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Haaretz: Israeli Party Approves Annexation Plan to Coerce Palestinian Departure


World  (tags: injustice, disrespect of human rights, israel, extreme-right, policies, strategy, plan, planning, Palestine, cleansing, annexation, Human Rights, discrimination, racism )

Evelyn
- 581 days ago - haaretz.com
With a stamp of Netanyahu approval, right-wing party conference discusses their plan to annex the Palestinian territories and offer a surrender-or-transfer ultimatum



   

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Evelyn B (63)
Friday September 15, 2017, 3:59 am
Israeli Party Approves Annexation Plan to Coerce Palestinian Departure

With a stamp of Netanyahu approval, right-wing party conference discusses their plan to annex the Palestinian territories and offer a surrender-or-transfer ultimatum

Yotam Berger Sep 13, 2017 3:36 AM


The conference of the National Union faction, which has MKs in the Habayit Hayehudi Knesset party, approved a plan Tuesday for essentially annexing the territories while either facilitating the exit of Palestinian residents or allowing them to remain but without voting rights.

The approval of the plan, dubbed by its supporters “The Decision Plan,” has been actively promoted by Habayit Hayehudi MK Bezalel Smotrich. It aims to “alter the discourse and present a true alternative to any plan based on dividing the land,” according to a National Union statement.

“After a hundred years of managing the conflict, the time has come for a decision,” Smotrich told the assembly. “The principles [of the left] have within a few years become accepted by growing parts of the Israeli leadership. First on the left, and later, unfortunately, also on the right, which to a great extent has lost its belief in the justice of our path and has been dragged toward the two-state solution.

“The vision of the decision plan is not new,” Smotrich said. “These are the foundations on which Zionism was erected. We do not assume that there are two narratives here that are equal. There’s one side that’s correct, and another that is undermining the right of Israel to exist as a Jewish state.”

Smotrich added, “We have to engrave in the consciousness of the Arabs and the entire world that there is no chance of establishing an Arab state in the Land of Israel.”

The plan was unanimously approved by the delegates present, who included Habayit Hayehudi MKs Smotrich, Agriculture Minister Uri Ariel, and MK Moti Yogev. Party chairman Naftali Bennett, however, did not attend the conference, nor did he send a recorded message, although Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu did.

The Smotrich plan presents a kind of surrender-or-transfer ultimatum to the Palestinians in which “two alternatives will be offered to the Arabs of the Land of Israel:

“1. Anyone who is willing and able to relinquish the fulfillment of his national aspirations will be able to stay here and live as an individual in the Jewish state.

“2. Anyone who is unwilling or unable to relinquish his national aspirations will receive assistance from us to emigrate to one of the Arab countries.

There is also a third option.

“Anyone who insists on choosing the third ‘option’ – to continue to resort to violence against the Israel Defense Forces, the State of Israel and the Jewish population will be determinedly handled by the security forces with greater force than at present and under more comfortable conditions for us.”

The plan further calls for a “settlement decision.”

Smotrich proposes offering “self-government” to the Arabs in the occupied territories, who “would be divided into three regional municipal governments that will vote in democratic elections,” based on districts.

According to the plan, “These governments suit the cultural and extended-family structure of Arab society.” The objective is “to dismantle the Palestinian national collective.” It is stressed that “the Arabs of Judea and Samaria will be able to conduct their own daily lives, but in the first stage will not be able to vote for the Israeli Knesset.”

As Smotrich himself wrote in the past about the plan, “The big challenge in this context will be the democratic challenge; the need to persuade the world that among all the different alternatives, the alternative of democratic rights without the right to vote for the Knesset is the least bad alternative. It is indeed a challenge, but we can meet it.”

Racists? Us?

National Union members seem offended when asked to explain why their plan isn’t racist. “God forbid,” said party secretary Ofir Sofer. “It’s clear that there are difficulties in discussing this using the concepts we have today. But it’s not racist,” he said.

Sofer added that although the plan uses the term “the Arabs of the Land of Israel,” it does not mean that Israeli Arab citizens would lose their citizenship.

“The plan proposes citizenship,” he adds. “In the long term it proposes this. [Even today] Israeli Arabs don’t serve in the army and the Arabs of East Jerusalem don’t vote for the Knesset. That’s why I think it isn’t racist. You can’t create two contradictory realities – of settlement and the Palestinian Authority. But I would never vote for a racist plan.”

