The Coming of a Palestinian State: A Summary of Arguments for the Established Independence of Palestine and an Exploration of the Flawed Argument Against that Establishment
1: A Practical Look
Palestine does not require the approval of the UNSC to become a state. The United States is therefore, from a technical point of view, unable to forbid the formation of a Palestinian state. Palestine has embassies and ambassadors around the world at this moment, and many nations already recognize its sovereignty. This September, a majority of the world’s countries will recognize Palestine’s sovereignty and independence in the forum of the United Nations General Assembly. And yet the ever-lethargic United States will not be moved. AIPAC is as strong as ever, and against the vast majority of the world’s populations, the vast majority of the world’s nations, and the vast majority of the dictates of international law, the United States now stands almost entirely alone in proclaiming that Palestine may not hold sovereign status.
The coming of a Palestinian state is not something that the United States has the power to prevent. It is something which will come with the general consensus of everyone and everything from the world’s most powerful nations to its least empowered individuals in every corner of the world. It is therefore inadvisable for the United States to remain in opposition of an independent Palestine, and necessary that the US Congress recognize Palestine as a sovereign state this coming September-- at the latest.
2: A Moral Look
The issues of human rights which revolve around the arguments of Palestine’s sovereignty should be familiar to anyone who keeps up with such events. The label of “sovereign” will, we all hope, grant an ear to those whose complaints have been unheard, the complaints of those Palestinians who are forced to endure violations of their natural rights every day of their lives, people who are born into a life where they must accept that they, as people, are not worth as much as Israelis. Recognizing Palestinian statehood will bolster the legitimate complaints of those who suffer violations of human rights and international law every day. Furthermore, we hope it will bring the crimes of Netanyahu into the open light, crimes which offend Israeli and Palestinian alike, and any other conscious human being.
In summary: From a legal standpoint, the United States is powerless to prevent the coming of an independent Palestine this September. From a moral standpoint, the United States is in fact obligated to recognize an independent Palestine. From a practical standpoint, even should the United States remain fervently opposed to an independent Palestine, an independent Palestine will come all the same—the world has already made up its mind, with or without the United States. It is, then, inconceivable that the United States should refuse to recognize an independent Palestine, and yet the lobbyists and religious zealots behind the opposition remain firm, and hide behind the most vulnerable defense: “we oppose such a unilateral move”.
3: The Argument Against an Independent Palestine
They refer, of course, to the “unilateral move” of Palestinians to proclaim their independence. It is not, in fact, a “unilateral move” when more than four of the almost seven billion of the world’s people and more than 2/3 of the world’s nations proclaim their support for an independent Palestine (as many as 170 of the UN’s 192 nations are expected to proclaim support for a sovereign Palestine, with 2/3 being the lowest estimate). It is not “unilateral” to follow the dictates of international law or the declarations of the United Nations. There is nothing in any way “unilateral” about the Palestinian bid for statehood, and yet pro-Israeli pundits hide behind this fallacy-ridden argument time and time again.
It is “unilateral” to presume that Israeli law may ignore human rights. It is “unilateral” to presume that Palestinian issues can be handled exclusively by an Israeli government. It is “unilateral” to presume that Palestinians have no legitimate voice, and that a coalition of US and Israeli politicians may say what is and is not right for a Palestinian nation.
I might also remind our readers that America’s independence was, in fact, a unilateral movement, and that even if I had simply made up all of these arguments, those who oppose an independent Palestine would do well to take a history class before making such terribly unfounded accusations. They suppose that unilateral movements are inherently unjust. The Palestinian bid for statehood, requiring the majority consent of the world, is the furthest thing possible from “unilateral”, but even were this not true, their bid for statehood could not be regarded as unjust simply for being a unilateral movement—which again, it is not.
4: A Brief Look into the Costs of the US-Israeli Alliance and Why Things Don't Change
The United States has been hiding behind its pro-Israeli arguments for far too long. Religious, political, economic, and strategic interests have all kept the US-Israeli alliance firm. But every moment of this alliance has in fact worked against long-term economic, political, and strategic interests of the United States. This alliance has come at the cost of positive US-Muslim relations in every corner of the world. It has isolated entire segments of the world’s populations. It has caused countries from the poorest to the richest to publicly proclaim the United States as a nation which thinks itself above international law, a nation which has destroyed any idea of human rights. This alliance has cost us more than three billion USD a year. It has cost the lives of dozens of thousands of unarmed Palestinians. It has cost us a potential alliance with the new democratic governments emerging across the Middle Eastern and North African world, democracies which now regard the United States as a backward and tyrannical nation unfit to be trusted. This alliance has manifested in the Taliban, al Qaeda, and an ISI which is more interested in cooperating with a terrorist than with a US Senator. It has manifested in the soul of every person who is raised to hate the United States by being shown video clips of American-made, American-funded bombs on American-made, American-funded planes destroying Palestinian homes, villages, and refugee camps—and then being told the truth: That these planes and bombs are approved year after year by the US Congress, and every year they are used by an Israeli government against an almost-Palestinian-nation which lacks the ability to keep itself alive.
Israel has treated the United States as an inferior: While the United States sends messages to Netanyahu’s Israel time and time again, condemning illegal Israeli settlement policies, Netanyahu, knowing that the United States Congress cannot really stand up against the Israeli foreign lobby, continues with settlement policies. As soon as the US condemns Netanyahu, he issues another statement proclaiming the establishment of more illegal settlements in Palestinian land, and if a US Congressman does not jump up to applaud Netanyahu’s flagrant abuse of power, he or she is attacked by the Israeli lobby.
Meanwhile, Palestinians and Israelis alike live in a world where it is illegal to express social or political dissent, where they are prohibited from gathering in public to protest Israeli policy. They live in a world where if they protest the ambitious designs of the Israeli government, they are more likely to be run over by an Israeli bulldozer and called a “terrorist” than to be remembered by the world as who they were and what they stood for. This is the real cost of our alliance.
In summary of those last two paragraphs: While US Congressmen feel trapped by the Israeli lobby, Palestinians and sympathetic Israelis alike feel just as trapped by their own abusive governments.
We have explored the downsides of the alliance and recognized that its expenses are huge. The arguments against US support of an independent Palestine do not withstand even the most minimal level of scrutiny. There is, furthermore, in fact every reason to support a Palestinian state, from an economic, political, legal, pragmatic, or strategic point of view. Even if all of this were not true—even if this entire essay was, in fact, entirely devoid of truth—it is still plainly impossible for the United States to alone withstand the will of all the other nations and all the other people of the world. Palestine will become a nation. The United States can accept it or not, but to not accept it will be nothing less than another crime added to its record—a crime which the emerging nations of the new Middle East and North Africa will not easily forget—a crime which the imminent Palestine will remember forever.