Whose ‘Two State’ Solution? End game or Intermission?

6 Jun

 

            From many sources there is a widespread effort to resume a peace process that has in the past led to failure, frustration, and anger, and often to renewed violence. The newly appointed American Secretary of State, John Kerry, is about to make his fifth trip to Israel since the beginning of 2013, insisting that the two sides try once more to seek peace, and warning if this doesn’t happen very soon, the prospects for an agreed upon solution will be postponed not for just a year or two, but for decades. Kerry says if this current effort does not succeed, he will turn his attention elsewhere, and that the United States will make no further effort. So far, aside from logging the air miles, seems perversely to be responsive to Tel Aviv’s demands for land swaps to allow settlement blocs to be incorporated into Israel and to promote further Palestinian concessions in relation to security arrangements, and totally unresponsive to Ramallah’s demands for some tangible signs from the Israeli government that resumed negotiations will not be another slammed door. In this vein, Kerry’s most ardent recent plea was at the Global Forum, an annual event organized under the auspices of the American Jewish Committee. Kerry told this audience that they possessed the influence to make the peace talks happen.

 

            Somewhat surprisingly, even Marwan Barghouti writing from prison, has seemingly endorsed this Washington activism, and seemed to go further, calling upon the United States Government to use its leverage with Israel to resolve the conflict in a manner that recognizes Palestinian rights, and at the same time serves the broader American interest of stability in the Middle East. If Barghouti’s response to written questions submitted by Adnan Abu Amer of Al-Monitor, and published on May 28, 2013, is read carefully, it reinforces an extremely pessimistic assessment of current prospects for peace. Barghouti is urging the U.S. Government that it must make a 180 degree turn away from its posture of unconditional support for Israel if it wants to be credible with Palestinians in the search for a solution to the conflict that accords with natural justice. The United States would need, above all, to insist that Palestine becomes a fully sovereign state within the 1967 borders, have East Jerusalem as its capital, while supporting the full implementation of UN Resolution 194 that affirms the right of return of Palestinian refugees, and the removal of the settlements without noting any exceptions. These are all reasonable positions to take, each in furtherance of the relevant standards of international law. Yet it must be observed, and I am sure this is not news to Mr. Barghouti, Palestinian reasonableness in the context of the Israel/Palestine struggle means choosing not to be politically relevant.

 

            It is from precisely this perspective that Barghouti words should be carefully and respectfully pondered. He calls the two-state solution “the only possible solution” and adds that it “must not be abandoned.” It is a vision of a two-state solution that comes superficially close to what the Israeli peace activist, Uri Avnery, advocates, but seems light years away from the kind of ‘solution’ that Israel might consider or Kerry advocate. In other words, there are two radically different two-state solutions that are often not being carefully distinguished: what might be called ‘the American conception,’ originally detailed in Barack Obama’s May 21, 2011 speech delivered at the U.S. State Department, which at the time of its utterance seemed to look toward Israel’s withdrawal to 1967 borders, with minor border adjusments, but included a general acceptance of Israel’s refusal to implement the Palestinian right of return behind the green line and its expectation that the main settlements would be incorporated into Israel sovereign territory . As so often has happened suring the Obama presidency, what seemed initially forthcoming, was soon altered by backpedaling in a manner that has severely damaged American credibility as a fair-minded third party. The U.S. Government in this instance has gradually come to acquiesce in, even if does not openly avow, these Israel’s unyielding demands, which makes Washington approach to the idea of two states for two peoples radically different than the Barghouti/Avnery conception of Palestinian statehood and self-determination. This latter conception is premised on the establishment of a genuinely sovereign and independent Palestine with East Jerusalem as its capital, and a genuine equality of the two states on matters bearing on security, resources, and refugee identity. There are, to be sure, important differences between Barghouti and Avnery with respect to the right of return, with Avnery opting for a more territorial view of the conflict consistent with the more moderate and humane Zionist views about limiting rights of Palestinian refugees and of the second-class status of the Palestinian minority living in Israel, but still rather far from the Barghouti position on these crucial matters so often ignored by the Western media.

 

            In the background is the persisting unwillingness of the Netanyahu government, despite the overall backing it receives from Washington, to make Kerry’s life easier by undertaking some obvious confidence-building gestures: a settlement freeze and the release of some Palestinian political prisoners. Netanyahu insists on no preconditions for resumed negotiations, which means no letup in settlement expansion, no lifting of the Gaza blockade, and the continuing abusive treatment of the West Bank population. Kerry was probably hoping that his remarks at the AJC event would generate some pressure on Netanyahu to be somewhat more forthcoming. It is clear that if the Palestinian Authority are to enter direct negotiations while settlement expansion continued unchecked, it would likely be extremely detrimental to the claims of Mahmoud Abbas to be the sole legitimate voice of the Palestinian people, a view that Barghouti rejects despite his Fatah affiliation.

 

            If Netanyahu was more adroit he could yield on these confidence-building prerequisites, and put Abbas in a bind. What has the Palestinian Authority to gain by entering into negotiations with an unabashedly expansionist and settler oriented Israeli government? Perhaps, it would win momentary favor in Washington. But for what benefit in relation to the struggle of the Palestinian people for a just solution? There are no signs whatsoever that Israel would even consider an outcome for negotiations that remotely resembled the Barghouti/Avnery two-state conception even if their differences are set aside for the moment. What would likely happen is that the negotiations would breakdown, as in the past, with the Palestinians receiving the lion’s share of the blame. Israel has much more spin control in the world media, especially if its narrative is backed by the United States, as has been the case in the past and would almost certainly be in the future. The likely hasbara assault would put the Palestinians in the position of once more being seen as rejecting what would be put forward to the world as generous Israeli proposals for a two-state solution that if looked at closely offered a statelet instead of a state, and even then subject to a humiliating and intrusive Israeli regime of control, all in the name of security, which should recall the disingenusous Israeli claim that its ‘disengagement’ from Gaza in 2005 put an end to the ‘occupation’ of the Gaza Strip.

 

            Barghouti distance from what Kerry is trying to broker was also underscored by his expression of anger directed at the recent acceptance by the Arab League of modifications of its 2002 Arab Peace Initiative made in response to pressures exerted by Kerry. Barghouti’s comment on this aspect of Kerry’s diplomacy is worth reproducing: “The Arab Peace Initiative is the lowest the Arabs have gone in terms of a historical settlement with Israel. The statements of the Arab ministerial delegation to Washington in regards to amending the 1967 borders and accepting the land-swap inflict great damage on the Arab stance and Palestinian rights, and stimulate the appetite of Israel for more concessions. No one is entitled to amend borders or swap land; the Palestinian people insist on Israel’s full withdrawal to the 1967 borders, in addition to removing the settlements.” In effect, what Kerry put forward as a diplomatic coup, Barghouti denounced as an Arab betrayal. It all goes to show that there are many contradictory understandings cohabiting within the two-state tent.

 

            It is notable that Barghouti also warns Israel and the United States that reliance on the status quo, which seems so comfortable from Tel Aviv’s perspective in recent years, is dangerously shortsighted: “security cannot be achieved without peace.” And further by implication, although not expressed in these words, “peace cannot be achieved without justice.” In this spirit of defiant nationalism, Barghouti also affirms that a right of resistance belongs to the Palestinian people, but its exercise should be sensitive to the limits of international law—“The tortured and oppressed Palestinian people have the right to defend themselves by all means approved by the UN Charter and international law. Total resistance is the most effective.” Barghouti in his responses strongly stresses the importance of moving to fulfill the tentative agreement between Fatah and Hamas to achieve Palestinian unity, while restating his awareness that resolving the refugee issue is central to a just solution while reaffirming his faith in an eventual Palestinian victory.

 

            Both Kerry and Barghouti reject a one-state solution as not of any political interest, unfortunately leaving the peace process where it currently belongs—in an undurable limbo of indefinite extension. Netanyahu and Kerry have a Plan B that might really be their Plan A. It involves what Netanyahu shamelessly calls an ‘economic peace,’ a persistence of the occupation and status quo, but in a manner that makes life materially somewhat better for West Bank Palestinians (Gazans are no where to be found on this most dubious ‘map of conscience.’). It cannot be a coincidence that at this time Kerry is peddling a scheme to induce $4 billion of investment in the West Bank, presumably to convert the occupation and Palestinian statelessness into a new kind of ‘golden arch.’ The moment may have arrived to chase the moneychangers from the temple!

