Tuesday, September 9, 2008
At the Begin Center, we met with Gavriel Cohen and Ysrael Medad, two Zionist, settlers. They talked about how Israel is not occupying Palestinian land and think that can be full opportunities and rights to Arabs in “their” land. They talked about the idea of Israel as an apartheid state. I have heard this word used often by both Israeli’s and Palestinians. It is interesting how words can really have such heavy meanings in this conflict. Ysrael is originally from South Africa and states that this is nothing like it. He cited the fact that there are 11 Arab Knesset members, arab judges and that Arab Israeli citizens do have rights. They argue that where they live is not a settlement though this is a point that both Israeli’s and Palestinians go back and forth about. Some say that they are illegal under international law but Zionists believe that the Bible/Torah is historical truth that it is the land of the Jews. I have some difficulty with this because I personally do not take the bible as historical fact but rather an interpretation written by imperfect human beings and open to personal interpretation. Yisrael said that the “green line” is a cease-fire line and temporary rather than a border. He stressed that “we” cannot continuously sub-divide a land that is sub-divided. He also said that there is no 2 state solution but a 4 state solution meaning that the land is actual not only 2 regions but Israel, Fatah-istan, Hamas-istan, and Gaza-Jordania. This was an interesting point that I had never heard before.