Sofer also protests the use of the term “transfer.” “Where do we talk about transfer?” he asks. “We’re talking about encouraging emigration. We have this for the Eritreans, etc. We are aiming here exactly at those terror operatives, those who support terror. Are you in favor of encouraging emigration of Eritreans and not of terrorists?”

As far as an explanation as to what will constitute “handling by the security forces” that the plan warns about for those who refuse to leave and retain national aspirations, both the plan and Sofer are vague.

Smotrich’s program may sound ephemeral, but it received recognition from Netanyahu, who sent a videotaped message of support to the conference.

“I was happy to hear that you are devoting the discussions at the conference to the subject of the future of the Land of Israel. Up until not so many years ago, this country was deserted and abandoned, but since we returned to Zion, after generations of exile, the Land of Israel is flourishing,” said Netanyahu in the recorded greeting.

The prime minister added: “Within less than 70 years, we have succeeded in building a prosperous country, a world leader in economics, technology, security, agriculture, cybersecurity, health and many other fields. We are building the country and settling it in the mountains, the valleys, the Galilee, the Negev and in Judea and Samaria too, because this is our country. We have been given the privilege of living in the land, and we have an obligation to guard it carefully.”

The premier’s greeting got rather weak applause. The most common explanation for this among the National Union activists is their belief that Netanyahu doesn’t really believe in the plan, but was just trying to pass Habayit Hayehudi’s Bennett on the right. “He’s winking at the right,” said one delegate. “He understands that the votes are on the right,” said another.

For Agriculture Minister Ariel, it’s enough that Netanyahu is paying attention.

“The Decision Plan is an important plan, particularly from the perspective of awareness,” Ariel said. “It’s not enough that there are half a million Jews in Judea and Samaria, and with God’s help there will be a million. We have to reach awareness, to recognize the justice [of Israeli rule and settlement in the West Bank]. To say, “Honorable Prime Minister, Mr. Netanyahu, there is not and will never be two states between the Jordan and the sea.’ I have told him many times, ‘You know there will never be two states.’ But the comments day and night about two states undermine and erode awareness of the justice of our path, that the Land of Israel is ours.”

Bennett’s absence from the conference was no coincidence; those who know him say the education minister isn’t very excited about Smotrich’s proposals. A few years ago Bennett presented his own “Pacification Plan,” which included annexation of some parts of the territories but didn’t include any mechanism for a population transfer.

Although Habayit Hayehudi and the National Union are closely affiliated and have been running together for Knesset, Bennett’s associates say he knows he will never be able to reach the political heights he’s seeking – in other words, the prime ministership – on a joint list with the National Union. He believes that a list which includes political views such as Smotrich’s can never be a ruling party. Their alliance has been a strategic one, but if he had an opportunity to run with a party that could attract more centrist votes, he would be happy to part ways with it.

Ariel is well aware of this. That’s why, in his address, he called on Bennett to preserve the alliance. “I call to my colleague and friend, Minister Bennett – unity is a value. And when it comes to politics, it can bring far greater achievements than other things. That’s why we at the National Union are fighting for the unity of the camp.”
 

Evelyn B (63)
Friday September 15, 2017, 4:02 am
"Get out, or crawl under our heel"

That's democracy in action, political Zionist style.

This isn't a "one state" peace strategy - it is an enslaving of a people constitutionally.
 

Jonathan Harper (0)
Friday September 15, 2017, 4:13 am
Noted!!
 

Tania N (883)
Friday September 15, 2017, 4:51 am
Thanks for sharing.
 

Peggy B (43)
Friday September 15, 2017, 5:45 am
Thanks for sharing, Evelyn. I've shared it as well.
 

Darren Woolsey (218)
Friday September 15, 2017, 6:47 am
Shared news article and analysis over social media to raise and spread awareness.
 

fly bird (26)
Friday September 15, 2017, 9:13 am
This is despicable!!

Shame on these land grabber!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

This should be done to them, perhaps, then they might remember....???

 

fly bird (26)
Friday September 15, 2017, 9:17 am
Noted!! sharing, thank you, Evelyn, for sharing this 'news"... it is never ending, the loss and depletion of Palestinian lands, annexed and stolen by the apartheid Israeli regime government that has no respect for Palestinian lives, property, or human rights!!

Boycott Israel!! End the illegal settlements, land thefts, and all U.S. aid to Israel.

