THOUGH I AM A WRITER BY TRADE, I am an attorney by training, one with a near fanatic devotion to the ideals of the United States Constitution, as revised and expanded beyond its slavery-tarnished origins. What I love most about America is its as-yet-unfulfilled promise of egalitarianism and equality, of one person/one vote, of the ability of a multicultural nation to live in fractious harmony. And yet, until recently, I had never allowed myself to question the wisdom of the classically framed two-state solution—Israelis here, Palestinians there, separation begetting peace.
Then, in April of 2016, on a trip to Israel-Palestine as part of a group of writers working on the forthcoming anthology Kingdom of Olives and Ash: Writers Confront the Occupation, I met the Hebrew University professor Bashir Bashir. Dr. Bashir views the question of whether the governing system of Israel-Palestine is one of a single state or of two states as all but irrelevant. The important question, rather, is whether the governing system in Palestine-Israel will continue to be one of segregation and zero-sum-games, or whether we can build a future based on the acknowledgement that this land is shared. Dr. Bashir argues that we must strive for “an inclusive, humanistic form of politics that allows us [Palestinians] to accommodate Israeli Jews in a democratic venture of togetherness.” This he calls “binationalism.”
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Source Citation: Tikkun 2017 Volume 32, Number 2:73