Palestinians need a one-state solution – Ghada Karmi in the Guardian

Celebrated author and commentator Ghada Karmi, whose writing includes her widely acclaimed memoir In Search of Fatima (2004), and Married to Another Man (Pluto, 2007), has written a piece for the Guardian‘s Comment is Free this week – ‘Palestinians need a one-state solution‘.

Karmi, who was born in Jerusalem but forced to leave as a child in 1948,  is one of the world’s most renowned commentators on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. In this article she argues that the time has come to ‘shred the fig leaf’ of the two-state solution; Palestinian autonomy has long-since been an illusory goal, and all the while, Israel’s economic, political and geographical stranglehold of the occupied territories continues to tighten. As she writes:

Few would dispute the Palestinian entitlement to a state, but it simply cannot be achieved given the present reality. It was always folly to pursue the two-state solution in a context that militated against its ever happening. Today’s Israel-Palestine is demonstrably one state, impossible to divide. But it is a discriminatory state operating an apartheid-style system against the Palestinians with impunity. Gross economic inequality is one indicator of this system.

Putting forth the logical conclusion that therefore a new strategy is called for, she opts for a ‘plan B’. In this vision, the Palestinian struggle for two states is transformed into one for equal rights within the unitary state of Israel. Such a strategy would require, in Karmi’s eyes, the dismantlement of the Palestinian Authority in its current constitution.

Why? While such a move might seem counter-intuitive, removing one of very few buffers between the oppressive Israeli state and Palestinian citizens, the PA’s retirement would take with it any illusion ‘of a spurious Palestinian autonomy it has fostered’. As Karmi suggests: ‘This has not only shielded Israel from facing its legal obligations as an occupying power, but it has created a false equivalence between occupier and occupied.’

If it does endure, Karmi would have the Palestinian Authority restrict its role to pursuing the rights of its occupied people, and preparing them for the abandonment of the two-state idea and the struggle for equal rights in its place.

She concludes:

Without a middleman to hide behind, the reality of Israel’s occupation will be exposed, and the logic of a civil rights struggle will be inarguable. Israel has hitherto enjoyed a cost-free occupation, with a Palestinian leadership that does Israel’s administrative and security work and a donor community that picks up the bill. At one stroke, Plan B shreds these fig leaves, and removes the chimera of a Palestinian state that has diverted attention from the reality on the ground.

In order to read the full article, go to the Guardian‘s CiF page, here.

Married to Another Man

Israel’s Dilemma in Palestine

Ghada Karmi

Celebrated author Ghada Karmi argues that the only practical solution to the conflict is for Palestinians and Israelis to live together in a secular democratic state

“Ghada Karmi’s storytelling eloquence is celebrated. Now the sheer power and sense of her analysis throws down a challenge to those who claim the ‘problem’ of Israel and Palestine cannot be solved. She shows it can.” – John Pilger

“Ghada Karmi’s storytelling eloquence is celebrated. Now the sheer power and sense of her analysis throws down a challenge to those who claim the ‘problem’ of Israel and Palestine cannot be solved. She shows it can.” – John Pilger

£14.99 only £13.00 on the Pluto site

2 thoughts on “Palestinians need a one-state solution – Ghada Karmi in the Guardian

  1. Ghadi seems to be a beautiful person and I wish her luck but she should also know that most Jews will not go back to Europe as this was their killing fields and they were never welcome there. Israel is their home but a binational state just might be the solution everyone desires.

  2. Pingback: mi

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