Sunday, May 24, 2009

In what parallel universe?

During meetings with congressional leaders this week, Netanyahu was stunned by the "harsh and unequivocal statements" with which lawmakers complained about the settlements, according to an account in the Israeli newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth. The newspaper said that although the prime minister tried to highlight the threat of Iran in his talks, lawmakers instead returned repeatedly to the issue of settlements.
--Washington Post
If Netanyahu was stunned, I cannot help wondering what other world he lives in. You cannot continue to expand settlements in Palestinian territory and pretend that you want peace or, for that matter, that the security of Israel is your goal. It is theft of land by rabid zionists: plain, pure, and simple. To even allow language about divine right to the land is to invoke the sort of knee-jerk fundamentalism we condemn in all religious traditions, and to invoke it in the pursuit of power and wealth ( = land) at the expense of those who are displaced. It is patently immoral, unjust, and unconscionable.

I would like to see Israel thrive - within its pre-1967 boundaries. But until it ceases this expansion I cannot and will not support it. This lies at the heart of the abiding problems there. It is an action that dares surrounding countries and the world community to do something about it, provoking an abiding (and in this case fully justified) resentment among the Palestinians. It can only make matters worse. Not only do I believe expansion should cease, I believe the settlers should all return to Israel (their definition of Israeli boundaries not being acceptable). If they whine, tough shit. They should not be there in the first place. I have zero sympathy for them, just as I have zero sympathy for the US architects of the invasion and occupation of Iraq.

It is obvious that I do not equate rabid expansionist zionism with the nation of Israel. I refuse to accept the idea that one must accept the former for the sake of the latter. The latter needs to cut out the cancer of the former if it wishes to live in peace and behave like a civilized nation. Having said that, any reader of this blog knows I do not believe the United States has been behaving like a civilized nation, so I certainly am not holding us up as a shining example.

I rejoice to see pro-Israel American lawmakers and the Obama Administration stand up and call Israel on this issue. It's about effing time.

And if nobody is going to play nice, should the land go back to the Hivites, the Jebusites, the Perizzites, etc.? Because I can no longer buy into territorial theology, even when it's in the Bible.

--the BB

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