 

            In pondering this dismal landscape of peace talk without peace, one wonders what became of ‘the roadmap’ and ‘the Quartet.’ It may be a small blessing that their irrelevance is being tacitly acknowledged. These creations never seemed more than a thin and deceitful veil thrown over a one sided American control over Israel/Palestine diplomacy. [For compelling documentation see Rashid Khalidi’s Broker of Deceit (2013)] In this sense the boldness of Kerry’s statecraft and Barghouti’s implicit recognition that the peace ball is in America’s court at least moves in the direction of ‘eyes wide open.’ For Kerry this means another set of grand gestures, for Netanyahu it means remaining immobile in the comfort zone created by the Palestinian shift away from the tactics of violent resistance,  for Barghouti it means a call for resistance, a plea for  more  solidarity, and a kind of longing for an Israeli, or even an American, France’s DeGaulle or South Africa’s De Klerk who bothdramatically ruptured prior expectations by replacing confrontation with accommodation. Until something as drastic as this occurs, although not necessarily the work of a charismatic counter-hero, we need at least to have the honesty to admit that the end of the tunnel is dark except for occasional flickers of light. I discern such a flicker in the undertakings of those engaged in a legitimacy war against Israel, step by step gaining the high moral and legal ground, which may soon uncover political tipping points that will abruptly alter the relations of forces in support of Palestinian justice claims. The Palestinian Legitimacy War combines Palestinian resistance with a global solidarity campaign that is being waged on a global battlefield.

 

              

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77 Responses to “Whose ‘Two State’ Solution? End game or Intermission?”

  1. David Singer June 6, 2013 at 11:55 pm #

    Dear Professor Falk
    You state:

    ” The United States would need, above all, to insist that Palestine becomes a fully sovereign state within the 1967 borders, have East Jerusalem as its capital, while supporting the full implementation of UN Resolution 194 that affirms the right of return of Palestinian refugees, and the removal of the settlements without noting any exceptions. These are all reasonable positions to take, each in furtherance of the relevant standards of international law. ”

    I find your comment that these are reasonable positions to take as very disturbing for the following reasons:

    1. There were no 1967 borders – only 1949 armistice lines agreed between Israel and Jordan ( the last Arab occupier of the West Bank and East Jerusalem). Those armistice lines were breached by Jordan entering the Six Day War despite being warned by Israel to refrain from doing so.

    2. UN Resolution 194 has no binding effect in international law and also only served as the terms of reference for the Palestinian Conciliation Commission.

    3. East Jerusalem has never been the capital of any Arab state or entity in history. Even Jordan did not seek to declare Jerusalem the capital of the territory of the West Bank and Transjordan after they were unified into one territorial entity in 1950.

    4. The present Arab claimant – the PLO – only came into existence in 1964 and the claims made in its Charter that all of Palestine (including Jordan) belongs to the Arab residents of Palestine are not backed up by any historic or other proprietary entitlement.

    5. The removal of the settlements will amount to the displacement of 500000 Jews from a part of former Palestine where Jews were to be encouraged to closely settle the land including State lands and waste lands not required for public purposes – as decreed in article 6 of the League of Nations Mandate for Palestine and preserved by article 80 of the UN Charter.

    I would be pleased if you would elaborate on what basis you claim that these positions are in furtherance of the relevant standards of international law.

    You might also care to comment on the fact that what you are now articulating was open to the Palestinian Arabs in conjunction with the Arab League to achieve at any time between 1948 – 1967 when not one Jew lived there – as they had all been kicked out by Jordan in the 1948 invasion of Palestine.

    Indeed an even greater area of land would have been available to the Palestinian Arabs had they agreed to the UN Partition Plan in 1947 or the proposals contained in the Report of the Peel Commission in 1937.

    Trying to turn the clock back to those earlier days simply is and has always been a doomed project.

    The entire West Bank and East Jerusalem cleared entirely of its Jewish inhabitants cannot in my opinion possibly now become the sovereign territory of the Palestinian Arabs or Jordan or any other Arab entity as a result of negotiations.

    The 19 years window of opportunity for that to happen disappeared in 1967.

    Force of arms could achieve that result – but at what price? I shudder to think.

    Israel has already offered to cede its claims to sovereignty in at least 90% of the territory on two occasions – 2000/1 and 2008.

    Those two opportunities have also probably been squandered.

    Why the continuing insistence on 100% and not one square metre less?

    The Arab demands that you find reasonable will once again put an end to any hope for a peaceful resolution of a dispute that has remained unresolved for 130 years.

    Secretary of State Kenny’s threat to leave the parties to their own devices looks set to happen if Abbas does not return to the negotiating table without preconditions. At best it is only postponing the inevitable – an end to the two-state solution as envisaged by Oslo and the Bush Roadmap.

    Perhaps then some pressure will be put on Jordan to step in and negotiate with Israel to restore the status quo existing at 5 June 1967 as far as is now possible given the changes that have occurred since then

    • TLanglo June 10, 2013 at 11:42 am #

      Dear Mr. David Singer,

      I am not nearly the expert neither on international law nor on the issues of Israel/Palestine that Dr. Falk is and this should reflect that my comments are partially biased as I continue to seek his knowledge and wisdom on both of these areas of international relations.

      However, since childhood I have been keenly aware of issues between the Palestinians and Israelis because I was born on June 7th 1967 and became aware of the horrific acts Israel took during the Six Day War which led to expanding its territorial boundary agreements.

      Your comments above include two major issues (of others) that I wish to be acknowledged by readers:

      1. You wrote above:

      “There were no 1967 borders – only 1949 armistice lines agreed between Israel and Jordan ( the last Arab occupier of the West Bank and East Jerusalem). Those armistice lines were breached by Jordan entering the Six Day War despite being warned by Israel to refrain from doing so. ”

      I find this to be terribly misleading information as it can possibly Spin readers who are not aware of the actions taken during the Six Day War that led Jordan to enter the previously agreed boundary markers.

      2. You also wrote:

      “UN Resolution 194 has no binding effect in international law and also only served as the terms of reference for the Palestinian Conciliation Commission.”

      This statement can also be misleading without providing readers information as to who the UN Resolution 194 is and is not recognized as “binding.”

      As usual there is great difference between UN Resolutions that are agreed upon in contrast to what is recognized by the Security Council.

      With these problems expressed, I very much agree with your words:

      “Trying to turn the clock back to those earlier days simply is and has always been a doomed project.”

      However, the positions shared by Dr. Falk do not suggest turning back the clock. Rather, they suggest creating a new vision. As you said yourself, East Israel has never been a capital of an Arab state – yes, this would be new.

      Also, yes it would demand that a large portion of the Israel state which has been immigrated in through Israeli political tactics to be relocated. These immigrants have been placed in the surrounding borders in order to increase boundaries, often or mostly unaware of the political turmoil their placement involves. Furthermore, the reasons that lead to their seeking a life in Israel has much to do with internal conflicts from occurring in their original habitats, due to external international pressures. Therefore the international community can create solutions to deal with the relocation of some of these immigrants who were brought to Israel and indeed some of the wider Israeli population is likely to consider creating new Israeli territories in other nation-states, such as the U.S.
      This too would be new.

      • David Singer June 10, 2013 at 5:02 pm #

        In response to your two numbered comments might I answer as follows:

        1. Jordan entered the Six Day War because it had signed a five year mutual defence agreement with Egypt on 30 May 1967 – which enabled President Nasser of Egypt to declare that same day:
        “The armies of Egypt, Jordan, Syria and Lebanon are poised on the borders of Israel … to face the challenge, while standing behind us are the armies of Iraq, Algeria, Kuwait, Sudan and the whole Arab nation. This act will astound the world. Today they will know that the Arabs are arranged for battle, the critical hour has arrived. We have reached the stage of serious action and not of more declarations.”

        Jordan had to live with the consequences of its decisions to sign the pact and then breach the armistice line less than a week later against Israel’s advice to refrain from doing so.

        Had Jordan not done so one could speculate that not one Jew would now be living in the West Bank and East Jerusalem and Jordan would still be in control of the West Bank and East Jerusalem in 2013.

        Jordan relinquished any claims to these areas in 1988.

        These are facts.

        2. I take your point regarding Resolution 194 which I could have made clearer was a General Assembly resolution which is non- binding.

        Regrettably the spin came from Professor Falk in suggesting that America should insist on it being fully implemented – when Professor Falk knew it had no binding effect.

        That would open the door for calls for any General Assembly resolution on any subject to be implemented. The UN is in enough chaos and upheaval without adding another layer of confusion into the system.

        Certainly I agree with you that creative solutions need to be found if the conflict between Jews and Arabs is to be resolved.

        East Jerusalem as the capital of a Palestinian State has been touted by the PLO since 1967. My comment is that it could have been such a capital at any time between 1948-1967 with the stroke of an Arab League pen. it did not happen. It has only become an issue when it fell into Jewish hands. Even so Israel has made offers in relation to East Jerusalem which have been rejected by the PLO in 2000 and 2008.

        Removing 500000 Jews from the West Bank and East Jerusalem is an impractical solution. Israel has previously agreed to return more than 90% of the West Bank where few or no Jews live. The PLO wants the lot – lock, stock and barrel and the Jews gone. This is not a creative solution – only one that in my opinion makes the two-state solution impossible to achieve.

        Your veiled suggestion that Jews be returned to the places they came from is as objectionable as suggesting that the Arab residents of Palestine who came to live there from Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Lebanon and Saudi Arabia be returned to those countries.

        My creative solution is to restore the status quo ante that existed at the outbreak of the Six Day war by returning to Jordan so much of the West Bank as is now possible given the changed circumstances on the ground in 2013 – to area to be determined in direct negotiations between Israel and Jordan – notwithstanding that Jordan walked away from the West Bank in 1988.