Stop the ethnic cleansing of Palestine, end the siege of Gaza!! End the occupation of Palestine, now!!
 

fly bird (26)
Friday September 15, 2017, 9:36 am
Israeli authorities demolished a Palestinian school hours before the children's first day back.

http://www.care2.com/news/member/312733850/4067319

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
 

Evelyn B (63)
Friday September 15, 2017, 12:29 pm
Such an innocent-sounding plan -

Who'd expect "Decision Plan" to be so abusive of rights?
 

Freya H (345)
Friday September 15, 2017, 6:12 pm
Congress has before it a horrible bill that would outlaw boycotting Israel. Please sign these petitions:

Against the House version
Against the Senate version
 

Animae C (508)
Friday September 15, 2017, 6:35 pm
Both Freya's petitions signed.

TY Evelyn
 

Shirley S (187)
Friday September 15, 2017, 7:26 pm
Noted TY Evelyn & Freya's petitions signed in July.
 

fly bird (26)
Friday September 15, 2017, 8:49 pm
"No one knows the full cost of Israel's settlement ambitions ." 8-14-2005

http://usatoday.com/news/world/2005-08-14-israelsettlerc
 

fly bird (26)
Friday September 15, 2017, 8:53 pm
"Israel's effort since the 1967 Mideast war to fill the West Bank and Gaza Strip with Jews has grown from the scattered actions of zealous squatters into a network of 142 towns and villages that house nearly 240,000 people.."

I'm unable to access the article - I ran across this older post; it's too long to type -- if anyone can access it, type a live link.. or, leave the text in the message box, it would be an interesting read .. it goes back some 12 years, at least!
 

Henriette Matthijssen (154)
Friday September 15, 2017, 11:02 pm
Israhell at their evil doing continues & international laws broken as usual & U.N. does nothing to stop Nuttyahoo! Thanks Evelyn.
 

Sue H (7)
Saturday September 16, 2017, 10:14 am
Outrageous. :(
 

TOM TREE (247)
Saturday September 16, 2017, 3:59 pm
Truly UNBELIEVABLE !! WTF !
 

Evelyn B (63)
Saturday September 16, 2017, 9:16 pm
Part of the same strategy????
Right-wing Israeli Ministers Introduce Plan Targeting High Court's Powers

Education Minister Naftali Bennett and Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked's initiative would limit the High Court of Justice from intervening and deprive the court of the power to disqualify a basic law

Revital Hovel Sep 15, 2017 2:21 AM

Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked and Education Minister Naftali Bennett announced on Thursday the introduction of a new basic law that would limit the authority of the High Court of Justice to strike down laws. The High Court has the power to interpret legislation and disqualify law in accordance with its interpretation.

Basic laws have constitutional status, and the proposed basic law would include an override provision that would allow a Knesset majority to vote to bypass the High Court’s ruling. The proposal by Bennett and Shaked, both of whom are from the Habayit Hayehudi party, doesn’t specify the exact number of Knesset members that would be necessary to override a court decision.

When a similar override proposal was made in the past, then-Supreme Court President Aharon Barak demanded a super-majority of 70 Knesset members be required to take such an action. Former Justice Minister Daniel Friedmann had suggested a simple majority of all Knesset members, that is 61 of the Knesset’s 120 members be required, rather than a simple majority of attending MKs.

The Habayit Hayehudi legislators' proposal follows two particularly activist decisions made recently by the High Court. One, written by Justice Noam Sohlberg, disqualified a law due to flaws in the legislative process that would have imposed a special tax on owners of three or more homes. The other disqualified the practice of passing a two-year government budget. In the case of the two-year budget, the court involved itself in an unprecedented manner in the provisions of a basic law.

Bennett and Shaked’s initiative would limit the High Court from intervening and deprive the court of the power to disqualify a basic law. It would also limit the High Court’s authority to strike down laws due to flaws in the legislative process.

“Recently the High Court of Justice has struck down Knesset laws and cabinet resolutions such as the plan to remove infiltrators, the budget law and the rescission of the residency of Hamas members,” Bennett, the chairman of Habayit Hayehudi, said. “This new situation in which striking down laws has become a routine thing will force us, the legislators who were elected by the public, to act to restore the proper balance between branches of government.”

(Follow the link for the full article)
 

Ed Site Issues V (198)
Sunday September 17, 2017, 8:25 am
Noted, Thanks
 

fly bird (26)
Sunday September 17, 2017, 10:05 pm
.. telling cartoon... says it quite well!!
 

Winn Adams (179)
Monday September 18, 2017, 6:59 am
Noted
 

Margie FOURIE (148)
Tuesday September 19, 2017, 12:11 am
Okay
 

Judy C (91)
Wednesday September 20, 2017, 12:31 am
WTH? This is horrible, completely unacceptable.Thanks Evelyn.

