Wednesday, September 21, 2011

It is the Palestinians who oppose a two-state solution

Sometimes a little YouTube lecture says far more than a Cranmer homily...


Blogger Sam Vega said...

Superb. Should be compulsory viewing for everyone in Europe and America.

21 September 2011 at 09:47  
Blogger tory boys never grow up said...

"It is the Palestinians who oppose a two-state solution"

No it isn't - it is some Palestinians, just as it some Israelis who do so. Re whether Palestine should be recognised as a state by the UN - I would have thought that it is the lack of unity of purpose among Palestinians that would mean that it fails to meet the basis criteria for UN membership as a state per the UN charter re recognition of the other member states and the intention to resolve any differences with such states using peaceful means (to say nothing about upholding the other values enshrined in the UN Charter) (go and look at the Charter if you want to see what the requirements are for a state to be accepted into membership of the UN)

I for one would love to see Palestine meeting the conditions of the UN so that it could be accepted into membership - but they are just not there at present.

21 September 2011 at 09:58  
Blogger Muggins said...

"it is some Palestinians"

Can we then say that it is "every group set up to negotiate on behalf of the Palestinians" who oppose the 2-state solution?

What Palestinian group is negotiating seriously for peace? Give me a really good example of how they've negotiated in any other way than saying "That's not good enough" and leaving the table.

By all means post a link to the strongest possible counter-argument. Always seems like a propaganda war to me though..

21 September 2011 at 10:15  
Blogger Angus Lambkin said...

you have your narrative, they have theirs.

What is your workable solution.

21 September 2011 at 10:23  
Blogger tory boys never grow up said...


You may be right about those who are currently negotiating - but there are still plenty of individual Palestinians (and Israelis) who know that a two state solution is the only way that this mess is going to be resolved. The challenge is how to get these views to the negotiating table - and no I don't have an easy answer, but others (on both sides) have had success in edging towards that direction - and I suspect that is where the answers lie rather than indulging in ritual condemnations of the other side.

21 September 2011 at 10:29  
Blogger Muggins said...

Tory Boys: let's hope so.

I don't mean to join in the condemnation. I guess my view is that the Israelis are trying to talk, and Abbas and his predecessors (possibly because of pressure from the people they are speaking for) continually adopt a ridiculously tough bargaining position.

At what point do we say someone is being impossible to negotiate with?

Angus: the word 'narrative' has connotations of a rather silly branch of humanities academia for me. I think the BBC are reporting this in a very unbalanced way - causing me to give a slightly
different view..

21 September 2011 at 10:49  
Blogger Rebel Saint said...

@TBNGU ... have you actually watched the video? Do you know of all the historical offers of a 2-state solution? Do you know which party has rejected them?

There is already a 2 state solution in existence: Jordan & Israel. What we are talking about now is a 3rd state solution.

General ignorance on the history of the area (ancient & modern) is stupefying. Most people seem to believe there was an ancient country called Palestine, a land free of any Jewish history or ancestry; that the Jews took it over and called it Israel then drove all the "Palestinians" out of it. Surprising how many 'educated' people there are who seem to have this narrative in their heads.

21 September 2011 at 10:58  
Blogger Sam Vega said...


"Workable solution" is an interesting term. Sometimes it is used to imply that there is always a fix for every problem which avoids disappointment and, more importantly, bloodshed.

It might be that this is not possible in the case of Israel and the Palestinians. If it were, someone would surely have suggested it by now. It might be that the best we (as mere onlookers/supporters) can hope for is to be clear about our "narrative", and to know that we think and speak in the light of truth.

21 September 2011 at 11:13  
Blogger Preacher said...

Thank you Dr Cranmer for this clear & concise teaching.
It makes crystal clear, who the aggressors are & the greed & hate of the Jewish people that is their motivation.
The most surprising thing is the enduring patience & willingness of the Israeli government to continue negotiating for peace, despite the obvious & oft declared desire of the Arab states to annihilate them.

