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An Inconvenient Truth on Israel and Palestine?

Brian McLaren links to this article at the Huffington Post. It may be inconvenient, but is it truth? (I guess I need to tell my readers that I often like what Brian McLaren has to say, but then there are these moments.)

I’m also opposed to those who think Israel is always right. But there is some weird thinking that goes on in deciding who is oppressed and who is the oppressor in various circumstances. Here in America we threw a multi-year temper tantrum after a few thousand deaths. We decided it was alright to invade Iraq over this, which oddly enough had nothing to do with that terrorist attack. I’ll note that the international community generally supported us in Afghanistan, which did have something to do with it, yet quite justifiably (in my opinion) were more reluctant to do so in Iraq.

Yet Israel is supposed to just take it. Israel’s enemies, in general, negotiate on the basis that Israel has no right to exist at all. Laying aside all arguments over the validity of Zionism, ask yourself whether it is reasonable to expect the Israeli government to negotiate on the basis that it has no right to exist.

I think there are many things that the Israeli government has done that are not good. I don’t believe our policy must be attached to Israeli policy. We can be independent. I don’t support unilateral extension of settlements. The issue I have here is with making Israel the exclusive bad guys.

Yet at the same time we need to recognize reality on both sides. Israel faces a much greater terrorist threat than we do, and many of those terrorists would not be satisfied unless Israel ceased to exist. Your actions in your own defense might change if you faced such a threat.

Just look how ours changed when we faced a proportionally much smaller threat.

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  1. I also don’t think that Israel are exclusively the ‘bad guys’. They only killed hundreds of children and women in Gaza, in ‘self defense’ just as any of us would do in the same circumstances were our tanks and planes the unwilling recipients of stone throwing.

    We need to teach these people a lesson they will never forget! If you throw a stone at our tank or our F15/F16 fighter bomber, we will end your life. That’s Israeli justice, true justice.

    And as for denying 1.5 million people freedom of movement, food and medical supplies. Well that’s also Israeli justice that can be seen to be done. We don’t want to kill and starve and deny medical treatment to pregnant women or sick children but we do have a job to do. We didn’t leave our homes and jobs in NY to have to live with Palestinians. Taking their land is one thing, living with them is another.

    1. >>If you throw a stone at our tank …<<

      Or a rocket at their towns, or carry a suicide bomb into one of their markets …

      Again, I note that the evil is not on just one side.

  2. We might, Henry, both be Jewish. But there are nice Jews and nasty Jews. And there are also killer Jews. But not, thank God, in America.

  3. Henry,

    An excellent post, balanced and filled with common sense, which is in short supply on this issue.

    You are correct, of course, that Israel has not always acted innocently and rightly, but there seems to be a total lack of recognition on the part of persons like McClaren of the fact that those running the Palestinian “show” refuse to recognize Israel’s right to exist. Time and time again when I have discussions with these people, I always ask two questions: First, do you want Israel just to vacate the land completely, to which they answer no. Then I ask how they would recommend negotiating with someone who believes that you do not have the right to live. That one they can’t seem to answer, or their response is that I am exaggerating. Only if you live in a cocoon of ignorance would you even believe that such is an exaggeration.

    I have no doubt that there are plenty of “Palestinians” who are prepared to live in peace side-by-side with Israelis. The problem is they are not the ones calling the shots.

  4. Glen Beck has less than a junior high school grasp of history and world affairs, a complete lack of honesty and integrity, and a total disregard for the intelligence of his audience. His presentation is full of unfounded conspiracy theories and when he is caught in a lie, which he often is, he just switches from being a “reporter” or “political commentator” to being an “entertainer.”

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