The De Facto Argument.
One could argue that the state of Israel has gained legitimacy due to it´s 60 plus years of de facto existence and functioning. The weakness of this argument is that it provides precedence for illegal practices being legitimized due to having been practiced for a sufficient amount of time. Sadly the de facto legitimization of illegal practices, due to the ability to back the illegal practices with military force, is still commonplace in 2011. The de facto existence argument needs the most careful consideration for a number of reasons.
The most prominent of those reasons are:
The fact that nations are established with the support of superpowers who apply economic, political and military force to support the establishment of nations that are friendly to them is highly problematic. One of those incidents is Kosovo, where the Serbian population has been, and still is subject to oppression by politically motivated violence via KFOR. Thus the United Nations has become an instrument for “nation building” projects, that are opposed to it´s own charter and principles of peoples right to self determination.
The fact that the state of Israel is the first nation world wide, that owes it´s very existence and legitimacy to the United Nations should oblige Israel to strictly uphold any UN General Assembly and UNSC resolution which is not in contradiction to the charter of the UN.
The de facto reality meanwhile is, that Israel is condescending, and refusing to accept the legitimacy of one UNSC resolution after the other that is critical of Israel, while at the same time using it´s influence within the USA and EU member states to oppress the natural and human rights of the Palestinian people at the United Nations. An Israel that continues this practice can neither legally nor morally rely on being legitimized by the international body which it refuses to adhere to.
It is a fact that Israel has for now 60 plus years committed and continues to commit crimes which are the antithesis of the principles that are enshrined in the charter of the United Nations, from which it claims legitimacy. Principally those crimes are: The repeated invasions and aggressions against Lebanon with tens of thousands of murdered civilians.
The illegal occupation and annexation of the Golan Highs and parts of Southern Lebanon. The occupation of Gaza, and after leaving Gaza, the illegal land and maritime siege against Palestinians in Gaza.
The illegal and criminal deprivation of Palestinians in Gaza from basic food items, and medicines, from the ability to trade freely. The repeated destruction of infrastructure such as electric power plants and water supplies, government buildings, schools, and cultural facilities.
The illegal occupation of the West Bank and the annexation of vast Palestinian territories, leaving Palestinians in the West Bank to live in de facto enclaves that are separated from each other by military installations, illegal settlements, illegal walls that isolate the populations in the enclaves.
The illegal taking of prisoners, including children. The treatment of even uniformed Palestinian liberation fighters as criminals and “terrorists” instead of giving them the status of prisoners of war. The systematic torture of prisoners. Countless human rights abuses. The use of military ammunitions in civilian areas. The regular use of disproportionate military force.
Murder of Palestinian politicians as well as liberation fighters, policemen, and other under an illegal program of what is euphemistically called targeted assassinations. Daily cruel, degrading and inhumane treatment of Palestinians.
The controlling every aspect of individual, family, community and political life. Deportations that amount to ethnic cleansing. Refusing refugees the right to return. A 60 year long politic of aggression, violence, massacres, deportations and ethnic cleansing that amount to genocide.
Justifications and Justice.
The fact that Israel has the policy of justifying it´s 60 plus year long policy of aggression and genocide, or rather innocenticide, does not lend justification to it´s inhumane treatment of Palestinians. Non of it´s arguments, not the uniqueness of Jewish suffering; the historical argument; the argument of legitimacy by virtue of the Balfour Declaration; the argument of legitimacy by virtue of the United Nations; nor the de facto argument provide legitimacy for the cruel, inhumane and degrading treatment of Palestinians and the systematic genocide that is conducted on a daily basis. Apparent justification is not to be confused with justice.
The Right to Resist.
The people of Palestine have every right to resist. They have the right to peaceful resistance, and they have the right to use politically motivated violence. They have however, as understandable as their desperation is, not the right to use the same illegal practices that are used against them and which they deplore. The murder of innocent, non-combatant Israeli citizens.
The so called kidnappings of soldiers, such as Gilat Shalit (20) are perfectly legal, provided that prisoners are granted the full rights of prisoners of war to the extend that security allows. The defamation of armed Palestinian liberation forces as “terrorists”, while terror bombing civilians does not contribute to a solution that could bring security to Israelis or Palestinians. The absolute dis-proportionality of Israeli repression against armed liberation groups, and the indiscriminate murder of civilians does not provide security for Israel, nor for Palestine.
