Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Once Again...

...if you have a few minutes, you may want to read through the remarkable string of Comments at TPM Cafe in response to my recent post on Olmert's offer.

10 comments:

littlehorn said...

Hi Bernard. Personally, I never liked endless comments and debates. It's like a movie that is almost at its end, and there's no more action. I'm glad for you that this post provoked so much thinking.

Y. Ben-David said...

I just got Benny Morris’ new book “One State, Two States”. MANDATORY READING FOR EVERYONE!
I was flipping through it and I came across his description of the “Clinton Parameters”. The fact is that the Palestinans REJECTED them. There was no agreement on anything. However, so that the Americans would not cut them off, they called the rejection “acceptance with reservations”, but the reservations pretty negated the whole thing. The Palestinians even rejected Jewish sovereignity over the Western Wall.
So the claim that the Palestinians have pretty much accepted "the solution that everyone knows" and all that is needed is pressure and threats on Israel to get them to go along IS A MYTH.

littlehorn said...

Um. But isn't Morris a post-Zionist who came around to accept ethnic cleansing and the Zionist state ? What are the sources used ? I'd need to read that but I can't afford it.

In any case, what if it was a myth ? What are the consequences for this being a myth ? I thought the rights of Palestinians were grounded in natural justice, not in the way the history of the negociations is portrayed in history books.

Anonymous said...

Hi Littlehorn,

If I understand your concept of "natural justice" then Jews have a right to all Palestine including Jordan. Benny Morris is miss understood by both sides. He is, like writer of this blog, an academic (living inside school/university walls). He tries to describe historical events with social and political acceptance of the day, not today.

Potter said...

I am, at your prod, in the process of reading the comments at TPM which are indeed of high quality (so far... there is a lot to go through and I don't mind if it is good). First thing it did for me was question the wisdom of each side voting in a referendum post agreement, though I don't see how it can be avoided since it has been promised. But there are clear advantages to leaders imposing a solution.

But I write here to commend you Bernard Avishai for the clear thinking and articulation on that piece which generated such commentary. This is a pleasure especially at this point when it is so easy to tune out with disgust and despondence.

littlehorn said...

If I understand your concept of "natural justice" then Jews have a right to all Palestine including Jordan.Um. No, that's not what I'm talking about. I don't know how you arrived at that conclusion...?

Natural justice is a concept of justice that transcends time, place, race, religion. Try this text.

I don't consider Palestinians as a nation and therefore as entitled to land, I consider every individual within the Palestinian 'group' as having natural rights to property, liberty and life.

So, if I were to consider the case of Jordan, or indeed any place on the face of the earth, Jews, as one group of human beings amongst many, do not have a right to it, but they certainly have a right to move there, find a house and work, and live their lives as they wish to, so long as this is in accordance with basic principles of justice.

Potter said...

I finished reading the string and it was not a few minutes of my time but very well worth it. There are also links to be pursued.

I asked myself what was different and ( unfortunately) special from the usual butting of heads, colliding of opinions in this conversation. It starts with the initial post which, as I said, was thoughtful and well articulated. The comments followed this template which is not about being even-handed but about being fair and also grown-up ( for want of a better way of putting it). Also consideration of points being made lead to other points and other considerations added. Very productive and it is a conversation. It proves (again) that ending this conflict should not be left only ( or at all- they had and lost their chances) to the main actors, and that the working out/ironing out should not ever have been halted.

There was, a few days ago, an excellent piece in The Guardian- and a link to the fuller pdf version

The Paradox of Israel's Pursuit of Might

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2009/may/09/israel-middle-east-max-hastings

fuller version:

http://image.guardian.co.uk/sys-files/Guardian/documents/2009/05/08/limitsofforce-hastings.pdf

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