“Almost”

Remember this gem from Fernando Teson, Tobias Simon Eminent Scholar at Florida State University’s College of Law?

Almost everyone has by now accepted the two-state solution for the Israeli-Palestinian dispute.

What a difference a few years makes, right? From “almost everyone has by now accepted” to “almost no one of consequence now accepts” in two short years. A fine day’s work. Almost makes you wonder what kind of knowledge the original claim was based on.

JERUSALEM — An emboldened Israeli right wing is moving quickly in the new year to make it far more difficult to create a Palestinian state, signaling its intention to doom hopes for a two-state solution to the conflict.

The actions have come on multiple fronts, as Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s party for the first time has urged the annexation of Jewish settlements in the West Bank, and the nation’s top legal officers pressed to extend Israeli law into occupied territory.

In addition, the Israeli Parliament, after a late-night debate, voted early Tuesday to enact stiff new obstacles to any potential land-for-peace deal involving Jerusalem, while abandoning at the last minute a measure that would have eased the way to rid the city of several overwhelmingly Palestinian neighborhoods.

Coming on the heels of President Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital in defiance of decades-old United States policy and international consensus, the moves showed that the Israeli right senses a new opening to pursue its goal of a single state from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean.

“We are telling the world that it doesn’t matter what the nations of the world say,” Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan told more than 1,000 members of Likud’s central committee on Sunday. “The time has come to express our biblical right to the land.”

If you think my title is in bad taste, what do you think of the calm serenity of Teson’s unretracted expression of blank ignorance masquerading as impartial, scholarly expertise? I guess there’s always the standard-issue Bleeding Heart Libertarian expedient of re-writing the original post and pretending not to have said what you did say.

No one has ever accused me of being calm, serene, impartial, scholarly, or an expert of any kind. But you’d be hard pressed to argue that I was wrong.

One thought on ““Almost”

  1. Am I belaboring the point? You bet I am.

    Unfortunately, in reporting on the two-state solution’s loss of “steam,” this article subtly perpetuates the mythology that Teson had offered in the first place: it treats the two-state solution as having enjoyed a consensus that has now eroded, but does so by focusing on the Israeli liberals, mainstream Americans, and official Palestinian Authority spokesmen who either sincerely bought the two-state solution, or were officially obliged to pretend that they accepted it. It neither differentiates those two (very different) things, nor acknowledges the obvious: that many Palestinians and Israelis rejected the two-state solution in favor of a one-state solution, despite having radically different conceptions of the latter, and having radically different reasons for rejecting the former.

    The one salutary outcome of Trump’s “policies” has been to “polarize” the region, and in doing so, make clear what was previously unclear: the “two-state solution consensus” was a dogma bolstered by appeals to authority and fake appeals to majority. Its defenders promoted it for decades as though it was the only conceivable or feasible option, dismissing as unsophisticated those who questioned it. Being the authoritative figures that they were (in their own minds, at least), mainstream commentators (like Teson) ignored obvious objections to their views, and ignored the views of people–especially Palestinians–living under occupation. Karma has now run over their dogma, but don’t expect them to admit it.

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