LETTER TO THE EDITOR | Israelis Must Give Palestinians the Right to Thrive

Re “Palestinians and Israelis Both Deserve to Thrive” (opinion, Feb. 17)

Prof. Joseph Margulies, government and law, was part of Cornell’s Collective for Justice in Palestine, a group dedicated to the freedom of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness for all people (Israeli and Palestinian) from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea. In his Guest Room submission, “Palestinians and Israelis Both Deserve to Thrive,” Margulies hits on many liberal Zionist talking points without explaining the reality of the current situation for both of our groups. In his submission, Margulies reveals himself as a typical liberal, with one notable exception: his stance on Palestine.

I completely agree with Margulies’s assertion that both Israelis and Palestinians deserve to thrive, but we must examine why this is currently not the case. Is it because the Israeli government has been deemed an apartheid state by multiple human rights organizations (B’Tselem, Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International)? Is it the ongoing occupation of the West Bank and the current genocidal assault in Gaza? Or maybe it’s the over 700 road obstacles and 140 Israeli checkpoints that limit Palestinians’ freedom of movement? We can both wish all we want for how things ought to be, but we must not look away when confronted with the facts of the situation. I would hope a professor of law and government would know this.

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