Saturday, August 29, 2009

Death of a Myth: Israel’s Support of a Two-State Solution

Washington Report on Middle East Affairs, Page 7

Special Report

By Rachelle Marshall

ISRAEL’S actions from the beginning have directly contradicted the image it projects to the West. The founding of a country that was to be “a light among nations” required the forcible expulsion of most of its original inhabitants. The “Middle East’s only democracy” became the brutal oppressor of three million Palestinians. The nationhood that was to endow the Jewish people with “normality” gave them instead a garrison state in which military strength is the dominant value.

  • On the day of Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s White House meeting with President Barack Obama, a Palestinian woman in the occupied city of Hebron stares at an Israeli soldier standing guard near a wall spraypainted by settlers with obscenities and the Star of David. Ultranationalist Israeli Knesset members were visiting the city to protest Netanyahu’s promotion of the easing of restrictions on Palestinians (AFP photo/Menahem Kahana).

The most enduring myth of all is that Israel would welcome peace with the Palestinians and the Arab nations if they agreed to recognize Israel’s legitimacy as a state. In 1955 then-Prime Minister Moshe Sharett recorded in his diary a statement by Israel Defense Minister Moshe Dayan that revealed Israel’s true policy: preserving the unity of an immigrant population by discouraging peace efforts and maintaining a sense of permanent beleaguerment.

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