        Israel and Jordan are the two successor states to the Mandate for Palestine – occupying respectively 17% and 77% of former Palestine. Dividing sovereignty of the remaining 6% between them seems eminently achievable – especially as they already have a signed peace agreement that deals with the processes for settling contentious issues such as Jerusalem, refugees and water.

        Yes – the clock can’t be turned back – but one can attempt to do the best one can.

    • Lasse Karagiannis June 12, 2013 at 1:15 pm #

      I feel the need to correct your perception of what have happened historically, the big facts that you don’t seem to have understood.

      1. The international community gave Israel 56% of Palestine in 1947. This is israels borders. Palestine protested but that is irrelevant since it wasn’t a state. The 1947-borders is the borders given to Israel by the international community.

      2. Israel starts an illegal war of agression in 1948, and a criminal act of war. It displaces Palestinians and they kill unarmed people, as testified by IDF-veterans at Zochrot-youtube channel. It has settled the cleansed land, and that is a warcrime. It is irrelevant if the neigbouring arabic countries scrambled to protect the civilian pouplation

      3. It started a second war of agression in 1967, which also that is a warcrime. At the same time more civilians are cleansed. israel then again settled occupied territories which is again a war-crime. It is irrelevant if Jordan join in to protect the palestinian population or what. It was a war of aggression from Israels side according to one of its architects General Mathiau Peled.

      These are undisputed facts. Settling is a warcrime according to the Geneva convention, war of aggression is a war-crime according to the the same.

      Israel is a Jewish State for the so called Jewish People that isn’t a race and isn’t a people like for instance the ethiopians because anybody can join by converting to Judaism for a licensed rabbi, (except if you´re black, unofficially)
      ANYBODY can legally convert adn become a Jew and obtain the right to “return” and “redeem” the land from the indigenous population!

      • David Singer June 12, 2013 at 6:37 pm #

        Lasse Karagiannis

        In reply to your numbered comments:

        1 Yes the UN did offer the Jews 56% of what was left of Palestine in 1947 – after the carve off of Transjordan in 1946 – and the remaining 44% to the Arabs. the Arabs rejected the offer – as they had rejected the offer of partition recommended by the Peel Commission in 1937. How do you claim that the Jews are bound by a UN proposal the Arabs failed to accept?

        2. You seem to have overlooked the following facts that occurred between the time the Arabs rejected the UN partition plan in November 1947 and the invasion of Palestine by six Arab armies on 14 May 1948:

        (A) the mufti of Jerusalem orders a three day strike in Jerusalem followed by demonstrations

        (B) December 2: Arab rioters burn a Jewish shopping quarter and do other extensive damage

        (C) December 4: Jewish convoys on Tel-Aviv- Jerusalem road attacked.

        (D) December 9: Jerusalem riots have spread to Haifa and between Tel Aviv and Jaffa

        (E) December 11 – A Jewish convoy going to the West Bank group of Jewish settlements
        Is attacked on the Hebron Rd and in another attack the next day at the same place 9 Jews were killed.

        (F) December 12- 5 Jews killed near Beersheba

        (G) December 13 – 14 Jews killed near Lydda

        Were the Jews justified in trying to defend themselves in dealing with this slaughter? They obviously thought so and responded.

        (H) 4 January – An Arab building in Jaffa is blown up killing and wounding a number of Arabs

        (I) 5 January – Semiramis hotel in Jerusalem blown up with loss of 20 Arab lives including the Spanish Consul with the Haganah claiming responsibility alleging it was the HQ of Arab terrorists.

        (J) 1 February – Jewish owned Palestine Post HQ is blown up

        (K) 18 February – Explosion in Ramleh place where 6 Arabs killed and 32 Arab injured.

        (L) 20 February – Explosion in Ben Yehuda Street the heart of the Jewish business quarter kills 50 and wounds 70

        In the midst of this upheaval large detachments of the Arab Liberation Army began to infiltrate into Palestine from Syria under the command of Fawzi Kaukji

        Seven of these detachments with a total estimated strength of perhaps 5000 were in Palestine by beginning of March.

        Want me to go on ?

        3. I believe the Six Day War was initiated by Egypt which closed the Straits of Tiran in breach of international law and dismissed the UN Emergency Force from the Sinai whilst professing its intention to wipe Israel off the face of the map.

        You mention the Geneva Convention (whose applicability to the West Bank is not universally accepted) but fail to mention Article 6 of the Mandate for Palestine and article 80 of the UN Charter which preceded the convention and specifically encourage
        close settlement by Jews in the West Bank on state lands and waste lands not required for public purposes.

        Anyone can convert and become a Moslem and indeed this is the declared aim of Islam. Why should anyone opting to convert to Judaism be the target of your racist and bigoted comments? Do you have the same view of converts to Islam seeking to live among their fellow Moslems?

        Seems you – like the 22 existing Arab States – still want to continue the war on the Jews rather than end the conflict that could have been resolved if the Arabs had accepted – not rejected – the 1947 UN Partition Plan.

    • Ronald Bushnell July 2, 2013 at 2:40 pm #

      I agree with your assessment, that is is time to end the farce of the two state solution. Why should all of those nicely built homes be destroyed; as has been the racial segregation policies of the past? ~ In my view it is time for outside forces such as a re-legitimized United Nations to force a policy of equal rights, in the free and open International State of Israel. As we move toward an interconnected world society, the very concept of a racially exclusive state is historically and morally reprehensible and unacceptable. That is to say, I believe it is time to abandon the concept of Israel as a Jewish state, to one of an expanding racially inclusive state; that is a world model of integration. In real terms the United States of America is a kind of Jewish State. ~ What seems certain, is the world needs to prepare for intervention within Israel itself; both relative to nuclear weapons, and the unacceptable situation in Gaza – where this seems to be a role suitable to a newly empowered United Nations enforcing the rule of law.

  2. Francis Oeser June 7, 2013 at 6:01 am #

    Richard,
    The basis for your piece seems grounded on a myth: that another Palestine will (and can) be created.
    Think of the Golan Heights where a UN team has been unarmed and patrolling it for years. Now, with Syria in shambles, there is no security brought about by the UN. The situation is a minature example of the neccessity of armed policing, armed politics which is embedded in the ME these days. Coupled with Israeli intransigence, their own myths of unassailability and Palestinians as sub-human, NO AGREEMENT can be made; no advancement of stability and peace.
    The very idea of peace talks is as unreal as walking on water. It is NOT a matter of debate or aspiration anymore. What sort of intrusion into the process, what kind of shift in an ossified situation is both unclear and unimaginable. But a modicum of good will would surely help.
    You display that but I am dismayed by your analysis!
    SORRY!!

    Francis

    • Gene Schulman June 7, 2013 at 1:01 pm #

      To both Francis, and David Singer, above:

      HOGWASH, and you know it.

      • David Singer June 7, 2013 at 5:26 pm #

        I am afraid that one word dismissive comments such as yours are a waste of time.

        If you care to point out what is hogwash and why – then I will be happy to answer you.

  3. kairossouthernafrica June 7, 2013 at 11:41 am #

    Reblogged this on Kairos Southern Africa.

  4. monalisa June 8, 2013 at 1:16 am #

    Dear Richard,
    thank you for your thoughts and reflections.

    Israel has shown no interest in real peace talks with Palestinians and to comply with UNO resolutions in past times. Israel’s government too has its objective to bomb Palestinians (being fenced-in and no escape, being neither equal of military equipments nor soldiers) as well as surroundng countries shown in the past and quite recently concerning Syria.

    To treat Palestinians as fenced-in people on their own homeland, to create a wall and to pursue a state with one religion only reminds me – sorry but that’s a fact –
    on the Medieval Europe. Almost same actions and political thoughts, same fencing-in to certain quarters. (Who stole and/or demolished the olive trees of Palestinians on their land and to restrict water especially drinking water?? – Just as an example ! Who murdered blatantly this American woman who did nothing except to stand in front of an Israeli bulldozer in order to save the home of a Palestinian family not being demolished?? Or what about those poor little children in an elementary shool yard being chosen as targets for Israel soldiers’ shootings?)

    Zionists over the world (mostly in USA) are getting nervous as the world community is more and more aware of what is really going on with the Palestinians and how Israel’s government treats them. With Asia and Russia as well as South America as awaking countries and parts of its mainstream media not so much polluted and bribed by Zionists as in the Western political hemisphere things are cracked open maybe not to the full extent however even parts of it are enough to get a better viewpoint and to be able to discern between truth and lies.

    As we a are maybe on the verge of a greater war-arena for Western militaries as “game
    exercises implementing the next Cold War era” the Palestinian case could be easily forgotten – that’s I fear considering the latest political outcome and the retreat of UNO soldiers (Austrian) on the Golan Heights. They have been ordered home – which means to me that it could be that some political/military movements are already planned by Western countries together with Israel in this geographical area.

    We shall see and I do hope very very much that I am wrong in my thoughts.

