Zionism's Existential Dilemma
16 July 2016
By Khalid Amayreh
In 1895, the fledgling Zionist movement dispatched a number of rabbis to
Palestine to explore the possibility of establishing a homeland for Jews in
the predominantly Arab country, then under Ottoman rule.
After scouring the country, the rabbis sent back the following
message: ''The bride is beautiful but she is married to another man''.
Today, 120 years later the legitimate husband and the rapist
turned-master of the house continue the century-old fight for legitimacy and
possession of the land.
At one point, the arrogant
and self-absorbed rapist thought he achieved a final victory over the
legitimate husband who obviously lacked the wherewithal to defend, let alone
repulse, the powerful beast, the pugnacious settler and colonizer.
But the legitimate man of the house was not to be crushed. He
survived despite his weakness, vulnerability and poverty.
In a certain sense, he survived in spite of logic and history.
Today, notwithstanding Israel's incessant efforts to obliterate the
Palestinian and his memory, there are as many Palestinians as there are Jews
in the area between the River Jordan and the Mediterranean, including Israel
proper, the West Bank, East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip.
This is more than just another problem facing the Zionist
enterprise in Palestine. This is the ultimate nightmare haunting Israel,
rendering its future precarious.
Indeed, the fact
that Israel and the territories it occupied in 1967 are today populated by
approximately 6 million Palestinians (in addition to 6 million Jews) should be
viewed as the ultimate strategic failure of Zionism. Of course, this failure
was never intended to be. In fact, it was inadvertent as it was inevitable.
The re-emergence of demographic realities in
Palestine-Israel reminds us of Albert Camus's iconic words, appearing in his
famous play ''Le Malentendu'' or ''In Cross purpose.'' ''In a world where
everything can be denied there are forces undeniable, and on Earth where
nothing is sure we have our certainties.''
seems that Palestinians have survived ''in spite of logic'' and ''in spite of
history'', perhaps thanks to Camus' ''forces undeniable'' That is precisely
the Palestinian odyssey in a nutshell.
I have no
doubt that history will record that one of the main reasons for Israel's
ultimate demise is the intensive proliferation of Jewish settlements
throughout the West Bank which rendered the establishment of a viable
Palestinian state utterly impossible.
Yes, it is hard
to thank someone for doing you a favor he never intended to do in the first
But perhaps we Palestinians ought to thank
Israel for building that many settlements in the West Bank. I don't know if
Israel knew or not what she was doing.
But the net
outcome is the same as the seemingly existential dilemma already facing the
Zionist enterprise is irreconcilable, irreversible and inescapable. By
definition, a dilemma is a situation where one has to choose between two
The dilemma facing Israel and
Zionism today is having to choose between a bi-national state where at least
half of the population is non-Jewish (and they are growing demographically at
a faster rate in comparison to Jews) or adopting perpetual occupation,
repression, and apartheid as outstanding policy pending the appearance of the
Messiah, irrespective of his religious affiliations and political
orientations!! Israel might very well be entertaining a third choice.
After all, Israel is Israel and can be expected to embark on
But the ''unthinkable'', however
ghoulish it might be could boomerang on Israel and be decidedly suicidal for
Jews especially in the future.
This is because any
foolish act against the Palestinians, such as mass expulsion, which would be
tantamount to an actual genocide, would really open the gates of hell on
Because then every expelled man, woman and
child would, almost spontaneously and automatically, transform themselves into
bombs walking on two legs.
And they would meet
absolute approval and backing from the 1600 million followers of Islam and
other supporters. Such would be the ultimate triumph of the ISIS.
Khalid Amayreh is a veteran Palestinian journalist and current affairs
political commentator living in Occupied Palestine