Mondoweiss / February 18, 2022
You surely know that Nancy Pelosi was in Israel with a group of Democrats including Trump prosecutor Adam Schiff and a couple of progressives, too, visiting the Knesset and military facilities. The pictures make it look like Disneyland. Pelosi met the rightwing prime minister, and tossed off one of her favorite lines: Israel’s founding was the greatest political achievement of the 20th century.
So the Democratic Party kisses up to a rightwing “apartheid” government (per Amnesty International and other global human rights groups) that regularly kills Palestinians under occupation and declares Palestinians’ leading human rights groups to be terrorist groups, for a simple political reason: to keep the Israel lobby on its side in the coming elections. “Our donors,” as Rep. Elissa Slotkin once described Jewish contributors.
The Dems cover themselves for their complicity in persecution that Washington has known full well for nearly 75 years by saying they are for a two-state solution so Palestinians can finally get their rights. Nancy Pelosi says she’s for a two-state solution. So does Ro Khanna and nearly every other progressive Democrat. Trump prosecutor Adam Schiff says the two-state solution is the only way forward.
The two-state solution is the Democratic Party’s way of assuring progressives who support the obvious policy, punishing Israel for its violations of international law, that We care about Palestinians. The two-state solution is their way of brushing aside the apartheid reports. The two-state solution is the liberal Zionists’ way to try to convince the left that We are actually doing something to help Palestinians.
The two-state solution is a big lie. It is never going to happen, and all the Democrats know it.
But just like Trump and his big lie, the Democrats and their liberal Zionist friends spend never-ending time and energy spouting a claim that they know is a bald lie because it allows them to have their cake and eat it. Though in this case the media has the delicacy not to bust them for it. Because they’re in on it.
The truth is actually pretty simple. For the last 75 years the international community has declared its commitment to a two-state solution to the Palestine problem, and for 75 years only one side has gotten a state. The 1947 promise to the Palestinians vanished within a few years, and so did the 1978 promise in the Camp David agreement, and so did the 1993 promise in Oslo, and Wye or Geneva or Annapolis, ad nauseam.
It really is a charade, and a cruel one. Again and again the world said that there must be a Palestinian state alongside a Jewish state, and the only thing to show for it is expanded Israeli control of lands that were supposed to go to that state, with 750,000 Jewish settlers moved into the hilltops of those Palestinian lands in violation of the Geneva Convention, with regular violence to push the Palestinian villagers aside, along with the annexation of the supposedly-shared capital, Jerusalem. And not a peep out of the United States, beyond the occasional exasperation of the John Kerry’s of the world.
The Israelis have never wanted Palestinians to get a state. The prime minister whom Pelosi embraced yesterday announces all the time that it won’t happen.
Anyone who has visited Palestine can tell you that there’s one state between the river and the sea, and there is no possibility of making a sovereign state in the bits and pieces that Israel has left– tiny bantustans. What J Street laments as “deepening occupation and creeping annexation” continue unabated, with no meaningful protest from the U.S. or the liberal Zionists. No, J Street visits the prime minister too.
Even as Pelosi tours Israel, the country is throwing Palestinians out of their homes in annexed Jerusalem, and the House Speaker has nothing to say about it. She and her delegation got a clinic on Jerusalem yesterday not from the Palestinians who are being cleansed but from an Israeli who hangs on to the “Zionist vision.”
It’s a joke, except it’s worse than a joke, because American liberals lie to Palestinians and the world about it and then tell themselves they’re for Palestinian rights.
They are all in on the lie, because– again– it allows them to reconcile two irreconcilable positions: they back Israel to the hilt, which is the position of the Israel lobby, and they say they are also for Palestinian rights. Or to quote the liberal Zionist group J Street, they are pro-Israel and pro-Palestine. Which is like saying, We’re pro-Jim Crow and pro-desegregation.
If any of these leaders were actually sincere about a Palestinian state, they would have called for sanctions against Israel a long time ago. Because Israel only responds to outside pressure. And Democratic voters are all for pressure. But of course there’s never been pressure because the Israel lobby demands that the White House and Congress back the Israeli government, and the Democratic Party leadership doesn’t want to be out of line with the lobby. The Capitol would crumble and fall before the Congress abandons Israel, Nancy Pelosi lectured “the Squad” after they got into Congress. And even progressives are soon piping the tune — Bernie Sanders and AOC and Ro Khanna all support a two-state solution.
While Russia-gate hero Adam Schiff posts a photo of his son in a Mossad t-shirt, and the media could care less about Israeli influence.
There are signs of cracking, outside the Capitol that is. The Washington Post ran a long article on a tour of the occupied West Bank showing that it is delusional to speak of a Palestinian state. Carnegie Endowment last year said what everyone knows, the peace process has failed, and it’s time to abandon that scaffolding and focus on Palestinian rights. “There is no two-state solution open for the taking at the moment and likewise a one-state outcome that offers equal rights for all is just as unlikely,” Zaha Hassan said frankly. “We only call for the… U.S. [to] support an outcome that insures equal rights for all those living under Israel’s control and jurisdiction.”
That view is catching on in the Democratic base and in the think-tanks. “There’s as much chance of a two-state solution as there is of me walking out that door and flying to the moon,” Harvard scholar Steve Walt once said.
It tires you out to carry a lie. You have to remember what you said, as Mark Twain put it. Because you’re continually denying reality.
And then at a certain point it becomes an open farce. Like Nancy Pelosi’s Democratic delegation touring apartheid like it’s Disneyland.
Philip Weiss is senior editor of Mondoweiss.net and founded the site in 2005-2006
h/t Scott Roth, Dave Reed, Adam Horowitz, James North, Michael Arria.