Archive | December, 2019

Forgetting 2019: A Poem

31 Dec

[Prefatory Note: At this age, having exhausted prose options, I indulge myself during holidays, by sharing poems that seek also your indulgence. I searched 2019 forsome glimmers of good news, and felt stymied. Of course, here, there, everywhere there were glorious private exceptions, yet hovering over the public marketplaces ofthe world I cringe beneath menacing storm clouds and below chaos and misery, and catastrophes waiting to happen. It is this spirit that I looked back on 2019, and yet reject despair, and pledge to fight for what I believe in 2020 with the conviction that it can happen, and of course should happen.]




Forgetting 2019


asphalt rain


darkens green fields




flares Amazon skies


fake leaders slithering


toward real dangers


hither and yon


seek safe havens


gated nations


hiding from truth


screaming ‘no’


migrants fleeing despair


pleading ‘please’


hiding from evils


Aung San Suu Kyi


defending genocide


this fallen Nobelist


broadcasting abroad


her deadly message


two centuries ago


Walt Whitman


arrived in our midst


singing aloud




of America’s future


later lost to predators


seizing their loot


robbing the land


turning dreams


to wilting flowers


our grief becomes


a betrayed destiny


tainted at birth


natives driven


off their sacred land


of holy innocence


the trusted voice


of Toni Morrison


is gone not lost


if we listen


if we listen


if we listen


all not yet all


lost futureless


nested eggs contain


our only hope


of what may yet come


of what to renounce


let’s start with gold


then learn not to hate


keep love joy truth


if we listen


if we listen


if we listen




Richard Falk

Santa Barbara, CA


December 31, 2019


What Drives Anti-Semitism? The Authentic and the Spurious 

24 Dec

[Prefatory Note: This is a modified version of an earlier text published in TMS (Transcend Media Service) in the December 23-29, 2019 edition. For the sake of discouraging anti-Semitism and restoring freedom of expression in Western constitutional democracies denouncing the branding of those in solidarity with struggles for justice and rights on behalf of the Palestinian people should be high on the policy agenda of 2020, and yet we have so far heard only the silence of the lambs in the debates of Democrats seeking the presidential nomination.]


What Drives Anti-Semitism? The Authentic and the Spurious 

Only the most regressive rendering of tribalist solidarity can explain labeling those

who oppose Israel’s abusive treatment of the Palestinian people as ‘anti-Semites.’

We look upon Aung San Suu Kyi’s failure to condemn the Myanmar abuse

of the Rohingya as casting the darkest of clouds over her Nobel Peace Prize. It

is an insult to Jews and others to allow Zionists, Evangelical, and Trumpsters to brand solidarity with the Palestinian struggle, or even empathy with the Palestinian people long enduring the denial of their most basic rights as a new species of anti-Semitism.


There is little doubt that real anti-Semitism, in the sense of hatred of Jews, has increased

in Europe and North America in the last decade of so. But the nature of why this is happening, and what is its true nature, are especially obscure, and subject to manipulations. Part of this obscurity is deliberate, arising from orchestrated efforts to label criticism of Israel or Zionist tactics and ideology as anti-Semitic, or in some usages as expressive of the ‘New Anti-Semitism.’ This extension of the scope of anti-Semitism seems designed to inhibit responsible opposition to Israel’s conduct in defiance of international law and, further, to make European Jews feel insecure enough in their country of residence so that they would consider emigrating to Israel, which in recent years has experienced a net outflow of Jews.


The essence of the new anti-Semitism is rooted in the definition proposed by International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (or IHRA), which blends strong criticism of Israel with hatred of Jews or the Jewish people. President Donald Trump incorporated this IHRA definition into his Executive Order issued on Dec. 11, 2019 that is coupled with lawfare assaults by the US Government and right-wing Zionist organizations on respected American campus initiatives that critically address the Israel/Palestine conflict, including having students and faculty actively engaged in such nonviolent solidarity initiatives in support of the Palestinian quest for basic rights as the BDS Campaign. One recent example of this government pushback are calls for an investigation of the Center for Contemporary Arab Studies at Georgetown University because some of its members are BDS supporters.


The IHRA definition is elaborated in terms of signs of anti-Semitism as supposedly manifested in criticism of Israel. One of these signs set forth to illustrate the scope of the IHRA definition is singling out of Israel for criticism or coercive acts when its behavior is not worse than that of other human rights violators. This is the basis for the alleged link between BDS and anti-Semitism. Yet in no other context is this kind of test administered, nor is the severity of Israeli wrongdoing ever mentioned or taken into account. Recalling the anti-apartheid campaign against South Africa of 30 years ago, it should be remembered that apologists for apartheid then similarly contended that conditions for black Africans in South Africa were better than elsewhere in the sub-Saharan region. Such contentions were argumentative, but were never used to stifle anti-apartheid activism in foreign countries, including a robust anti-apartheid BDS Campaign in North America and Europe, which many observers believe contributed to the unexpected reversal of course by the Afrikaner leadership in Pretoria that opened gates to achieving transition to a peaceful post-apartheid South Africa, constitutionally premised on racial equality and human dignity for all.


In my experience, the worst overall effects of this effort to stigmatize anti-Israeli speech and activism as anti-Semitism is not its punitive dimensions that target programs and individuals in unfair and harmful ways, but the larger informal and mostly invisible atmosphere of intimidation and silent discrimination that is produced. Already timid academic and institutional administrators are alerted to avoid conference proposals, speaker invitations, and faculty appointments if there exists a plausible prospect of attack, or even criticism, by Zionist watchdog groups. I am sure others have tales along these lines to tell, but in my own case, I have experienced and heard about many such instances. Only a few attain visibility, which can happen when a previously arranged meeting space is cancelled due to backroom pressure or an event is called off because of alleged security concerns. This happened to me in relation to a London launch tour of my book on Israel/Palestine two years ago when stories were circulated, and threats made, of planned disruptions as a way of inducing cancellations, which did occur at two universities. Some of these planned events did go forward, including a somewhat stormy session at the London School of Economics where during the discussion period shouting and hostile behavior by supporters and critics of Israel in the audience were viewed as threatening public order, but the meeting went on to its end. I was told that later on, LSE reacted by adopting stricter regulations to ensure balance in presentations and an entirely neutral identity of the moderator, which is an institutional signal designed to discourage controversial subject-matter. This is bad enough, but I think the real effect of these experiences is to make faculty and administrators think twice before supporting events perceived as critical of Israel or in solidarity with the Palestinian struggle. My impression is that the indirect effects of this Zionist pushback is having a more significant inhibiting impact on academic freedom and freedom of expression than the shockingly suppressive initiatives being adopted by legislative bodies in such leading countries as France, Germany, and soon Britain, as well as the United States.


