In a world dominated by magical thinking, superstition and religion, give yourself the benefit of doubt. This is one skeptic's view of the Universe.

"Tell people there’s an invisible man in the sky who created the universe, and the vast majority believe you. Tell them the paint is wet, and they have to touch it to be sure."

-George Carlin

“If people are good only because they fear punishment, and hope for reward, then we are a sorry lot indeed”.

-Albert Einstein

“Skeptical scrutiny is the means, in both science and religion, by which deep thoughts can be winnowed from deep nonsense.”

-Carl Sagan

The person who is certain, and who claims divine warrant for his certainty, belongs now to the infancy of our species. It may be a long farewell, but it has begun and, like all farewells, should not be protracted.

-Christopher Hitchens

 

7 Things to Consider Before Choosing Sides in the Middle East Conflict

Are you “pro-Israel” or “pro-Palestine”? It isn’t even noon yet as I write this, and I’ve already been accused of being both.

These terms intrigue me because they directly speak to the doggedly tribal nature of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. You don’t hear of too many other countries being universally spoken of this way. Why these two? Both Israelis and Palestinians are complex, with diverse histories and cultures, and two incredibly similar (if divisive) religions. To come down completely on the side of one or the other doesn’t seem rational to me.

It is telling that most Muslims around the world support Palestinians, and most Jews support Israel. This, of course, is natural — but it’s also problematic. It means that this is not about who’s right or wrong as much as which tribe or nation you are loyal to. It means that Palestinian supporters would be just as ardently pro-Israel if they were born in Israeli or Jewish families, and vice versa. It means that the principles that guide most people’s view of this conflict are largely accidents of birth — that however we intellectualize and analyze the components of the Middle East mess, it remains, at its core, a tribal conflict.

By definition, tribal conflicts thrive and survive when people take sides. Choosing sides in these kinds of conflicts fuels them further and deepens the polarization. And worst of all, you get blood on your hands.

So before picking a side in this latest Israeli-Palestine conflict, consider these 7 questions…

This genius video perfectly explains the history of the “Holy Land”

Who’s Killing Who? A Viewer’s Guide
Because you can’t tell the players without a pogrom!

Put yourself in their shoes – look at the world through their eyes. It is not fair that a Palestinian child cannot grow up in a state of her own, and lives with the presence of a foreign army that controls the movements of her parents every single day. It is not just when settler violence against Palestinians goes unpunished. It is not right to prevent Palestinians from farming their lands; to restrict a student’s ability to move around the West Bank; or to displace Palestinian families from their home. Neither occupation nor expulsion is the answer. Just as Israelis built a state in their homeland, Palestinians have a right to be a free people in their own land.

Barack Obama, speaking in Jerusalem

Despite the president’s trip to Israel being one meant to strengthen the already impossibly strong U.S.-Israeli bond, I wasn’t expecting to hear this. If this was turned into economic motivation, we could get Israel to sit down with Palestinian leaders and meaningfully negotiate in a flash. 

(via mohandasgandhi)

There would be no conflict between Israelis and Palestinians if neither believed a magical god blessed a special city.

(via goodreasonnews)

azspot:

Mr. Fish: For the Record

So, just for clarity: the conflict between Israelis and Palestinians has nothing at all to with the belief that a divine real-estate agent has promised a particular plot of land to a particular race of people, with a stipulation that said people must occupy said plot of land in order to please their god? That’s a relief, because that would be fucking insane. 

(Note: obviously there are many other geopolitical factors at play in the region, I’m just commenting on one factor, and not suggesting that the whole conflict is based in religious delusion.)

azspot:

Mr. Fish: For the Record

So, just for clarity: the conflict between Israelis and Palestinians has nothing at all to with the belief that a divine real-estate agent has promised a particular plot of land to a particular race of people, with a stipulation that said people must occupy said plot of land in order to please their god? That’s a relief, because that would be fucking insane.

(Note: obviously there are many other geopolitical factors at play in the region, I’m just commenting on one factor, and not suggesting that the whole conflict is based in religious delusion.)

Israeli/Palestinian conflict

amateurcartography0:

I’ve gotten a few asks about the basic history of the Israeli/Palestinian conflict, so I figured it would be easier to address that in a text post, and answer any subsequent questions.

