November 24, 2012
In A Pillar Built on Sand in the London Review of Books blog John Mearsheimer says that at the most basic level, Israel’s actions in Gaza are inextricably bound up with its efforts to create a Greater Israel that stretches from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea.
Despite the endless palaver about a two-state solution, the Palestinians are not going to get their own state, not least because the Netanyahu government is firmly opposed to it. The prime minister and his political allies are deeply committed to making the Occupied Territories a permanent part of Israel. To pull this off, the Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza will be forced to live in impoverished enclaves similar to the Bantustans in white-ruled South Africa.
The Palestinians will continue to resist Israel’s efforts to deny them self-determination, resist the Zionists’ efforts to colonise their land and subjugate them in the process. The US provides the necessary diplomatic cover.
Mearsheimer says that Israel’s aim in bombing Gaza is not to topple Hamas or eliminate its rockets, both of which are unrealisable goals. Instead, the ongoing attacks in Gaza are part of a long-term strategy to coerce the Palestinians into giving up their pursuit of self-determination and submitting to Israeli rule in an apartheid state.
The flaw here is that the Palestinians will not abandon their pursuit of self-determination and accept being consigned to a handful of enclaves in an apartheid state.