Palestine: One state for all or a final Zionist ethnic cleansing?

Palestine: One state for all or a final Zionist ethnic cleansing?

The headline over a recent article in The Times of Israel by the paper’s Middle East analyst, Avi Issacharoff, was The end of the two-state solution. And the strapline (secondary headline) underneath that was a quote from the body of his article. “It’s time to say it out loud: The Israeli right has won – a temporary, pyrrhic victory that has set Israel on the path to becoming a Muslim-majority state.”

Issacharoff’s opening thoughts were the following.


Conditions are now such that an Israeli withdrawal from the West Bank has already become impossible.

And here it must be said: The watershed line seems to have been crossed. The two-state solution is no more.

No Palestinian state will exist here beside the State of Israel.


He went on to ask if anyone believes that an evacuation of (illegal) Jewish settlers from the occupied West Bank is possible. His own answer was the following (my emphasis added).


During the disengagement, the Israeli army managed to evacuate the settlers from Gaza in just a few days. But there were fewer than 10,000 settlers then, and the army looked different as well. Does anyone seriously think that the army in its present form – an army that has undergone such significant social transformations over the past two decades, whose best officers are members of the religious Zionist movement and live in the settlements – can carry out a task of that nature? The idea seems so unrealistic as to be ludicrous.


What Issacharoff didn’t say is that the real reason for Israel’s withdrawal from the Gaza Strip was the need to do some defusing of the ticking demographic time-bomb of occupation.

In reality the two-state solution was never on from the moment the UN Security Council passed Resolution 242 on 22 November 1967.

The Six Days war of June of that year was a war of Israeli aggression not self-defense. Given that fact (as opposed to Zionist propaganda to the contrary), and that 242 did emphasize “the inadmissibility of the acquisition of territory by war”,the resolution ought to have demanded that Israel withdraw from all occupied Arab territory without conditions. It didn’t. But there was more to the Security Council’s surrender to Zionism than that.

An early draft of 242 required Israel in exchange for peace to withdraw from “the territories occupied in the recent conflict.” By definition that meant withdrawal from all Arab territory grabbed in the 1967 war. But at Zionism’s insistence, which the Johnson administration in America endorsed, the definitive article (“the”) was dropped from the final text of the resolution; and that left Israel free to interpret the resolution as it wished and determine the extent if any of its withdrawals from newly occupied Arab territory. In other words, 242 put Zionism’s monster child in the driving seat and effectively gave Israel’s leaders a veto over any peace process.

It also has to be said that 242 was by default a Security Council green light for Israeli settlement/colonization of newly occupied Arab territory. How so? Resolution 242 ought to have put Israel on notice that if it proceeded with illegal settlement it would be condemned and sanctioned. It didn’t.

Why did the Security Council surrender to Zionism?

My summary answer, which was endorsed in private by one of the senior British diplomats who participated in the drafting of 242, is the following.

Those responsible for framing Resolution 242 were very much aware that Israel’s hawks were going to proceed with their colonial venture come what may – in determined defiance of international law and no matter what the organised international community said or wanted. Sosome if not all of those responsible for framing 242 were resigned to the fact that, because of the history of the Jews and the Nazi holocaust, Israel was not and never would or could be a normal state. As a consequence, there was no point in seeking to oblige it to behave like a normal statei.e. in accordance with international law and its obligations as a member of the UN.

My own complete awakening to the impossibility of an Israeli withdrawal to pre-1967 lines to make the space for a Palestinian mini-state came during a private conversation I had with Shimon Peres in early 1980 when he was the Labour opposition leader to Menachem Begin’s Likud government. At the time I was in the process of becoming the linkman in a secret, exploratory dialogue between Peres and PLO Chairman Yasser Arafat.

Page 1 of 2 | Next page