Jerry Haber, an Orthodox Jew, writes:
For some time I have had a dream about a community, a coalition, a big tent that includes within it all those constituencies who cry out to end the occupation now. Yes, I know, there already is a US Campaign to End the Occupation, and they do good work. Read about them here. But I am thinking of something else
I am thinking of people of all colors, races, creeds, ethnicities, sexual orientation – and of varying, even opposing ideologies. Under this tent are committed anti-Zionists who believe that a Jewish ethnic state is a bad thing; others who don’t think that Jews have right to national self-determination in Palestine; Palestinians who would, if they could, liberate all of Palestine from Zionist hegemony, and liberal Zionists, who believe that Israel, for all its flaws, offers promise to the Jewish people, the world, and, yes, even to the Palestinians. What unites these constituencies is the conviction that the occupation and subjugation of one people by another over three generations is morally intolerable and can go on no longer. And that now is the time to link arms, despite our profound and irreconcilable differences, and act to end the occupation.
But what does “ending the occupation” mean? It doesn’t mean merely a withdrawal of the Israeli Defense Forces from the West Bank. It doesn’t even mean the creation of a Palestinian state. It means simply this: that Palestinians can live freely and with dignity, that they are not under the control of anybody else, that they are free at last. And that this freedom extends not only to the Palestinians living still within Palestine but wherever they may be, in the camps, in the Arab emirates, in Jordan, in Detroit. It also means that Israelis, Jews and Palestinians, can also live a life of freedom and dignity, enslaved neither to fear, nor to feelings of ethnic entitlement.
The only liberal Zionists who can oppose the move, in my opinion, are the ones who are more Zionist than liberal, and indeed, their self-perceived “liberalism” is nothing more than a delusion.
It’s time for liberal Zionists to get off the fence and start heading towards the tent with the one-staters and the BDSer’s – without, necessarily, accepting those ideologies. This move will come first, in Palestine/Israel, and then throughout the world.