21 September 2011 at 11:23  
Blogger tory boys never grow up said...

"At what point do we say someone is being impossible to negotiate with?"

Certainly not yet - I suspect that judgement could have been reached many times over with regard to Northern Ireland - yet eventually it is possible to make some progress.

Rebel Saint

It is possible to argue about who is responsible until the cows come home and beyond - but I very much doubt that any attempt to attribute blame to one side or other (as the video tries) will actually have the slightest influence on achieving any kind of negotiated solution, especially when the other side has a diametrically opposed view of who is blame which they would probably be more than willing to put on a video.

You can call it a 3 state solution if you wish (actaully I think ratehr more than 3 states will need to be inviolved if there is a meaningful solution) - but I'm afraid there there whatever the history there are "Palestinians" who want to have a state they can call their own (just as the Jews have a legitimate claim to the same land) and I'm afraid modern day Jordan will just not cut it for them (even leaving aside the little matter of Black September).

As always I'm afraid you appear to have some problem in understanding that sometimes you have to resolve conflicts between two legitimate viewpoints - and that asserting the moral/intellectual/god given surperiority of one over the other really just doesn't work as a practical solution. You always seem to searching for certainty and clarity in a world where it doesn't actaully exist.

21 September 2011 at 11:50  
Blogger David Lindsay said...

Of course "Jordan is Palestine". Jordan as created at the end of the British Mandate. Which is to say, including the West Bank.

There has never been a state with its border at the Jordan, and the populations on either Bank are one people. The answer to the question of why anyone ever designed a country so short of water as Jordan is, is that no one ever did.

The creation of a Palestinian State in the West Bank would be the end of the Hashemite Kingdom: the pressure for incorporation into that State would be irresistible. That, rather than the destruction of Israel, would be the great national aspiration. And then, following its rapid and its largely (if not entirely) bloodless achievement, that would be the great national triumph.

The Palestinian bid for UN membership at this stage may look like a gimmick, the American veto being the real point for future propaganda purposes.

But the AIPAC and ADL crowd, representative of nothing and no one but itself, is no base of Obama's, having campaigned almost insanely to prevent his nomination, and having done little, to put it politely, to secure his election. The adherents of that strange thing, Christian Zionism (what is it with America as a hotbed of heterodoxies?) did not vote for him last time and would never vote for him next time, no matter what he said or did. He beat AIPAC and the ADL for the nomination, and he beat the Left Behind lot at the election.

So, what if Obama told them where to stick it, told them that it was payback time? What if he said that the security of American citizens, or even just their economic interests in the enormous number of countries supporting this move, simply mattered more? What if he pointed out that it was a very recent and thoroughly pernicious innovation for American foreign policy to be based on (rather adolescent) ideological rigidity rather than on cold, hard reality? What if he mentioned Nixon and China, or the gravely underrated Gerald Ford and Helsinki, with the countless lives saved by the sense to accept that the real world is the real world, whether or not one might happen to like it? And what if he asked what the Israelis had ever done for America?

What would actually happen if there were no American veto after all?

21 September 2011 at 11:58  
Blogger Andrea Muhrrteyn said...

Mr. Obama's intentions remain more mysterious?

If you think Obama knows what his motivations are in regards to Israel and Palestine; then you think he is an honourable liberal. I don't think Obama has any fixed idea as to what he wants, except to remain in political power. If he can crucify either the Jews or Arabs, for his own personal gain, he will do so. He has no fixed values or principles. None that I am aware of.

21 September 2011 at 12:39  
Blogger Andrea Muhrrteyn said...

In fact: If you consider the big picture; I imagine its something like this.

The worlds arms manufacturers and bankers, in this case probably primarily American and Iranian (who supplies Israel and Hamas, etc?) don't want Israel and Palestine to resolve their differences into a two state solution; for it provides the never ending war provides them with consumers for their products. Palestinian/Arab leadership are not serious about a Palestinian state: if they were they could address root cause demographics issues to prove their sincerity and seriousness; they prefer the jihad state of existence, since it provides them with 'jihad glory' and status, as to who can be the most sadistic prick on the block, breeding the most children for suicide bombers kind of crap; than to address the root causes of their psychological addiction to sadistic power and glory or to confront their fears.

