Solidarity!

Tomorrow, the Palestinian Solidarity Campaign is holding a 'lobby day' in Parliament - let's have a look inside.

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Is a two-state solution too much to ask for?
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The Commentator
On 22 November 2011 10:18

Since 1988 the Palestinian Authority has accepted a two state solution as the only solution to the conflict.

In contrast to this, the clearly stated views of the Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC) leadership, literature and their logo, points to their implacable support of a one-state solution to the Middle East conflict.

The principles of tomorrow's 'lobby day' are to support the legally enshrined right of self-determination; the British government’s implementation of international law – including supporting the withdrawal of the Israeli state from the occupied Palestinian territories; and the rights of the Palestinian people to demonstrate and to seek international support for justice, including demonstrations and boycotts.

But their aims and objectives fly in the face of widely held opinion that two states for two people is the only solution to the Middle East Conflict; a viable Palestinian state living beside a safe and secure Israel. As opposed to supporting the right of self-determination for both the Jewish and Palestinian people, the PSC only and exclusively supports the national rights of the Palestinians.

A two state solution relies on accepting that the land on which Israel was established in 1948 is Israel proper and is not 'disputed' or 'occupied territory'. But as their logo demonstrates, the PSC makes no distinction between the land Israel was established on in 1948 and the land it took control of after the six day war, describing the whole area – from Tel Aviv to the Jordan River - as ‘occupied territories’.  

According to their website they are also ‘in opposition to [the] Zionist nature of the Israeli state’. We wonder what exactly is it about the right of self-determination of the Jewish people in their own sovereign homeland that the PSC is so opposed to?

Their continued campaign for Palestinians to have the ‘right of return’ to their ancestors’ homes, abandoned on Israel’s creation in 1948 is further evidence of their stance on the future of the state of Israel. The PSC are effectively calling for a position that pre-judges Israeli-Palestinian negotiations, challenges Israel’s Jewish majority and rejects compromise.

Dig a little deeper and we are confronted by near constant condemnation of Israel for ‘aggression against neighbouring states’ yet no acknowledgment of any aggression towards Israel from its regional neighbours.

Nothing about the fact that that in 1948, 1967 and 1973, Israel’s neighbours attempted to destroy the state for good. Nothing about attacks on Israeli sovereign territory from Hezbollah in southern Lebanon and Hamas in Gaza. And nothing about the Iranian regime’s repeated threats to ‘wipe Israel off the map’.

But it is perhaps the PSC’s ‘friends’ that give the most cause for concern. The organisation works closely with, and promotes, groups whose output is even more extreme and objectionable than their own. Last year the Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign, posted the winning entry from Iran’s notorious Holocaust cartoon competition of 2006 on its website. The Commentator refuses to post it, but if you're interested you can find it here.

Close ties with Friends of Al Aqsa and the British Muslim Initiative which campaigns to “Stop the Holocaust in Gaza” (and is run by Mohammed Sawalha, former Hamas commander) confirm exactly the sort of agenda that the PSC has.

So when the PSC lobby Parliament on Wednesday, those who regard themselves as fair arbiters and defenders of compromise and the peace process should remember what the PSC is all about and who they are really meeting with.

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