Sydney Ideas - Year 51. Alternative Futures for Palestine-Israel

22 September 2017

Professor Mark LeVine, University of California, Irvine and Lund University, Sweden 

Sydney Ideas co-presented with the Department of Arabic Cultures and Languages

In the 50 years since the Six Days War, many in the international community believe East Jerusalem, the West Bank, and Gaza Strip to be living in the state of belligerent foreign occupation. To them the idea of a two-state solution, if it ever was plausible, is clearly a charade. What exists today is a de-facto one state solution, with one State having full sovereignty and control over the totality of the territory.

Yet despite this, it remains nearly impossible for Israeli, Palestinian, and international policy makers, donor organisations, and recipients of foreign aid to say this openly.

No one knows what possible futures might await Palestine-Israel if the two peoples were allowed to decide on their future as equals and without compulsion and violence. Will they ever be able to honestly talk about the one-state reality, and begin to discuss and debate how Palestinians and Israelis can achieve a full and equal measure of rights in this context? 

If the Israeli government openly talks about the end of the two-state solution and the permanence of Israeli control, what happens if we take them seriously and try to imagine a positive outcome for such a situation?

Professor of Middle Eastern History at University of California, Irvine, Mark LeVine asks us to engage in the process of thinking outside the box, and move towards enabling Palestinians and Israelis to imagine a shared future that is no longer a zero-sum game or based inevitably on the domination of one group over the other.

Professor Mark LeVine is professor of history at UC Irvine and Distinguished Visiting Professor at the Center for Middle Eastern Studies at Lund University, Sweden, and a senior columnist at al-Jazeera, where he’s extensively covered the Arab uprisings and the Israeli Occupation. He’s the author and editor of a dozen books, including most recently One Land, Two States: Israel and Palestine as Parallel States (2014) and a forthcoming book on the next 50 years of the Occupation.

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Sydney Ideas - Year 51. Alternative Futures for Palestine-Israel

Where New Law Foyer
Level 2, Sydney Law School
Eastern Avenue
The University of Sydney
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22 September 2017

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