Saturday, May 5, 2007
Contributed by Datta
A Very Good Interview
By Laila El-Haddad
"For nearly two decades, the so-called “two-state solution” has been promoted as the agreed upon framework for negotiations- and ultimately peace- to end the seemingly intractable conflict between Israel and the Palestinians. But two decades on, it has failed to bear fruit.
In his new book, One Country: A Bold Proposal to End the Israeli-Palestinian Impasse, Ali Abu Nimah (a Palestinian-American writer and commentator on Middle East and Arab-American affairs and co-founder of the Electronic Intifada site) argues that the “conventional wisdom” of the two-state, land-for-peace equation needs to be drastically re-thought. Partition, he argues, is a flawed idea that is ultimately doomed to fail.
The only viable choice is to a return to the proposal of a one-state solution-one country with equal rights and votes for both Israelis and Palestinians. Laila El-Haddad interviewed Abu Nimah by phone about his book.
Q: You go from reluctantly backing a two-state solution to advocating for a one-state solution. When did you make the ideological shift and why?
Ali: I always struggled with it but I did for many years sincerely believe that a two-state solution was the best solution; the most possible; the most pragmatic. I think I sort of made the final shift about 3 or 4 years ago during the [second] Intifada, when I just recognized that all the talk of a two-state solution, all of the diplomatic initiatives, were so divorced from the reality of what Israel was doing on the ground that it became clear to me it was not possible. I learnt more, I read more about South Africa, about Ireland, about Palestine, and this is where I ended up......"