    Take care of yourself,

    monalisa

    • David Singer June 8, 2013 at 3:17 am #

      You state:

      “To treat Palestinians as fenced-in people on their own homeland, to create a wall and to pursue a state with one religion only reminds me – sorry but that’s a fact – on the Medieval Europe”

      Sorry to contradict you but that is not fact.

      The population of Israel is 7.2 million – of whom 1.4 million are Arabs – mainly Moslem.

      There are an abundance of mosques and churches in Israel and freedom of worship and the right to practice one’s religion is open to all three faiths – not to mention the Bahai whose world headquarters are located in Haifa

      Perhaps you might like to acknowledge your mistake and withdraw your remark.

      • Gene Schulman June 8, 2013 at 6:34 am #

        Monalisa is NOT mistaken. She is referring to the Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza, not Israel proper, if can one speak of a “proper” Israel.

        Your original reply to me (above) is correct. It is a waste of time, because your whole argument is one of classic hasbara misinformation and incorrect history. I’m not at all interested in reading your replies.

      • David Singer June 8, 2013 at 3:50 pm #

        Gene Schulman

        Thank you for explaining what monalisa meant by her post( not sure why she did not take the time to explain herself)

        Giving her the benefit of your expiation that Israel is pursuing a state with one religion in the West Bank and Gaza – can you or she explain:

        1. Why then did Israel unilaterally disengage from Gaza in 2005 leaving it a total Jew free zone?

        2. Since the PLO have total administrative and security control in the totally Jew free territory known as Area A comprising 18% of the West Bank and containing 55% of the Arab population of the West Bank – what evidence do you or monalisa have to support monalisa’s claim that Israel is pursuing a state in the West Bank with one religion?

    • Gene Schulman June 8, 2013 at 6:45 am #

      http://www.counterpunch.org/2013/06/07/us-zionist-lobby-reels-from-resistance-al-qusayr-victory/print

      Just to confirm what you say about Zionists the world over getting nervous as the public becomes more aware of what Israel and its Western allies are up to.

      • Gene Schulman June 8, 2013 at 7:07 am #

        The above should have been addressed to monalisa.

      • monalisa June 8, 2013 at 7:32 am #

        to Gene Schulman:
        thank you for this above mentioned link I just read it.
        It is interesting to me that my conclusion/s based on observation (as a non-political individual) of the political arena is in line with others more qualified.

        It is unfortunate for Israel’s inhabitants that their government doesn’t act for the wellbeing of the whole state.

        As an Austrian I do hope that our government will not get some sort of reprimand from EU administered by UNO = USA driven.

        monalisa

    • Ronald Bushnell July 2, 2013 at 2:58 pm #

      I agree with you. What David Singer points to is true; but like many Israelis, they point good things and ignore unacceptable activities as if they don’t exist. Saying “Look, we are a democracy!” – while ignoring the displaced Palestinians in a prison camp having white phosphorus and cast lead dumped of their heads. ~ It is becoming abundantly clear that it is time for the world to intervene to protect Jews and Palestinians, and dismantle Hamas; the terrorist group that is indoctrinating a new generation of hatred – as are the Israelis. ~ In my view it’s time to abandon the farce of the two state solution, and force a free and equal greater world state of Israel.

      • David singer July 2, 2013 at 11:43 pm #

        Roger

        Perhaps you should consider that Israel’s disengagement from Gaza was met by the trashing of Israeli buildings and infrastructure and the despatch of over 12000 missiles in the indiscriminate targeting of Israeli population centres – which Professor Falk has acknowledged as constituting war crimes.

        States are entitled to defend their citizens against such attacks.

        Separation of Jews and Arabs has been recognised as the only workable solution by the League of Nations and the United Nations since the first decision to do so was made in 1922, then in 1937, 1948 and in 1993.

        Suggesting a single state now as you do would involve combining the West Bank and Israel into one state and is a certain non-starter where Jews and Arabs would again form the two components of a single state and return the two populations to the era of strife and rioting before 1948.

        However – combining the West Bank and Jordan into one bi-national state as existed between 1950-1967 can work – where Moslem Jordanians and Moslem Palestinians would form the two components of a bi-national state.

        Of course murder and mayhem between Arab and Arab is still possible as events of the Arab Spring and Syria and now Egypt graphically show.

        However the policy of separating conflicting parties seems a necessary consequence of the bitter blood between Jews and Arabs.

        A bi- national state of Jordan to embrace the aspirations of the populations of the West Bank and Jordan seems a far better solution.

        None of this would have been necessary if the two-state solution had succeeded.

        It hasn’t after twenty years and there is no likelihood in my opinion that it will.

      • Richard Falk July 4, 2013 at 2:32 am #

        Mr. Singer: Although I don’t agree with your comments about my views on the Gaza rocket attacks, which I did condemn, but noted the context of many Israeli provocations and far greater Palestinian casualties at every stage of interaction since 2005; and also, the willingness of Hamas to establish and maintain ceasefires, which have been broken mainly by Israel, although the timelines are complicated and contested, I do agree with you about the ‘two state’ solution being a dead letter, and rather bad faith on all sides to pretend otherwise.

        The question seems to me to be “What Next?” I think the Jordanian option is one answer, but not one I endorse. There is a need for this discussion, I agree to this extent.

      • Gene Schulman July 4, 2013 at 2:54 am #

        I think Richard Falk is being too kind to David Singer. Why doesn’t Mr. Singer ask himself why the rockets are being used in the first place? Could it be that they are the Palestinians only defense against Israeli oppression in Gaza? And if Israel would lift the siege, the rockets might cease? As Singer says, everyone has the right to defend themselves against aggression. That should include the Gazans.

        I agree with with both, the two state solution is dead, and Kerry’s current efforts are a waste of time and will amount to nothing and merely delay the inevitable.

      • David singer July 6, 2013 at 10:51 pm #

        Professor Falk

        I note that the following post by me has not appeared on your website. Is there any reason why?

        “Professor Falk

        I believe you previously acknowledged that rockets fired indiscriminately into Israeli population centers constituted war crimes. Am I mistaken?

        We both agree that the two state solution is dead.

        I have just had published the following article on the Jordan option which I note you do not endorse,

        http://www.americanthinker.com/2013/07/palestine_the_binational_state_that_can_work.htme

        Could you explain why?

        Could you also elaborate on what you believe should be the next step.”

      • Richard Falk July 6, 2013 at 11:00 pm #

        Mr. Singer:

        I never received this comment from you. I would have posted it as I do now. Let me consider your proposed solution, and decide whether I have anything useful to offer in response. At present, I am preoccupied by the developments in Egypt and Turkey, including their effects on the Palestinian situation.

      • David singer July 7, 2013 at 1:51 am #

        Professor Falk

        Thank you for your prompt reply.

        I understand your concerns with Egypt and Turkey and would also include Syria in your deliberations.

        I also sent the following post in response to Gene Schulman – which obviously was not received.

        “Gene Schulman

        A real breakthrough – Professor Falk, you and I all agree that the two state solution is dead,

        Can we in a civilized manner conduct a discussion on what we believe the next step should be?

        I have proposed negotiations to reunify all or part of the West Bank with Jordan to create a bi-national state for the Jordanians and Palestinians/

        Professor Falk does not endorse this proposal and I have asked him to explain why.

        What are your thoughts?”

      • Gene Schulman July 7, 2013 at 2:24 am #

        http://www.zcommunications.org/egypt-s-morning-after-by-richard-falk

        It never ceases to amaze me just how wise Falk can be when it comes to analyzing events in the Middle East. Of course, all of this is in connection with seeking solutions to the Israel/Palestine situation, which is his UN mandate.

      • Richard Falk July 8, 2013 at 9:43 pm #

        Mr. Singer:

        I have read your article with care, and it does provide a clear alternative to the two-state
        solution. It is also an approach that I know from my diplomatic contacts is being encouraged
        by Israeli negotiators in private meetings with the Palestinian Authority, and toward which
        the PA has not expressed outright rejection, but apparently a willingness to consider.

        Nevertheless, I have several problems with this alternative to the political reasoning that
        underlay SC Res 242:
        –I am doubtful whether such an outcome would be acceptable to Jordan because of issues of internal
        demographic balance, and an unwillingness after generations to grant Palestinians full rights of
        citizenship. Similarly, Palestinian self-determination under Hashemite rule seems like an oxymoron to me.
        –Also, you are not clear about the fate of East Jerusalem or Gaza, or Palestinian refugees, especially
        those in Syria and Lebanon.
        –further, the presumed retention by Israel of the land associated with settlements, roads, wall, seems
        to be an unacceptable reward for behavior that was almost universally condemned as a violation of IHL,
        including by the USA.

        Given the paucity of decent alternatives, if the legitimate representatives of the Palestinian people
        genuinely accepted such a solution without it being imposed, it might be better than nothing, and the best
        among bad options. Without exploring the historical background, our differences are partly grounded on contradictory
        understandings of the validity of arrangements reached in the colonial period, especially in relation to deciding
        in London that a Jewish homeland could be established in Palestine, and then not even abiding by the proviso that
        it not involve encroachment on the rights of those living at the time in that territory; I do not accept the
        Zionist narrative on the historical evolution of pre-Israeli statehood.

