Question, answer, imagine: The Hybrid States road map, circa May 2010

by Yaniv Reich on May 12, 2010

Hybrid States has been on something of a hiatus recently. The reasons for this are several. First, the blog found itself bombarded with a seemingly infinite stream of mind-boggling and truly outrageous news items, due not in small part to the seemingly infinite lunacy coming out of Israel’s government. But keeping on top of the news and providing the needed, continuous commentary was too time-consuming for an individual blogger to maintain (especially as life’s other obligations become overly exigent, as they are wont to do). There are many, extremely high quality blogs on Israel/Palestine that serve this purpose already; it is absolutely not this blog’s intention to compete with them, as if it could anyway (see, e.g., the blogroll in the right-hand column for such websites).

Second, taking a step back allows one to reassess the contributions this blog is making—and aspires to make.

Six months into this project, I think I can state my goals pretty clearly (although they are sure to evolve over time):

  1. To provide tools for private, concerned citizens to question the most commonly received wisdom in the West about Israel and Palestine.
  2. To present accurate historical and contemporary information that helps answer those oftentimes difficult questions.
  3. To push forward the international and intratribal (Jewish) debate about the forever intertwined future of Jews and Palestinians.

Some of these aims are clearly more ambitious than others, but I think these three interrelated objectives—question, answer, imagine—are at the core of what I want this blog to do.

In practical terms, I will continue to spend precious blogging space on exposing the interminable contradictions of the Zionist project in both its historical and modern day forms.  Leave it to Jews to take chutzpah to the highest levels imaginable.  Leave it to Hybrid States (and all the other amazing blogs out there) to shine a light on that chutzpah and ridicule it widely and loudly for the pathetic thing it is.

I will also devote more effort to building the `Resources’ section of this site so that interested individuals can find efficiently the primary and secondary data that they need to argue for justice in Israel/Palestine.  I hope to fill this section with human rights reports, economic analysis, original documents, photos, presentations, reading lists and so on.  As always, any suggestions on formatting and/material are very welcome.

Finally, I am going to concentrate more on the future, in the following sense.  I, for one, believe that an ethnically exclusive Israel is one of the worst ideas ever, including for my family that found some semblance of safety, no matter how tenuous, after wandering out of the Poland’s concentration camps.  Why?  Because it was—and remains—unequivocally dependent on an intense, soul-crushing, and unfailingly unjust system of discrimination and control of non-Jewish minorities.  Because there is no other way to have a so-called Jewish state in the middle of a land once dominated by Arabs, who for a variety of fully human and understandable reasons don’t feel like they ought to just move away from their ancestral homes to make way for some other long-suffering, now long-oppressing ethnic group to take their place.

Many ethical people around the world are beginning to see, with the assistance of an important set of technologies that help democratize information, the racist ideology that is the centerpiece of Zionism and the ethnically exclusive state it has created.  As allegiance to this regime falters, people must be able to see comfortably in their heads what might replace it: we must have know something about where we are going.  Personally, my chips are bet on secular democracy in all of historical Palestine, with strong protections for minority rights.  But this beautiful idea needs to be more widely discussed, people must let it seep into their consciousness, bounce off the frames of the ethical beings people think they are, and that they actually are, and stir up a whole lot of insecurity and hostility before the calming, deep grasp of justice takes over. The persistent painting and repainting of this alternative vision is the third goal.

This is the Hybrid States road map, circa May 2010.

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