One of the supposed anti-Semitic tropes has been the contention over the centuries that Jews exercise disproportionate influence on public policy in ways that are harmful to the general wellbeing of society. It hard to interpret the success of concerted Zionist and Israeli efforts to adopt the IHRA definition and approach as other than a confirmation of this charge, validating grounds for public concern about the excessive influence wielded by Jews. Two prominent centrist political scientists, John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt wrote a very academic study a decade ago to show how the Israeli Lobby in the United States was influencing foreign policy undertakings in ways inimical to national interests. (The Israeli Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy (2007)) Whether true or not, and I believe it was true, the authors were unjustly vilified even in 2003 for daring to raise such questions about the extent, character, and policy effects of Jewish influence, and although leaders in their field, undoubtedly paid for ever more, subtle hidden career prices. It should be noted that targeting Muslims, which is more common and vicious in Europe and North America, than what has been experienced by Jews, has produced no comparable official condemnations of Islamophobia.


More to the point in any effort to penetrate the penumbra of confusion surrounding this subject-matter is the near fanatical support of certain right-wing political orientations for Israel, while simultaneously pursuing an anti-Semitic agenda. This is the widely known case for many Christian evangelical groups who read the Book of Revelations as promising a Second Coming of Jesus once Israel is reestablished and Jews return, then being given an option of converting or facing damnation. Actually, this seeming tension, almost the opposite of the supposed fusion of anti-Israeli and anti-Semitic attitudes in the IHRA approach, actually has deep roots in the pre-Israeli experience of the Zionist Movement. From the start of the British Mandate the Jewish minority in Palestine was under 10%, hardly the basis for a feasible basis to establish a Jewish state in an essentially Arab society in a historical period in which European colonialism was being widely discredited, and starting to collapses. Zionists appreciated the odds against realizing their goals, and resolved by all means to overcome thiis disabling demographic inferiority, especially as national legitimacy seemed connected in both their vision and wider international public opinion with democratic procedures of governance, which in this instance, presupposed a Jewish voting majority.


As a result, Zionists did everything in their power to induce diaspora Jews to move to Palestine, even resorting to striking Faustian Bargains with outrageously anti-Semitic regimes in Europe, including even the Nazi government in Germany. This dynamic of coerced and induced population transfer of Jews is documented on the basis of archival research in The State of Terror (2016) by Thomas Suarez. Against this background the anti-Semitic card has been played in contradictory ways by Zionist hardliners, earlier useful to encourage Jewish immigration to Israel and recently to inhibit criticism of Israel, with the common element being opportunism, entailing a disregard of principle.


There is another reinforcing dimension of such policies that further discredits the IHRA approach. Israeli foreign policy even in circumstances where a Jewish state of Israel exists, and has been given constitutional status by the 2018 Basic Law: “Israel as the Nation-State of the Jewish People,” there continues to be an Israeli willingness to overlook overt anti-Semitism in a foreign leader provided diplomatic friendship is accorded to Israel, or economic gains can be achieved. Viktor Orban of Hungary is the example most often cited, but the pattern seems to explain the choice of Modi, Bolsonaro, and Trump as Israel’s preferred benefactors. Netanyahu’s Israel reciprocates this friendship with arms deals and military/policy training to governments on the far right, and its ambassador to Myanmar recently went so far as to lend psychological support to the Myanmar Government’s legal defense at the World Court against overwhelming evidence of genocide against the Muslim minority, Rohingya. While the IHRA definition of anti-Semitism is justified as a check on forgetting the Holocaust, when non-Jews are the victims of genocide a quite different ethical calculus apparently applies. Forgetting genocides, while remembering the Holocaust, seems the tangled message that Israel and Zionist enforcers are sending to the world.


I think these various considerations make it plain that the current surge of emphasis on anti-Semitism is being driven by a combination of many crosscutting factors, some genuine, some fake. One of the more malignant developments in recent years is centered on this attempt to extend the scope of anti-Semitism beyond its core reference to hatred of and hostility toward Jews. In this broad sense, by classifying supporters of the human rights of the Palestinian peoples as anti-Semites there is both a loss of focus on hatred of Jews, combined with a deliberately misleading insistence that those who oppose Israeli apartheid and oppression are anti-Semitic. It seems evident that such distortions of the anti-Semitic discourse reflect the growth of civil society activism, critical of Israel, and reactive to Israel’s expansionism and pointedly defiant posture toward criticisms by the UN and human rights organizations. The disgraceful effort to brand Jeremy Corbyn and the British Labour Party as anti-Semitic inserted an irrelevant toxic element into an electoral process in a leading democratic country, and is suggestive of the radiating implications of this irresponsible IHRA approach to anti-Semitism.


A final ground for suspicion about such tactics is the seemingly unconditional disregard of

Israel’s behavior. Without such an inquiry, to brand opposition to Israel or solidarity with the Palestinian struggle as anti-Semitic is to engage in a destructive form of anti-democratic polemics that has the perverse secondary effect of encouraging real anti-Semitic behavior that deserves condemnation. Even the notoriously cautious prosecutor of the International Criminal Court has just announced that an investigation of criminal allegations relating to Israel’s settlement activities on the West Bank and Gaza. Beyond this there is a growing consensus among those informed about the overall relationship between Israel and the Palestinian people (including those in refugee camps and exile) is accurately understood as based on apartheid structures of control. If this is a reasonable perception, then BDS and other solidarity initiatives are justifiable responses that deserve and need support and protection rather than being shamefully stigmatized as anti-Semitism, and compensate for the inability and unwillingness of established institutions to protect the basic rights of vulnerable people.




Reconciling Ecological Imperatives and the Right to Food at a Time of Bio-Ethical Crisis

15 Dec

Reconciling Ecological Imperatives and the Right to Food at a Time of Bio-Ethical Crisis[1]



A Perspective


Humanity faces an unprecedented challenge in the coming decades that threatens the foundations of life itself, and yet to date societal reactions have been disappointingly weak and evasive, aside from voices in the wilderness. Despite expertly documented studies from the most qualified climate scientists, the overall response of supposedly responsible political and economic elites has been tepid, escapist, and even denialist. The United State Government has led the way toward doom by withdrawing from the 2015 UN Paris Climate Change Agreement, an international agreement that did not go far enough to meet the challenges of climate change, but it was an encouraging step in the right direction that was taken by virtually every government on the face of the earth. With nihilistic audacity the American president, Donald Trump, has formally withdrawn American participation in this international framework that mandates national reductions in carbon emissions with the overall objective of keeping global warming from increases above 2%, which is higher than the 1.5% that the scientific consensus proposes as necessary, but far lower than what we can expect if present emissions trends continue without significant cutbacks and regulatory oversight.


