once Palestinians give up “armed terrorism” and return to peaceful sit-ins and demand a vote, Israel will finally be recognized for the Apartheid State that it is.

      • Just my general thoughts:
        1. All this talk of Islamists and the dangers of the Muslim world completely miss the point that this UN initiative is brought upon by the more secular PLO/PA. Hamas controls Gaza, not the West Bank. The PLO/PA has been trying to solve it’s problems through a legal framework for some time now, and Israel has routinely insisted that it would rather work with the PLO than Hamas.

        2. Trying to become a member of the international community is the exact opposite of Islamic extremism. It’s trying to solve problems through an internationally agreed upon framework. Israel’s rejection of this simply shows how hollow it’s desire to have some form of 2 state solution.

        3. Palestinian Muslims aren’t the only ones who have historically fought against Israel. There are Palestinian Christians, Druze, and various other minorities who were kicked out of what is now Israel.

        4. Aziz has mentioned this time and time again, when he says that Palestinians were kicked out of Israel in the 1940s with no compensation, they were literally kicked out of their actual homes, and forced to live in what is now the West Bank, Gaza, or various refugee camps in Lebanon, Syria, and Jordan. Israeli citizens moved into these homes, and often times kept the old furniture. Although the number of Palestinians who remember the 40s and 50s are dwindling in number, the same feelings of homelessness, and lack of permanent residence lingers today when Israel continues to expand its occupation of the West Bank, evict and deport Palestinians who never left Israel (yes, this is still happening almost 70 years later), and who designate where individuals can live or travel. E-1 is just a continuation of this policy.

        5. I hope that Israelis will one day support the redistribution of the US to various Native American tribes.

      • Thanks for the link. This is precisely the behavior that Israel loses moderates support.

        We can’t have Biblical borders but the right to have a Jewish majority State, free from minority votes is the only solution going forward.

        Hopefully in 200 years secular society will rule.

  17. After much thought and research Israel will only survive if they allow Duel Citizenship for “Jewish Homeland Fighters” The war will only be won, Stalingrad style. They will need all the manpower they can muster. This means actual ethnic cleansing (i.e. Muslims killed, or placed in camps, door to door). The Germans in WW2 did the same thing, as they felt Jews were Communist sympathisers, and had to be removed.

    A Palestinian State will be a breeding ground for terrorists. We can’t even control Iraq or Afghanistan. How could we control Palestine?

    How many non Jews would be prepared to fight for Israel’s right to exist? I bet there is a lot of Christians in the US Military who would volunteer. A type of Crusade.

  18. says “States Parties particularly condemn racial segregation and apartheid and undertake to prevent, prohibit and eradicate all practices of this nature in territories under their jurisdiction.” A review of Israel’s country report by the experts of the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination took issue with the establishment of Jewish-only settlements and stated “The status of the settlements was clearly inconsistent with Article 3 of the Convention which, as noted in the Committee’s General Recommendation XIX, prohibited all forms of racial segregation in all countries. There was a consensus among publicists that the prohibition of racial discrimination, irrespective of territories, was an imperative norm of international law.

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