September 13, 2013 will mark the twentieth year of the Oslo 'peace process', now an interminable process, without peace and without end. At a time when most Palestinians have denounced Oslo and seek to overturn their leadership’s capitulation to agreements through which "Israel has secured official Palestinian consent to Israeli occupation" (Said, 2002: 14), the Americans have arrived with new proposals, and talk of billions of dollars in economic aid, which threaten to re-cement this process for an indefinite period, if not years to come.
The ongoing imperial investment in Oslo partly has to do with the way this process created the sense "that the Palestinian problem had been resolved" (ibid: 15). Yet, far from an opening towards peace, grounded in recognition of the Palestinian people and their rights, Oslo was designed to recuperate Zionist settler colonialism, and its racist, militaristic ideology.
If Oslo was more akin a negotiated surrender of the Palestine Liberation Organisation, then it is useful to revisit Oslo and the devastating effects it had on the Palestinian people through the lens of Michel Foucault’s reversal of Carl von Clausewitz’s famous axiom in his claim that "politics is the continuation of war by other means". In this reading, Oslo did not accidently lead to disaster, but was an instrument for domesticating and reframing Palestine, and as such, was the condition of possibility for Zionist settler colonialism to continue its war against the Palestinian natives through other strategies and means.