21 September 2011 at 12:56  
Blogger carl jacobs said...


As always I'm afraid you appear to have some problem in understanding that sometimes you have to resolve conflicts between two legitimate viewpoints

How do you resolve a conflict between two legitimate viewpoints when one side's viewpoint is "The Jews all leave or die, and the Muslims get all the land."


21 September 2011 at 14:00  
Blogger Andrea Muhrrteyn said...


How do you resolve a conflict between two legitimate viewpoints when one side's viewpoint is "The Jews all leave or die, and the Muslims get all the land."

These are not their REAL INTENTIONS OR REAL VIEWPOINTS. You confuse PR STATEMENTS as implying to be the real motivations and intentions of the speakers. PR statements are made to fuck with your mind to be obedient cannon fodder; not to tell you the truth about their real intentions and motivations. Very few 'citizens' appreciate HONEST STATEMENTS OF INTENTION, because subconsciously they have been educated by a PC public school system to value PR bullshit as 'reality'; and for their fragile ego's and minds (sans critical thinking) to be offended and insulted by any politician who tells them the truth about such politicians real intentions (see Brad Blanton).

You cannot have it both ways. Citizens either appreciate and vote for brutally honest committed to problem solving politicians, who demand you act like a citizen, not a fucking retarded welfare addict; or you get Abner Louimaed by PR bullshitting Masonic liars who promise you a tyra-nanny state.

21 September 2011 at 14:23  
Blogger Johnny Rottenborough said...

The video complicates matters. Yahweh gave the land to his worshippers and then Allah sent a Prophet to tell his worshippers to drive Yahweh’s worshippers out. In that regard, the demographic changes in the United States will make it much easier for Muslims to accomplish their divine task.

21 September 2011 at 14:43  
Blogger Avi Barzel said...


Just clicked on your name; don't know what took me so long and why I didn't recognize the significance of your crest avatar. Former SAC? Whoo-whee! That's something to put on a cv. Explains too your ability to zero in on the meat of a matter.

Sincere thanks to you and your buddies for staying awake in your tunnels, eyes on thread boards, keeping us all safe and free to go about our business.

21 September 2011 at 15:10  
Blogger tory boys never grow up said...


Short and glib answer - very carefully. Long answer is still ongoing work in progress - but you try and get both parties to modify their objectives so that they can become mutually compatible or you have a war where the winner takes all that is left. Continual harking on about the original differences usually leads to the latter rather then the former.

As Andrea has already pointed out people are often more realistic about their objectives than might appear at first sight.

21 September 2011 at 15:52  
Blogger Avi Barzel said...

tory boys,

Isn't it what the land-for-peace formula and the Oslo accords were all about? Your advice about wiping out the past and pushing the restart button everytime there's a snag is not a strategy; it's pointless fumbling which will lead nowhere, as has been the case time and time again.

With a unilateral delaration and a land claim before the UN, the Hezbolah missile build-up in Lebanon (under the eyes of the UN), the ongoing arming of the terror nest in Gaza, Egypt going apeshit, "peace flottilas" trying to end a naval blockade, a clueless dud in the White House and with Iran's nuclear programs and its sabre rattling, it would be negligent for the Israeli government to waste time in cabinet meetings and assume that the enemies are just posturing, looking for a dialogue or attention. Making yet more territorial concessions for nothing in return would be suicidal not only for any Israeli government, but for Israel as a viable nation state as well. I would assume that all parties in Israel are, at this time, doing the smart thing and planning for a vigorous defensive or pre-emptive war aiming for a quick, harsh and decisive victory. It's an "old" approach, but it's the only one that has ever worked.

21 September 2011 at 16:30  
Blogger Andrea Muhrrteyn said...

Tory Boys

As Andrea has already pointed out people are often more realistic about their objectives than might appear at first sight.

