(JAAFAR ASHTIYEH/AFP/Getty Images)

Israel risks becoming an apartheid state if efforts fail to reach a peace settlement, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said Friday during a closed-door meeting. U.S. officials have until now avoided using the charged term in discussing Israeli policies. We’ll discuss Kerry’s remark and the gridlocked Israeli-Palestinian peace talks.

Guests:
Abraham Sofaer, senior fellow at Hoover Institution
George Bisharat, law professor at UC Hastings College of Law

  • colinvgallagher

    How is it democratic that Israeli settlers vote for right-wing governments that build new settlements in the occupied territories and the Palestinians have no say in those decisions? Since Israel has effectively annexed the West Bank, then all Palestinians, not just the settlers, should be entitled to vote in Israeli elections. Otherwise, Israel really is an apartheid state, isn’t it?

    • phil small

      95% of the Palestinians live in areas A and B of the West Bank. They are under PA control. They have their own elections. Why should they vote in Israeli elections?

      • Peter

        “Why should they vote in Israeli elections?”
        Because the PA is subservient to the Israeli government, which maintains the population registry, controls all access in or out, and can and does seize land and arrest people without the approval of the PA.

        • phil small

          That’s correct, when Israeli security uncovers terrorist activity they go in and clean it out before innocent Israelis are killed. Every security force in a civilized country does the same thing, so why demonize Israel? Waiting for PA approval would make the whole thing a farce.

          • Peter

            “Every security force in a civilized country does the same thing, so why demonize Israel?”
            Web are talking about actions taken by Israeli security forces OUTSIDE that civilized country, not in it. And how is calling for a right of West Bank Palestinians to vote in Israeli elections “demonizing” Israel? It seems like just the opposite to me. Your comment about what a farce it would be if Israeli security forces required PA approval for actions in areas under nominal PA control just shows why it is important that the people living there should be allowed to vote for the government that controls those forces.

          • Kit Eakle

            EXACTLY what white Afrikaaners said in South Africa…

          • Matt

            In the process, they kill lots of innocent Palestinian children, women, and men. In “Operation Cast Lead,” the Israeli forces killed over 1,400 of them. Some of them they killed with white phosphorous. Lots of people all over the planet believe that using chemical weapons against civilians is unacceptable and that keeping people in a huge open-air prison camp (Gaza), restricting movement of people, restricting food to that population resulting in malnourishment, demolishing people’s homes, destroying people’s orchards that have belonged to them for generations because the Israeli state wants to ethnically cleanse the land of the native people for colonists from Israel and other countries, find that unacceptable. Perhaps that might account for what you perceive to be the demonization of Israel.

      • colinvgallagher

        If the West Bank is under Palestinian control then why are all of those settlements being put in there over the objections of the PA and the international community?

  • Matt

    The fact that people get upset about the use of the term apartheid doesn’t mean that the word shouldn’t be used, given that it is accurate. Outrage at the term apartheid is part of the strategy by Israel supports to distract from the reality of the brutality and injustice of the Israeli occupation of Palestine. They get all upset about the use of the term, while the people who use the term are upset at the brutality of the Israeli state and the fact that the US funds it, against the best interests of the US people, and against the wishes of millions of US citizens who do not want their tax dollars to support an apartheid state.

  • Matt

    Why does Michael Krasny cite Bill Crystal? This guy has been totally discredited because of his cheerleading and warmongering for invading Iraq. He was wrong on everything. All of his predictions were wrong. And yet, here is Krasny citing this guy. Why, Mr. Krasny? I wish you would up your game and not cite discredited warmongers.

    • Robert Thomas

      It’s a puzzle. I think it comes from the mistaken notion, raised up over the last fifty years, that popular journalists are the same as public intellectuals.

      When people mistake Tom Brokaw for being George Kennan, it’s a short step to mistake Irving (or even [shudder] William) Kristol for being Edmund Burke.

    • thucy

      “Why does Michael Krasny cite Bill Crystal?”

      That’s terribly unfair to the comedian who has little comment on politics. William Kristol is another matter.

  • Robert Thomas

    As a regular person with regular understanding of world affairs, I think its a mistake to apprehend the Israeli Palestinian conflict as having interesting tactical aspect from day to day or month to month or even year to year.

    The best course for the Palestinian people would have been complete and utter capitulation and surrender after the Six Day War. Had each and every adult Palestinian accepted defeat in that event, at least with the finality that the Japanese excepted accepted defeat at the conclusion of WWII, my counterfactual contention is that they might be by now in possession of a serviceable if not exactly enviable homeland and state.

    In the ensuing half-century, Israelis have determined that demography is destiny. I see that they believe no course is available other than one of inexorable annexation.

    • Peter

      “Had each and every adult Palestinian accepted defeat in that event, at least with the finality that the Japanes excepted defeat at the conclusion of WWII, my counterfactual contention is that they might be by now in possession of a serviceable if not exactly enviable homeland and state.”
      The Japanese people had no reason to believe that the Americans had settler-colonial designs on Japan, meaning moving some of their civilian population onto the islands to live under American civil law and trying to get natives to leave. If the Americans did such a thing in Japan, I’m sure there would be much more resistance.

