The Arabist

The Arabist

By Issandr El Amrani and friends.

Richard Falk embraces one-state solution

I have remained (barely) attached to the two-state solution in Israel/Palestine, because it's always seemed to me that the one-state solution a) does not seem to be desired by either party at the moment b) is a recipe for civil war and c) is fifty years away. But I listen when Richard Falk, an eminent American law professor who is the UN Special Rapporteur on Palestinian Human Rights, makes the case for one state:

I have been a strong admirer of the Houston Declaration that I think morally, legally, and politically responds in an inspiring and convincing way to the terrible ordeal that continues to confront the Palestinian people and that has been misleadingly diverted by this charade of international negotiations between representatives of the State of Israel, of the Palestinian Authority and the mediation of the United States Government. This is a charade in two different ways. One is that it creates a cruel deception that, somehow or other, there is a sincere search for a just settlement of the conflict. And secondly, it creates the view that the contours of a just settlement involve the establishment of two separate states in the historic Palestine Mandate. That deception is very misleading at this stage, given the encroachment on post-67 occupied Palestine by way of the settlements, by the construction of the security wall, and by a series of house demolitions, imposed residence requirements--all sorts of deliberate undertakings by Israel to make a viable Palestinian distinct state a political impossibility. And yet at the same time Israel, with U.S. backing, pretends that a solution would involve two separate political entities.

My judgment, coinciding with the orientation and the various assertions of the Houston Declaration, is that the genuine search for a just peace at this stage depends on building a strong political and moral consensus in favor of a one-state solution: the state being of secular character, equal to all people living within its borders, comprising the whole of the territory that was constituted by historic Palestine, and bringing human rights and democracy and dignity to both of these embattled peoples.

The whole thing and videos are here.