Another game-changer for US foreign relations. John Kerry, in a speech that was leaked to the Daily Beast, said that Israel could become an Apartheid State.
If there’s no two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict soon, Israel risks becoming “an apartheid state,” Secretary of State John Kerry told a room of influential world leaders in a closed-door meeting Friday.While John Kerry put windowdressing on his remarks and subsequently walked them back, it is clear that Israel's policies of perpetual warfare have gotten the US so fed up that it is now affecting relations between the two countries.
Senior American officials have rarely, if ever, used the term “apartheid” in reference to Israel, and President Obama has previously rejected the idea that the word should apply to the Jewish state. Kerry's use of the loaded term is already rankling Jewish leaders in America—and it could attract unwanted attention in Israel, as well.
It wasn't the only controversial comment on the Middle East that Kerry made during his remarks to the Trilateral Commission, a recording of which was obtained by The Daily Beast. Kerry also repeated his warning that a failure of Middle East peace talks could lead to a resumption of Palestinian violence against Israeli citizens. He suggested that a change in either the Israeli or Palestinian leadership could make achieving a peace deal more feasible. He lashed out against Israeli settlement-building. And Kerry said that both Israeli and Palestinian leaders share the blame for the current impasse in the talks.Kerry was laying out the alternatives for the two parties. One is a one-state solution, which would destroy Israel's identity as a Jewish state. The other is a two-state solution, which is supported by the West as a means of respecting the international right to self-determination. The third alternative, which is where the two parties are headed thanks to Israel's policy of perpetual warfare and treating the Palestinians as second-class citizens, is the apartheid state.
Maintaining an apartheid state is a violation of international law.
According to the 1998 Rome Statute, the “crime of apartheid” is defined as “inhumane acts… committed in the context of an institutionalized regime of systematic oppression and domination by one racial group over any other racial group or groups and committed with the intention of maintaining that regime.” The term is most often used in reference to the system of racial segregation and oppression that governed South Africa from 1948 until 1994.Already, relations were strained, as evidenced by Israel's abstention of the UN General Assembly vote against Russia for its aggression in Ukraine. Israel has tried to strike Iran over its alleged nuclear program; however, even George Bush, in the waning days of his term, refused to grant them permission to fly over Iraqi airspace to do so. And the US has refused to carry out airstrikes on Iran or permit Israel to do so.
The problem is that Israel has nobody to blame for this deterioration of this relationship but themselves. They have a foreign minister who has openly advocated for the forcible transfer of Palestinians living within Israeli territory. Nobody with those sorts of views would ever have a place of power in our society, as evidenced by the current uproar over Donald Sterling, in which even his own players protested against his racist remarks. When the Israeli government puts in power someone who is a known racist, it is obvious that they are not interested in peace with the Palestinians.