Thanks for the links Jess.

Already signed your petitions in July, Freya. Thank you.
 

Past Member (0)
Wednesday September 20, 2017, 4:18 am
HaHaHaHaaretz!
 

Marija M (25)
Wednesday September 20, 2017, 9:27 am
Unbelievable..., horrible, this is 21st century?
 

fly bird (26)
Thursday September 21, 2017, 8:47 am
Can anyone link/ get text from this article?

"No one knows the full cost of Israel's settlement ambitions ." 8-14-2005

http://usatoday.com/news/world/2005-08-14-israelsettlerc
 

. (0)
Friday September 22, 2017, 1:57 pm
Noted.
 

Evelyn B (63)
Saturday September 23, 2017, 2:25 am
Jess -
The only article I can see that fits that title is very old - 2005 (so out of date figures! And I'm not sure that the US policy of cutting dollar for dollar any sums going in to the settlements is even still an active policy ...)

No One Knows Full Cost of Israel's Settlement Ambitions
Date posted: August 16, 2005
By USAToday
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JERUSALEM (AP) — Israel's effort since the 1967 Mideast war to fill the West Bank and Gaza Strip with Jews has grown from the scattered actions of zealous squatters into a network of 142 towns and villages that house nearly 240,000 people. Now that Israel plans to spend some $2 billion to dismantle just 25 of the settlements — for which U.S. aid has been requested — it raises the question of how much money has been poured into populating these biblical lands with Jews, and exactly where it came from.

The official answer: No one knows.

Vice Premier Shimon Peres estimates Israel has spent about $50 billion since 1977, when the hard-line Likud government took over from his Labor party. Other former finance ministers and government officials don't discount a price tag — commonly floated but never documented — of $60 billion.

"No one eye in the world saw the whole picture," says Labor Party lawmaker Danny Yatom, a confidant of the late Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin. "Most of it is not camouflaged, but it is not possible to connect A to B to C to D to E to F to G."

Calculating an exact figure is impossible because much of the building was financed through winks and nods, an opaque state budget and secret military spending that in some cases violated Israel's laws and undercut international peacemaking efforts, according to official Israeli inquiries as well as Associated Press interviews with past and present officials, settlers and their opponents.

Among the methods used, the interviews show, were government subsidies, shadowy land deals, loopholes in military spending, and an auditing bait-and-switch in which U.S. aid was used to free up billions of dollars for spending on the settlements formally opposed by the United States.

Even today, with preparations under way for demolishing 21 settlements in Gaza and four in the West Bank, housing and roads continue to be built in West Bank settlement blocs Israel wants to keep in a final peace deal with the Palestinians. This contradicts the internationally backed "road map" peace plan to halt settlement expansion.

And a government-commissioned inquiry in March revealed similar methods were used to build and expand dozens of unauthorized West Bank "outposts" — set up as flag-showing exercises and usually consisting of a handful of people in mobile homes.

It found widespread government complicity in establishing more than 100 such outposts, and the inquiry's chief, former prosecutor Talia Sasson, called the government's actions "a blatant violation of the law."

Last year, the funding of the outposts came in for sharp criticism from the State Comptroller, the government's main watchdog. It found at least two cases where the Housing Ministry funded outposts that the military had ordered demolished.

Now settler leaders, eager to embarrass Prime Minister Ariel Sharon over his Gaza withdrawal plan, say they had official backing in all their ventures.

"Let me be very, very clear: It's not a question of dark-of-night grabs, or hide-and-seek or deceit on anyone's part," said lawmaker Yitzhak Levy of the pro-settler National Religious Party, who headed ministries in Likud and Labor governments.

"It is government policy," he said.

The settlements started after 1967 under Labor governments, which sought to confine them to border areas they considered necessary for national security. But then Likud came to power in 1977, claiming a God-given right to the whole West Bank and Gaza Strip. The chief settlement advocate was Ariel Sharon, the former general who — now as the prime minister — has ordered the Gaza pullback.

Using his Cabinet posts between 1977 and 1992 — agriculture, defense and housing — he doled out government grants, low-cost loans and tax breaks to settlers. He also gave birth to the idea of advertising the enclaves as bedroom communities just minutes from Israeli urban centers.

Some settlements close to towns in Israel proper were subsidized by giving the inhabitants tax cuts, cheap mortgages and grants of between $6,900 and $57,000 — perks ordinarily reserved for outlying areas.