What did I say to give you taht BS impression?

I said all POLITICIANS LIE ABOUT THEIR OBJECTIVES. A massive big difference between consciously lying and being less than realistic. The one is conscious malicious deception, the other is unconscious and unintended.

Is it any wonder that white civilisation is crumbling; when men such as you and your fellow pieces of white meat shit; have no honour and no value for brutal honesty!

Lying two faced pieces of scum.

21 September 2011 at 16:53  
Blogger Muggins said...

David Lindsay:


"The creation of a Palestinian State in the West Bank would be the end of the Hashemite Kingdom: the pressure for incorporation into that State would be irresistible"

Sorry if I'm being thick. Are you saying Jordan and Palestine would merge? Didn't King Hussein kick out a lot of Palestinians in 1970 because of the amount of trouble he was having?

Also if America didn't veto they would be implicitly supporting someone who didn't recognize Israel's existence. Does that have no consequenses?

And are you telling me the Palestinians and their Iranian buddies, would suddenly be ok with Israel? Would they not in fact be twice as bold in their "negotiations"?

You tell me

21 September 2011 at 18:17  
Blogger tory boys never grow up said...


It is possible to be "consciously lying" and to have a more realistic objectives than set out in the "conscious lies" - which is what I thought you were saying and is what I think is the case with some Palestinian (and Israeli and others) politicians for that. matter.

21 September 2011 at 18:23  
Blogger tory boys never grow up said...


I haven't said anywhere that Israel shouldn't defend itself if attacked or make plans to do so in the event of such attacks. Nor have I said they should make territorial concessions in return for nothing. That is because that is the opposite of what I believe. That said I don't believe such responses should be preemptive or disproportionate.

Sticking to and refusing to negotiate on rigid principles also isn't much of strategy for negotiations when the objectives of both sides are mutually exclusive doesn't appear to be much of strategy either.

21 September 2011 at 18:38  
Blogger Dreadnaught said...

How many more rounds of fruitless negotiation, false dawns, random missile attacks and out and out wars, should Israel absorb without responding, for some people to accept that there is a Death Warrant out on that Country and it Jewish people and its called Islam.

There will never be negotiations between God, Yahweh or Allah and there will never be peace at least according to Hamas and the Ayatollahs until the Jews and their little patch of land are eliminated. Even then, they will not be satisfied - the world is their objective - not that for one minute do I believe that will achieve it in anyone's life time, but they are in for the long haul.

We are all Israeli now.

21 September 2011 at 20:20  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

Dreadnaught said...

" ... there will never be peace at least according to Hamas and the Ayatollahs until the Jews and their little patch of land are eliminated."

What's even more scary is that a growing body of 'Christian Zionists' see peace as impossible too and the inevitability of a final showdown before the return of Christ.

There are fanatics on both side of the divide - and in the middle normal, everyday people (Palestinians) who just want to live an ordinary life free to go about their day to business without fear.

21 September 2011 at 21:03  
Blogger DP111 said...

The Daily Star Lebanon:

From behind a desk topped by a miniature model of Palestine’s hoped-for blue United Nations chair, Ambassador Abdullah Abdullah spoke to The Daily Star Wednesday about Palestine’s upcoming bid for U.N. statehood.

The ambassador unequivocally says that Palestinian refugees would not become citizens of the sought for U.N.-recognized Palestinian state, an issue that has been much discussed. “They are Palestinians, that’s their identity,” he says. “But … they are not automatically citizens.”

This would not only apply to refugees in countries such as Lebanon, Egypt, Syria and Jordan or the other 132 countries where Abdullah says Palestinians reside. Abdullah said that “even Palestinian refugees who are living in [refugee camps] inside the [Palestinian] state, they are still refugees. They will not be considered citizens.”

The so-called refugees will continue to be what the original intention was - to use as a weapon against Israel. Once Israel is destroyed, the reason for the PLO's existence would vanish, and the territory will be divided by Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon and Syria.

