Contact Me

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Palestinian statehood: the chicken or egg conundrum

This is kind of a continuation from:

The idea expressed by the interviewee that (more than a few) Jews went through a transformation from terrorist to statesmen, but Palestinians are incapable could be why the peace process isn’t going anywhere.

If Israel expects that Palestinians can’t transform, as they did, from terrorist to statesman, then Israel isn’t going to give an inch and will in fact create conditions that breed terrorism as a sort of self-fulfilling prophecy.

I don’t know, though, that this mutual understanding and respect has to precede talks and a Palestinian state. This would take forever. If we had waited on prejudice of African Americans to subside some before throwing out slavery and giving them civil rights, we would not have come as far as we have.

It comes down to the chicken and egg. Which are actually final status issues? Should we require a government, certain democratic benchmarks as we have been before a state is “awarded”? Or should a Palestinian state be declared first and negotiate Jerusalem’s international status, dismantling of settlements, removal of the wall, contiguous nature, etc in continuing negotiations? I still think one state should be considered; it would make all the other issues disappear.

Declaring a state first seems more logical to me. If no state is declared, then Israel feels free to continue the brutal occupation indefinitely, which is costly for Israel and obviously unjust and costly for Palestinians. If there is a state and other issues are worked out later, it seems there would be more of a reason for both sides to work things out.

Strangely enough, seems the world isn’t ready for this solution (statehood) that it claims in the end game for these negotiations that we always want to jump start. Everyone wants peace in the Middle East. Every head of state wants to assist in negotiations. This means nothing if they aren’t ready for the solution they claim is the goal of all this! Yet another contradiction in this never ending process…

Recognizing Palestinian state premature: EU

U.S. "would veto" Palestinian state move: Senators

The US and EU are saying no to a unilateral decision for Palestinians to move forward with a state. They want to return to negotiations that have stalled due to Israeli insistence on breaking the law and everyone else’s complicity in this crime. I believe that's called aiding and abetting.

A return to negotiations means Palestinians will have to give up more land- as if they had much, if any to give away in the first place. They were lured into negotiations with the US stand for international law that settlements are illegal and the US was going to go for a temporary halt to building in the West Bank and East Jerusalem. Due to Israeli insistence and certain events on the ground (continuing construction despite any US announcements), the US is falling back into line with Israel. What are the Palestinians supposed to do? Accept the injustice of more of the same or just move ahead with a state? It would be nice to have a bilateral agreement, but those always end up being Israel-US, not Israel -Palestinians anyway and under the circumstances, the latter is the best option. I had always thought leaving refugees, Jerusalem, borders, etc as "final status issues" was backwards anyway. Establishing a state first makes so much more sense than expecting Palestinians to act sovereign while trying to overcome travel restrictions, checkpoints, and other hassles and tragedies Israel imposes on them that make proving themselves or their sovereignty impossible.

I had always thought that everyone supported a Palestinian state. By definition, the much celebrated “two-state solution” demands it. It appears this is only the case under terms Israel agrees with, which will surely cement the status quo of collective punishment, blockade, travel restrictions, terrorism and humanitarian disaster that Israel has established.

And what’s this about Israel planning to retaliate if Palestinians unilaterally declare a state?? What kind of punishment can they throw at Palestinians that they aren’t already?

“Israel reacted quickly, warning that a negotiated peace agreement was the only solution to the conflict, while declaring a state without it would lead to Israeli counter-measures that could include annexation of more West Bank territory.”

Did Israel ask Palestinians' permission before declaring itself a state? Did the Palestinians get to dictate the terms of Israel declaring a state like everyone wants for Israel and the Palestinian state? I think not.

I still believe a single secular democratic state is the real answer, but I don’t guess I really have a say in this.

No comments:

Post a Comment