Saturday, October 6, 2007

nonviolent resistance in palestine

The Christian Science Monitor has done a story on this important subject (see link below). Peaceful mobilization is the best and perhaps only way for them to continue their struggle. But I would point out one thing in the story, which is not emphasized enough: without the parallel path of Israel's civil courts, the village's years of protest would have been fruitless. For people to protest in Gaza now would have no practical effect, as it is in effect a giant cage labeled an "enemy entity" by Israel. Only by combining judicial means with civil disobedience can Palestinians hope to prevail in specific instances.

This experience shows that the comparison with apartheid South Africa is pertinent. When people who critique critics of Israel talk about Israel's democracy, they are only talking about one part of the land controlled by the Israeli state. The rest of the land -- that taken in 1967 -- has no part in Israeli democracy.

Unless the US and Israel get serious soon, the window of opportunity for the two state solution will have passed, and only the one state solution -- which I and many activists support, for its similarity to the South Africa solution, and for making ethnicity and religion irrelevant to citizenship -- will remain. Unless of course you count the nihilistic, pessimistic vision trumpeted by Zionists every time such a thing is mentioned: endless war. What pitiful cowardice! For peace one must embrace risk and face the other honestly and openly.

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