21 September 2011 at 22:15  
Blogger Avi Barzel said...

tory boys,

I commend you on your wisdom, but I can't read minds. What I responded to was " try and get both parties to modify their objectives so that they can become mutually compatible..." Perhaps that's a good diplomatic dictum to throw on the table at a Peace Studies seminar, but the troublesome and irritating reality for Israel is that all attempts to modify objectives have failed ...clearly and demonstrably because of Arab intransigence. There. Am I allowed to acuse without apologies in the 21st century or must I pretend to a relativistic detachment in order to be deemed civilized? Your wording implied equivalence in behaviour, as if two nasty and truant boys have been fighting in the hallway and both need to be disciplined. I reject that line of thought: Israel made concession after concession while the world "guaranteed" fairness. Returning the Sinai to Egypt, inviting Arafat from exile and even arming the PLO, backing out of Lebanon without propping up the Christian Falangists, backing out of Lebanon again and doing nothing while the UN oversees re-arming of Hezbolah, handing over Gaza, promising Judea and Samaria and even the Old Jewish Quarter of Jerusalem and now, even the deadly Oslo accords are dead and the Quartet which "guaranteed" Arab compliance are pushing Israel for more concessions with further "guarantees."

Am I also guilty of "continual harking on about the original differences," as you put it? Should I be moving on, as they say nowadays and beg an indifferent world for understanding and mercy for a sliver of land in a nasty neighbourhood? What if Israel wisens up before the imminent attack for a change and draws the line in the sand? Will it be "sticking to and refusing to negotiate on rigid principles"? Words will have serious meaning in the coming months and for me and my people, in Israel and in the Diaspora, they'll have serious consequences.

Don't misunderstand, tory boys, I'm not accusing or attacking you personally. Many Israelis and Jews abroad think along the same lines and give these matters even less time than you have. All of us, including me at one time, accepted the propaganda barrage of repeated half-truths and blatant lies by the world's most august assemblies, governments, media and education systems. How and why this has happened is another story, but there comes a time when the truth, loaded with all the weight of evidence must crash through, and I am hoping that I can play even a tiny part in speeding up that process.

22 September 2011 at 01:29  
Blogger carl jacobs said...


Yep, I was in SAC. If you have ever seen the movie 'Wargames' just take it from me that the movie is hysterical. It is devoid of any connection to reality, but it is hysterical. And Denzel Washington's character in 'Crimson Tide' should have been shot. No, would have been shot. Not a doubt in my mind.

Victors in the Cold War

22 September 2011 at 03:38  
Blogger TMLutas said...

There is one thing that is vital to any peace negotiation and is only marginally addressed in this presentation, water. Figure out how to get the palestinians water equality and you have something that is a much more attractive proposition.

22 September 2011 at 03:58  
Blogger len said...

'It is the Palestinians who oppose a two-state solution?'.

No....It is those who are 'behind the Palestinian problem' who oppose the two State solution.The Palestinians are merely pawns in a strategy to destroy Israel.

The YouTube article portrays this brilliantly, what is alarming is that so many people (Christians included)who have no knowledge of the reality of the situation and being duped by the anti Israel propaganda jump in feet first with their opinions as to how to 'solve the situation'.

Israel is a 'stone' which will cause many to stumble and will act as a beacon to draw all the enemies of the God of the Bible into one place where they will be Judged.

22 September 2011 at 08:17  
Blogger Andrea Muhrrteyn said...

unsubscribe. have heard more coherent sincere serious arguments from alleged mentally insane patients.

problems cannot be solved if the individuals and their constituencies are not willing to honestly confront the root cause of the problem.

enjoy your slave and cannon fodder breeding Masonic wargames. I suggest Israel never be as moronically stupid as PW and FW by giving up their nuclear arsenal. Perhaps a few nukes will wake the little slave and cannon fodder wargames imbeciles to the reality of confronting root cause problem solving.