      • Robert Thomas

        Well, I was indulging in the fun but (I freely admit) marginally interesting pursuit of a counterfactual (the currently en vogue term for this sort of play) and your guess is as good as mine about what the attitude of the Israelis would have been in 1968 toward a defeated Palestine or what Palestinians would have anticipated in 1968, had they admitted defeat.

        However, my anecdotal but colorful understanding of aspects of the Allied Occupation of Japan gained from descriptions provided by my father is a little at odds with your characterization of the contemporary apprehension of many Japanese people.

        My father was a sailor in the Pacific during WWII and from an immediately adjacent vessel watched the surrender ceremony that took place on the USS Missouri on September 2 1945. He was involved in a number of administrative tasks during the early part of the subsequent occupation of Japan and also in post war reconstruction on mainland China. He reported that in those days many Japanese people thought that the U.S. might decide to populate parts of Japan, especially after the administration of the nation was handed to the Americans and to MacArthur as Supreme Commander, rather than to a junta administering sectors as had been anticipated and as had been deployed in Germany.

        In time, obviously, this (perhaps minority) fear abated. But even today, if you were to poll the residents of Okinawa, you might not find that the notion that the occupation ended in 1952 is not universally recognized. At least, not in that homely corner of the nation.

        • Peter

          Robert, you obviously know a lot more about post-war Japan than I do. So some Japanese may have feared American settler colonialism, but it never did happen. (Military bases don’t count as settler colonies.)
          In 1967, the Palestinians living in the West Bank and Gaza Strip knew exactly what had happened to their countrymen at the hands of the Israelis in 1947-1949: In fact, a large fraction of these same individuals had 20 years earlier lived on land that became the state of Israel but were either kicked out by the Israelis or fled the fighting and were forbidden by the Israelis from returning. Some were expelled from their villages and towns even after surrendering and being promised they could stay. I don’t know what experience with the Israelis leads you to conclude that if the Palestinians in the territories conquered in 1967 had “accepted defeat” with “finality” then they “might be by now in possession of a serviceable if not exactly enviable homeland and state.” (And are you using the word “homeland” in the way that the Apartheid regime in South Africa did?)

          • Richard Stack

            Before the agitation surrounding the ANC, Isael was quite content with its relation to South Africa, particularly, of course, with the substantial Jewish minorty there who often volunteered for service in the IDF. The most infamous phrase in Jewish history is, of course the “Final Solution”. Perhaps less well known is that it was first used, as a description of what he had in mind for Palestine, by the founder of Zionism, Hertzl.

    • Matt

      The Israelis have come up with their own final solution, apparently.

      • Robert Thomas

        It’s more banal and less dramatic in the way of a solution but just as determined and it seems, more likely to succeed.

      • Naj

        Ah, calling Israelis Nazis are we? Your true colors shine bright.

        • Matt

          Page 7 #3 of the Defenders of Israel Handbook:
          “When the facts of the brutality of the Israeli occupation and the campaign of ethnic cleansing against the Palestinian people are apparent, and all else fails, call somebody a Nazi.”

          It doesn’t work anymore, pal.

          • Naj

            I’m sorry. Do you understand what I wrote? You’re the one calling Jews Nazis when you say, “The Israelis have come up with their own final solution, apparently.” How ironic that you should accuse me of exactly what you did just because I point it out. Hilarious.

    • thucy

      “Japanes excepted defeat”

      Did they so take exception to defeat, or did they perhaps accept defeat?

      • Robert Thomas

        Yow! I rotesed it, so it musta be so.

        • thucy

          🙂

  • libbyandlentraubman

    One “fact on the ground” is the near-total disengagement and lack of relationships among the Jewish and Palestinian citizens themselves — across borders, and within the state of Israel. With the people so disengaged and living with such ignorance and exaggerated fear and stereotypes, how can politicians be expected to move ahead of the people without a vastly expanded human, face-to-face public peace process that dignifies and familiarizes both peoples? As a Nigerian colleague told us, the killer worse that HIV/AIDS is HRV — Human Relationship-deficiency Virus.

  • thucy

    Dear Forum Producers:
    What became of the earlier comments on this topic?

    • Peter

      The earlier comments are in the section for the 9:00 a.m. half-hour:
      http://www.kqed.org/a/forum/R201404290900
      I suspect that Forum producers aren’t monitoring this comment section anymore. Especially when a comment has stayed here for 15 hours calling one of the guests “that anti-Semitic piece of garbage” and alleging, while providing no evidence, that this piece of garbage was giving out “Lies, lies, and more lies.”

  • Guest

    Are we kidding? BECOMING? It seems to me it IS an apartheid state!

  • Naj

    Wow. What I’d like to know is who deleted my posts. Was it Mr. Krasny himself or some leftist, clueless intern? How dare I call out the hateful lies spewed on this show as Krasny sits idly by. KQED allows anti-Semitic venom on their shows and deletes the posts of those who point it out. Just great.

    • danzoll

      Hi Naj
      Your comment violated our community guidelines which ask users to refrain from personal attacks. If you wish to edit and repost your comments please feel free to do so.
      Thanks
      Dan

      • Naj

        So it’s OK to slander all Jews but not to call some one an anti-Semite when they slander all Jews? Gotcha.

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