I wish to give attention to this extremely disturbing evolving situation by labeling it ‘the first bio-ethical crisis to confront humanity.’ It is bio-ethical in the primary sense that the challenges posed are fundamentally directed at the wellbeing and even survival of the species as a whole, which is a new occurrence for the human species. The crisis has an ethical character because knowledge and resources exist to overcome these challenges, and yet such suitable action is not taken. We need to ask ‘why?’ to discern the obstacles. In essence, these challenges to our human future could be addressed within the broad framework of a feasible reconfiguring of the industrial foundations and ethical outlook of modernity, and yet it is not happening. By having the knowledge of such a menacing future and yet choosing not to act is itself an ethical choice of the greatest magnitude. It is not as if a gigantic meteor was hurtling toward the earth with no known way of diverting its path or cushioning its impact. We know, and yet we lack the fortitude to act even for the sake of future generations that will suffer the main consequences of our profound irresponsibility.


Putting these concerns in the context of the right to food and food security generally, we are keenly aware that food and water are the most indispensable aspects to the right to life itself. We also realize that rights to material necessities are drained of meaning if extreme poverty deprives the poorest among us the purchasing power to purchase food that is affordable, sufficient, and nutritious. Although some governments are more protective of the vulnerable segments of their population than others, experience teaches us that social protection cannot be left to the good will of governments. Rights must be reinforced by practical remedies that are accessible to ordinary people, and can be successfully implemented. In many countries of the West where capitalism and fiscal austerity prevail, there is an ethically deficient ideological insistence on allowing the market to decide on the wellbeing of the members of society. This sends a perverse ethical message: the rich deserve their bounty, while the poor deserve their hardships. From such a strictly capitalist standpoint, pleading for the intervention of the state is alleged to make matters worse by imposing restraints on economic growth.


My attempt is to identify the obstacles, and suggest how these might be overcome. Put differently, we know what is wrong, we know what should be done, and yet it does not happen.

Further, the longer that it doesn’t happen the more burdensome will be the adjustment, and there are risks that by not acting responsibly in the present, tipping points of irreversibility will be crossed making societal adjustments if not impossible, almost so. Illustratively, if diets now limited meat consumption by one or two meatless days a week, there might be some prospect of achieving ecological balance by gradual measures, but if diets are unregulated for the next two decades, adjustment to avert catastrophe may require a mandatory vegetarian diet.



Confronting the Obstacles: These obstacles overlap and reinforce one another, and should not be regarded as entirely distinct. Such an assessment suggest that an integrated and transformative approach should be developed to comprehend these four types of obstacles in an integrated and comprehensive manner, and what might be done to overcome them.


Ideological (1)


Our social relationship to food and agriculture deeply reflect the interplay of capitalism—maximizing profits and consumerism—which includes maximizing choice, identified positively  as freedom. Interferences by governing authorities occur only if overwhelming demonstrations of adverse health effects can be demonstrated, but usually only after costly delays resulting from ‘expert’ reassurances on food safety given by corporate high paid consultants. Such market-driven patterns, fueled by advertising and addictive products produce unhealthy dietary habits throughout society, causing epidemics of obesity and many serious health issues.

Social concerns on an international level are understandably focused on avoiding humanitarian catastrophes in the form of mass starvation or famine. This kind of preoccupation places an emphasis on disaster relief and response to emergencies while ignoring the underlying ideological problem arising from distorted priorities of profits and unregulated markets over human health and ecological stability. The same forces that suppress and distort information pertaining to health are irresponsible abusers of environment, and disrupters of ecological balance. A vivid recent example is the burning of the Brazilian rainforest to satisfy market demands for high-yield logging and livestock farming, while undermining the viability of the rainforest as a major carbon capture resource and a precious storehouse of biodiversity.




Structural (2)


Seeking to balance food security against these ecological concerns is often at odds with the human and global interest. The structures of authority that shape global policy are overwhelming responsive to national interests, and this includes the UN System. Again, using the example of Brazil giving priority to development over planetary dimensions with respect to the Amazon rainforest by deferring to claims of national sovereignty so as to override objections about the dangerous impacts of this behavior on global warming and ecological equilibrium. Despite the global scale of the effects of agriculture, particularly agro-business, there is no effective international mechanisms to achieve responsible behavior on a national level.


Even when governments cooperate for the public common good, as was the case with the Paris Climate Change Agreement (2015), the commitment is framed in an unenforceable and sovereignty respecting manner. This means that even if the pledges of reductions in carbon emissions were to be fulfilled, it would still fall short of what the respected IPCC Panel prescribes as essential to avoid dangerous, possibly catastrophic effects of further global warming. Similar considerations bear on meat consumption undertaken without any effort at achieving a global regulatory perspective. Such an approach is also shaken by irresponsible global leadership as currently exercised by the United States, epitomized by its recent support of Brazil’s sovereignty claims with respect to the management of the Amazon rainforest and by the U.S. withdrawal from the Paris agreement, creating dreadful precedents that will certainly affect poorer, more economically stressed countries, and eventually the rest of us. Why should a country confronted by a food and agriculture crisis, for instance, Zimbabwe, forego developmental opportunities by acting more ecologically responsible when the world’s largest per capita carbon emitter is behaving so irresponsibly?



(3) Temporal


The most influential sources and structures of influence and authority have evolved in the modern period by being excessively attentive to short-term results. Such short-termism is associated with holding political leaders and corporate executives accountable to citizens and shareholder. Democracy rests on this proposition that voters get the chance every four years to heed the call that “it time for a change,” or more crudely, ‘throw the bastards out.’ This pattern can be observed in the preoccupation of political leaders with the electoral cycles, which are seen as decisive when it comes to assessing performance. Even for non-democratic forms of governance short-term results shape views of whether the leadership should be supported and given signs of approval.


It is no different for the economy, which exhibits an even more pronounced tendency toward short-termism. Most corporate and financial executives are judged by quarterly balance sheets when it comes to performance, and given little or no credit by shareholders and hedge fund managers for normative achievements relating to health, safety, and environment.


