Tuesday, April 29, 2014

There's No "Could Become" About It


Israel is an apartheid state, complete with different sets of laws for Jews and Arabs in Israel proper and fake "homelands" in Gaza and the West Bank, theoretically governed by their own inhabitants but in actuality governed militarily from Tel Aviv. That's just a fact of reality.

Do I understand the reasons why Israel finds itself painted into an apartheid corner? Sure -- 50 years seeking a Jewish homeland, six million dead in the Holocaust, a bloody war for independence and "national survival," subsequent bloody wars (some more, some less for that same "national survival") tend to create a fortress "us versus them, eternally" mentality.

But it is what it is, and to blame US Secretary of State John Kerry (who has many actually blame-worthy qualities) for saying the same thing that Israel's founding father, David Ben-Gurion, said in 1967, that former prime minister Ehud Barak said in 2010, and that pretty much everyone recognizes as either accomplished or impending fact, is ... well, stupid (so is pretending that Israel is an "ally" of the US rather than just a very demanding welfare client with a powerful political lobby; so US Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) is two for two on today's Stupidity Meter -- along with Kerry himself, who is now backing down in public from what he thought he was saying in relative private).

The Israeli and US governments both claim to want a "two-state solution" -- Israel co-existing with an Arab Palestinian state in Gaza and the West Bank. But they're not serious about it. Any time the Palestinian Arabs start getting their act together for statehood, Israel throws a temper tantrum and the US government pronounces itself "disappointed" at the Arabs' gall and temerity. The only "second state" Benjamin Netanyahu is willing to accept is one which allows Israel to run its foreign and military policy and unilaterally set (and re-set at will) its borders. Which, of course, is not a "state" at all, or even a believable masquerade costume of one.

Israel claims to not want a "one-state" solution, but that is what it has -- an apartheid one-state solution in which Jews are "more equal" than Arabs in Israel proper and Gaza and the West Bank live under military occupation with, among other outrages, Israeli "settlers" stealing their land at will.

As an anarchist, I prefer a "no-state" solution, but I'm not optimistic about that happening any time soon. And no, I don't have any grand plans to offer for how Israel might get itself out of this bad situation. But restoring the 1967 borders and butting out of what happens on the other side of those borders, as every US president since at least as far back as Nixon has urged, might be a good place to start.

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