The Pitfalls of a U.S.-Israel Vision of a Palestinian State

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VOL. 35


No. 2
P. 56
The Pitfalls of a U.S.-Israel Vision of a Palestinian State

After situating the Palestine question in the context of U.S. global policy, ‎this essay deconstructs the U.S.-Israeli conception of Palestinian ‎statehood as an all-encompassing "package deal" solution replacing the ‎final status issues of return, refugees, settlements, and borders. The Gaza ‎disengagement, the author argues, is the first step in implementing this ‎plan. With disengagement, Gaza becomes a strictly Palestinian problem, ‎no longer an Israeli problem, and whatever negotiations may take place ‎will henceforth be dominated by technical and procedural issues ‎connected with the Strip. The whole point of this vision of statehood, ‎according to the author, is to downgrade the Palestine problem to its "true ‎dimensions."‎

Azmi Bishara, a former professor of philosophy at Birzeit University, is a member of ‎the Israeli Knesset and head of the Arab National Democratic Alliance (Tajamu’/Balad). ‎This essay is based on his keynote address, delivered via video, at the annual conference ‎of the Palestine Center in Washington, DC, on 18 November 2005.