Watch now (13 mins) | Our call this week will be at its regular time, Friday at Noon EST. Our guests will Rabbi Hanan Schlesinger and Noor Awad from the organization Roots. I reached out to Rabbi Schlesinger because he’s an Orthodox settler rabbi who has undergone an unlikely transformation into a supporter of Palestinian equality. I want to ask him about the attack in Hawara and the terrifying ideological and theological currents that are coursing through parts of the Jewish settler population. I want to ask Noor, who lives in Bethlehem, about the dangers facing Palestinians and the challenges of working with Israeli Jews in support of political equality.
I asked Chomsky about this when I last interviewed him. I will again if he agrees to join us again this year. I want to get Finklestein on the calendar too to see if these are still his views.
I wrote at some length about the question of self-determination here https://jewishcurrents.org/there-is-no-right-to-a-state
i don't see them as two separate entities. 20% of israel's citizens are palestinians. it would be far more if not for the nakba. and there are perhaps israeli jews across the green line in "Palestine." That's why i link the two. i think we're in one integrated political unit that must be equal and binational. so it's partly a recognition of reality and partly a statement of aspiration. as i said, i have no problem referring to israel as the name of the state, just not the territory
Russia, Ukraine, Russia/Ukraine, or Russia-Ukraine?
I haven't been on the blog for too long but has Beinart ever addressed these criticisms of his "one state solution" by Noam Chomsky and Norman Finkelstein?
"There is no one state solution. That is a total illusion! It in fact serves as a way to support Israel. There is no possibility that Israel would agree to terminate its existence to go out of existence and to become a Palestinian state and furthermore there is no support for that in the world. None! Not in the African countries, not in the third world, not in the global south, certainly not in Europe....Third world countries are very jealous of sovereignty. They don't want to see sovereignty overruled, it's dangerous for them, so this is a proposal with no support, no possibility of being realized." - Chomsky
"There's nothing in the law for one state! It's a nonstarter." - Finkelstein
One more quote for good measure:
Hussein Ibish, an Arab-American scholar who supports a two-state solution, says that “Finkelstein and Chomsky have enough experience and have their ear to the ground to see that the one-state effort is quixotic. BDS’s hysterical reaction to Finkelstein was inevitable, because it’s much closer to a religion than it is to a political idea.”
Indeed it will!
No, I think it reflects the profound difference in political cultures between the two countries. And it's not just a matter of political cultures but institutions. The Israeli Land Authority, for instance, which gives almost half its seats to the Jewish National Fund, does not have an equivalent in Ukraine or the US, France, Nigeria etc. I do have a consistent standard: equality under the law irrespective or race, religion of ethnicity. Rights to sovereignty must be judged on how well they provide for that. I'll give you the last word.
The president of Ukraine is a Jew. When israel has a christian or Muslim prime minister let me know
there's a fundamental difference between ukrainian (or french or italian or nigerian) sovereignty and Jewish sovereignty. You can be a Muslim or Christian or Jewish Ukrainian. You can't be a Muslim or Christian Jew. if Israel were a state for all its citizens irrespective of religion, ethnicity and race than i'd have no problem with Israeli sovereignty, though since the name itself suggests one religion it would have to expand to include others. but i'd absolutely oppose Ukraine (or France, Italy or Nigeria) defining itself as a Christian state and giving Christians rights than members of other religions don't have
in his first podcast he was quite clear that he does see the bedouins as amalekites but in his second he says that we can't project the texts about the amalekites into the present day
Why don't you come out from hiding .." Anonymous". I can't believe I even responded to such nastiness.
The idea of one-state for all is a pipe-dream so long as the Palestinians continue to propagandize their people with the belief that the land between the river and the sea is their land, that there is a "right of return" to the millions of descendants of 1948 refugees (literally a made-up definition of refugee), that children are taught antisemitism in school, that murderers of innocent Jews are memorialized as heros and their families are paid a lifetime pension, etc.
For this to ever even be considered, the onus is on the Palestinians to show that THEY want peace and that THEY want to live in harmony with Jews. For 70+ years, it has been and continues to be the opposite.
It is in both peoples' interest to live in their own countries, side by side in peace. The current Israeli government is not playing into the appeasement game. They're playing hard ball. If the Palestinians want change on the ground to claim the West Bank, they must explicitly say and act 3 things: 1) acknowledge Israel's right to exist in peace (and please -- don't start up with the nonsense of "oslo"); 2) agree to recognize" borders that define their own country and Israel; 3) any "right of return" will be to this new Palestinian state. If and when that happens, any Israeli government would respond positively, even the current one.
Until this corrupt Palestinian leadership does that, the Palestinian people are the ones losing out as the world moves on without them. This is not on Israel to change, it's on the Palestinians.
I say nicer things than Ron and I didn't get a special mention in the video. :P
(I'm just kidding I don't really mind lol.)
Peter,I have been following your comments over the years and I am so pleasently suruprised byyour evolution from writing in thes Jerusalem Post to being the editor of Jewish Currents which during the 90s I was in the editorial board. I am fully supportive of your vision of a binational state as the only way to bring peace and reconciliation to the region, and equality and justice to both Jews and Palestinians.
Peter, how come you never wrote an article about any of my questions or arguments? Mine are way more important and impactful than what to name the region! You're hurting my feelings.
"They both have the right to self-determination, but not self-determination meaning exclusive sovereignty, which denies the rights of other people, but self-determination meaning communal autonomy within a framework of legal equality for both people’s absolute legal equality in a binational state. "
Peter, you literally just wrote two weeks ago about how Ukrainians are fighting a just war to keep Russia out of their territory and how the US is right to support Ukrainian independence and self-determination and not wanting to be part of Russia. How are you able to handle this blatant and obvious cognitive dissonance? If self-determination for Ukrainians means exclusive sovereignty, why doesn't self-determination for Jews and Palestinians mean exclusive sovereignty? If "communal autonomy within a framework of legal equality" isn't acceptable for Ukrainians, then why should it be acceptable for Jews and Palestinians?
Now THAT's a Substack article I'd like to read about.
Agree completely with your naming & why. Also deeply appreciate yr willingness to engage with those with whom you disagree. (Tho' I do wish you'd given Tom Friedman & Brett Stephens more of a challenge to their thinking, they desperately need it!) Onward with many thanks for all that you do.