22 September 2011 at 09:11  
Blogger tory boys never grow up said...


I haven't assumed equivalence of behaviour between the Israelis and Palestinians - I don't actaully think that making such a judgement would help the process. Any Palestinian would happily come up with a list of what it sees as the wrongs committed by Israel and the concessions they have made - you would doubtless disagree with their analysis just as they would disagree with your own. In each analysis some points will be well supported and some will be more tenous. I certainly don't think that any sustainable solution will come about as a result of a "headmaster" figure administering discipline as I very much doubt that there is any such figure who could impose a solution on both sides. There is a role for an honest broker who can take the confidence of both sides, not be judgemental and see where the grounds for compromise may exist and then seek to hold both parties to their commitments - but I very much doubt anyone could perform such a role if they have already expressed a judgement on either of the parties behaviour in the past.

Apart from such an approach I fail to see what the alternative is other than mutually assured destruction. One side could try and weaken the other's resolve by violence or force - but the long past history of this actaully shows that such actions have the opposite effect and strenghten the resolve of the other.

PS I know some Israelis also think in a similar manner to myself - and I acknowledge that those not involved in a conflict have the luxury of being able to take a dispassionate view - but that doesn't mean that such views and approaches do not have validity, and haven't been used to great effect elsewhere.

22 September 2011 at 10:39  
Blogger peedeel said...

A sound bite of information presenting a particular view point…is not the solution to the problem, but part of the problem itself.

Take for example the Nebi Musa riot. There is no mention of the fact that in October 1915 the British government pledged that Palestine would be Arab and independent in the future. Balfour made his famous declaration that Palestine 'should be the national home of the Jewish people’ in 1917.

Lord Curzon stated in 1918:

“One of the difficulties of the situation arises from the fact that the Zionists have taken full advantage - and are disposed to take even fuller advantage - of the opportunity which was then offered to them. You have only to read, as probably most of us do, their periodical 'Palestine', and, indeed, their pronouncements in the papers, to see that their programme is expanding from day to day. They now talk about a Jewish State. The Arab portion of the population is well-nigh forgotten and is to be ignored. They not only claim the boundaries of the old Palestine, but they claim to spread across the Jordan into the rich countries lying to the east, and, indeed, there seems to be very small limit to the aspirations which they now form”.

No mention of this, either, on the clip. There’s little point in becoming bogged down in the Faisal-Clemenceau agreement, and the fact Faisal originally supported the idea of a Jewish National Home in Palestine; nor of reiterating the erratic nature of British policy in the area. Under the Ottoman’s thousands of troops were normally deployed in Jerusalem to prevent disorder during the Nabi Musa procession. In 1920 the Brits deployed aprrox. 188 policemen - this following Jewish pressure for unlimited immigration, and an end to wartime restrictions on land purchase, a reduction in Arab (Syrian) administrators with a corresponding increase in British and Jewish functionaries; this, too, following Jewish claims on French-held Lebanese and Syrian territory. Is it any surprise the Arab population was unhappy with the situation? The declaration of the Syrian Congress on March 7 of the independence of Syria and Palestine with Faisal as its king, simply exacerbated the situation, raising local expectations to fever pitch.

The riots, inevitably followed.

The clip claims six Jewish deaths during the riots - In fact I’m only aware of five, they are identified by the Israeli Government as: Meyer Gani; Matityahu Michal Gross; Abraham Samuel Haramati Schwartz; Shmuel Eliezer Silberman; Yossef Hamedi. Four Arabs also died.

The Palin Commission set up after the event placed the blame for the riots on the Zionists, 'whose impatience to achieve their ultimate goal and indiscretion are largely responsible for this unhappy state of feeling’ among the Arab population.

And this, too, is part of the problem. The continuous quest for someone to blame. It must be someone’s fault. Guilt must be attached. While the clip makes no mention of the Palin Commission’s findings (probably doesn’t fit the director’s agenda) it does try hard to place blame. It presents complexity in a simplistic way, thus distorting reality.

While this sort of mentality continues in the west, and in Israel and in the Arab world, there will be no peace. We have to move beyond history and the concept of “blame”, failure to do so, may ultimately have terrible consequences for Israel and the Arab world in general. This clip, sadly, adds to the problem, thus making a solution that much harder to find.

