MOVE OVER AIPAC! IT’S U.S. POLICYMAKERS AGAINST ZIONISM (UPAZ)

A post-script to this.

In an op-ed for MSNBC, Yousef Munayyer, newly appointed head of the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation, urges US policymakers to ditch ‘the two-state framework’:

What is needed now is for policymakers to engage in a moment of deep reevaluation and throw out the two-state framework that has underpinned US policy for the last several decades.

The ‘two-state framework’ is endorsed every year by an overwhelming majority of the United Nations General Assembly. It calls for peace based on Israel’s withdrawal to the pre-June 1967 border (with minor and mutual landswaps), the establishment of an independent Palestinian state on the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and Gaza, and a just resolution of the refugee question.

Every year, two countries stand virtually alone in rejecting these terms: Israel and the United States.

It has been the work of many years and much pedagogical effort to raise awareness of the US’s destructive role in blocking a two-state solution.

And yet here is the head of one of America’s largest solidarity movement organisations, casually airbrushing the long record of US rejectionism out of existence.

As the Obama administration energetically conflates the international consensus two-state settlement with its own counterfeit version, which would see Israel annex critical chunks of the West Bank in violation of Palestinian rights; and as it considers tabling a Security Council resolution to consecrate and legitimise these counterfeit terms, dealing a likely fatal blow to the Palestinian struggle for self-determination – at this perilous moment, one of America’s most prominent pro-Palestinian spokespeople echoes and endorses that same conflation.

And in the service of what?

The hope that ‘bold and smart’ American ‘policymakers’ will ‘press Israel to immediately dissolve’ the ‘system Zionism has imposed on Palestinians’.

Taken together, Munayyer’s New York Times and MSNBC pieces advance the following strategic argument:

  1. Prime Minister Netanyahu has provoked growing international hostility towards the Israeli government.
  2. Since Israel will only reverse course under external pressure, it is crucial that this international hostility be further fuelled and inflamed.
  3. International hostility is driven by Netanyahu’s rejection of the internationally supported two-state solution.
  4. Therefore… the solidarity movement and US policymakers must ditch the two-state solution.

At the level of governments as well as public opinion, frustration with Israel has never been higher. What a pity if, for the sake of fantasies and dreams, the momentum is squandered – or, worse, left for capture by Palestine’s enemies.

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