[DEBATE] : The politics of anti-Zionism
critical.montages at gmail.com
Wed Jan 21 09:30:09 GMT 2009
On Wed, Jan 21, 2009 at 3:15 AM, Ran Greenstein <rangreen at sn.apc.org> wrote:
> The crucial dividing lines are between those who oppose the occupation and those who
> support it
> We must also ask ourselves, what really lies behind policies such as those of Hamas, that
> are bound to drive dissident Zionists into the arms of the government and in support of the
> war, but that's another long debate.
Hamas probably would never have come to power if the Israeli
government had made a decision to dismantle settlements in the West
Bank and the Gaza Strip while the PLO was still the political vehicle
of the wills of a clear majority of Palestinians. While the
Palestinians were still thinking they could achieve their own state
through the Oslo process, Hamas's approval rating was just 10%. As
the Israeli government kept building settlements throughout the
process, doubling the number of settlers under Labour*, in 2002 Hamas'
support became 25% and in 2004 30%. (See Anthony H. Cordesman and
Jennifer Moravitz, The Israeli-Palestinian War: Escalating to
Nowhere.) Despite this trend, the USG insisted on the elections in
the OPTs, which Hamas won, despite (or probably in part because of)
the US financial support for Fatah and the Israeli obstruction of
Hamas during the election campaign. I'd ask the dissident Zionists
who say they have been driven into the arms of the Israeli government
by the rise to power of Hamas: what do you think has driven so many
Palestinians into the arms of Hamas? The answer in my opinion is that
dissident Zionists, non- and anti-Zionist Jews, and Palestinian
citizens of Israel together just could not stop settlement expansion.
Why that was so and what can be done to change that is what they
should be thinking about. If anti-Zionism grows, it won't be because
of Hamas but because of settlements.
The political process between Israel and the Palestinians did not
impede settlement activities, which continued under the Labor
government of Yitzhak Rabin (1992-1996) and all subsequent
governments. These governments built thousands of new housing units,
claiming that this was necessary to meet the "natural growth" of the
existing population. As a result, between 1993 and 2000 the number of
settlers on the West Bank (excluding East Jerusalem) increased by
almost 100 percent.
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