22 September 2011 at 10:52  
Blogger Ariadne said...

More accurate information. It mentions the (later Nazi) Grand Mufti of Jerusalem.

22 September 2011 at 12:04  
Blogger ALLtoJesus said...

The Palestinians most certainly do NOT want a two-state solution, as they made perfectly clear by the logo they used in their UN appeal:

They want the whole enchilada.

22 September 2011 at 15:13  
Blogger Avi Barzel said...

tory boys,

You say, "Any Palestinian would happily come up with a list of what it sees as the wrongs committed by Israel and the concessions they have made - you would doubtless disagree with their analysis just as they would disagree with your own. In each analysis some points will be well supported and some will be more tenous." These lists have been compiled and energetically distributed by hundreds of NGOs, the UN and many of its bodies, academia and whatnot. Claims of wrongs can be examined and their validity determined, although the process is difficult, expensive, open to fraud and highly subjective. Concessions are much easier to enumerate. Specifially, concessions required by the various peace agreements, such as Oslo. Here, one can search hopelessly for a single sigificant concession the Arabs have had to make within the frame work of these agreements, whereas the list of Israeli concessions and fratuities is long. You say, on one hand, that equivalency is not what apply, but on the other, you say that claims are unverifiable and that we are forced to take them all at face value, or as the case has been, with bias and prejudice.

You say, also, that you "... fail to see what the alternative is other than mutually assured destruction.". Why? Israel is in conflict with nations that have a proven ability to lose real conflicts again and again. This is why they have come to rely on a fictional nationality, the "Palestinian," on international political pressure, on humanitarian organizations whose sole task is to make it impossible for Israel to defend itself and on fictional "international laws" to tie its hands with. There are battles and wars worth fighting and worth winning. The world would look very different today, not in a good way, if the Allies had wrung their hands and looked for ways to avoid conflict with an ideology and a war machine aiming to rule the world. The situation today is not that much different, and as many rightly point out, Israel is the lynchpin in the conflict.

In your last paragraph you make alusions to the problem of armchair generalship from the safety of one's home. It's a topic that crops up regularly and one that is only applied to those who argue in favour of rightous conflict, defensive or offensive, never to those who offer only appeasement. The issue is not whether I or anyone else will be on the front lines. The issue is whether those who must make the decisions will have the backing of the people to allow them freedom of movement; political or military. This selective pacifism, as it is applied to Israel and increasingly to the Western democracies, aims to tie our hands, to force us to worry about the well-being of enemy populations, to always delay with diplomatic devices, to concede, forget, forgive, sue for peace and happily pay tributes to cleptocratic and pirate governments and entities through face-saving gestures like international aid. And in the end, the bottom line, drawn since the dawn of history when groups of humans ranged over the landscape and struggled for land and resources, remains the same; those wiling to take a stand, to create warriors as well herders, farmers, artists and priests, and to risk life and limb, those able to make their societies function effectively and to attract wealth, supporters and allies, those groups will succeed and prosper. Those who backed off meekly at every instance of threat eventually found themselves in corners out of which they couldn't move out and disappeared from the rolls of history. For most, we don't even remember their names. It sounds all so primitive and atavistic, I admit, but no amount of imagining, fanfare and offialdom has ever been able to alter this mechanism.

22 September 2011 at 15:15  
Blogger Avi Barzel said...


Yes, I understand what you mean. Curious, how Hollywood seems to always portray the military as if its peppered with exciting, off the wall characters, who in real life would be thrown out of most office jobs for being dysfunctional nincampoops. In my humble occupation, shows like Ice Truckers hype a fairly safe, simple and horribly boring procedure to the point where me and colleagues love to sit down with a couple of beers and howl with laughter at how the directors can make a truck moving at 45 km/h, cracking through a thin and inconsequential layer over the ice base, seem like the most dangerous task in the world.