Maaleh Adumim, the largest settlement with about 30,000 people, received this "priority" status even though it is just three miles from Jerusalem. So did Elkana, an affluent settlement five miles from Israel's economic hub, Tel Aviv.

Settler leader Adi Mintz said even some of the settlers thought the tax breaks for bedroom communities were unfair.

The state also picked up as much as half the tab for hooking up utilities. And pro-settler lawmakers fought to control key ministries such as Construction and Housing, National Infrastructure, and Transportation so they could direct money to settlements.

"When I was at the Ministry of Housing, I set the objective of expanding (settlements in) outlying areas," said lawmaker Levy.

The classified defense budget further propelled expansion, funding troop deployments to guard settlements, and building fences and wide roads for settlers living among more than 2 million Palestinians who adamantly oppose their presence.

The estimates of $50 billion to $60 billion do not include the 32 settlements built on the Golan Heights which Israel captured from Syria in 1967, and whose native populace is Druze, not Palestinian.

In the West Bank, entire settlements were built under the guise of military or security needs, even though they weren't formally authorized by the government, according to Yatom, a former West Bank military commander.

A government official conceded that some uses of military funds "in hindsight ... aren't legal and shouldn't have been done." He spoke on condition of anonymity because he was discussing possible violations of the law by the government.

At times, government watchdogs balked at the way government funds were being used. Most recently, the Interior Ministry launched an investigation into the transfer of $2.8 million in 2003 and 2004 from settlement municipalities to a settlement lobby group, which is funding the fight against the Gaza pullout.

Because the state and separate ministerial budgets don't break down outlays by region, it is difficult to identify the flow of money to settlements. Supporters and detractors both say this allowed Israeli governments to hide behind the budget when it came to settlement financing — and forestall friction with Washington.

"The state of Israel didn't want a head-on confrontation with the United States ... therefore Israel always did things with winks and nods," said Mintz, the settler leader.

Despite its declared opposition to settlements, Washington only began taking action in the early 1990s, when Israel sought billions of dollars in U.S. loan guarantees. Washington said it would deduct sums that went into settlements dollar for dollar.

In 2003, when Israel was granted $9 billion in loan guarantees over three years, the cut was $289.5 million. Officials familiar with the issue, and speaking on condition of anonymity, say that low figure was reached with the help of the influential pro-Israel lobby, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC).

AIPAC officials refused to discuss the issue on the record, but denied they helped to negotiate the numbers.

Israel also used private U.S. donations for which it secured U.S. tax-exempt status, said David Newman, a political scientist at Israel's Ben Gurion University who researched settlement funding.

U.S. tax laws don't exempt donations for political activities such as settlements. Israel separated the World Zionist Organization from the quasi-governmental Jewish Agency, a move that allowed donors to inject money into settlements without losing tax exemptions. In reality, the two groups operate under one umbrella, with the same officials, departments and administrators overseeing the activities, Newman said.

Perhaps the grayest area is how Israel expropriated, confiscated or purchased land for settlements.

During the first 12 years of occupation, more than 10,000 acres of land confiscated by the military for security needs were handed to settlers, according to Defense Ministry statistics quoted in "Lords of the Land," a book by Israeli authors Akiva Eldar and Idit Zartel.

Even after Israel's Supreme Court in 1979 raised the bar for security-related land confiscations, the state seized thousands more acres of West Bank land on security grounds and turned it over for settlers, some living in unauthorized enclaves.

The state-funded Jewish National Fund, along with settler groups and their supporters, also bought land from private Palestinians, using middlemen to cloak the sellers' identity and shield them from attack by other Arabs.

Shaul Goldstein, head of the Gush Etzion Regional Council in the West Bank, said his council recently paid $10,000 for 11,000 square feet of Palestinian land — about one-twentieth the cost of land just over the border.

During the past four decades, the settler leadership and Israeli governments have manipulated budgets, circumstances and public opinion to make the settlement enterprise into what it is today, Newman said.

"They don't need to play around with the illegal use of money because their network is so strong," he said.
 

