Sunday, September 16, 2007

CS Monitor: "Palestine: democracy not Zionism"

This Jimmy Carter-ish article declares that a "decent two-state solution to the 'Palestinian problem' has become impossible." Other bloggers have already noted the extremeness of the author's anti-Zionism. I would just like to look his claims to practicality:
. . . if this problem is ever to be solved, it must be redefined. Those who truly seek justice and peace in the Middle East must dare to speak openly and honestly of the "Zionism problem" – and then to draw the moral, ethical, and practical conclusions that follow . . .
What does the "practical" part of that look like?
Just as marriage is vastly less complicated than divorce, democracy is vastly less complicated than partition. A democratic post-Zionist solution would not require any borders to be agreed, any division of Jerusalem, anyone to move from his current home, or any assets to be evaluated and apportioned. Full rights of citizenship would simply be extended to all the surviving natives still living in the country, as happened in the United States in the early 20th century and in South Africa in the late 20th century . . .
And all the Hamas and Islamic Jihad fighters, of course, will then line up to turn their weapons in. We didn't want a Palestinian right of return after all! We're fine with no explicitly Palestinian sovereignty over anything! Of course, Whitbeck is not saying that all this will be "easy":
No one would suggest that the moral, ethical, and intellectual transformation necessary to achieve a decent one-state solution will be easy. However, more and more people now recognize that a decent two-state solution has become impossible.
What distinguishes the "not easy" from the "impossible"? I'm not supposed to ask that. Does he have to do everything? Redefine the problem and solve it, too?
It is surely time for concerned people everywhere – and particularly for Americans – to imagine a better way, to encourage Israelis to imagine a better way, and to help both Israelis and Palestinians to achieve it. It is surely time to seriously consider democracy and to give it a chance.
Not that this involves weening the Palestinians from forming People's Liberation Fronts or Martyrs Brigades or anything . . .

Crossposted on Soccer Dad

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