Illinois Republican Congressman Joe Walsh has introduced a resolution in the US House of Representatives that seems to support formal Israeli apartheid. Or does it in fact support a one-state solution with equal voting rights for Israelis and Palestinians alike?
Walsh was elected last year in Illinoi’s 8th Congressional District (north and west suburbs of Chicago) with strong Tea Party support.
Walsh has also introduced legislation to cut $600 million of funding the United States gives to the Palestinian Authority.
Walsh’s House Resolution 394 calls for:
Supporting Israel’s right to annex Judea and Samaria in the event that the Palestinian Authority continues to press for unilateral recognition of Palestinian statehood at the United Nations.
“Judea and Samaria” is the name Israel gives to the Israeli-occupied West Bank.
After a lengthy preamble setting out standard Israel lobby talking points, the draft bill declares:
Resolved, That the House of Representatives firmly supports Israel’s right to annex Judea and Samaria in the event that the Palestinian Authority continues to press for unilateral recognition of Palestinian statehood at the United Nations.
There’s just one tiny catch. What happens to the almost three million Palestinians who live in the Israeli-occupied West Bank if they are annexed by Israel?
Does Israel then have the “right” to expel them? Do they live under permanent second class status, as African Americans did before US Civil Rights legislation, or like blacks in South Africa under apartheid?
Or is Walsh actually proposing a one-state solution in which Palestinians get to vote in Israeli elections?
Walsh is mysteriously silent on this crucial point. I have put the question to him via Twitter (@RepJoeWalsh):
He’s an avid and active Twitter user, so let’s see if he has an answer for this straightforward query.