Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Israel vs. the Palestinians

While much of the world condemns Israel's recent attacks on Palestinians, some, like Rod Dreher, though fervently defend Israel's move.

How can Israel be expected to make peace with devils like that? Why should Israel tolerate rockets being sent by Hamas against Israeli villages? It is terrible that Palestinian civilians are dying today by Israeli bombs. But their blood is on the hands of the jihadi terrorists of Hamas.

Of course Israel should not tolerate terrorism against their citizens. And, of course, Israel should take steps to defend itself. The problem is that Israel is not taking the hard political action they need to in order to make progress on this issue. Why have they not completely their illegal settlements? Why have they not been more willing to work out a two-state solution? Why do they not realize that there is no military solution for terrorism?

Let me stress that none of Israel's actions excuse the terrorist actions against them. However, isn't it understandable on a certain level what the Palestinians feel? They were forced out of their homes, forced from their land and they watched it all given to the Jews. Wouldn't that make anyone mad? Not just mad, but furious? Especially when no suitable compensation was offered in return. The Palestinians were not offered an equal political say. They were not given anything in return.

This post is not to debate the morality of the creation of the modern state of Israel, but I do believe that the circumstances of it place a greater moral burden on the Israelis. They should not compromise their safety, but if they need to go more than half-way, then they should. By occupying land that was not theirs, that someone else was forced out of to make way, the Jews took on the burden of having to be the ones with the greater imperative to make the new situation work. The Holocaust was horrific, but that does not give the Israelis an excuse to treat others poorly.

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