Omar Barghouti — a founding member of the Boycott National Committee (BNC) and the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI) — explains frankly and clearly that, despite what many might think, the end of Israel’s presence and the establishment of a Palestinian state in the West Bank and Gaza is not the end game of BDS.
In the eyes of BDS, the Palestinians not only have a right to the lands controlled by Israel as a result of the Six-Day War in 1967, but they also have a right to the “1948 lands,” meaning all of the land within the internationally recognized boundaries of the State of Israel.
Below, Mr. Barghouti explains it even more plainly.
“Definitely, most definitely, we oppose a Jewish state in any part of Palestine,” he says, referring to the entire stretch of land between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea encompassing the West Bank, Israel proper, and Gaza:
The BDS movement has a list of demands that is meant to obfuscate their true aims. In their demands they state that they will maintain a boycott of Israel until 1) it “ends the occupation of all Arab lands,” 2) until it recognizes the “fundamental right of Arab citizens of Israel to full equality,” and 3) until it grants the so-called “right of return” to Palestinian refugees.
In terms of its first demand, the BDS movement considers all of Israel to be part of “Arab lands,” meaning that Israel itself must be eradicated.
In regards to the second demand, Israeli Arabs have more rights in Israel than in any of the 21 Arab countries. With roughly 1.9 million Arab citizens of Israel, accounting for roughly 20% of the population, Israel has never practiced racial segregation; it is the only real democracy
in the Middle East, where Arabs sit in the country’s Parliament
, in its governing coalition
, and on its Supreme Court
; the Chairman
of Israel’s largest bank is an Arab/Palestinian; while over 22% of the student body of the Technion
, Israel’s version of MIT, are Arab students. Israel also has progressive laws when it comes to free speech
, gender equality
, as well as LGBTQ rights
In the video below, Mr. Barghouti explains the true implications of this third demand — the so-called “right of return” for Palestinian refugees and all their decedents.
“If the refugees were to return,” he says, “you would not have a two-state solution. Like one Palestinian commentator said, you would have a Palestine next to a Palestine, rather than a Palestine next to Israel.”
In the video one can also hear Mr. Barghouti oppose the two-state solution. He supports a one-state solution in which Israel will be replaced by a Palestinian state encompassing all of what is now Israel and the Palestinian territories. He also has stated there is no reason not to re-name this new state, “Palestine.”