Labour must propose a one-state peace plan

The Trump administration and its Israeli-sided efforts to implement a peace plan in the Israel-Palestine conflict is doomed to fail before it has even been unveiled. Jared Kushner, incompetent son-in-law to an incompetent President Trump, seems impervious to the suffering of the Palestinian people under occupied territory.

Since his entrance to the Oval Office in 2017, Trump has defunded millions of dollars in aid to Palestinian humanitarian efforts. He has also proclaimed Jerusalem, a city under intense debate between two religions, as the holy capital of one. Furthermore, he has recently announced the annexation of the Syrian region, the Golan Heights, to be retained under Israeli rule for the foreseeable future. His decisions and policies, knee-jerk reactions to an existential crisis that has continued for decades, now sees a region under intense hostility seem insurmountable.

The only viable option to end conflict over land rule between Arabs and Jews is a one-state solution. Whilst America appeases a hard-line conservative Israeli government, the governing Conservative Party in Britain self-aggrandises in a current leadership contest set to pick the next prime minister. The Labour party, a democratic socialist organisation in opposition, has become one of the only mainstream parties in the western world to be an ally for the Palestinian cause.

A resurgence in socialism across the world and its notion for peace must come out in force to battle a surging right who are prepared to impose more borders and blockades on Palestine. A one-state solution, still yet to gain traction, could be Labour’s alternative to a conservative’s robust Israeli alliance mired in scandal.

A one-state solution would allow a federation-like state to rule over a collective Arab and Jewish population. The right to vote, move freely and live by side by side with a former enemy would give the two warring sides the same equal opportunities and rule of law. Like the UK, Palestine could have nations living under a federal jurisdiction. The West Bank and Gaza could be similar to a Wales and Scotland that help Great Britain be a union. Nationalist, leftist and conservative parties could be elected to serve in one national parliament, whether they are predominantly Jewish-Israeli or Palestinian. This would enable both ethnicities to have equal protected status that are intolerant to any form of discrimination or bias.

A one-state solution has been drafted by the Israeli right in the past. Instead, this plan involved allowing Israeli sovereignty to rule over the Gaza strip and the West Bank in its entirety, disregarding the needs and demands of a large Palestinian population. The Zionist sentiment must be softened to an extent. This would eviscerate an ultra-nationalist endeavour which favours a sole Israeli state within a traditionally Arab region.

A one-state conclusion has not energised advocates for peace the same way as a two-state plan has. However, aspiring towards a two-state solution has had detrimental consequences in the past, particularly with the Oslo Accords in 1998. However, with Jeremy Corbyn leading a peace-loving party and recently-elected Democrats in America holding a pro-Palestinian position, the one-state idea could yet face the test.

A pro-Palestine position has riddled left-wing parties with accusations of antisemitism. The Labour party is currently under formal investigation with antisemitic abuse from so-called party members spreading online and in publications. Meanwhile, fresh-faced socialists under the Democratic umbrella in the U.S have been accused of barefaced antisemitism following their excoriation of a powerful American-Israeli lobbying firm. To mobilise support for a one-state conclusion with equality for both ethnicities could potentially alleviate the affiliation with antisemitism and anti-Zionism.

With Trump failing to placate a tense Middle East, this Kushner deal is not looking advantageous for the Palestinian people who inhabit dire conditions within the region. With Trump at the helm of these negotiations, the current Labour party must do all they can to counter-attack a toxic and damaging Trump and Tory foreign policy.

First published for Backbench U.K ( https://www.bbench.co.uk/single-post/2019/07/07/Labour-must-propose-a-one-state-peace-plan)

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