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Israel vs. Palestine: Two-States or One State?

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  • Israel vs. Palestine: Two-States or One State?

    The 'Two-States or One State' public debate between Uri Avnery and Ilan Pappe got enormous attention already before it took place on the evening of May 8. 2007. The positions taken by the two "gladiators" were known in advance. It was Teddy Katz who came up with the idea of inviting them before an audience, after the two had started polemizing over the internet.

    Actually, already for several years this subject is being debated in all kind of informal gatherings, but Gush Shalom has brought the discussion to the limelight by challenging Ilan Pappe to appear together with Uri Avnery under the modest but firm moderation of Zalman Amit.

    First to speak for a packed hall was Ilan Pappe. What he told us about ethnic cleansing having taken place in 1948 would have been even more shocking had we not already become acquainted with these facts - not in the last place due to the actions of the "new historians", to whom Pappe himself belongs. The more remarkable thing is what conclusions the pedagogue/activist Ilan Pappe draws from the crimes which were
    perpetrated during the birth of the state of Israel. For Pappe, 1948 isn't closed history about which he can say learned things, without being able to change anything. His concept is based on reversing the wrongs of 1948.

    For Uri Avnery, the results of 1948 are in the main irreversible, but he wants to undo the wrongs of 1967 - in a way which would lead to two-states and a peace agreement, and he is convinced in spite of all the set-backs that that is where we are heading. Ilan Pappe, however, sees the ongoing settlements drive as... irreversible, and doesn't believe anymore in a fair two-state solution.

    Living through times where Israel is like a ship loaded with explosives and without a captain, and surrounded by cliffs, it was actually refreshing to hear these two display their thoughts - the bold, uncompromising thinking of Pappe and the very special rationality of Uri Avnery ("it is not rational to ignore the irrational motives which affect people's behaviour").

    Maybe not many changed their mind on the subject of the debate, but at least one went home knowing that the two camps of which Avnery and Pappe are such outspoken representatives, respect each other enough to continue together the struggle against the occupation which was mentioned by both speakers to be point number one on the agenda. And for this struggle, the evening provided, strange as it may sound, new energy.
    [via newprofile.org]
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  • #2
    Ilan Pappe - opening words, debate May 8, 2007

    Translation Adam Keller
    12/05/07
    Zionism was born out of two logical and justified impulses. The first was the desire to find a safe shore for the Jews of East and Central Europe, after decades of anti-semitic persecutions - and possibly also a premonition that there was worse to come. The second impulse was to redefine the Jewish religion as a national movement, under the influence of "The Spring of the Peoples" in the mid-Nineteenth Century.

    When the leaders of the movement decided, for reasons which cannot be detailed here, that the only territory where these two impulses can be fulfilled is Palestine, where nearly a million people already lived - this movement turned into a colonial project. [...]
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    • #3
      Uri Avnery - One State: Solution or Utopia

      Response to Ilan Pappe in a May 8 debate.
      12/05/07

      THIS IS not a duel to the death of gladiators in a Roman arena.

      Ilan Pappe and I are partners in the battle against the occupation. I respect his courage. We stand side by side in a joint struggle, but we advocate two sharply opposing goals.

      WHAT IS the disagreement about?
      We have no disagreement about the past. We agree that Zionism, which has made its mark on history and created the State of Israel, also brought a historic injustice upon the Palestinian people. The occupation is an abominable situation, and it must be ended. No debate about that.

      Perhaps we also have no disagreement about the distant future. About what should happen in a hundred years. We shall touch upon that later in the evening.

      But we have a sharp disagreement about the foreseeable future [...]
      Sed et tortor vitae turpis blandit fermentum. Integer lacus turpis, sem. Aliquam erat volutpat. Suspendisse a nibh ut dolor facilisis molestie. Sed et pede. Sed vitae leo. Phasellus varius ultricies eros. Sed tempor, metus id adipiscing porttitor, diam turpis tempor eros. Nam id libero ut nisl posuere ultricies. Phasellus sed nibh eget lorem consectetuer tempus. Volutpat.

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