        Richard Falk

      • david singer July 9, 2013 at 1:22 am #

        Professor Falk

        I am encouraged by your response and your advice that the approach has apparently been raised in discussions in private meetings between Israeli negotiators and the Palestinian Authority.

        Let me deal with your objections and try to answer your concerns:

        1.” I am doubtful whether such an outcome would be acceptable to Jordan because of issues of internal demographic balance, and an unwillingness after generations to grant Palestinians full rights of citizenship.”

        Only negotiations can determine whether you are correct or not.

        However West Bank Arabs were Jordanian citizens between 1950-1988.

        The West Bank was unified with Jordan between 1950-1967

        The overwhelming majority of Jordanians (70%) were born in or are descendants of persons born in Western Palestine.

        Jordan has already indicated it would agree to a confederation with Palestine once a State was created in negotiations with Israel.

        The bi-national state of Jordan would encompass about 80% of Mandate Palestine and Israel about 20% of Mandate Palestine – surely a fair resolution of the territorial claims of each other.

        2. “Similarly, Palestinian self-determination under Hashemite rule seems like an oxymoron to me.”

        The Hashemites have secured 78% of Mandate Palestine under Arab rule for the last 90 years and have done far more for the cause of the Arabs of Palestine than any other leader during that time.

        The Mandate prescribed the reconstitution of the Jewish National Home in Palestine – which could have covered a far greater area than the present 17% – had Abdullah not gone to Transjordan in 1920 and procured Britain to create an Emirate in his favour in Transjordan – thereby denying the Jews the right to reconstitute their national home in 78% of the area originally designated by the League of Nations.

        Semantics decree King Abdullah to be a Hashemite, but he was born in Jordan – an area that is 78% of Mandate Palestine. He is as Palestinian as any other Palestinian born in any other part of Palestine.

        3. “Also, you are not clear about the fate of East Jerusalem or Gaza, or Palestinian refugees, especially those in Syria and Lebanon.”

        The fate of East Jerusalem and Gaza would obviously need to be settled in the negotiations and Israel has already indicated it was prepared to make some concessions regarding East Jerusalem. I believe there were also negotiations concerning linking Gaza by means of an overhead roadway or an underground tunnel. Linkage of Gaza with Egypt is another option that could be explored in those negotiations.

        Palestinian refugees would have the right to emigrate to the newly created bi-national state of Jordan – which is four times larger than Israel.

        The negotiations could lead to Israel agreeing to accept a specified number of the 1947 refugees being accepted to emigrate to Israel.

        I believe such negotiations would be easier than those that have gone on for the last 20 years without success – because Israel has a signed peace agreement with Jordan in which the negotiating parameters for such thorny issues as Jerusalem, water and refugees are laid out.

        4.”further, the presumed retention by Israel of the land associated with settlements, roads, wall, seems to be an unacceptable reward for behavior that was almost universally condemned as a violation of IHL,including by the USA.”

        Israel has already agreed to cede its claims in some 95% of the West Bank and Gaza.

        The West Bank was lost to Israel in the Six Day War after Jordan was warned to stay out of the war and ignored the warning.

        SCR 242 does not prescribe Israel’s withdrawal from all the territories – on the American interpretation and as is made clear in the English translation.

        Expecting 500000 Jews to be made to quit their homes is in breach of the UN Declaration of Human Rights.

        5. “Given the paucity of decent alternatives, if the legitimate representatives of the Palestinian people genuinely accepted such a solution without it being imposed, it might be better than nothing, and the best among bad options.”

        The best negotiated settlement is one where neither side is happy with the result.

        Let the negotiations begin and see where they lead to.

        Obviously there will be no agreement if Israel, Jordan and the PLO are not prepared to sign a binding agreement.

        6. “Without exploring the historical background, our differences are partly grounded on contradictory understandings of the validity of arrangements reached in the colonial period, especially in relation to deciding in London that a Jewish homeland could be established in Palestine, and then not even abiding by the proviso that it not involve encroachment on the rights of those living at the time in that territory; I do not accept the Zionist narrative on the historical evolution of pre-Israeli statehood.”

        We can argue the history ad infinitum but it won’t bring about an end to the conflict that arose with London’s decision in 1917.

        However you cannot ignore that London’s decision was unanimously endorsed by the League of Nations in 1922 and by the United Nations in 1945 in article 80 of the Charter

        I understand that the PLO regards that decision as illegal and void – but whilst the PLO is entitled to its view – it certainly would not be the view of most lawyers who would regard the Mandate as a legally binding treaty in international law.

        Both Jews and Arabs have suffered grievously during the last 90 years.

        Surely it is time to attempt negotiations which have a sound historic, geographic and demographic basis designed to finally divide Mandate Palestine between Jews and Arabs and end the suffering on both sides.

        These negotiations would – if successful – accord with efforts by the League of Nations and the United Nations to achieve an equitable resolution of the dispute in 1937 and 1947 by dividing the territory between the two claimants.

        There was then and now no other proposal that could possibly work.

        I look forward to your comments.

      • Gene Schulman July 9, 2013 at 3:38 pm #

        @ David Singer:

        I have earlier promised to ignore your comments because I do not believe we could come to any compromise on positions you take. But since your most recent exchange with Richard is cordial, I have decided to offer a short reply. I could easily demolish your arguments for a two-state solution, but will confine myself to just one egregious statement you make in this response to Richard: “Expecting 500000 Jews to be made to quit their homes is in breach of the UN Declaration of Human Rights.” What chutzpah you have in raising human rights in this statement. Those 500,000 Jews in the occupied territories are there illegally, and have no right to reside in those settlements illegally built. What about the human rights for the thousands of Palestinians who were driven from their lands and homes? Have they no rights? I would not object to those settlers remaining if a two- state solution were ever realized, or even a one-state solution. Those Jews could be given the option of remaining in the newly created state, governed by the Palestinians. But I doubt the would want to given the prejudices and racism of the settlers.

        Mr. Singer, I would seriously suggest you read a new book by Rashid Khalidi: “Brokers of Deceit, How the US Has Undermined Peace in the Middle East”, in which he describes in detail just how the US has favored Israel and ignored any consideration of the Palestinian cause. The conclusion is that there is zero chance for any brokered peace, especially when the US has no interest in one. Not to speak of the Israelis. whose officials have recently openly stated that there will never be one.

      • david singer July 9, 2013 at 6:43 pm #

        Gene Shulman

        I do not wish to enter into a long debate as to whether the right of Jews to settle in the West Bank is legal or illegal.

        I am more interested in exploring the possibility of negotiations being started to redraw the international boundary between Israel and Jordan to create the bi-national state of Jordan.

        The issue of what happens to those 500000 Jews would be determined in such negotiations.

        Certainly if the Arab side proposed they would be granted full Jordanian citizenship along with the same grant of citizenship to the Arab residents of the West Bank – then this would be an offer that needed to be seriously considered.

        Under the current negotiations – the PLO wants those Jews removed – no ifs no buts. That is one of the principal reasons the current negotiations have gone nowhere. The PLO wants every square metre of the West Bank free of Jews.

        Personally the issue in my opinion is a non-issue if Israel retains sovereignty over no more than 10% of the West Bank. The Jews will remain there as citizens of Israel and live within the boundaries of Israel.

        Given the fact that the bi-national state of Jordan will be four times larger than Israel – the ceding of Arab claims in 10% of the West Bank is a small concession to make in the negotiations to secure an end to the conflict and grant the Palestinian Arab refugees wherever they live self determination in an area encompassing 80% of former Palestine.

        Khalidi is entitled to his viewpoint that there is zero chance of a negotiated peace – but I believe that is not the viewpoint of Professor Falk and it certainly is not my opinion – especially if the bi-national state unifying Jordan and the West Bank is the subject of negotiations.

        That Professor Falk has indicated such a proposal has already been the subject of private discussions between Israeli and Palestinian negotiators is encouraging.

        That Professor Falk has stated such a solution could be the best of the bad options available is also important.

        Everyone must strive for a resolution – not write off a possible solution.

        Professor Falk, yourself and I all agree the two-state solution is dead.

        Where to from here?

        I have proposed the bi-national state and Professor Falk has raised problems that could derail any negotiations to bring it about. I have tried to answer those problems and await Professor Falk’s reply with interest.

        Do you see any further problems relating to the bi-national proposal other than those raised by Professor Falk ?

      • Gene Schulman July 9, 2013 at 11:55 pm #

        @David Singer:

        1. There is no debate about Jewish rights to settle in the West Bank. There are none.

        2. What has Jordan got to do with a bi-national state? They are sovereign on their own and already have probably a majority of Palestinian refugees which threatens their own stability. I doubt if Abdullah would cede power to a bi-national entity, nor should he have to. The West Bank is Palestinian, and does not belong to Israel

        3. You object to the PLO wishing to remove all Jews, yet you are willing and happy to eliminate all Palestinians from their own lands.

