Avigdor Lieberman takes settlement policy to its logical conclusion

by Jesse Bacon


Lost in the debate over the settlement phase is its real purpose, to claim

Palestinian land for Israel. Even its hardcore defenders like Avigdor

Lieberman, know there will come a time when that has reached its

end, when all available Palestinian land has been taken, and all

Palestinians capable of being forced to leave will have done so.

 What to do then? Well, then

 Israel will suddenly become interested in drawing borders after 60+ years resisting doing so.

And apparently we are nearing that time. Fortunately, we are also

 nearing a time when Lieberman and company are revealed for

what they are. Netanyahu has kept him under pretty tight leash

after his appointment caused outrage around the world. But fresh

 off Israel’s triumphant avoidance of any punishment for allowing

 his fake settlement freeze to end, Netanyahu set Lieberman loose

 on the UN.

He is apparently seeking international support for the idea that

Israel has a right to suddenly declare some Palestinians no longer

 Israeli citizens, but citizens of another state without the messy

process of moving them (though no doubt violence would result

 anyways.) I hope people would protest this just as they would if

US suddenly declared its Latino citizens of Mexico, though I am

sure some are in favor of that. And like most racists, Lieberman

 was at pains to stress how un-racist his desire to expel one national

 group without their consent was. 

Hopefully, this is a sign that Israel recognizes it needs international

 legitimacy for its scheme in the wake of its badly damaged pr.

Less hopefully, the world does not have a great record of taking actual

 action to withold that legitimacy in any meaningful. I fear this will

 become part of the consensus of “serious people” in the same way that

 “everybody knows” that Ariel will always be part of Israel. But hopefully

 again,  we have seen the power of international citizens led by Palestinians

  to challenge that consensus.

PS. the article asked whether Lieberman was speaking for himself or

the Israeli government. If it was the former, and random citizens of

Israel are now permitted to address the United Nations, I hope the UN

 will give equal time for people calling for some sort of shared democratic

state or full withdrawal to 1967 borders. If, as I suspect, it was the latter

then I hope that Jewish groups who are always asking Palestinians to

condemn other Palestinians are consistent in their treatment of Lieberman.

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Avigdor Lieberman takes settlement policy to its logical conclusion

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