The Right to Return.
Israels refusal to respect Palestinians right to return on one hand, the steady increase of illegal settlements, the import of Jewish people from throughout the world that significantly changes the demographics in the illegally occupied Palestinian territories on the other, can in spite of all euphemisms, only be described as systematic ethnic cleansing and genocide.
Nothing short of genocide embraces the full monstrosity of what has been happening in Palestine for over 60 years, and the monstrosity of what is happening in Palestine every single day.
The Right to Exist.
If the state of Israel ever had the right to exists, it has now spent over 60 years on demonstrating that the recognition of Israel was one of the most tragic mistakes that have been permitted and committed since the end of the second world war. In the eyes of many scholars world wide the consensus that Israel has lost all legitimacy, if it ever had any, is becoming increasingly prevalent.
The massive increase of access to independent media and information will make it exponentially more difficult for Israel to maintain the dehumanization of Palestinians.
Israel must be aware that the support of Western governments for maintaining it´s criminal practice will only be possible as long as the populations of these countries don´t demand that their governments demand that Israel respects preconditions for their support. Preconditions which Western governments will have to establish as soon as the number of citizens that have had access to factual information is reaching a politically critical mass.
A well meant word to the Jewish Community.
You are a wonderful people. The author of this article has Jewish people among his good friends. If you are Jewish and you wish to support the cause of the Jewish people, do read this article twice. The best thing that you can do for yourself, for the Jewish people, for Israel, and for peace is this:
A slowly, but ever so slowly increasing number of Israeli soldiers deny to serve within the illegally occupied territories of Palestine. Support them. A slowly growing community of Jewish people speaks out against the Holocaust Industry. Support them. Both Arab and Jewish Israeli citizens protest and actively resist illegal demolitions of Palestinians homes.
Join their cause and demonstrate for those who have suffered at the hands of Jewish people for over 60 years. Understand that it is a criminal minority that bears responsibility for both the Palestinians and Israelis suffering. Speak out against power.
Show them that you have courage to resist against being represented by criminals. Show humanity. Lobby against those lobbies who create hatred rather than understanding. Show the greatness of your people by showing your ability to understand suffering.
Your people have had a genuine and frightening, though not unique suffering brought upon you. Show that you understand that the suffering of the Jewish people was not unique, but that it helps you to be compassionate towards others who suffer. Show that you are human, and protest the dehumanization of Arabs and of all human beings, everywhere. Your humanity is the best safeguard against ever being dehumanized again.
Is “Israel” viable.
The short answer is no. No two state solution will ever bring a de facto independently existing Israel or a de facto independently existing Palestine into existence.
After decades of “Peace Process” on the track of a two state solution it must have become evident for all parties involved, that the only viable possibility for the establishment of peace for Arabs, Christians and Jews alike is one state. One secular state with the liberty to practice ones religion of choice. One state that embraces Palestinians inalienable right to return.
One state that is seeking peace with it´s neighbors. One state that embraces a policy of immigration, that is fair and balanced, and does not give rise to internal conflicts. One state that adheres to international law and human rights while maintaining it´s uniquely rich and fertile cultural elements.
Failure to let reason and humanity prevail may very well become one of the root causes for a conflict that ends civilization as we know it. A state for Jews, Muslims, Christians, Buddhists, Atheists and others alike is the only viable solution.
And please do not let the choice of a name come in the way of reason and peace. What about Peacerael.
All opinions presented in this piece are the opinions and analysis of their author, and do not necessarily represent the opinions of the IMEMC.
About the Author:
Dr. Christof Lehmann is a clinical psychologist as well as political advisor. Besides his clinical work, Dr. Lehmann has for now 29 years been working as political advisor.
HIs clients, include 2 Presidents, one Prime Minister, and many other high profile politicians. Among them, in 1982, H.E., the late Palestinian President, Yasser Arafat.
Dr. Lehmann is a life long peace activist and advocate for Palestinians right to statehood, self-determination, the right to return, an end of the occupation.
On August 28 2011, Dr. Lehmann started the news blog nsnbc to help break western media´s embargo on truth. My articles are published worldwide.
All references are attached to Part One.