        4. You ask where to from here? How about one bi-national state consisting of Palestinians and Israelis in all the land, under one secular democratic government for each and all of its citizens, as was originally planned.

        5. Your “opinions” are ridiculous, and I return to my original position of ignoring you.

      • Richard Falk July 10, 2013 at 2:23 am #

        Mr. Singer:

        I disagree with Gene Schulman when he labels your views as ‘ridiculous,’ but I do find them one-sided for
        some of the reasons that he points out.

        Without attempting to respond point by point because there are some underlying gaps separating our positions that cannot be bridged
        by reasoning or compromise, I will merely express my reservations about advocating a resumption of negotiations
        at this time. First, as past failures have shown, there is a downside to failed negotiations, leading to frustration,
        recourse to violence, and so there must be some confidence that any proposed resumption of negotiations at this
        time would be productive. Secondly, I do not believe that there are grounds for such confidence for two main reasons–
        the outlook of the Netanyahu government, which seems ill-disposed toward a fair resolution of the conflict and contains in its cabinet
        several ministers that favor annexing the West Bank; and the inability of the Palestinians to form a unity government that allows
        their representatives in negotiations to speak with one voice, at least so far as those Palestinians living under occupation
        are concerned. Thirdly, I do not discern any support among Palestinians for the Jordan bi-national option that you are proposing
        or your rendering of history and law, and it is primarily their right of self-determination that is at issue. The international
        community lacks the authority or the political will to propose and impose a fair solution that would undoubtedly anger both sides to
        some extent; and secondarily, I find no interest in this approach among Jordanians, either those in government or those in
        leadership roles among the various ethnicities living in the country.

      • Gene Schulman July 10, 2013 at 2:52 am #

        Well, let us just say, ridiculously one sided, then ;-)

  5. Gene Schulman June 8, 2013 at 7:41 am #

    http://www.counterpunch.org/2013/06/07/marching-to-jerusalem/print

    Here is another link, for David Singer, which he can stuff into his hasbara pipe and smoke.

    • monalisa June 8, 2013 at 8:20 am #

      to Gene Schulman:
      I read too yet the counterpunch article concerning “marching to jerusalem”.

      As I stated several months ago already, Israel’s government is extremely shortsighted: to replace old buildings, old places, demolish old churches and old mosques means for the future clearly, that more and more foreigners will not be interested to visit Israel.
      Green hills have been made full of settlers’ buildings looking almost all the same and don’t bear any aura of former times, old streets not conserved to give visitors a glimpse of older days ……

      and so forth …..
      maybe I am speaking only for Europeans more interested in history, old places and so forth …
      if Jerusalem will be undergone a whole “resurfacing” and older buildings will vanish from the history of the citiy ….

      monalisa

    • David Singer June 8, 2013 at 4:17 pm #

      You still seem keen to avoid discussing my detailed comments concerning Professor Falk’s remarks by introducing an article written by someone else that does not address my comments.

      Why are you continuing to be so reluctant to state in detail what you dismiss as “hogwash”?

      I do not intend to abuse Professor Falk’s blog by dealing with the issues raised in Sarah Marusek’s article that I find misleading, intended to deceive and factually incorrect.

      Please feel free to take my comments concerning Professor Falk’s. statement apart point by point – if you wish – and I will respond.

      Smoke screens and red herrings will get you nowhere.

      As they say in the classics – “Put up or shut up”.

  6. monalisa June 9, 2013 at 12:27 am #

    to David Singer:
    I am not interested in any discussion with you about what you have written.
    As you repeat every time here in this blog the same opinion and therefore are unable to be a partner for discussion. Discussion means – to me – open to others’ opinions reflecting facts and developments in different areas of our life and within our life-time (as well as taking into conideration history with its affiliates). As well as able to have the grandeur to say OK in this or that field of discussion more research should be done and/or just to admit that this or that of facts/outcomes etc. haven’t taken into consideration and therefore the own opinion should be shaped/abandoned/replaced.
    Fixed minds are repeaters of their dogma. Like a mantra or some psalms or chapters of religious books without even thinking about.

    For example like the KLU KLUX KLAN dogma that the white (caucasian) race is superior and therefore anybody with colored skin belonging to another race shouldn’t be allowed to mix with the “whites”. In biology it is the diversity and mixing of genes which show more versatility and most of the times the IQ is higher as the average tested. Therefore, taking those dogmatic people into spotlight it just gives the examples of poor education as well as manipulation for the sake of more money and/or power.

    To me your posts are irrelevant as they always negate proven/recorded facts. (It starts with history and goes to DNA probes as well as facts recorded in written, filmed and/or on pictures.)

    monalisa

    • David Singer June 9, 2013 at 6:02 am #

      Monalisa

      You made a statement with which I disagreed and gave you my reasons.

      Gene Shulman sought to explain what you meant – which if correct was just as wrong – for the reasons I gave.

      If you wish to dispute my explanations – please feel free to do so.

      It is much easier to do that than go off on a tangent writing lengthy posts that have no relevance to the statements you made and I sought to correct.

      • Gene Schulman June 9, 2013 at 6:11 am #

        I don’t know about monalisa, but I don’t care to dispute your fallacious explanations. I prefer to ignore you.

      • David Singer June 9, 2013 at 3:21 pm #

        Gene Shulman

        When you are not prepared to discuss your generalized and unsubstantiated claim that Israel is pursuing a state with one religion in the West Bank and Gaza – which I have contradicted with two factual statements – then readers can make up their minds as to whom to believe.

        Similarly you have described my correction of Professor Falk’s use of the term “1967 borders” instead of ” 1967 armistice lines ” as an “attack” on Professor Falk.

        Sorry Gene Shulman – the use of incorrect language needs to be corrected if there is to be any headway in resolving the Jewish- Arab conflict.

        Where Incorrect language is used to mislead and deceive – I will seek to correct it.

        If I am wrong in my remarks – then point them out. Don’t shy away from having that debate.

        If there were 1967 borders – then what countries were those borders between and when were those borders agreed?

        Is a “border” different from an “armistice line”?

        Fact – not fiction – must be agreed on and form the basis for any rational discussions to end the conflict.

        Attacking the man and not the issue will get you nowhere.

      • Gene Schulman June 10, 2013 at 4:41 am #

        “Don’t shy away from having the debate.” I’m not at all shy, but I know that you are not looking for debate, rather you wish to hear your own self talking hasbara nonsense. As monalisa has said, you only repeat yourself. Well, I’m not interested in banging my head against your wailing wall. I will continue to ignore you as, it seems, most other readers of this blog have done.

      • David Singer June 10, 2013 at 3:19 pm #

        Gene Schulman

        You have now for the fourth time repeated your refusal to discuss whether the 1967 line referred to by Professor Falk was a “boundary” or an “armistice” line.

        I guess Professor Falk does not want to discuss it or the other points I raised in response to his comments – judging by his continuing silence.

        I can only presume his comments cannot be justified. If so they should be reviewed and revised.

      • Daniel Ariel June 13, 2013 at 3:00 pm #

        David,
        I really like your comments very much.
        Keep on the Good Work.

  7. rehmat1 June 10, 2013 at 10:10 am #

    Netanyahu is not in favor of the so-called “two state” solution. Recently, his cabinet ministers Danny Danon and Ze’ev Elkin, confirmed it recently.
    Personally, I believe in the ‘option’ of a democratic one-state Palestine, based on ‘one-vote- one person’ with equal rights for all its citizen, dismantling of racist Zionist political parties and Israel Occupation Force (IOF), right of return for the natives and suitable compensations for their loss of properties to the Jew settlers – and of course the dismantling of country’s nuclear arsenal. All those racist Jews, who don’t want to live in peace with the natives – they should be allowed to migrate back to their ancestral lands – Germany, Russia, Poland, France, the UK, the US, etc. – as many White settlers did in South Africa, Algeria and India. In fact, Professor Edward Said had predicted long time ago that the great majority of Israeli Jews would rather prefer to live under Muslim rule in Palestine than going back to their ancestral western homeland where they know anti-Semitism would be waiting for them.
    However, some Jewish bloggers like Roger Tucker and Gilad Atzmon agree with Helen Thomas’s famous solution.

    http://rehmat1.com/2010/06/18/palestine-the-third-option/

    • monalisa June 10, 2013 at 12:56 pm #

      to rehmat1:
      a solution with one state whatever called Palestine or Israel wouldn’t work out.
      Far too many Israelis of Mosaic belief got some sort of a brainwash and they don’t mind to steal and murder.
      If a driver of a bulldozer doesn’t mind to stop in front of an unarmed single woman and start to think which orders and on what they are based and refuse to carry out an governmental order what kind of population in general can be expected of such a country?
      When soldiers shoot into a school yard of an elementary school just for fun what kind of people are they ? All in the name of relgion ? All in the name that they are better than others ?

      The Christian religion (whatever their crimes were, I am aware of that very much) got at least some sort of belief and this is Love.
      – Love even for enemies ! At least for about fifty years this is the prevailing credo.
      (So I am aware of the fact, that the Roman-Catholic brainwash of more than thousand years is still there however, much more state and law controlled, at least in Europe.)