The importance of longer horizons of accountability is a consequence of the character of current world order challenges, with preservation of environment, avoidance of human-generated climate change, and maintenance of ecosystem stability being illustrative of the growing importance of thinking further ahead than in the past, especially when it comes to government and private sector behavior. Yet to propose such an adjustment is far easier than it is to envision how such temporal adjustments to human and ecological wellbeing could be brought about. These clusters of concerns bear directly on all dimensions of food and agricultural policy. In earlier periods adverse change from mismanagement and shortsightedness led to relatively local and national, or at most regional, harm, but the threats at this time are more systemic, totalistic, and more costly to reverse or correct. Such issues as land use, pesticides, herbicides, soil preservation, genetically modified foods, and agricultural production priorities suggest how crucial it has become to plan in a time frame that is as sensitive as possible to the precautionary principle as it applies to risk management, and thus relates to all aspects of food policy.



(4) Normative


In considering these broad issues of risk and choice in a food context we encounter a distinctive array of normative concerns of an ethical, legal, and even spiritual character. At issue most basically is the way humanity interacts with nature. Modernity, with its vision of progress resting on science and technology, regarded the natural surrounding as a series of venues useful for exploitation to enrich human society. That path brought us many interim benefits and pleasures, but it also set in motion trends that over time have produced the current bio-ethical crisis that challenges, as never before, the future wellbeing and even survival of the human species. It is relevant even in this circumstance of bio-ethical crisis to alter our way of seeing so that it encompasses ecological wellbeing in addition to human wellbeing. It is my belief that this kind of ecological consciousness as an alternative to anthropocentric orientations will provide human society with also yield benefits of a spiritual nature that go beyond meeting the materialist challenges of human existence, thus reenchanting the human experience with meaning and purpose in ways that the great religions did in the past.


Food and agriculture provide the vital linkages between this search for better forms of coexistence between nature and human experience, what pre-modern society often achieved but lost with the advent of modernity. Translating such a vision into practical policies is the work of specialists and those who are attuned both to human and ecological imperatives, but whose guidance will fail unless leaders in all spheres of collective existence are held accountable by popular will, strengthened by activism and education, so as to be properly attuned to the complex interplay of human activity and the sustainable carrying capacity of the earth.




A Concluding Plea


Pointing toward a desired reconciliation between ecological imperatives and the fulfillment of the right to food requires our attention, as well as our moral and political imagination. From such a perspective I offer these suggestions:


–applying the precautionary principle in all policymaking arenas with an awareness of the need to reconcile food and agricultural policy with ecological imperatives;


–identify the obstacles to such a reconciliation with a stress on the human as distinct from the national, on the ecological as distinct from the anthropocentric, on the intermediate and long-term as distinct from the short-term;


–without minimizing the magnitude of the challenges or the resistance of the obstacles find hope in ‘a politics of impossibility’; many historical developments from the collapse of colonialism to the collapse of apartheid in South Africa and repressive communism in Soviet Russia demonstrate that ‘the impossible happens.’ As a result, the future is uncertain to the extent that we have an opportunity and a related responsibility to act as if what seems impossible can still be made to happen. Such is our situation, such is our hope.



[1] Remarks as modified, first presented at “The 2nd International Agricultural & Food Congress,”

25 October 2019, Izmir, Turkey.


Learning from Others (about racism in German and the American South)

8 Dec

Learning from Others: Germans and White Supremacists


Susan Neiman has written a remarkable book, Learning from Others: Race and the Problem of Evil (Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 2019). What makes it remarkable is the clarity, approach, and particular angles of interpretation taken toward racism, exploring with depth and originality the mystifying evil realities of prolonged lethal racist behavior, with a focus on its toxic longevity, and the importance of learning how its legacy in particular contexts might be best addressed. Neiman brings to bear her knowledge and craft as a professional philosopher, who at the same time philosophizes in an instructive manner that is far removed from the fixations on language and logic that is the mainstay of contemporary Western philosophy, whether Anglo-American or Continental. In this regard her stance toward philosophy is also a therapeutic undertaking that in its own way seems as vexing as is racism itself. In her own relevant words of lamentation, “(T)here was a time when American philosophers brought passion and clarity to the major social and political events of their day.” (261) She illustrates this observation by reference to Emerson and Thoreau, who in their time not only decried slavery, but supplemented their moral condemnation by engaging in acts of nonviolent and unlawful solidarity. Such is Neiman’s engagement with her challenging subject-matter.


Neiman insists that her preoccupation with evil is not so strange for a traditional philosopher. She is, as always, clear about her work being situated in what was once the philosophical mainstream: “How should we live in a world riven with evil? Is the question that has driven philosophy from its beginnings.” (18) Surely, this is one of the questions, but is it the question? I have my doubts. And certainly, the main philosophical work of the past century has dwelled on evil here and there. It is my impression that the most influential Anglo-American philosophers during my lifetime have made it almost dogma to avoid altogether the challenge of evil as a dimension of the human condition.  


A further feature of Nieman’s book, not often encountered in a self-consciously ‘philosophical’ book, is the insinuation of autobiographical details that express her personal connection with the argument being advanced. She informs readers at the very outset: “I began life as a white girl in the segregated South and I am likely to end it as a Jewish woman in Berlin.” (3) And she finishes her book by describing the failure of her attempt to live with her children in Israel. She was put off by what she experience of Israel’s tribalism, and this discomfort occurred despite the rather strong sense of Jewishness and its traditions that informs her worldview. That she feels more at home in Berlin than in Tel Aviv is both significant and intriguing, and goes along with her obvious tough love engagement with the deep South, especially the state of Mississippi. I suppose part of an explanation is an obsession with the occurrence of evil, how it happens, how it can be overcome, and above all how might the evil genie be returned to its bottle, although without minimizing the risks of a future escape as part of a justification for the preoccupation. In this sense, Learning from Others, can be read as citizen engagement on behalf of avoiding the recurrence of racism and other evils, or put crudely, as a way of taking seriously the rather flip slogan, ‘Never Again!.’ Her sense of citizenship, it strike me, centers on working to sustain freedom and a democratic spirit, in essence, a neo-Jeffersonian commitment to the ‘eternal vigilance’ Jefferson believed vital if democracy was remain true to its values in the course of time.


