New Article: Dumper, Refugee Entitlement and the Passing of Time

Dumper, Mick. “Refugee Entitlement and the Passing of Time: Waldron’s Supersession Thesis and the Palestinian Refugee Case.” In Forced Migration, Reconciliation, and Justice (ed. Megan Bradley; Montreal: McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2015): 323-44.

 
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Extract

This is not to say that Zionism as an ideology is unravelling, but more that the current debate in Israel and the Jewish diaspora over its nature reflects these changes in political architecture. And such changes will accelerate after a peace agreement. As Rashid Khalidi points out, a peace agreement will not arrive out of thin air but as part of a dialectical process with Israel, perhaps offering more generous terms resulting in a softening of negative Arab attitudes that in turn will lead to a greater understanding of Israeli security needs and so forth. Of course this dialectic must also be underwritten by an essential component of any agreement: reconciliation. A viable peace agreement between the parties will likely to include clauses detailing a series of reconciliatory steps such as public apologies, a truth commission, commemorations, joint educational programs, and other forms of transnational dialogue. These may erode the high social walls and ideological divide between the protagonists.

Thus, to return to the central question of the impact of changing circumstances, the Palestinian claim for justice needs to be seen in light not only of growing Israeli entitlements but also of the less-than-cataclysmic implications of the demands being made and a dynamic political situation that is broadly leading to greater cooperation and the potential for greater understanding. The Palestinian claim, therefore, can be met if it on one hand is disaggregated, and on the other precipitates a further change in circumstances. A claim that considers the changed nature of the land Palestinian have exiled from, the rights of new generations of Israelis, and the concerns of Israelis to safeguard their Jewish culture, and that devises a series of proposals to respond to these issues, can to some extent square the circle of mutually exclusive Palestinian and Israeli entitlements. At the same time, Israeli Jewish claims based on an exclusivist Zionist ideology will need to be softened in ways in which non-Jews can be embraces so that all Israelis may live and work within a state that is committed to equality and justice for all its citizens.

 

 

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