      Moslems got the deep belief of Mercy also for other religions and enemies and that Christians and Mosaic believers should be respected.

      What kind of believe got the Mosaic religion believers ?
      That they are superior ? They can do what they want – even steal and murder? For the sake of a promised land ?
      What are Mosaic belief clergies teaching ?

      Many Jews claimed possessions from Germany and Austria which their Jewish relatives owned once (or owned by themselves) and which had been confiscated (= practically stolen by the government of that time).
      Thinking about that: how much compensation got Palestinians for their stolen possessions?

      I know, it is a scandal and at the same time a real dilemma. But far too many Israelis don’t still realize that their government is extremely unwise and doesn’t care for its next generations.

      And to say the truth: I feel too very sorry for the Israeli Jewish population. A population not being able to discern between necessity and religious fantasy.

      monalisa

    • David Singer June 10, 2013 at 3:09 pm #

      Rehmat1

      Are you in favour of the Helen Thomas Solution?

      Indeed Professor Falk – are you in favour of the Helen Thomas Solution?

      • rehmat1 June 10, 2013 at 4:16 pm #

        Did you bothered to read my views on the matter as mentioned in the article before asking the idiotic question?

      • david singer June 10, 2013 at 9:30 pm #

        Rehmat 1

        Wouldn’t it be simpler to answer “Yes” or “No” rather than obfuscate and avoid answering my “idiotic question”?

      • Gene Schulman June 11, 2013 at 1:06 am #

        http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article35229.htm

        @ David Singer: Maybe the above can answer your idiotic question.

      • David Singer June 11, 2013 at 3:10 am #

        Gene Schulman

        Are you the ventriloquists dummy – answering for monalisa and now rehmat1. Are they incapable of responding themselves?

        OK here is your big opportunity

        Do you favour the Helen Thomas Solution? Can you limit your response to a “Yes” or “No”

      • Gene Schulman June 11, 2013 at 3:30 am #

        Emphatic “YES”!!!!

      • David Singer June 11, 2013 at 4:11 am #

        Gene Shulman

        Thank you.

        I wonder if rehmat1 can be equally receptive to answering my “idiotic question”.

  8. rehmat1 June 11, 2013 at 6:36 am #

    Professor Falk chased by the UN Watch, Again!!

    http://rehmat1.com/2013/06/11/richard-falk-calls-for-removal-of-jewish-un-watch/

    • David Singer June 11, 2013 at 10:55 pm #

      Rehmat 1

      Perhaps in the interest of fair play and balance you might like to post the following on your web site

      http://blog.unwatch.org/index.php/2013/06/10/un-watch-blasts-un-rapporteur-falk-after-he-demands-investigation/

      I would not have considered commenting on this matter – which has nothing to do with contents of Professor Falk’s blog – had you not sought to raise it in the unfair manner you have.

      I hope this post ends any further discussion of Professor Falk – the man- and concentrates solely on the contents of the message he is delivering.

      • Gene Schulman June 12, 2013 at 9:57 am #

        I stopped reading the link when it said the Boston Bombing left over 300 dead. Try again David Singer. Meanwhile, I’ll be attending Falk’s conference on “The Situation of Palestinian Children in the Israeli Military Detention System” here in Geneva.

      • David Singer June 12, 2013 at 10:07 pm #

        Gene Schulman

        The article said “300 dead and grievously wounded”

        Keep reading – not misleading.

        Hope you pay more careful attention to what Professor Falk has to say.

      • Gene Schulman June 12, 2013 at 10:44 pm #

        David Singer:

        I know how to read. The statement “300 dead and grievously wounded” is what is misleading. There were only 3 dead. No one knows for sure how many were “grievously” wounded, but 300 is surely an exaggeration to about the power of about ten. Typical hasbara methods.

        I ALWAYS listen carefully to what Richard Falk has to say, because he tells the truth. I’m curious to see how many of your ilk will be in the audience to sling insults at him.

      • rehmat1 June 12, 2013 at 8:21 pm #

        @David Singer

        I have no problem linking to the UN Watch anti-Falk propaganda lies – only if you could convince Hillel Neuer to post mine on his website. I bet you will get a 7-letter answer from Moshe Neuer.
        I know Dr. Falk has lost the courage to stand-up to Israel Lobby and have done Teshuvah in the past; removing the cartoon on Lobby vs Libya – and going at length to prove to the Lobby that he is not a self-hating Jew – but how could Lobby foget his meeting Imam Khomeini in exile in Paris.
        On October 25, 2012, Richard Falk, in his report to the UN urged the member nations of the UN General Assembly to boycott companies that do business with the Zionist entity.
        What a shame!

        http://rehmat1.com/2012/10/27/unhr-envoy-un-must-boycott-israel/

  9. TLanglo June 11, 2013 at 10:40 am #

    Dear Sir David Singer,

    I thank you very very much for your informative answers AND your shared ideas towards creative solutions. Indeed, I know Dr. Falk began this blog to invite constructive discussion about the issues he addresses; you have allowed for this learning discussion to occur. Perhaps on my own behalf more than yours.

    Much of what solidifies my opinions about Israel and Palestine today is based on the content of a book “The Lemon Tree” by Sandy Tolan which helps to explain why many Palestinians do not see a divided Jerusalem as an acceptable solution. Another key source of my grasp on the ideas I hold are based on the everyday experiences shared with me by peace workers who work with youth in both Israel and Palestine.

    Your reply will send me to seek more knowledge about the Jordanian relationship with the borders since 1967. I thank you for bringing this layer of the issue to my attention. Based on what I have learned already is that Israel had already been expanding their territory and increasing its population of Jews through immigration beyond the level agreed upon (I am not sure exactly when -either in the British Mandate for Palestine or in the Balfour Declaration which promised not to obstruct the lives and traditions of the non-Jewish population), which is why the bordering Arab States sought to put an end to Israel expansion and to restore the people who had been removed from their homes and lives.

    I also thank you for appreciating my creative solution; however, somehow it seems you have misinterpreted the idea. I do not think the immigrant Jews ought to return from where they came. Rather, I believe they should be given choices as to other places (nations) they can go, Perhaps they can go to other nations or even create Jewish states in the other nation-states aside from Israel/Palestine. Many Jews who are native and who have immigrated are quite secular. Their immigration to Israel is often based on political and economic goals rather than for religious purposes. I am reminded of the “Voyage of the St. Louis” turned away from finding hospitality in the United States by Roosevelt. This event is an example of reasons I think that all Jews would find solace in other countries aside from Israel. This does not describe Jews returning to where they came.

    To readdress the current issues regarding “Whose Two-State Solution” I hope our discussion has brought to light layers of complexity that can otherwise be missed when considering options of two state solutions. I believe the Jewish People have been incredibly nourished and cultivated with a history being creatively innovative in ways of working with lands, environments, and resources. I believe if their wisdom, traditions, and principles could benefit where they may choose to go by invitation of other countries while the population of Jewish in Israel is restored to a proportion agreed upon by the Israeli and Palestinian leaders.

    I write this thinking to myself – to begin is to imagine.

    Although I would love to continue this discussion, I fear its continuance will lead too far away from the current issue Dr. Falk is highlighting and that both of us will be more productive and affective to examine the reactions and choices being made that will produce what happens now. You have my sincere respect and appreciation.

    • David Singer June 11, 2013 at 10:29 pm #

      TLanglo

      I have not read “The Lemon Tree” – but others who have did not apparently find it as meaningful as you.

      https://www.standwithus.com/app/iNews/view_n.asp?ID=2565

      Jordan comprises 78% of the territory of the Mandate for Palestine in which the provisions of the Mandate calling for Jewish National Home to be reconstituted in Palestine were postponed or withheld.
      Jordan and the West Bank and East Jerusalem share a special relationship following Jordan’s conquest of these areas in 1948 and their occupation till lost in the 1967 Six Day War. My suggested solution of once again reunifying these two areas is based on history,geography and demography.
      I hope your further research will enable you to confirm the correctness of my statements.
      Given the virtual end of the two- state solution postulated by the Oslo Accords and the Bush Road Map – my proposal is one that I believe must now be seriously considered.

      My own opinion is that your suggested solution that other countries offer places for the Jews and their descendants to immigrate would have very little impact in resolving the conflict. Are you also suggesting the same offer be extended to the Arabs and their descendants who came to live in Palestine for economic and secular reasons after the Jews started to return there in numbers in the 1880’s to join those Jews who had been living there before then? I am sure these Arabs could find solace in any one of the current 22 Arab states. Why only the Jews and not the Arabs being made this offer?

      Surely a creative solution should involve no one – Jew or Arab – leaving their current homes. My proposed solution achieves this outcome.

      To understand how seriously Jewish immigration was curtailed – not increased as you suggest – Jewish immigration was restricted to 75000 Jews between 1940-1945 by the British Government in its 1939 White Paper.

