January 11, 2009
The Christian Science Monitor: Letter to the Editor
regarding "The Long Tunnel to a Gaza Peace", 1/9, p.8
editorial asserts that Israel can't afford a second defeat in Gaza.
Israel lost by starting this barbaric offensive. Wars hardly ever solve
conflicts. There will be hatred and attempts of revenge as long as the
legitimate inhabitants of Palestine live in concentration camp-like
conditions. Israel's policy of "collective punishments" is a despicable
form of terrorism.
It is time to find real solutions
instead of blaming and rationalizing. The USA must stop its
unconditional support of Israel. As Israel populated much of the
Palestinian lands, it has forgone a two state solution. What is needed
is one democratic, secular state that includes Israel, the West Bank
and the Gaza Strip. Israel worked closely with South Africa's white
regime and cooperatively developed nuclear weapons. South Africa, with
its vast African majority, has become a democracy that dismantled its
"homelands", apartheid system, and nuclear facilities. It is time for
Israel to find a similar solution.
[this letter was published, shortened, 1/13/2009]
February 21, 2009
Regarding Israel/Palestine: In a Christian Science Monitor front page article (2/17/2009), "Window closing for two-state solution
in Middle East", staff writer Howart LaFranchi states "some now see a
risky 'one-state solution' as the only option in Israeli-Palestinian
conflict." and "particularly in the wake of Israel's electoral lurch to
the right .... a number of Israelis and Palestinians are warning that
the two-state solution is in its death throes."
extremely urgent for the Obama administration to stop defending Israel
as a separate Jewish state for many reasons:
- Israel has not worked towards a two-state solution since the nineties. It has de facto pursued an Israel from the Mediterranean to the Jordan River.
- The lack of progress is not due to Bush's lack of initiative, it is due
to the USA's support of Jewish West Bank settlements and support of the
illegal actions by Israeli police and defense forces. Israel does not
accept that their theft of Palestinian lands and building of walls
within the West Bank are illegal and must be stopped, but the USA at
most reprimanded Israel while giving further assurances of support.
- At this point, attempts by the Israeli government to dismantle the
illegal Jewish cities, suburbs and settlements in the West Bank may
lead to a civil war. Pursuing a two-state solution has become very
- We must not support any quasi religious state, Christian, Jewish,
Muslim or other. We must work towards secular democracies that follow
- If a united Palestine is secular, democratic and neutral, Jews do not
have to fear a razor-thin Arab majority. Both groups need each
other. There are many multiethnic states where at least one group
is a minority. Generally the wealthy and, to a lesser degree the well
educated, are most influential, not the majority. We must
remember: during the early decades of Israel's existence, racism and
terrorist crimes against blacks were common in both South Africa and
the USA. There has been much progress without two-state solutions.
- Additionally, in a democracy, political decisions deal with basic
problems of income distribution, priority setting, economic philosophy,
etc., not religious beliefs and ethnicities. The USA just decided
that a ethnic minority president best represents the people's interests!
- In Palestine, the ethnic differences are small; Arabs (including
Palestinians) are Semitic and have spoken a Semitic language since
Antiquity while Judaism represent more a religious affiliation than
ethnicity. Jews were often prosecuted because of their roles in
society and because of jalousie: for centuries they were not allowed to
own land and gravitated to very lucrative jobs in commerce and/or
academia. Among Arabs, Jews generally lived in peace.
- That Hamas does not accept the right for Israel to exist is irrelevant
since they have virtually no power. Many countries did not accept
other countries' governments or de facto borders.
- As long as the USA supports Israel's brutal right-wing government, we
continue to lose credibility in the Middle East and the Third World. We
will continue to lose respect in the whole world. We have been very
hypocritical, condoning Israel's illegal nuclear arsenal and defending
the brutal collective punishments of Israeli police and defense forces,
while condemning small desperate acts of powerless Arabs. We
acknowledged Israel's right to torture suspects and to destroy the
lives of families of adolescent Palestinian fighters–this is
terrorism. Our hypocrisy drives powerful anti-American sentiments
and terrorism. Arab terrorists hardly hate freedom, they hate the
excesses of the West, the mistreatment of Arabs in Israel, and the
threat Western corporations and media pose to their culture.
USA cannot afford spending billions to support Israel, further billions
to repair and rebuild what Israel destroys, while harming our
relationship to the rest of the world.
March 10, 2009
The Obama administration continues to promise support and close
ties with Israel, trying to pursue peace through a two-state
solution. This in spite of the facts that,
- As reported 2/26 (the Christian Science Monitor,
p.4) Israel plans to demolish 88 homes in Silwan, a Palestinian
neighborhood in East Jerusalem (West Bank), supposedly for an
archeological park. From the Washington Post,
March 4, 2009 By Glenn Kessler: "Clinton criticizes Israel,
Iran... Israeli plans to demolish Palestinian homes
'unhelpful,' secretary of state says." Approximately 1,500
Palestinians are to be evicted with the justifications that the
buildings were built "without permit"
- As reported 3/3 (the Christian Science Monitor,
p.7) plans for at least 73,000 housing units in the West Bank will be
available for Prime Minister-designate Benjamin Netanyahu to act on.
- European news media noted that Likud officials carefully avoid
mentioning the 'two-state solution', and, as reported on 3/4, the Christian Science Monitor,
p.11, Netanyahu, a longtime critic of the Oslo peace process, is not
committed to a 'two-state solution' that includes an independent
- Netanyahu's incendiary actions seem
designed to foment more desperate acts by Palestinians, so that Jews
look like victims. In recent decades, much more Israelis have been
maimed or killed by irresponsible Israeli drivers than Palestinian
rockets, but Israel used a few desperate violent acts to justify
killing hundreds of innocent civilians.
If we do not work with Hamas, the elected government
of Gaza, because they do not accept the existence of Israel, why should
we support and work with Israel? Netanyahu does not accept the right of
Palestinians to have the freedoms and rights of citizens in their own
An Israel-Palestine 'two-state solution' is
manifestly obsolete. The question is: will Israel get away with
'apartheid', treating Palestinians as inferior race, arresting and
torturing innocent relatives of fighters, bulldozing anybody's home,
building more walls and Israeli cities within Palestinians'
lands? Furthermore, if Israel wants the international community to
stop Iran's nuclear program, it must be willing to give up its own
nuclear arsenal. The USA must stop taking insults and acknowledge that
Netanyahu is a dangerous extremist. He wants to use us. The USA must
change its language now and start acting, withdrawing all support for
Israel, until Israel recognizes the rights of Palestinians and