Chaim Gans on Gideon Levy's idea of a national referendum to determine the fate of the settlements and the occupation through challenging voters with a simple and straightforward question: "Do we continue the occupation, all of the occupation, yes or no? If yes, then yes, if no, then no." Levy thinks it's razor-sharp.
Levy's question is not razor-sharp because it ignores the dispute in this country over whether our standing in the territories is that of an occupier, and because it binds together in one category both the occupation and the settlements, instead of separating the two.
Continuing the occupation could be legitimate on security grounds; the question of whether those grounds justify its continuation is one that reasonable people could disagree about. Therefore, it would be truly legitimate to decide it by democratic means.
In contrast, nobody can think that settlements within the framework of occupation could be legitimate. A state is not entitled to colonize conquered lands, neither from the point of view of international law nor that of international morality. Therefore, a democratic majority cannot legalize such settlements, just as a democratic majority of a condominium's residents cannot legalize the beating up of one of the residents.
I had a similar argument about this here...
What we should do is to break this linkage between comprehensive agreement and settlements. The settlements should go regardless of what happens with this peace process. There is very little chance of anything good happening with it anyway.
Source: east med sea peace
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