If I gave a speech saying that Israel had the right, invested in it by God, to permanently rule over millions of disenfranchised Palestinians in violation of their rights and their legitimate aspirations, I’d be outing myself as a dangerous fanatic who has no problem with a Jewish democracy becoming a Jewish apartheid state. So when will people start listening to what Mike Huckabee is actually saying?
Former U.S. presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee said Tuesday there is no room for a Palestinian state “in the middle of the Jewish homeland” and Israel should be able to build settlements wherever it wants — taking a stance firmly at odds with Washington.
It’s not just at odds with Washington. It’s a stance at odds with the entire international community, pretty much every Israeli government of the past 15 years and, as Amjad Atallah writes, it’s even to the right of Hamas. Huckabee has gone far beyond pandering to the Israel lobby in pursuit of evangelical support for the 2012 GOP nomination. What do the Palestinians get from Huckabee?
“The question is should the Palestinians have a place to call their own? Yes, I have no problem with that. Should it be in the middle of the Jewish homeland? That’s what I think has to be honestly assessed as virtually unrealistic.”
If Huckabee has any idea what he’s talking about — which at this point is an open question and the only exculpatory option for him — then he’s advocating the transfer of millions of Palestinians from the West Bank (and, who knows, maybe Gaza) to a different Arab state. That’s commonly known as “ethnic cleansing.” Israel and the world, rightly, consider transfer to be monstrous. Or, I suppose, he could mean tiny Palestinian Bantustans, swallowed up by ever expanding Israeli settlements, which could “govern” themselves under endless Israeli occupation. If we take Huckabee at his word, those are the only two choices. And this is the guy who’s based his entire political profile on good Christian values.
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