Evelyn B (63)
Saturday September 23, 2017, 2:36 am
Aaron - if you don't trust Haaretz, find them a laugh, do you accept Jewish Philosophy Place?
https://jewishphilosophyplace.com/2017/09/19/decision-plan-tikvah-fund-ethnic-cleansing-in-israel/

(Decision Plan) Tikvah Fund & Ethnic Cleansing in Israel
Posted on September 19, 2017

Jewish Studies colleagues along with readers of Tablet Magazine online and the Jewish Review of Books should find of interest this piece by here by JJ Goldberg. The article is about a recent rightwing plan, promoted by one Bezalel Smotrich, whose party belongs to Netanyahu’s ruling coalition, to annex all of the West Bank, to create there a formal apartheid system with the ultimate aim of encouraging ethnic cleansing. The interest lies not simply because the plan is odious, but that it was promoted in the pages of a Hebrew journal in Israel sponsored by the Tikvah Fund. While Goldberg does not directly address the responsibility of Jewish Studies colleagues involved with the Tikvah Fund and its various and associated platforms in the States, the question is unavoidable. The involvement of the Tikvah Fund with this journal speaks (as per Goldberg) to deep moral rot not just in conservative Jewish thought in the U.S. but also to political blindness, if not creeping moral erosion in Jewish Studies. I want to be clear. I am not accusing anyone of directly or even knowingly supporting this kind of fascism in Israel. But if you work with or have ever contributed to a Tikvah Fund or Mem Bernstein affiliated publications, you have to understand that you are a part of the problem if and for as long as you continue to remain silent in action and word.

Here’s Goldberg:

“Smotrich’s plan was released September 6 in an 8,600-word lead essay, “The Decision Plan” (Tochnit Ha-Hachra’ah) in the fall issue of the Hebrew-language bimonthly Hashiloach, a conservative journal of ideas published by the New York-based Tikvah Fund.

That’s right – this plan’s institutional backing includes one of the most distinguished philanthropies in Diaspora Jewry. Tikvah is one of several conservative foundations endowed by the estate of the late investment fund manager Zalman-Sanford Bernstein. It is largely controlled by his widow, the philanthropist Elaine Mem Bernstein, and Tikvah’s board of directors includes some of the most prominent names in Jewish neoconservatism, including William Kristol and Elliott Abrams.

In addition to Hashiloach, launched a year ago, Tikvah also has a number of other publications, including the English-language journals Mosaic, Jewish Review of Books and the Library of Jewish Ideas, a book series published jointly with Princeton University Press. Another Bernstein foundation, Keren Keshet-The Rainbow Fund, publishes Nextbook and Tablet Magazine. A third, the Avi Chai Foundation, is a major force in Jewish education reform.

Hashiloach takes its name from an early Hebrew-language journal founded in 1897 by the Zionist essayist and gadfly Ahad Ha’am and later edited by the revered poet Hayim Nachman Bialik before folding in 1919. Tikvah’s choice of that name for its journal might be deemed ironic, given the contrast between the liberal stance of the original Hashiloach, which championed a spiritual, anti-nationalist brand of Zionism, and the hardline politics of the current incarnation.

On the other hand, the choice is in character for the Bernstein family of publications, which tend to combine their core political conservatism with a free-wheeling cultural sensibility and an openness to diverse, challenging ideas.

Still, Smotrich’s right-wing theories are a stretch even for the free-wheeling, open-ended conservatism of Bernstein-world. The notion of a mass population transfer to rid Israel of Palestinians, even if imagined as somehow voluntary, has long been consigned to the fetid corners of Israel’s radical right. If it’s now moved into the mainstream to the point where it can be taken seriously in a distinguished journal of ideas, that’s a depressing comment on the current state of Israeli and Jewish political discourse. If, on the other hand, it hasn’t gained that sort of broad respectability, then its appearance in Hashiloach suggests an alarming erosion of moral focus in Jewish neoconservative thought, as represented by the Tikvah Fund and its affiliates.”

 

Evelyn B (63)
Saturday September 23, 2017, 2:38 am
Goldberg's article in The Forward!
http://forward.com/opinion/383106/a-major-jewish-philanthropist-just-published-a-plan-to-ethnically-cleanse-p/

A Major Jewish Philanthropist Just Published A Plan To Ethnically Cleanse Palestinians
J.J. Goldberg September 18, 2017

A far-right faction within Israel’s Likud-led governing coalition has endorsed a plan for Israel to annex the entire West Bank and encourage the Palestinian residents to immigrate to neighboring Arab countries. The plan would allow Palestinians who voluntarily gave up all “national aspirations” to remain, granting them limited municipal self-government, but without Israeli citizenship or Knesset voting rights.

Make no mistake about this — this plan amounts to a none-too-subtle form of ethnic cleansing. It presents Palestinians with an untenable choice: Leave your home or be stripped of basic civil rights, perhaps forever.

