Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Israel, Palestine, and Irrationalism

UN Security Council Resolution 242 has been argued over for forty years now. But I think to even a mildly disinterested observer it is clear that Israel is in the wrong here. The preamble to peace is simple; Israel must pull back from all occupied territory and dismantle all illegal settlements. If your neighbour took half your house and refused to vacate it for forty years, do you think you could ever live in peaceful coexistence with him? I think not. Almost every rational observer on the globe understands that Israel is consistently standing in the way of peace through the act of occupation. Only through abandoning its illegal occupations can Israel empower the process by empower those among the Palestinians who also want peace. There are some on both sides that will try to undermine the move to peace even if it were to arrive, but those will have no power in the face of genuine cooperation and empowerment. The worst tragedy is that so many people in a handful of the world's most powerful countries have so easily bought into the idea that a ragtag group of malnourished individuals in refugee camps are the aggressors who are responsible for all the conflict in the Middle East. It would be like the Roman Empire blaming the Visigoths for all the war on the northern frontiers. Come on, wake up!

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