22 September 2011 at 15:25  
Blogger tory boys never grow up said...


I can assure you that the ancestors of those who were displaced from their lands on the creation of Israel, those who have lived for many years in refugee camps, those who have suffered from Israeli massacres in those camps or as a result of Israeli retaliation and those that suffer day to day indignities in the occupied zones who do not consider themselves as "fictional" Palestinians. If you look at history you will see that the ideas as to what constitutes a nation can change dramatically according to circumstances - so showinging me maps from 2000 years ago really isn't the point.

It would be similarly insulting to call those Jews who came to Israel after the attrocities in Europe "fictional" Israelis - as I'm afraid some do.

While, there are clearly those who wish to use Palestinians as their pawns in a fight against the whole idea of Israel (and if you want to look around you will find I am no fan of such creatures) - I'm afraid that there are both Israelis and Palestinians who have genuine and good claims for their own territory and rights of self determination. Sort those competing claims out - and then I think their will be a much better chance of dealing with the evil causes that are currently standing. Don't and I'm afraid you let our enemies continue to hold a rather large propaganda card.

22 September 2011 at 15:52  
Blogger Avi Barzel said...

tory boys,

Showing maps from two millenia ago or decades ago is legitimate. Claims to lands and iderntities are human cultural constructs, but their viability depends on the intelligence, work and resources put into them. A people that creates itself and constructs a just society, healing the landscape and creating industries will always be stronger and more legitimate than a people who cannot even manage to utilize generous gifts without killing themselves and others in orgies of hatred. The bulk of the ancestors of those "Palestinians" came as recent arrivals as well, landless serfs to Ottoman and Arab landlords and in greater waves when Jews began creating wealth and jobs, and today they depend on internaltional and Israeli largesse. The supposedly desired Palestinian State openly promises to remained armed to the teeth, to be judenrein and to maintain all artificial, specially-designated refugees as permanent, multi-generational "refugees," stuck for generations in self-run UNRWA camps allover the Middle East. Do you think a single Arab state will allow them to either become citizens or to move to their new nation of Palestine? Hardly, with billions going into "camps" to fuel the economies of dying Arab regimes. And the world yawns and see that it's all good.

I also challenge all vague claims of Israeli massacres and expulsions, retaliations and imposed indignities until they are specified. That is because a parity of credibility does not exist between Israel and its enemies; any self-correcting, democratic system with a free media and a sound judiciary will always trump the lies of dysfunctional tyranies. So yes, I rudely, cavalierly and with all due prejudice categorically and in a pro-forma manner dismiss these claims until proven beyond doubt, no matter how often repeated and with however many kilowatts of screaming, passion and stridency.

I urge you to examine "Palestinian" nationalism, tory boys, to perhaps ask why it was only created in the late sixties and seventies, only after Jordan was kicked out of the "West Bank" and why it was instituted with the openly stated cynical proviso that this national designation is only meant to serve as a temporary political device for Western consumption, and towards the ultimate task of driving the Jews into the sea. Please, don't say that it's all posturing and PR and that they don't really mean it; the evidence is strongly against such a hypothesis.

I have no doubt that there are sincere and good Arabs who yearn for a real Palestinian culture and a coexistence with Jews and other non-Muslims. I suspect strongly that their numbers are far greater than we are allowed to believe, but their voices are stilled, usually with the simple expedient of threat and punishment by their own rulers and with the passive acceptance of a selectively-caring world.

However you look at things, the "propaganda card" everyone frets about is rapidly becoming a minor player in an increasingly serious and even deadly game. This is because finally the situation has arrived at a point where no options exist other than either capitulating incrementally to the ever-moving goalposts placed by militant Islam and its handmaidens, or decisively defeating those tyrants we have placed or left in power due to stupidity, avarice, laziness and cowardice. This can only happen when not only Israel and the US stand in resistance, but when every free nation sees the obvious and bands together to do something about it. It would be nice to have a third option, a smart solution to every problem, but sometimes life becomes depressingly binary and it's time to choose.

22 September 2011 at 16:54  

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