First of all, I just want to make clear that the way I view the the world is through a lens of ideas, context, and humanitarianism. This worldview contributes to my understanding and processing of all information, and most certainly influences the way I discuss the Israeli/Palestinian conflict in particular. One of the biggest issues we have in America is the way we discuss and frame this particular conflict, and to many people, the way that I frame the conflict with this worldview is controversial. Take that as you will.

The conflict over the territory in present-day Israel and Palestine did not begin thousands of years ago. While this land has certainly seen its share of conflicts throughout history, the specific conflict between Israelis and Palestinians can be traced back to really only the late 1800s. The general idea here is that facing rampant antisemitism in Europe, many Jews were coalescing around the idea of establishing their own land in order to be free from persecution. The World Zionist Organization talked about establishing such a nation in a few places throughout the world. One popular idea was Argentina. However, many Jews also liked the idea of returning to Palestine, as some considered this their spiritual homeland. 

At this time, the Ottoman Empire controlled the territory of Palestine. To make a long story short, throughout WWI the British promised a few key Arab leaders independent states if they helped them to fight the Ottomans. Once the Ottoman Empire fell, however, the French and the British carved up the Middle East for themselves. The British controlled the territory of Palestine, and did promise them independence. This never happened. In the meantime, due to politics in Europe and among prominent Jews and members of the World Zionist Organization, the WZO set their sites definitively on Palestine. Throughout the 1900s, there were large waves of Jewish immigrants coming to Palestine. The indigenous Palestinians at first got along very well with their Jewish neighbors, but as they started coming in in the hundreds of thousands, it began to cause serious tension and economic issues.

Arab leadership pleaded with the British to let them have independence, or to at least stop or put some kind of cap on the massive immigration. WWII broke out, however, and the British had to keep their attention on that instead of Palestine. Independence was again put on indefinite hold. Some of the new Jewish immigrants had begun forming militia groups such as the Haganah/Irgun to takeover Palestine from the British (and ultimately from the indigenous population). They believed that the land belonged to Jews for the creation of a Jewish state, and that it would be taken by force if necessary. Now there were two groups asking the British for Independence: the indigenous Palestinians and the Jewish immigrants.

By the time WWII ended, the British decided to leave the “question of Palestine” up to the newly formed United Nations. Prominent Jews in Europe held more political power and influence, and the UN decided that the land would be split between the Jewish immigrants and the Palestinians. It should be noted, however, that the most fertile land was awarded to the Jewish immigrants. Obviously, the Palestinians and surrounding Arab nations were not happy with this UN decision, and challenged the ruling. However, on the date set by the UN to finalize the split in 1947, the highly trained Jewish immigrant militia groups in Palestine went in and physically took over the land designated to them by the UN. They destroyed entire villages and in many cases massacred entire families. This was frightening to the Palestinians, and so many of them left their homes in order to escape from the violence. The militia groups used this opportunity to take over and occupy not only the land designated by the UN, but as much land as they could. Arab nations came in and fought on behalf of the Palestinians, but their underdeveloped armies were no match for the militias and they lost. 

This is the starting point, I believe, for the “modern day” conflict. I could write pages and pages, but to sum it up let’s say that from 1947 until the early 90s there were a few wars involving the new Jewish state and the indigenous Palestinians with their Arab allies. This is where the idea of “denying Israel’s existence” comes from—for many decades after the UN decision, Palestinians along with many other nations around the world refused to accept Israel as a legitimate nation, because of the nature of its founding. The historic Oslo Accords in the early 90s established a mutual acceptance of both Palestine and Israel to exist and set up a plan to create an independent Palestinian state while maintaining peace. However, no such state has been created and obviously there has not been a lasting peace.

Clearly I have skipped over a TON of history here, but I’m hoping you get the idea. When it comes to Palestine there are a few hugely contested issues that remain unresolved:

  • there is no official Palestinian state. This means that Israel has ultimate veto power over any actions by any sort of Palestinian government. 
  • to create an independent Palestinian state, borders must be defined. Over the past 50 years, Israel has illegally expanded its territory far past the 1947 lines established by the UN, and has even gone past lines set in subsequent wars. Moreover, Israel continues to allow for the existence of illegal settlements in Palestinian territory in very blatant attempts to gain more land, specifically land adjacent to bodies of water. (Please see the map below of the “Shrinking Palestine”
  • after the wars in ‘48 and ‘67, many Palestinians who left their homes to escape the violence had their homes taken over by the Jewish militia/new Israeli state. These people have been toiling away in refugee camps for decades, created generations of refugees that the Israelis will not allow back in the country. At this point, so much time has passed that generations of Israelis now live where these homes and villages once were, so beyond ideological differences, there are huge practical problems. 
  • Right now Palestinian territory is divided between the West Bank and Gaza Strip. These two territories are completely separate and it is nearly impossible to travel between them. Each territory is governed differently by Israel. It is also governed differently by Palestinian leadership—in Gaza, Hamas has political control while Fatah has control in the West Bank. Uniting these territories and these people will be crucial in creating a single, unified state. 

In addition to and mixed in with this are HUGE problems regarding the treatment of Palestinians by the Israeli government. Palestinians suffer incredibly human rights abuses that have been condemned many times over by the UN. The Gaza Strip is referred to as the world’s largest open-air prison. Palestinians in the West Bank, typically somewhat better off than their counterparts in the Gaza Strip, face checkpoints that are not only dehumanizing, but are an impossible burden to any sort of hope for economic development or even basic human travel. Men, women, and children are imprisoned often without cause, a trial, or any kind of conviction. Rampant corruption is present in Palestinian government. Any kind of civil society movements are quickly crushed by the Israeli government. Crippling poverty is present throughout both the West Bank and Gaza.

I will stop myself there, but if you’re interested in more about the humanitarian situation in Palestine, there are many resources available. I will suffice it to say that the cruelty is unimaginable. Moreover, there are many ways the Israeli government systematically enacts barriers to any sort of economic or political growth or a larger peace process in general. Again, if you would like more on this you can message me. 

I tell you this because I’m sure that you have already heard of the bombs that are launched from Gaza into Israel, and the history of suicide bombings. These things do happen, and they are terrible and awful and have resulted in the death of many Israeli civilians. I do not condone violence in any way, from any party in this conflict. I do think it’s important though to understand why a certain minority of Palestinians turn to violence. There are also many resources available that look at this. 

The current situation in Gaza is Israeli “retaliation” for Hamas bombs launched into Israel. The problem is that Hamas considers those rocket launches “retaliation” for Israeli attacks on Gaza, which happen just as often and usually kill exponentially more civilians. This argument doesn’t get anyone anywhere, and these back and forth attacks are only symptoms of a much larger problem. There are many reports on the numbers of deaths caused by Israelis to Palestinians and vice versa, if you are interested. 

There are a billion related topics that I could get into, but this post is already long enough. If you are interested, I highly recommend a book called the Gun and the Olive Branch by David Hirst. It’s very accessible and offers a comprehensive look at the history of the conflict. 

Israeli/Palestinian Conflict

skepticalavenger:

stfuhypocrisy:

This is one of the best articles I’ve seen written on the topic (the last one submitted was not bad, mostly correct, but couldn’t avoid bias)

http://www.quora.com/Israeli-Palestinian-Conflict/Starting-from-the-very-beginning-what-happened-in-the-Israel-Palestine-area/answer/Claire-J-Vannette?__ac__=1#comment1381307 

This is an excellent article on the history of the region, and why conflicts exist today and why there doesn’t seem to be any easy solution.  Absolutely no one is without guilt in this mess.

(Source: stfueverything)

Still the bully: the breath-taking cruelty and serious danger of Romney’s words to Palestine

underthemountainbunker:

“It is no small thing to suggest you view one group as culturally inferior. It is no small thing to suggest that God plays favorites.”

Joshua Greenman discusses the serious mistake Mitt Romney made yesterday in Jerusalem:

View Post

shared via WordPress.com

Israel to demolish solar panels because they benefits Palestinians

jonathan-cunningham:

Two large solar panels jut out of the barren landscape near Imneizil in the Hebron hills. The hi-tech structures sit incongruously alongside the tents and rough stone buildings of the Palestinian village, but they are fundamental to life here: they provide electricity.

Imneizil is not connected to the national electricity grid. Nor are the vast majority of Palestinian communities in Area C, the 62% of the West Bank controlled by Israel. The solar energy has replaced expensive and clunky oil-powered generators.