One other feature of the way Neiman proceeds arises from her sense that reality needs to be approached by listening with great care to how others with relevant experience articulate their engagement with this blight of collective racism, whether the voice is that of victim, resister, or even perpetrator. Her words: “I just became aware that you need to see events from many different angles before you can get as close as possible to the truth about them.”(83) What I found most impressive about this willingness to listen attentively and at length to all sides is that these conversations that appear throughout the book build toward moral clarity rather than encourage a suspension of judgment or the adoption of a posture of moral neutrality. Neiman avoid any pretense of detachment or professional distance, refusing to copy the supposed objectivity of a natural scientist or mathematician. Neiman leaves even the most casual reader with little doubt as to where she stands with respect to refusals by a social order and its members to purge the present of the past (that is never entirely past) by redressing evil, although she empathetically acknowledges that in the face of military and political defeat, such a redemptive healing process is more likely to occur, but takes time, patience, persistence, and maybe a bit of luck.


The thematic unity of the book is achieved by a focus on one of those incredibly inflected German words, vergangenheitsaufarbeitung, which Neiman renders in English as ‘working-off-the-past.’ (7). In effect, the taint of past evil, in this case the twelve years of Nazi rule or the stages of racist abuse, from slavery to Jim Crow to the resurgence of white supremacy in the American South, do not disappear on their own. It requires a deliberate often anguishing willingness to look the past in the eye, and to be sure in the present to rid the societal landscape of glorifying reminders of what needs to be rejected. In this regard she revisits in detail debates about the presence of monuments to Confederate heroes of the past and the ongoing attachment of most white southerners to the Confederate flag. She contrasts this American failure to get beyond its shameful racist past with the relative success of the German experience. It would be unthinkable, for instance, for a Nazi town or city to erect a statue of Hitler or fail to preserve the memory of a nearby death camp. The book acknowledges that maybe Germans were helped by not only losing the war, but by being occupied by foreign liberating forces for fifty years thereafter. The contrasting non-repentance of the American South is a major theme.


There are some surprising, well-reasoned, conclusions that give an interesting twist to German post-Nazi experience, living as a divided country from 1945 until the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989. I had never stopped to think why former Nazis seemed to have such an easy time in West Germany. Neiman sets forth two convincing explanations from her research and experience. Perhaps, most prominent, was the priority accorded in West Germany, especially by the United States, to anti-Communism, a credential that for a time virtually erased any blight from past Nazi affinities and activities so long as deactivated in the present. Of course, in East Germany under Soviet occupation and influence, the equation was somewhat reversed. Anti-Communism in any form was totally unacceptable, while anti-Fascism was the order of the day, infusing education and ideology. In effect, for this reason it took West Germans much longer to clear their body politic of the Nazi virus. Neiman is certainly not giving the East Germans a clean bill of health when it comes to addressing contextual evil, as she takes note of the failure of East Germany to acknowledge, much less repudiate, the crimes of Stalinism and the Soviet Union. At the same time, she believes that Nazism was a much more severe immersion in evil, and rejects the fashionable claim of their equivalence.


When it comes to American racism as still manifest in the South, Neiman convincingly notes the impact of conservative American presidents, including Nixon, Reagan, and most of all, Trump who has given racist dog whistles so loud as to be discernable by the most dimwitted. They signal that it is okay to revere the Confederate ethos and its heroes, that it is part of the American past, acceptable at the time, that need not be hidden or occasion shame. In her view, this tolerance of past racism unsurprisingly encourages extreme and pathological racists to translate their views into action in the present, and incidents such as the Charlottesville March and the Charleston massacre in a black denominational church are almost bound to occur.


A distinctive dimension of Neiman’s methodology is the presentation of extensive interview material from prominent historical figures, community leaders, and ordinary folk with stories to tell. Such an approach, according value to the voices of those with a relationship to memories and remnants draws on Neiman’s skill as an interviewer, or more accurately, a conversationalist. This includes the capacity to listen sympathetically, yet never foregoing her own unwavering and unconditional repudiation of racism whether in Germany or the Southland of America. I know of no philosopher of her distinction that dismounts from the elegant horses of philosophical abstraction to gather evidence from the trenches where the relevant realities of her inquiry are situated. The lucid prose style gives the book a clarity enlivened by a kind of storytelling quality. It is against this background of blending philosophical concerns with deep aspects of the human condition—in the spirit of Hannah Arendt—that a profound understanding of prolonged racism occurs. Neiman’s special type of empiricism blends philosophical inquire with social science. It makes this treatment of overcoming racism rather unique. Its special quality is also enriched by Nieman’s long personal experience in both Germany and the deep South. She does not write as an outsider, but in neither setting does she fully qualify an insider.


Perhaps, the most intriguing conclusion drawn from the comparative aspect of Learning from the Germans is that the Germans have done a better job of overcoming their past than have their American counterparts. Although Neiman discussed the rise of the far right AfD Party in considerable critical detail,  she seems to feel that although the AfD is a disturbing reminder that the Nazi virus is still present in the German body politic, it is a marginal phenomenon, drawing its strength not so much from the past as from the anti-migrant stance that has nudged the politics of all major European countries to the right. By way of disturbing contrast, the American people have elected as their president a person who actively encourages and embodies such a rightwards lurch, including a disparagement of the most basic institutions of constitutional democracy, as well as many signs of tolerance for if not sympathy with extreme racism as manifest in the majority racist politics of several southern states. I find Neiman’s insight here significant. In effect, Trump exhibits a pre-fascist potentiality in America, which is more fearsome than having a neo-fascist presence at the margins of mainstream politics as seems the case in Germany. Of course, if conditions change the margins can be erased or erode the mainstream in ways that should not be ignored as future possibilities. And in America, if Trump and Trumpism are repudiated in the 2020 elections, the country might again seem to resume the trajectory of creative democratic constitutionalism.   


With moral clarity Neiman supports the call for reparations to be paid to African-Americans. She considers the arguments opposed to reparations, but is unpersuaded, suggesting that it is an unpaid debt to the victims of slavery and Jim Crow that needs to be paid to survivors and descendants, if nothing else, . Neiman rejects the contention that those not victims are undeserving or those not perpetrators have no responsibility. She points to the wealth that slavery and racism brought to white society, and the impoverishment endured by African Americans, currently reflected in their differential wealth and income. In this instance, Neiman support a controversial argument, put forward most coherently Ta-Nehisi Coates, that even progressive political figures , such as Bernie Sanders or Elizabeth Warren have not adopted, which would strike the American mainstream as unacceptably ‘radical.’  In effect, Neiman insists that working off the past of white racism requires something more tangible and ongoing than an apology, and that given the past enrichment achieved by society due to racist forms of exploitation, a monetary form of redress is quite appropriate.