Despite (or because of) its draconian nature, the plan was adopted unanimously at a September 12 convention of the National Union-Tekuma party, which holds two Knesset seats as the junior partner in the religious-nationalist Jewish Home bloc. National Union leader Uri Ariel serves as minister of agriculture in Benjamin Netanyahu’s Cabinet. The party’s other Knesset member, Bezalel Smotrich, is the author of the annexation plan.

It’s a marginal enough party that those concerned with human rights or with Israel’s international standing needn’t fear the plan’s immediate implementation. But we should be troubled by the plan’s institutional backing — not just in Benjamin Netanyahu’s government, but also in the heart of American Jewish philanthropy.

Smotrich’s plan was released September 6 in an 8,600-word lead essay, “The Decision Plan” (Tochnit Ha-Hachra’ah), in the fall issue of the Hebrew-language bimonthly Hashiloach, a conservative journal of ideas published by the New York-based Tikvah Fund.

That’s right — this plan’s institutional backing includes one of the most distinguished philanthropies in Diaspora Jewry. Tikvah is one of several conservative foundations endowed by the estate of the late investment fund manager Zalman-Sanford Bernstein. It is largely controlled by his widow, the philanthropist Elaine Mem Bernstein, and Tikvah’s board of directors includes some of the most prominent names in Jewish neoconservatism, among them William Kristol and Elliott Abrams.

In addition to Hashiloach, launched a year ago, Tikvah has a number of other publications, including the English-language journals Mosaic, Jewish Review of Books and the Library of Jewish Ideas, a book series published jointly with Princeton University Press. Another Bernstein foundation, Keren Keshet-The Rainbow Fund, publishes Nextbook and Tablet magazine. A third, the Avi Chai Foundation, is a major force in Jewish education reform.

Hashiloach takes its name from an early Hebrew-language journal founded in 1897 by the Zionist essayist and gadfly Ahad Ha’am and later edited by the revered poet Hayim Nachman Bialik before folding in 1919. Tikvah’s choice of that name for its journal might be deemed ironic, given the contrast between the liberal stance of the original Hashiloach, which championed a spiritual, anti-nationalist brand of Zionism, and the hard-line politics of the current incarnation.

On the other hand, the choice is in character for the Bernstein family of publications, which tend to combine their core political conservatism with a free-wheeling cultural sensibility and an openness to diverse, challenging ideas.

Still, Smotrich’s right-wing theories are a stretch even for the free-wheeling, open-ended conservatism of Bernstein-world. The notion of a mass population transfer to rid Israel of Palestinians, even if imagined as somehow voluntary, has long been consigned to the fetid corners of Israel’s radical right. If it’s now moved into the mainstream to the point where it can be taken seriously in a distinguished journal of ideas, that’s a depressing comment on the current state of Israeli and Jewish political discourse. If, on the other hand, it hasn’t gained that sort of broad respectability, then its appearance in Hashiloach suggests an alarming erosion of moral focus in Jewish neoconservative thought, as represented by the Tikvah Fund and its affiliates.

The respectability granted to Smotrich’s essay is particularly puzzling given its intellectual weaknesses, from faulty logic to naivete regarding international relations to plain ignorance. He claims, for instance, that the name Palestine, coined by the ancient Romans after their conquest of Judea, was revived by the Arabs of the Holy Land “when they launched their struggle against the Zionist movement” — when in fact the name had been in common use in Europe for centuries before and was imposed on the local Arabs by the British Mandate, not vice versa.

At another point, Smotrich writes that Palestinian extremism and terrorism were products of the 1993 Oslo Accords. Perhaps the 37-year-old settler-lawyer, born and raised in the hermetic world of the settlements, is unfamiliar with the bloody record of the pre-1967 Palestinian Fedayeen. Maybe he’s never heard of the horrific wave of Palestinian terror attacks throughout the 1970s on Israeli homes, schools, hotels, airport terminals and even Olympic athletes. It was before his time.

Smotrich recites at great length the paradoxical argument that coexistence between two nations living side by side in the Land of Israel is impossible because, first, the Palestinians refuse to accept the legitimacy of Jewish statehood, and second, the Jewish claim to the land is the only legitimate claim — meaning, by his lights, that even if the Palestinians were to accept the legitimacy of two states, the Jews could not legitimately do so. That is, the Palestinians are at fault for not accepting the principle of sharing, which we don’t accept either.