According to the Israeli authorities, these solar panels – along with six others in nearby villages – are illegal and have been slated for demolition…

Imneizil’s solar system was built in 2009 by the Spanish NGO Seba at a cost of €30,000 to the Spanish government. According to the Israeli authorities, it was built without a permit…

The problem for Palestinian communities here is that permission to build any infrastructure is very hard to come by. According to figures from the civil administration quoted by the pressure group Peace Now, 91 permits were issued for Palestinian construction in Area C between 2001 and 2007. In the same period, more than 10,000 Israeli settlement units were built and1,663 Palestinian structures demolished.

The Jewish settlements in Area C are connected to the national water and electricity grids. But most Palestinian villages are cut off from basic infrastructure, including water and sewage services. Imneizil, which borders the ultra-religious settlement of Beit Yatir, currently has nine demolition orders on various structures, including a toilet block and water cistern for the school.

In order to more effectively steal land from poor destitute people, the government and many citizens of Israel demolish Palestinian homes and build Jewish homes on top of the rubble, destroy necessary and life saving infrastructure and to stop the Palestinians from importing luxury goods like chocolate or exporting goods for sale or personal profit. 

How anyone can look at these monsters bulldozing schools and water cisterns and defend them is entirely beyond me.

mohandasgandhi:

silentlydrawn:

madeinnablus:

Israel’s logic.

Gotta love those handy leaflets… 

Have you seen the “letters” they send? The IDF will simply throw pieces of paper around, leave voice mails, or send text messages to Palestinian civilians warning them that they’ll bomb any residence potentially harboring weaponry or “terrorists.” These informal tactics are supposed to be the “warning” the IDF issues to prevent civilian casualties and per the reasoning of the Israeli government, if a Palestinian civilian is killed, it’s their fault. No investigation, no official inquiry, nothing.
I think you might want those civilians dead, “Bibi.” Less Palestinians = larger Israeli-Zionist majority = more power for you! That’s what your defense ministers say, anyway….
No form of governance which even remotely cares about its citizenry, moral authority, or its legitimacy uses text messages and flyers to warn civilians about impending attacks. Whoops, did I blow a hole into your village? Didn’t you see the smoke signals we sent? Why weren’t you paying attention?

mohandasgandhi:

silentlydrawn:

madeinnablus:

Israel’s logic.

Gotta love those handy leaflets… 

Have you seen the “letters” they send? The IDF will simply throw pieces of paper around, leave voice mails, or send text messages to Palestinian civilians warning them that they’ll bomb any residence potentially harboring weaponry or “terrorists.” These informal tactics are supposed to be the “warning” the IDF issues to prevent civilian casualties and per the reasoning of the Israeli government, if a Palestinian civilian is killed, it’s their fault. No investigation, no official inquiry, nothing.

I think you might want those civilians dead, “Bibi.” Less Palestinians = larger Israeli-Zionist majority = more power for you! That’s what your defense ministers say, anyway….

No form of governance which even remotely cares about its citizenry, moral authority, or its legitimacy uses text messages and flyers to warn civilians about impending attacks. Whoops, did I blow a hole into your village? Didn’t you see the smoke signals we sent? Why weren’t you paying attention?

I have some personal experience with this. I was in the West Bank in 2002, just a week after the Israelis pulled out of the Jenin refugee camp, and I saw exactly how the Israelis “internalized the lessons” taught by the Germans: as they swept through the camp, they had spray-painted the Star of David on the walls of many of the houses on one street, and elsewhere throughout the camp. In the mosque in the center of Jenin—which the Israelis had taken over and used as a sniper tower—we found an empty can of spray paint they’d left behind, and a Star of David drawn on the chalkboard of the kindergarten in the basement. There was smashed glass everywhere I went, in Jenin, Ramallah, Bethlehem, Rafah and Hebron. As I listened to it crunching beneath my shoes and surveyed the destroyed homes, shops, and offices, and the cars crushed like tin cans by Israeli Merkavas and bulldozers, I couldn’t help but think of it as a Palestinian Kristallnacht.

Israel is at war with the people of Gaza (via azspot)

The abused becomes the abuser.

No More Applause

Here’s a taste of what Netanyahu said, and Jewish Voice for Peace’s debunking of it:

“You don’t need to send American troops to Israel, we defend ourselves.“

Not true. Israel does not defend itself. Israel is historically the number one recipient of US foreign aid. The US gives Israel a whopping $3 billion a year in aid and military equipment, most of which is used to defend Israel’s illegal occupation.