This brings me, finally, to the question of Palestine as it plays out in Germany. Although Neiman does not embrace conventional Zionist arguments that are now insisting that criticisms of Israel are the ‘new anti-Semitism,’ she fails to take note of the unlearned lessons by Germans and Germany with regard to Israeli anti-Palestinian racism as practiced over the course of several decades. As a result of several recent actions Germany had taken strong official steps to discredit the BDS Campaign and its supporters. Beyond this the German Government has refrained from any criticism of the unlawful and abusive policies and practices relied upon by the Israeli state in dealing with the Palestinian people. Overcoming the Nazi past would seem to involve a repudiation of racist patterns of behavior, regardless of the identity of the perpetrator. For Germany to be inhibited from criticizing Israel because it proclaims itself the nation-state of the Jewish people is to confuse the behavior of a state with hatred of its people. To criticize Israel is not to attack the Jewish people, provided of course that the criticism rests on evidence and is proportionate to the wrong perceived. I find this oversight on Neiman’s part to be the only serious shortcoming of her book, and as serious in its way as she finds the failure of the United States to pay reparations to African Americans.


As indicated at the outset, Susan Neiman has contributed to an indispensable addition to the scholarship addressing links between past and present with respect to racism. Although the objects of her concern are limited to Nazism and the American South, the methodology of her inquiry and the insights that result can be derived from comparable studies of past evil and its legacies. Unfortunately, the histories of genocide and racism remain incomplete, with new

circumstances of moral outrage emergent in many distinct civilizational settings. In the end we are challenged by Neiman not to consider racism or evil as matters of destiny, but fully subject to the vagaries of human responsibility, which includes the domain of a free society.     

Contra Israeli Apartheid

1 Dec

[Prefatory Note: The text below is a modified version of remarks made at the opening plenary session of the “1st Global Conference on Israeli Apartheid: Dimensions, Repercussions and the Means to Combat It,” 29-30 November 2019, Istanbul. The conference was held under the joint auspices of the Global Organization against Racial Discrimination & Segregation and the Union of NGOs of the Islamic World, with opening statements by the respective presidents of the two organizations, Rima Khalaf (who was the director of ESCWA at the time the apartheid study, “Israeli Practices toward the Palestinian People and the Question of Apartheid” was commissioned by ESCWA in 2016, and written by Professor Virginia Tilley and myself) and by Ali Kurt. The conference was loosely structured around the theme of updating our report since its release on March 15, 2017. The Conference Program is appended at the end of my remarks. The undertaking of the conference was also to launch a new NGO as named above, and formally established in Geneva, headed by Rima Khalaf, and devoted to opposing racism worldwide, with priority given to opposing Israel/Palestine apartheid.]


Contra Israeli Apartheid


Introductory Observations

Our experience with the Economic and Social Commission for West Asia (ESCWA) as authorts of the Report owes so much to the courage, dedication, and vision of Rima Khalaf, and this conference is itself a testimonial to the leadership she exhibited. She had the audacity to treat the UN as if it were what it was meant to be– an independent body representing the peoples of the world that seeks truth, respects law, and promotes peace and justice. In the age of Trump to act honorably in this manner is obviously ‘politically incorrect,’ that is, daring to act in the most admirable possible way from the perspective of human interests.


The firestorm that greeted the release of our report, what might be described as a ‘HalleyStorm’ exceeded the hostile pushback we expected after the report was formally released by ESCWA. I thought such an academic study would go largely unnoticed except by the most ardent Zionist watchdogs, especially since the text was preceded by a very visible disclaimer distancing the UN and ESCWA from our analysis and recommendations. By overreacting our high-profile attackers at the UN seemed to miscalculate, or maybe putting it better, contented themselves with scoring points in the short game, while giving away many more points in the long game that will ultimately determine the outcome of the Palestinian struggle for basic rights.


The attention given at UN Headquarters in New York City by the defamatory attacks launched by Ambassadors Halley & Danon greatly increased interest in our report, especially in civil society circles. What has happened in the two plus years since the ESCWA release in March 2017 has been to normalize the use of ‘apartheid’ to describe the Israeli/Palestine relationship, and governing structure, particularly in civil society circles. More than this, the apartheid discourse has influentially eroded, if not altogether superseded, the emphasis on ‘ending occupation’ as the clarion call of those seeking a sustainable and just peace for Israel and Palestine. In illuminating contrast, the report exerted little influence on the inter-governmental or formal UN discourse, which continued the zombie practice of dwelling on the occupation and placing hopes and bets on the two-state solution. I think there exists a growing consensus among pro-Palestinian activists that ending Israel apartheid as doctrine and practice now constitutes the one and only path to a sustainable peace. Of course, total ethnic cleansing or genocide is an outcome too distasteful to contemplate, leading to what should be termed an ‘unjust peace’ or ‘imposed peace’ and certainly not ‘a peaceful solution.’ Unfortunately, it has historical resonance whenever the context is one of settler colonialism. Resistance encountered in several settler colonial settings including the United States, Canada, and Australia resulted in the suppression, marginalization, and dispossession of the native people, and on occasion by genocidal means.


Conceptually and existentially our report revealed the links between allegations and findings relating to apartheid as a criminalized form of racism in international criminal law to a sinister politics of fragmentation and dispersal by which Israel has victimized and subjugated the Palestinian people in a variety of ways. What made this linkage of fragmentation and apartheid so important was that it was an inclusive way of understanding the scope of the distinctiveness of Israeli apartheid, embracing refugees, exiles, minority, and occupied Palestine in a single indivisible framework of victimization by way of racist domination of one ethnicity over another. This meant that if apartheid, as thus understood, were to be credibly dismantled, it would have to give equal status to Palestinians formerly marginalized or ignored by the long prevailing peace formula of expectations arising from an emphasis on the ‘land for peace’ slogan. In this manner our study privileges ‘people’ as distinguished from ‘territory’ as the core of the challenge of finding that elusive path leading to sustainable and just peace, as distinguished from the geopolitically manipulated Oslo peace process, which could never have achieved, even if an agreement had somehow emerged, more than a ceasefire disguised by being proclaimed by the negotiating parties as a permanent solution, or even worse, as ‘the deal of the century.’


