July 8, 2021


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Palestine: The third method ahead | Palestine

Because the catastrophic Arab failure in the 1948 and 1967 wars led to whole Israeli management over historic Palestine, the Palestinians have been attempting to get well their losses, however to no avail.

Refugees and prisoners in their very own homeland, they’ve tried armed wrestle and peaceable negotiations with equal vigour, however have did not get justice or attain peace.

Each methods entailed nice sacrifice and main concessions, however in the end neither led to the liberation of Palestine from Israeli domination. 

Worse, Israel’s urge for food for growth has grown with each Palestinian concession, and now its delusion of invincibility is driving it to illegally annex nearly a 3rd of what the Palestinians assumed could be their future state.

No matter whether or not it really formalises its de facto annexation or not, Israel is already radically and unilaterally altering the truth on the bottom. 

So now what? What to do? What to not do?

The best analysis is half the remedy

You will need to keep in mind that opposite to newspeak there is no such thing as a “Palestine problem” however relatively an “Israeli colonial problem” – the area’s final colonial downside – and the Palestinians might show to be its solely answer.

Since its creation on the finish of the 19th century, Zionism has mutated from arguably a respectable Jewish nationwide motion in Europe to a European colonial enterprise within the japanese Mediterranean.

It led, amongst different issues, to a century-long battle, a number of wars and hatred, fuelled by ethnic cleaning, dispossession and the displacement of tens of millions of individuals.

Since then, elevated Israeli colonisation, particularly within the occupied West Financial institution, devolved right into a reprehensible system of apartheid.

Apparently, apartheid was born in South Africa in 1948, the identical yr the Palestinian disaster started, and it led to 1994, a yr earlier than apartheid principally began in Palestine with the Oslo-II settlement, which divided the occupied territories into bantustans.

Like South Africa, Israel ought to be induced to provide its personal FW de Klerk to finish its apartheid. Such a pacesetter would discover the Palestinians able to reconcile and collectively with Israel construct a greater future.

And like South Africa, this doesn’t imply ending Israel. It means liberating Israel from its paranoid garrison mindset that sees hegemony as the one technique to survive.

Contemplating we’re all one human race, apartheid is in the end about hegemony, regardless of its racial or different pretexts.

It follows that the wrestle towards apartheid should be a common, indivisible wrestle for justice and freedom – one which opposes anti-Semitism, because it does colonial Zionism.

However what form and path ought to it take?

Palestinians have already begun to consider and debate new concepts to finish apartheid, which deserve additional examine and improvement.

However earlier than we get into what the Palestinians must do, allow us to look into what they need to not do. 

What to not do

Give up is just not an possibility. Don’t even give it some thought.

Accepting the so-called “deal of the century” put ahead by US President Donald Trump and his ally Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is to give up to Israeli hegemony. It means dwelling in captivity in perpetuity.

With out give up, there is no such thing as a victory. So long as the Palestinians don’t lose, Israel can not win. 

Refusing to surrender or give in is probably not straightforward, but it surely has confirmed efficient in irritating Israel’s plans, and restraining sure Arab regimes’ predilection for mischief.

Don’t despair. Time and historical past are in your facet.

It could not appear that method judging from Israel’s seen confidence, (learn conceitedness), however though it’s a self-proclaimed nation of “immigrants”, it has been bleeding lots of of 1000’s of emigrants, principally to the US.

And a excessive 40 p.c of Israelis are pondering of emigrating, as numerous Palestinians danger their lives to reclaim their proper of return.

It’s the similar story repeated over and over. Most if not all colonial powers misplaced to the weaker indigenous inhabitants over the previous century. So will Israel. 

To that finish, Palestinians have properly framed their trigger in authorized phrases and extracted many UN resolutions condemning Israel’s violations of worldwide regulation.

However worldwide regulation doesn’t deter the robust or save the weak, definitely not when the US flashes its veto on the mere point out of Israel.

Simply don’t rely on it. Depend upon yourselves. And overlook concerning the UN convening an worldwide peace convention with out American blessing.

Don’t beat yourselves up an excessive amount of. Be cheap.

Sure, the Palestine Liberation Group (PLO) has made its share of errors, however the Palestinians aren’t answerable for the contempt and incompetence of sure Arab regimes, or the cynicism of Western powers, particularly the US appeasement of Israel.

And cease with the self-pity.

You can not encourage and energise depressed folks. It won’t kill you to smile. The very best laughs are these blended with tears. There may be a lot to dread, however there may be far more to dream about.