“In Judea and Samaria, the Jewish people are not occupiers.” (Raucous standing ovation.)

Not True. Israel’s nearly 44-year long occupation of Palestinian territories is illegal according to international law. The more than 500,000 Jewish Israelis who have been moved into the West Bank and East Jerusalem since 1967 are settlers who occupy Palestinian land – much of it privately owned by Palestinians and stolen by Jews the rest of it expropriated by the Israeli state – all taken for exclusive Jewish use. (2) This is occupation.

Moreover, “Judea and Samaria” are the biblical terms for that piece of land. Is Bibi suggesting a state based not on secular law but on the Bible? A Jewish theocracy? Is this the Israel that our Congress promotes?

“You don’t need to export democracy to Israel. We’ve already got it.”

Not true. Within Israel, the 20% of Israeli citizens who are Palestinian do have the right to vote and run for office. But they are victims of systematic housing, workplace and resource discrimination. For example, 93% of Israeli land is reserved for Jews.(3) In the West Bank, more than 2 million Palestinians live under Israeli occupation—that is, their lives are ruled by Israeli military law, while their Jewish settler neighbors are subject to Israeli civil law. Another 1.5 million Gazans live under siege by the Israeli military. Is this democracy?

“Jerusalem must never again be divided. Jerusalem must remain the united capital of Israel.”

Not true. The original UN charter that created Israel, as still recognized by the international community, identified Jerusalem as an internationalized zone that must be shared by all parties.

(Source: azspot)

technipol:

Why Rae Abileah says she disrupted Benjamin Netanyahu’s Tuesday address to Congress
farhaaan:


 
How did you get into the House of Representatives to disrupt the speech of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu?
A friend gave me a ticket.
What did you shout out?
I held a banner that said “Occupying land is indefensible” and I shouted, “End the occupation; stopIsraelwar crimes; equal rights for Palestinians.”
Your father is Jewish and an Israeli. Why did you decide to protest?
Judaism teaches us to love our neighbors and work for justice. 
I see Israel’s brutal occupation and oppression of the Palestinian people as contrary to Jewish values. Because I am a Jew and an American, I feel an added responsibility to speak out against these violations of international law that are being committed in my name and with my tax dollars. My great uncle was one of the first Israeli conscientious objectors in 1948 and I feel I am following in his tradition of non-violent resistance to oppression.

JEW HATER! /Zionist
Oh wait, she’s Jewish—and she’s against the Israeli government’s fascism.

(via jonathan-cunningham)

technipol:

Why Rae Abileah says she disrupted Benjamin Netanyahu’s Tuesday address to Congress

farhaaan:

How did you get into the House of Representatives to disrupt the speech of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu?

A friend gave me a ticket.

What did you shout out?

I held a banner that said “Occupying land is indefensible” and I shouted, “End the occupation; stopIsraelwar crimes; equal rights for Palestinians.”

Your father is Jewish and an Israeli. Why did you decide to protest?

Judaism teaches us to love our neighbors and work for justice. 

I see Israel’s brutal occupation and oppression of the Palestinian people as contrary to Jewish values. Because I am a Jew and an American, I feel an added responsibility to speak out against these violations of international law that are being committed in my name and with my tax dollars. My great uncle was one of the first Israeli conscientious objectors in 1948 and I feel I am following in his tradition of non-violent resistance to oppression.

JEW HATER! /Zionist

Oh wait, she’s Jewish—and she’s against the Israeli government’s fascism.

(via jonathan-cunningham)

underthemountainbunker:

Dennis G. on Netanyahu pretending President Obama said something he didn’t:

I think it is pretty clear that delaying  any negotiations towards a Two-State solution is the policy of  Netanyahu’s coalition. That is why he had to pretend that President  Obama said something he didn’t say to create a distraction—without the  manufactured dust up talks might get underway and that must be avoided.
[…] It was a bit embarrassing to see so  many put the political desires of the extreme elements of the Likud  Party ahead of the future of Israel and the security of the United  States, but so it goes. It is all magical thinking and that is the rage  in wingnutopia. Bibi is a long-time believer in wishful thinking and so  he fits right in. He is yet another one of these folks who believes that  time, science, reality and everybody else in the world will stand still  while their fantasies plays out as imagined. The notion that it might  be crazy to think that the entire world revolves around your narrow  delusions and petty framing never seems to occur to these folks.