Picking at the holes in Smotrich’s arguments shouldn’t distract us from the larger questions raised by his plan. A morally repugnant concept that was rightly condemned as racist a generation ago is now the policy of an Israeli government coalition partner. This should have caused an immediate coalition crisis but, shamefully, it hasn’t. The plan’s mainstreaming in Israeli public life has been partly enabled by one of American Jewry’s most important philanthropies. This should have caused a crisis in Israel-Diaspora relations but, again shamefully, it hasn’t.

If there’s a bright spot in all this, it’s that we have a week and a half until Yom Kippur — time enough to repent our sins, to do justice and love mercy.
 

fly bird (26)
Saturday September 23, 2017, 9:54 am
Thank you for the text, Evelyn. Yes, I think that is the article from 2005.

****************
 

fly bird (26)
Saturday September 23, 2017, 9:56 am
the other article you posted, "(Decision Plan) Tikvah Fund & Ethnic Cleansing in Israel
Posted on September 19, 2017 , is well worth reading.

Thank you for sharing that one.
 

fly bird (26)
Wednesday November 1, 2017, 4:21 pm
PETITIONS NEED SIGNATURES: PLEASE SIGN!!

PayPal: Stop Discriminating Against Palestinians

http://www.care2.com/news/member/739002257/4074791

Thank you for posting, Freya, and Darren for the hyper-links
 

fly bird (26)
Saturday November 4, 2017, 6:11 pm
The Jews in pre-state Israel who called for a binational stare - Israel News.

https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/1.819411
 

fahad A (140)
Sunday November 19, 2017, 4:38 am
No matter how the Zionist state occupied! As long as the Zionist lobby controls the political decisions in the US Congress and the so-called United Nations silent about this injustice! The West and the Arabs are watching! The occupation of Palestinian lands and their displacement from their land will continue !!
 

fly bird (26)
Tuesday November 21, 2017, 5:22 am
Signatures needed. Please sign.

U.S. Campaign to End the Israeli occupation.

http://www.care2.com/news/member/739002257/4077236
 

fly bird (26)
Thursday December 28, 2017, 3:19 pm
Jerusalem still speaks Arabic.

It doesn't matter where anyone builds their diplomatic palaces. Jerusalem still speaks Arabic. I've heard her.

Hundreds of restaurants offer falafel, hummus, shawarma, pomegranate juice, and knafeh. Believe me. I've tried them all. But there aren't any delis. No corned beef sandwiches on rye. No bagel shops. No lox. Don't get me wrong. All those things are delicious. They're just not there. Because Jerusalem eats rice and yogurt with every meal. She uses bread as a spoon. She checks her teeth for leftover tabbouli. She's an Arab.

Certain aromas waft through the air. Cumin. Coriander. Nutmeg. Cinnamon. Turmeric. Sumac. Allspice. Those spices don't come from Poland and Brooklyn. Her women push their herbs in her markets. Thyme. Sage. Basil. Mint. Lots of mint. Those herbs don't come from Russia and Miami Beach. I've hung out with her. She drinks coffee that's almost too strong for human consumption. She eats parsley-infused meats. She sweats garlic like the rest of us. She's an Arab.

It's easy to get confused in her alleyways. They meander every which way, twisting and turning, each corner bringing a new little journey. But if you ask for directions from one part of the Old city to another, her children will just tell you, "Just go straight." Jerusalem is still an Arab. I promise you.

Look in her closets. She collects ornately embroidered gowns.
Visit her weddings. She "changes the light bulb" when she dances.
Go out to dinner with her. She fights over the bill.

Talk to her for more than five minutes. She asks you if you're married. And if you're not... Well, then prepare yourself for a much longer, and quite uncomfortable, conversation.

She wears a keffiyeh. Sometimes it's because she's protesting. And sometimes it's just to keep warm.

When she has some time for herself to listen to some music, she sings along with Fairouz, Abdel Halim, and Um Kalthum.

Jerusalem's been Arab for 1400 years. Crusader campaigns tried to change her. It didn't work. Israeli colonization, settlement, and profanity have tried to change her. They've failed terribly. Some stuttering speech about an embassy won't succeed either.

She's been through decades of foreign occupation, more than once. She has suffered the attempted theft of her heritage. She has watched the dispossession, expulsion, and looting of her children's lives, homes, and histories. She has even endured the propaganda that she still solely belongs to someone who doesn't remotely understand the beautiful creature she grown into today. Yet, despite these attempts to defeat her, Jerusalem still speaks Arabic. With a Palestinian accent.

She's one of us. Don’t worry. She can handle this.

http://www.civilarab.com/jerusalem-still-speaks-arabic/
 
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