Official Guardian Editorial Legitimizes a ‘One-State Solution’
So much of left-wing thought is a kind of playing with fire by people who don’t even know that fire is hot – George Orwell
We’ve long believed that chances were strong that the historic editorial preference at ‘Comment is Free‘ towards commentators (and even Islamist extremists) who seek a ‘one state solution’ to the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict would eventually translate into an official editorial position in favor of such a final solution. Whilst that position may not yet have been explicitly expressed, today’s official Guardian editorial, on Jerusalem’s municipal elections, seems to have at least taken a step in that direction.
Ignoring polls indicating that Palestinian residents of Jerusalem would prefer – in the event a Palestinian state were created resulting in a divided Jerusalem – to remain citizens or residents of Israel, their Oct. 21 editorial (Jerusalem elections: the ballot and the boycott) starts off by legitimizing the most radical and unrepresentative Palestinian voices:
To cast a vote [in the Jerusalem municipal elections] is to acknowledge the legitimacy of the occupation, or so it is argued. “Participating in the process merely gives [the Israelis] political cover,” insists Hanan Ashrawi, from the PLO’s executive committee. “They want to create a reality where the Palestinians participate in the occupation of their own country.
The Guardian editorial continues:
But this year, for the first time ever, there is a Palestinian candidate [Arab Israeli] Fuad Saliman…[who] is running as a part of an Israeli coalition of left-wing parties. Given that Palestinians make up well over a third of the city’s population, their participation in the political process could transform a political landscape…
So, what is the Guardian’s interest in increasing Palestinian voter strength? It becomes apparent in the following paragraphs:
As a thought experiment, however, it is fascinating. Extrapolating from the local situation in Jerusalem, what if all Palestinians made a strategic decision to seek full voting rights within the reality that is Israel, rather than demanding a separate Palestinian state? In other words, what if they transformed their struggle from a nationalist one into a civil rights one?
Of course, Palestinians don’t all have the same access to the ballot box. But far from looking to exert their electoral presence on the national stage, those who do have the right to vote have been exercising it less and less. Seventy-five per cent voted in the 1999 elections. Ten years later, it was 54%. The fact that it didn’t dip below half earlier this year was put down to a last-minute intervention by the Arab League urging the million or so Palestinians living in Israel to get out and vote. Amid deepening despair as to the viability of a two-state solution, this [one-state] option…is only going to attract more attention.
While it is curious that their latest expression of “despair” over the two-state solution was published at a time when serious peace negotiations between the two parties are currently taking place, it’s more important to understand what exactly their little one-state “thought experiment” actually means: the legitimization of a radical reconstitution of Israel from the world’s only Jewish state into a binational state in which Jews would likely again be at the mercy of the ‘benevolence’ of a hostile Arab majority.
The overwhelming majority of Jewish Israelis, possessing a political sobriety informed by an understanding of the catastrophic history of such political powerlessness, would of course violently resist such a scenario, rendering any attempt to impose such a solution a likely recipe for endless war.
Finally, in 2011, following the Guardian’s release of its highly skewed “expose” of the ‘Palestine Papers’ – which among other stances, characterized Palestinian compromise on the refugee issue as a “craven” – Ron Prosor, who was then Israel’s Ambassador to the UK, blasted the paper in a Huffington Post essay titled “The Guardian’s Assault on Peace in the Middle East“. Prosor decried the “self-appointed ‘guardian’ of Palestinian truth” who “maximized its opportunity to pledge allegiance to the hard-line, national fantasies which have crippled the Palestinian cause for decades.”
The one-state scenario, however it is couched, is not a “solution” but, rather, the racist anti-Zionist end game of Palestinian extremists who seek to deny Jews, and only Jews, their inalienable right to self-determination.
Adam Levick is the managing editor of CiF Watch, an affiliate of the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America (CAMERA).