      I suggest you read the original documents – not what appears to be misleading and deceptive information from sources you have not identified.

  10. David Singer June 12, 2013 at 10:37 pm #

    Rehmat1l

    I am not really interested in what goes on your web site or anyone else’s web site. That is a matter for you to decide and to take responsibility for.

    I am concerned that you use Professor Falk’s blog page to post links to material from your blog page that is one sided and unbalanced.

    This is all about you and your standards – not Mr Neuer.

    Correcting your blog page to present a more balanced viewpoint should be in your interest if you want your comments to be taken seriously.

  11. Rabbi Ira Youdovin June 14, 2013 at 9:52 am #

    It’s sad that Prof. Falk demonstrstes nothing of his gift for Socratic discourse on this blog. To the contrary, by iinviting questions and comments and then ignoring them, which is his usual tactic, he displays arrogance and disdain for his readers, not the humility Mr. Schulman found in Geneva.

    Prof. Falk will perhaps explain this disparity.. But until he does, I must assume that those attending his Geneva session embraced his perspective, while he is unprepared to address dissenting views presented by inform people like David Singer.

    One favor I ask of Mr, Schulman: please allow Prof. Falk to answer my question, if he cares to. Your version of what he couldda/wouldda said is of no value.

    Rabbi Ira Youdovin

    • Gene Schulman June 14, 2013 at 10:46 am #

      Note to self: IGNORE!

    • Richard Falk June 15, 2013 at 1:04 am #

      To Rabbi Youdovin:

      There are times to respond, and times to ignore, and it may take a lifetime of trial and error to decide which is which.

  12. segmation June 18, 2013 at 12:18 pm #

    I think it is not a End game or Intermission, but I wish for peace in our lifetime! What do you think?

  13. Gene Schulman June 8, 2013 at 11:47 pm #

    Ah, I see Rabbi Ira is back to join the attack against Richard Falk along with David Singer. Two birds from the same branch, twittering the same twaddle. Your arguments are so facile that they would be easy to pick apart by any reasonable observer, but it is a waste of time arguing with people who have been so indoctrinated in the Zionist cause, that they wouldn’t accept anything that did not conform to their own hasbara. And, again, that old canard of accusing anyone who disagrees with you of being a self-hating Jew or anti-Semite.

  14. David Singer June 9, 2013 at 6:05 am #

    Gene Shulman

    I am still waiting for you to pull my facile arguments apart. Please proceed to do so and I will respond.

  15. oldguyincolorado June 10, 2013 at 1:28 pm #

    David, you are wasting your time. These folks are not interested in “facts”, they just want their position to be the “only man left standing”. That is why some do not even want to address what you have to say. “Natives”, as if Jews are not among them? Preferriing to “live in a Muslim country” rather than returning to one which wants them dead seems to them to equate to endorsing a one state Muslim solution (choosing life over death – how often have we had to face that)? They probably never read the Jordanian Constitution, the Hamas Charter, don’t understand the expulsion of @ 850,000 Jews from Arab lands, have no idea who the Grand Mufti was and what he did and planned(Arafat calling him one of his “heros”), or even read the Koran (which is, to most Muslims, the word of Allah and to be followed in every respect).

    Arafat rejected a 97% victory, much to the shock of Bandor and Clinton. Now they reap the results of his decision. Now how many Jews still live iin Jordan or Gaza or feel safe in returning to lands from which they were expelled just because they were Jews?

  16. rehmat1 June 10, 2013 at 4:25 pm #

    Did you ever study some OBJECT source on Muslim-Jewish history before the European Zionist terrorists occupied Palestine?
    “I am a Jew of Islam becuase Judaism under the rule of the Crescent took a different course than that under the rule of the Cross. The Jews of Islam, although decreed by the Pact of Omar as dhimmis or second-class cirizen, never experienced the same level of hatred, anti-Semitism or persecution, which were their daily bread in Christendom. They were not demonized as god’s (Jesus) killers and did not have to defend their religion in public deputations. They were not expelled en-masse on religious grounds from a Muslim country as they were from England, France and Catholic Spain,” Rabbi Haim Ovadia, Kahal Joseph Congregation in Los Angeles, California, January, 2008.

    http://rehmat1.com/2010/01/20/gods-house-muslims-saved-jews-from-nazis/

  17. David Singer June 12, 2013 at 6:55 pm #

    Lasse Karagiannis

    Calling me the son of a whore ensures that I no longer want to have any discourse with you.

    Professor Falk – what happened to your supposed standards of civility and courtesy in putting posts up on your blog site?

  18. Richard Falk June 12, 2013 at 10:17 pm #

    Mr. Singer:

    You are correct. I have removed the post. While here in Geneva I have had little time
    to monitor this comments section.

    Richard Falk

  19. David Singer June 12, 2013 at 11:05 pm #

    Professor Falk

    I appreciate your taking the time to do so during your busy schedule.

  20. dreamsonthehill June 18, 2013 at 11:37 am #

    From a layman’s perspective it seems a merge into a one or two state state solution is inevitable and will only become more viable each day that passes. The escalated actions of the U.S. and other countries in the Middle East in the past decade coupled with the current tide in Syria indicate to me that at some point “balance” will be imposed to resolve the Israel / Palestine issue. I believe this solution, so to speak, will happen before any real balance is perceived or realized in the rest of the Middle East and will necessitate a resolution in order to achieve balance in the Middle East and else where. I think the climate is reaching a point that it will happen and some sort of multinational force will be part of maintaining the balance. I’m not an expert, but it just seems inevitable. I liken it, not to diminish or make light, to Regan grandstanding to Gorbachev to tear down the wall. Of course there is more than a wall involved here and more ideology beyond communism or psuedo conversion to capitalism. The selective process that the world intervenes in order to stop inhumanities or injustices is more apparent in the past decade and increasingly more in the past few years. There will be no choice but to intervene and to implement a balancing force of peace. After that, it will remain to be seen how the world continues and if it will address the imbalance of poverty amidst 7 billion people and if the purveyors of poverty will continue to occupy their coveted integer.

  21. Gene Schulman June 14, 2013 at 2:49 am #

    Last night (Thursday, June 13, 2013) I had the privilege of sitting in on a conference in Geneva on ‘The Situation of Palestinian Children in the Israeli Military Detention System’. The conference featured speakers on various aspects of the oppression brought on the Palestinians in the Occupied Territories by official Israeli policies.

    Richard Falk, United Nations’ Special Representative on Human Rights in the Palestinian Occupied Territories gave the introductory remarks, and was followed by:

    Laura Dupuy Lasserre, Permanent Representative of Uruguay to the UN Office in Geneva who spoke on the “Role and Challenges of the International Community.” Unfortunately, she read her long, technical text in a heavily accented monotone, and it was difficult to follow her argument.

    Ivan Karakashian represented the NGO ‘Defence for Children International’ in Palestine, and presented a chilling report which featured documentary films on how the IDF raids villages in the middle of the night to arrest children as young as nine or ten years old accused of ‘throwing stones’ at walls or Israeli military vehicles, and render them to Israeli prisons.

    Avihai Stollar is the representative of the Israeli NGO ‘ Breaking the Silence’ presented a report on IDF soldier’s testimonies of above such raids into the territories to capture these children, and why they revolted against such practices.

    Finally, Ibrahim Saïd from Graduate Institute in Geneva spoke about ‘Palestinian Children in Conflict with Israeli Law: Moving beyond the Human Rights Discourse’.

    Though each of the above speakers gave moving, informative talks about the situation in the Palestinian Occupied Territories, the piece de resistance of this conference was listening to Richard Falk. I have been in touch with Falk for some time, exchanging emails and commenting on his infamous blog, but I had never met him in person before. Thanks to our mutual friend, Daniel Warner, I was introduced to Falk. I have always admired his writings and agree with his positions, but it is a different level of admiration to hear him speak. He is self assured, completely lacking in arrogance, explains his issues without hesitation, weighs each word, and delivers them with a seriousness, understanding the importance of getting his message across with passion without anger, laced with occasional humor and irony. Last night he emphasized the psychological effects on children under an occupation now lasting some 46 years, having been born under and knowing nothing other than it during the whole of their lives. How especially it effects those under five years of age. He then spoke of the de facto annexation of the occupied territories and the the collaboration of the Palestinian Authority with the Israeli government in sustaining the occupation, and how this precludes any sense of a future for the children suffering it. He concluded his remarks with a call for ‘Palestinian emancipation’.

    Falk was especially good during the Q&A after the talks. He was able to listen to four or five questions at a time before responding to each of the them as though he were in direct conversation with each of the posers, remembering each and looking them directly in the eye. It was an amazing performance. Of course, many of the questions were about the recent scandal he caused in his report to the Human Rights Council when he called for an investigation of the UNHRC whose US representative had called for his resignation.

    This was a conference I wouldn’t have missed for anything, and I came away with even greater admiration for Professor Falk than I had before.

  22. Thanks for posting this. keep posting.

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Trackbacks/Pingbacks

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    […]  Whose ‘Two State’ Solution? End game or Intermission? – Richard Falk […]

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