Over the weekend, seemingly contradictory statements have emerged from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the Likud Party with regard to the two-state compromise – including the contradiction between allegedly not wanting to rule over Palestinians and enforcing the concept of a demilitarised hypothetical Palestinian state. These statements departed from the 2009 Bar Ilan speech, in which Netanyahu fabricated historical occurrences to fit his colonisation narrative.
A statement attributed to Netanyahu and publicised by Likud read: “The prime minister has announced to the public that the Bar Ilan speech is null and void. Netanyahu’s entire political biography is a struggle against a Palestinian state.” On 6 January, Netanyahu had accused Palestinians of rendering the Bar Ilan speech “emptied of any relevance” due to the belated decision to seek recourse at the International Criminal Court.
According to Al Jazeera, Netanyahu has denied making such a statement, with the PM’s office declaring that Netanyahu’s policy states that “under current conditions in the Middle East any land that is handed over would be grabbed by Islamic extremists.”
Palestinian Chief Negotiator Sa’eb Erekat declared that, “Netanyahu’s policies are a major threat to peace and stability in the region,” adding that settlements always constituted a priority for Israel. While Erekat’s comments may have been sought as the means to obtain an apparently opposing view, negotiations have proven the allegiances between Israel and the PA, including the PA’s willingness to compromise upon settlement expansion, thus collaborating with the settler-colonial state in confiscating Palestinian land.
The denial issued by Netanyahu’s office barely contradicts the statement attributed to the Israeli prime minister and disseminated by Likud. Rather, it affirms the imperialist fabrication of peace based upon the two-state compromise endorsed by Israel, the Palestinian Authority, and the international community, as the means through which to safeguard Israel’s colonisation process. Its irrelevance is independent of comments attributed to Netanyahu or Likud; the process allegedly leading to the creation of two states – also endorsed by countries claiming to support Palestine and, on an international level, by the UN – is irrelevant due to its hypothetical nature. However, the same irrelevance also constitutes relevance for Israel, as decades spent upon negotiations have enabled the fabricated state to expand within Palestine.
Additionally, the emphasis upon the two-state paradigm has been utilised as a tool to generate oblivion on various fronts – including obscuring the divide between Palestinians and the internationally-recognised Palestinian leadership; the commitment of Palestinians to resistance in order to achieve liberation of the entire territory; as well as the relevance of Hamas and other resistance factions in Palestine.
Quoted in Haaretz, US State Department Jen Psaki stated that, “Our commitment to achieving an end to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict hasn’t changed. We count upon having Israeli and Palestinian partners who are also committed to that.” Uttered within the context of the forthcoming Israeli elections, US rhetoric simply affirms the obvious – the certainty of having willing actors and accomplices to continue propagating the two-state fallacy; thus ensuring additional rounds of negotiations while the next Israeli government continues with its usurpation of Palestinian territory.
The views expressed in this article belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Middle East Monitor.