Don’t underestimate the ethical weight of your trigger within the Arab world and past, no matter what the doubters say.

Irrespective of what number of dictators recognise Israel, a belligerent apartheid state won’t ever obtain true legitimacy or safety regionally.

By no means.

Arabs see the wrestle for justice in Palestine as a image and extension of their very own battle for justice.

Syrians, Saudis, Yemenis, Egyptians and others could also be engrossed in their very own tragedies, as they need to be, however polls persistently present that, collectively, Arabs see Palestine as their foremost trigger within the wrestle towards colonialism.

Don’t forget that.

Israel has at all times tried to separate Palestinians from Palestinians and the Palestinians from their Arab neighbourhood.

Don’t enable it and don’t interact in secret negotiations. 

There are various methods to attach and bridge the geographic divide.

As conflict and diplomacy come to a lifeless finish, and as Israel dashes ahead arrogantly grabbing and annexing extra Palestinian land, communicate up and don’t let Netanyahu and Trump get off straightforward. 

Strive to not repeat the errors of the previous. 

Strive to not look again. Look forward. Search for a 3rd method ahead. 

Reinventing Palestinian unity

The lopsided peace course of has been terribly divisive for the Palestinians. It’s what asymmetrical peace processes do. Subsequently, abandoning it should result in some type of nationwide unity.

The dreadful competitors between the principle political factions has so far confirmed detrimental to nationwide unity and elections have been no much less divisive.

As an alternative of uniting towards the occupation, the factions have been preoccupied with managing it.

Whereas Fatah and Hamas proceed to insist on holding onto their “strongholds”, the separated bantustans within the West Financial institution and Gaza, some recommend the institution of an total political umbrella, maybe a reformed and expanded PLO, to unite all of the Palestinians across the undisputed reason for justice

However this can require a brand new era of Palestinians to step up and take over from the predominantly septuagenarian and octogenarian management to chart a recent, new method ahead.

All bureaucratic duties and tasks, whether or not on the extent of the Nationwide Authority or the municipalities ought to be left to technocrats, chosen on the premise of advantage not partisanship.

This requires an excessive amount of maturity, ingenuity and dynamism.

One other attention-grabbing concept is for Palestinians to unite behind a number of methods, as a substitute of being divided behind one failed technique of negotiations.

This tactical decentralisation means “popular mobilisation” the place every Palestinian group ought to be capable to design and embrace methods of wrestle in accordance with its talents and circumstances.

Palestinians in Gaza might wish to retain their deterrence capabilities to defend towards one other Israeli assault, and Jerusalemites might wish to strengthen their metropolis’s Palestinian presence and character.

Likewise, Palestinians in Israel might wish to remodel Israel’s binationality from demographics to politics. The Palestinians in Jordan might wish to work with Jordanians to dam Israel’s try to make their nation the choice Palestinian state. And the Palestinians in exile might wish to promote the trigger in international capitals. And so forth. 

These micro methods ought to be repeatedly synchronised and synergised as integral components of the nationwide wrestle for justice and liberation as an entire. 

Palestinians ought to now not be glad with passive “steadfastness”. They should reactivate and re-energise the favored base.

Boosting Palestinian immunity

Comprising nearly half the inhabitants between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea, the Palestinians must immunise themselves towards persistent Israeli repression and marginalisation.

Palestinians must offset Israel’s new makes an attempt at dividing and ostracising them by bettering enterprise infrastructure and financial life to assist folks endure.

They should broaden on one in all their biggest current achievements, specifically establishment constructing.

This entails deflating an inflated paperwork by ending corruption and nepotism and creating partnerships between the private and non-private sector to enhance financial planning and infrastructure improvement.

Presently, one-third of the nationwide finances goes to the safety equipment, greater than each the well being and schooling sectors obtain. On condition that it serves Israeli greater than Palestinian safety, there is no such thing as a purpose why it ought to proceed to devour a lot of the Palestinian finances.

Boosting nationwide immunity can also be about boosting particular person immunity in on a regular basis life.

And there’s no immunity with out nationwide and private dignity.

A Palestinian might be able to block or defy the humiliation of an Israeli soldier, however should still discover him/herself powerless when humiliated by a fellow (armed) Palestinian. Such humiliation is emotional and results in indifference, even betrayal. This should cease.

And there’s no dignity with out work. This implies there must be job creation, the growth of excellent productive employment, in order that poor Palestinians aren’t pressured to slave away at Israeli settlements.