Josh Marshall cuts through Netanyahu’s endless bullshit with this observation:

Prime Minister Netanyahu doesn’t want a  two state solution. Period. End of story. Whether this is a principle of  deeply held belief (probably) or just a desire not to see his coalition  government fall (certainly) doesn’t really matter. His clear aim is to  perpetuate the status quo indefinitely—something that is simply not  compatible with Israel’s security, America’s security or the  Palestinians need for a state.

And Jeffrey Goldberg explains, clearly, why a TWO-STATE SOLUTION is actually the PRO-ISRAEL stance:

If I were a Palestinian (and, should there  be any confusion on this point, I am not), and if I were the sort of  Palestinian who believed that Israel should be wiped off the map, then I would be quite pleased with Prime  Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s performance before Congress this morning.
[…] My goal: To hopelessly, ineradicably, entangle the two peoples wedged between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea.
Then I would wait as the Israeli  population on the West Bank grew, and grew some more. I would wait until  2017, 50 years after the Six Day War, which ended with Israel in  control of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. I would go before the UN and say the following:
“We, the Palestinians, no longer seek a  homeland of our own. We recognize the permanence of Israeli occupation,  the dominion of the Israeli military and the power of the Israeli  economy. So we would like to join them. In the 50 years since the  beginning of the ’temporary’ occupation, we have seen hundreds of  thousands of Israelis build communities near our own communities. We  admire what they have built, and the system of laws that governs their  lives. Unlike them, many of us live under Israeli military law but have  no say in choosing the Israelis who rule us. So we no longer want statehood. We simply want the vote.”
And this, of course, would bring about the end of Israel.

Observations on a Two-State Solution vs. the Magical-Thinking Status-quo

underthemountainbunker:

Dennis G. on Netanyahu pretending President Obama said something he didn’t:

I think it is pretty clear that delaying any negotiations towards a Two-State solution is the policy of Netanyahu’s coalition. That is why he had to pretend that President Obama said something he didn’t say to create a distraction—without the manufactured dust up talks might get underway and that must be avoided.

[…] It was a bit embarrassing to see so many put the political desires of the extreme elements of the Likud Party ahead of the future of Israel and the security of the United States, but so it goes. It is all magical thinking and that is the rage in wingnutopia. Bibi is a long-time believer in wishful thinking and so he fits right in. He is yet another one of these folks who believes that time, science, reality and everybody else in the world will stand still while their fantasies plays out as imagined. The notion that it might be crazy to think that the entire world revolves around your narrow delusions and petty framing never seems to occur to these folks.

Josh Marshall cuts through Netanyahu’s endless bullshit with this observation:

Prime Minister Netanyahu doesn’t want a two state solution. Period. End of story. Whether this is a principle of deeply held belief (probably) or just a desire not to see his coalition government fall (certainly) doesn’t really matter. His clear aim is to perpetuate the status quo indefinitely—something that is simply not compatible with Israel’s security, America’s security or the Palestinians need for a state.

And Jeffrey Goldberg explains, clearly, why a TWO-STATE SOLUTION is actually the PRO-ISRAEL stance:

If I were a Palestinian (and, should there be any confusion on this point, I am not), and if I were the sort of Palestinian who believed that Israel should be wiped off the map, then I would be quite pleased with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s performance before Congress this morning.

[…] My goal: To hopelessly, ineradicably, entangle the two peoples wedged between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea.

Then I would wait as the Israeli population on the West Bank grew, and grew some more. I would wait until 2017, 50 years after the Six Day War, which ended with Israel in control of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. I would go before the UN and say the following:

“We, the Palestinians, no longer seek a homeland of our own. We recognize the permanence of Israeli occupation, the dominion of the Israeli military and the power of the Israeli economy. So we would like to join them. In the 50 years since the beginning of the ’temporary’ occupation, we have seen hundreds of thousands of Israelis build communities near our own communities. We admire what they have built, and the system of laws that governs their lives. Unlike them, many of us live under Israeli military law but have no say in choosing the Israelis who rule us. So we no longer want statehood. We simply want the vote.”

And this, of course, would bring about the end of Israel.

Observations on a Two-State Solution vs. the Magical-Thinking Status-quo