Palestinian Statehood?

Dear Friends of MECA,

This week the Palestinian Authority (PA) is going to seek recognition as a state before the United Nations. As the PA leadership goes to the UN to become the 194th member, we cannot forget the significance of this number: UN resolution 194, which calls for the Palestinian refugees’ right to return.

Since talks of the UN Statehood bid emerged, there have been a variety of perspectives on the matter. Most notably, experts such as Ilan Pappe and Ali Abunimah have characterized the PA’s ambitions as “the funeral of the two-state solution.” For more than eighteen years since the start of the so-called “peace process” and the signing of the Oslo Accords, Israel has steadily changed the facts on the ground and effectively stalemated any political solution.

Both during that period and currently as the UN convenes in New York, the realities on the ground in Palestine are marked by ever-worsening Apartheid policies, construction and expansion of the illegal Wall, increased confiscation of land with over 650,000 Jewish settlers who continue to displace thousands of Palestinians from their homes and villages, military raids and operations, and an occupation with no end in sight. And while PA officials seek recognition of their state, 5,554 Palestinian political prisoners continue to linger and be tortured in Israeli jails, including 250 women and children (40 of whom are under 16).

Given our longtime work on the ground to support the children of Palestine, the Middle East Children's Alliance is especially concerned with recent developments in the region. In protest of the PA’s UN efforts, Israeli military checkpoints have become stricter; settler attacks against Palestinians are rampant, and in one case ironically forced Palestinian youth to postpone their first ever Model UN; and reports of the Israeli military arming and training settlers have prompted Palestinian activists in the West Bank to organize emergency response teams. Moreover, as MECA continues to seek donations for The Maia Project, news reports on depleting water resources and settler attacks on water reservoirs underscore the need for your support.

In October, MECA Executive Director Barbara Lubin will be traveling to Gaza to follow up on important projects such as Let the Children Play and Heal and The Maia Project. As we have done throughout our nearly 25 year history, MECA will continue to stand with the Palestinian people, support their right of return, as well as their struggle for basic human rights that guarantee freedom and dignity.

There continues to be various Palestinian-led movements both inside and outside working toward this ultimate goal. Many activists and organizations have offered their differing opinions about the recent statehood bid. It is in many ways a complicated issue that inspires multiple views about the future of the Palestinian struggle and possible outcomes of this event. We at MECA would like to share with you the range of perspectives, as well as some excellent information and analysis on what is certainly a historic moment for Palestinians.

In Solidarity,
Barbara Lubin, Executive Director
Ziad Abbas, Associate Director

Ali Abunimah, A Formal Funeral for the Two-State Solution: How the PA’s Statehood Bid Sidelines Palestinians, 9/19/2011 

MECA will be presenting a lecture by Ali Abunimah, along with Special Guest, Alice Walker, on Wednesday, October 5 in Oakland. For more details, please click here.

Ilan Pappe, At the UN, the funeral of the two-state solution, 9/12/2011 
"What we will bury — hopefully — in September was one of the major obstacles in the way to realizing this vision."

Stop The Wall, Post-September International Solidarity Analysis by the Palestinian Grassroots Anti-Apartheid Wall Campaign, 9/20/2011 
Many international activists, organizations and movements are faced with doubts regarding the current debate regarding the initiative for membership of a Palestinian state at the UN and ways forward. Stop the Wall gives answers to some of the most asked questions.

Joseph Massad, State of Recognition, 09/15/2011 
Whether the UN grants the PA status as a state or refuses to do so, either outcome will be in Israel’s interest

Ramzy Baroud, The Palestinian people are fed up with symbolic victories, 9/20/2011 
"All of this summons an urgent question: How can an authority that lacks the legal legitimacy as a representative of the Palestinian people take on a role that could change the course of the entire Palestinian national project?"

Zahi Khouri, Defending Jim Crow in Palestine, 9/21/2011
"If the Israeli government is really ready for peace, as it claims, why is it importing horses from Belgium, amassing tear gas, and organizing militias with trained dogs in illegal settlements? These officials seem determined to replay the role of white police officers on horseback and with attack dogs who enforced racial segregation in the American South in the 1960s."