We understand our task at this conference to be partly one of updating our ESCWA study in light of what has transpired since March 15, 2017 and partly to draw some interpretative perspectives and policy implications that derive from the study but were not contained in it. We have submitted separate updating papers that summarize our understanding of the changes relevant to the apartheid discourse as applied to Israel. In the papers we express somewhat differing understandings on some secondary issues, although in complete agreement on the core issue of the evidence support. Yet more significant is our shared acceptance of the basic apartheid framework as indispensable for useful analysis and policy formation, which is joined to our belief that dismantling apartheid, as we have conceptualized it, is the one and only gateway to sustainable peace between these two peoples. Underneath this conviction is my somewhat counterintuitive  view that Israeli Jews would also be beneficiaries of the ending apartheid in Israel just as the white South Africans were 25 years ago.



Problematics of Ethnocracy and Partition: Decoding the Zionist Project

Although not part of the original study, understanding the development of the dominant tendencies in the Zionist movement is crucial for the changing character of the relationship between Zionism and the relevance of the right of self-determination to the particular circumstances in Palestine. Of central relevance is the specific nature of Zionist opportunism when it comes to shaping policy. It changes through time, and is most basically expressed by grasping at what is available at each stage, without considering what was sought at prior stages or treating an acceptance of what was being offered in the present as the end of the road. From seeming to settle for a homeland, rather than a state in the Balfour/League formulations to the reluctant acceptance of the partition approach foisted on Palestine after World War II, to the current posture of, in effect, calling for Palestinian surrender in their own homeland, Zionism has kept raising its expectations ever closer to its underlying ambitions and its interpretation of the relevant balances of power and influence internally, regionally, and globally.


In many ways, and less often articulated, the Palestinian national movement for understandable reasons has taken what seems an opposite approach to that of the Zionist Project and later Israeli leadership. Palestinians quite reasonably rejected as unacceptable what was being offered to them at every stage of the conflict, which had they accepted it would have been seen as a political defeat. And somewhat ironically, the White House handshake between Rabin and Arafat symbolizing the mutual acceptance of the Oslo framework to resolve the conflict, which was portrayed at the time as a dramatic breakthrough leading to peace, turned out to be a disastrous tactical move by the Palestinian leadership. Oslo diplomacy allowed Israeli propagandists to portrays the Palestinian leadership as rejectionist as it seemed to be insisting on demands that were non-negotiable when what it was actually doing was trying to do was to avoid further encroachments on Palestinian land and rights, which were being continually diminished on the ground and by way of partisan brokered diplomacy. As Israelis consistently looked ahead on the basis of ever higher expectations, Palestinians looked backward in time ready to settle at a later stage for what they had rejected as a previous stage. Illustratively, when partition gave Palestinians 45% of the territory it seemed like and was treated as a totally unacceptable external fracturing of the unity of Palestine as a territorial polity and a disregard of the most elemental rights of its majority population, but later on the Palestinian leadership seemed ready to accept even 22% of Mandate Palestine as the boundaries of their greatly shrunken state. By then Israel, in contrast, was insisting on the total control of Jerusalem, a variety of security infringements on Palestinian sovereignty, including border control and permanent Palestinian demilitarization, as well, of course, as retention of the unlawful settlement blocs established on territory occupied in 1967. The Palestine Papers, document disclosing later secret direct peace negotiations between Israelis and Palestinians, involve a portrayal of this clash between Palestinian expectations then lowered even below the 22% threshold as Israeli actions and demands were no longer content with a mere 78% of the land, positing demands in various devastating ways on the Palestinian territorial remnant, including even diverting the water aquifers of the West Bank. It is worth noting that what Israel seemed to be demanding in its pre-Trump diplomacy was the Gazaization of any future Palestine entity, that is, Gaza after the Sharon disengagement plan was put into operation in 2005 that did involve the withdrawal of IDF occupation force, really their redeployment and even the dismantling of Israel settlements.


In addition to Zionist opportunism and this distorted picture of Palestinian rejectionism in relation to respective diplomatic postures, there are two other features of Zionist practice that have undermined the Palestinian pursuit of basic rights. First, the hegemonic political discourse used at any given time is calibrated by Israel to fit changing external circumstances of constraint and opportunity. In recent times, without Trump, and possibly lacking Saudi approval, for instance, it is doubtful that Israel would have moved to annex the Golan Heights or engaged in actions to treat the settlements as incorporated into Israel as a matter of law, although both moves were undoubtedly featured on the actual long-range Zionist agenda even if not  realizable under present conditions. Secondly, the disclosed changing Israeli policy agenda at each stage in the evolution of the struggle never corresponded with the actual, and relatively fixed, agenda. Perhaps, very recently this dual agenda is no longer part of the Zionist tactical approach as the Netanyahu/Kushner victory scenario is being quietly and misleadingly promoted as a. strategic endgame for the struggle. This coming into the open is coupled with an insidious suggestion that Israel tighten even further the apartheid screws to compel a Palestinian surrender, or as phrased by its advocates, the unfinished Zionist business being to convince the Palestinian leadership of the reality of their ‘lost cause.’


The apartheid discourse seems useful in demonstrating that this kind of Israeli endgame will not finish the struggle but merely prolong it, at most, generating yet another ceasefire that is almost certain to be followed by yet another intifada, or some other expression of resurgent Palestinian resistance. The world might is currently ignoring the significance of the sustained and innovative resistance under the most difficult circumstances of the Great March of Return. Palestinians and their supporters understand this dramatic form of resistance for what it is, a decisive repudiation of ‘the lost cause’ endgame, which is itself the more discreet form of describing the victory scenario. This scenario has been given its most forthright formulation by the Zionist extremist, Daniel Pipes, which can be viewed in all its crass ugliness on the pages of his website vehicle, Middle East Forum. The essential argument put forth by Pipes is that diplomacy has been tried and failed, and now is the time to end the conflict by its coercive resolution, which means making clear that Israel has won and Palestine has lost. All that remains to be done is to make the Palestinians see this reality, and since they stubbornly refuse to do, apply force and various types of soft power aggression until they finally give into the pain, and accept their defeat by a formal acknowledgement of surrender.


I believe this context makes the apartheid diagnosis and prescription more important than ever, first to grasp the full existential scope of the Palestinian ordeal, and then to envision that despite everything that has transpired, peaceful coexistence on the basis of realizing a regime of ethnic equality remains a possibility, and indeed it is the only positive alternative to permanent conflict or further ethnic cleansing.