Palestinians are among the most educated folks within the area. Modest funding in human capital might yield nice nationwide benefit in the long term. 

Rebuilding alliances

Because the PLO hedged its bets solely on the US-led peace course of, it deserted a lot of the worldwide solidarity motion.

As we speak, Palestinians must rebuild hyperlinks to European, Latin American, African and different international solidarity actions. These could be important for his or her wrestle transferring ahead, simply as they have been in ending apartheid in South Africa.

Furthermore, and in contrast to many forgotten indigenous populations, Palestinians aren’t alone. They’re a part of an enormous Arab area, and may draw energy and solace out of your Arab hinterland.

Palestinians even have a particular connection to the Islamic world, a lot of which has suffered terribly from Western colonialism. 

It’s paramount to confront Israel’s peddling of non secular justification for its occupation with civic and common, not non secular, arguments.

All colonial enterprises of the previous a number of centuries have used various levels of non secular justification, and Palestine has been the focus of curiosity for all three Abrahamic religions.

However treating Palestine as a “promised land” or “a waqf” turns the divine from a peacemaker to an actual property dealer. 

Palestine belongs to all its inhabitants, particularly its indigenous folks.

Cultivating Jewish companions

Profitable Jewish assist for justice and freedom in Palestine is crucial to dispel Israeli propaganda, and indispensable to roll again Israeli hegemony

Simply as white folks participated within the anti-apartheid motion in South Africa and within the civil rights motion within the US, Jews are indispensable within the wrestle towards apartheid in Palestine.

All through their historical past, Jews have been the victims of racism, struggling significantly from European anti-Semitism. And for lengthy, they’ve been on the forefront within the battle towards racism.

This week, for instance, I learn an obituary titled, “Denis Goldberg Man of Integrity: South African Freedom Fighter, Anti-Zionist Jew, and True Mensch” written by Ronnie Kasrils, a outstanding Jewish South African anti-apartheid activist a couple of comrade who had handed away. Reflecting on Goldberg’s lifelong anti-racism wrestle, Karsils emphasised: “As an anti-Zionist Jew he came to view Israel’s colonial-racism as akin to apartheid South Africa.”

I do know many such folks, having labored carefully with Jewish teachers, college students, journalists, feminists, editors, publishers, attorneys, unionists, and activists on numerous progressive causes together with that of free Palestine.

Palestinians should take down anybody who peddles anti-Jewish slogans in their identify and construct on growing Jewish resentment in the direction of an Israeli management that does horrible issues of their identify. 

When former US presidential candidate Bernie Sanders accused Netanyahu of “reactionary racism” and grew much more standard within the course of, it confirmed simply how far the American Jewish group and the Democratic Celebration have gone, taking into account that the majority American Jews vote Democrat, not Republican. 

Palestinians must nourish this new spirit and synergy to counter the Israeli-inspired marketing campaign equating anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism. 

Anti-Zionism has nothing to do with anti-Semitism. In any case, Jews have been the first to oppose Zionism.

A brand new Palestinian-Jewish partnership should battle Israeli injustice tooth and nail, exposing the Israeli authorities’s malign makes an attempt to label actions like Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) as anti-Semitic.

In brief, and as I argued just lately, it’s excessive time for a Palestinian-Jewish spring.

The endgame

The evolution of this renewed wrestle in its totality will decide the result – two states or one binational state, not the alternative.

The persevering with debate concerning the singularity or duality of states is just not solely untimely, it might show divisive and debilitating.

Israel will definitely oppose a one-state answer with the identical if not stronger willpower it opposes a sovereign Palestinian state with. 

The earlier the Palestinian leaders realise there aren’t any quick cuts or off-the-shelf options the higher they will probably be ready for the lengthy haul.

That’s the reason the Palestinian endgame ought to be justice and freedom. They don’t seem to be solely an attainable purpose that everybody will rally behind, but in addition a prerequisite for peace and safety within the area.

They require altering Israel’s calculus, not defeating it, or destroying it, as Israeli leaders whine and warn.

That is how main powers gave up their colonialism and the way South Africa ended its system of apartheid. They have been pressured to rethink the calculus of acquire and loss.

On this method, Netanyahu’s Israel can not have all of the land and all the safety. It can not proceed to reside by the sword and preach Kumbaya to the Palestinians.

In brief, it can not have its cake and eat it too.

If historical past is any information, Israel will finish its occupation simply as all colonial powers of the previous century ended theirs.

The earlier the higher for each Palestinians and Israelis.

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