We know that the present arrangement of forces, regionally and geopolitically will not last forever. It currently appears extremely favorable to Israel, but if the next phase of Arab awakening brings to power leaders more receptive to the views and values of their own people, the Arab politics of accommodation and appeasement would likely be quickly repudiated, and replaced overnight by a more confrontational approach. And even the current hyper-partisan support of the United States is not assured. If the Republicans are defeated in 2020 presidential elections, the policy toward Israel is likely to revert to its earlier posture of partisanship rather than its present absurd hyper-partisanship. This means, in more concrete terms, a revival of mainstream ‘liberal Zionist’ advocacy of a two-state solution and a diplomacy based on a supposed need for mutual political compromise. It was the approach most clearly articulated and promoted in the American presidencies of Clinton and Obama. Of course, without changes within Israel this revival of liberal Zionism as the basis of American foreign policy will not reverse or diminish Israeli expectations or end the Palestinian ordeal. For this reason, whether Trumpism persists or is replaced by a more moderate presidency, the responsibility for a sustainable peace will depend on the growth and deepening of global solidarity with the Palestinian struggle in all societal settings, which include governments, the UN, and above all, civil society.


Even if we achieve a civil society consensus on this apartheid analysis, it will not be enough to produce change. We need also to act on the basis that ending Israeli apartheid is the one and only path to peace. In the present setting, it is also evident that neither diplomacy nor the UN will endorse the apartheid analysis unless pushed very hard from below, and even many segments of the Palestinian leadership and movement are reluctant to do so. In this sense, work remains on the level of ideas organization as it is crucial to achieve a higher degree of doctrinal and organizational unity than presently exists.


For action, with the notable exception of South Africa and a few other governments, this burden of action principally falls on civil society at this stage. We can hope that with an expanding movement of people more governments and the UN may be gradually led to join the effort. What the South African precedent tells us is that what seemed impossible until it happened, became possible all of a sudden because sufficient pressure had been brought to bear over time by robust resistance within and militant solidarity efforts without. Over time this combination of pressures exerted sufficient pressures on the Afrikaner leadership to bring about its tactical transformation. There was no change of heart, but a recognition that the cost of maintaining apartheid were too high, and that many of the white privileges of apartheid could be retained by negotiating the replacement of political and legal apartheid by a multi-racial constitutional order. It goes without saying that Israel is not South Africa, and that Palestinians remain disunited with respect to representation and lack the sort of inspirational leadership that proved to be so valuable in the South African anti-apartheid movement. At the same time, we should never forget that the anti-colonial flow of history remains the dominant international trend of our time, and may yet bring the Israeli elite to their senses. A genuine post-apartheid peace will benefit Jews and Palestinians alike—this is the affirmation of peace and justice that follows from the negation of apartheid.


On the basis of present analysis and past experience we know what needs to be done, and so now the main challenge needs to be met in the doing, with a vigilant eye toward ever changing circumstances of struggle, constraints as well as opportunities.


Conf Program, 6Nov,2019

1st Global Conference on Dimensions, Repercussions of Israeli Apartheid And the Means to Combat it

Istanbul, 29-30 November 2019

DAY 1: Friday 29 November 2019

3:00-3:45 (p.m.) Opening Session

4:00-6:00 Plenary session I: The Israeli Apartheid Regime and its Impact on our Understanding of the Conflict and the Paths to its Resolution.
Chair: Dr. Nadim Rouhana

  1. Israeli policies and practices and the question of apartheid (Apartheid Report launch).

Professor Richard Falk

  1. Implications of the apartheid paradigm: rethinking the conflict, its origins and its resolution. Professor Virginia Tilley
  2. Denial of Palestinian refugees’ and exiles’ the right to return: the most overtly racist policy. Professor Joseph Massad

Open discussion


Conf Program, 6Nov,2019

DAY 2: Saturday 30 November 2019

09:00-11:00 Plenary session II: Dimensions, tools and repercussions of Israeli Apartheid

Chair: Dr. Kamel Hawwash, Chair of the Palestine Solidarity Campaign, UK

  1. Palestinian citizens of Israel: institutionalized discrimination and the struggle for equality. Dr. Muhannad Mustafa, General Manager of Mada Al-Carmel
  2. Israeli Apartheid in the earlier years (1948-1966): its objectives and tools, and the Palestinian Struggle to survive it. Prof Adel Manna, Palestinian history Professor
  3. Palestinians in the territories occupied since 1967 in the face of direct military occupation and racial discrimination. Prof. Zekeriya Kursun
  4. Palestinians in Jerusalem and the overt displacement policies. Prof Rasem Khamaisi, CPS Center for Planning and Studies
  5. Policies of impoverishment and economic dependency for control and domination in Palestine. Mohammed Samhouri

Open discussion

11:00-11:30 BREAK

11:30 – 13:30 Plenary session III: Consequences of Apartheid and Implications for the region and the World

Chair: Dr. Elias Khoury

  1. Repercussions of Israeli apartheid on the value system in Palestine/Israel, and the region. EliaZureik,ProfessorEmeritusofSociologyatQueen’sUniversityinOntario, Canada
  2. Research and knowledge gaps on Israeli Apartheid. Haider Eid, Associate Professor at al-Aqsa University, Gaza, (will join through skype or send a recorded speech)
  3. Israel’s new Basic Law: Israel as the Nation State of the Jewish People, and its implications on the peace treaties and agreements signed by Israel with Jordan, Egypt, and the PLO. Dr. Anis Kassim
  4. Racial discrimination and segregation in Palestine, from the perspective of international human rights law. Av. Suleyman Arslan – Lawyer, Turkey
  5. Apartheid is a Crime, Victims and Witnesses in Palestine. Mats Svensson

Open discussion



Conf Program, 6Nov,2019


Lunch break

3:00-5:30 Plenary session IV: Strategies and Paths for the Struggle Against Israeli Apartheid

Chair: Prof Refik Korkusuz, Dean of Humanities Faculty, Turkey

  1. Apartheid, occupation, and settler colonialism: Palestinian strategies for liberation and attaining justice. Ali Abu Nimah, co-founder and executive director of The Electronic Intifada
  2. Countering Israel’s racist policies against Palestinians in Jerusalem. Receb Songul
  3. Role of civil society organizations and youth movements around the world in combating the Israeli apartheid regime. Marie Crawley, Chair of the Ireland Palestine Alliance, Sadaka
  4. Role of the Palestine Liberation Organization in dismantling the Israeli apartheid regime. Hani Al-Masri, director general of Masarat, the Palestinian Centre for Policy Research and Strategic Studies.
  5. BDS and the role of advocacy in the struggle to combat apartheid. Tisetso Magama, BDS SA Board Member.
  6. Dismantling the Israeli Apartheid Regime as a precondition for justice, equality, and peace for all. Haneen Zoabi, former Arab member of the Israeli Knesset.

Open discussion

5:30-6:30 Concluding Session and Press Conference