| Sunday, November 16, 2008 - 04:59 pm |
"Less so given the fact that Palestine was a nation destroyed in order to allow Israel's creation"
Palestine was a nation? Palestine was part of the Ottoman Empire. It has never been a country onto its own. The Ottomans were defeated and the British gained a Mandate to control the area. Even after Israel became a state, the West Bank area was a part of Jordan and Gaza belonged to the Egyptians. They did not seem to feel the Palestinians needed to have their own homeland. Only when it was politically necessary did Jordan ever relinquish its claims on the West Bank, after Israel had already captured it in the 67 war.
Perhaps you are referring not to a nation but to the nationality of the inhabitants. Some scholars argue that Palestinian nationality only began emerging after the arrival of Jews in massive numbers. The Palestinian historian Rashid Khalidi puts the date closer to the 1880s and 1890s. It was only at this time when the seeds of national identity started a slow growth in the Palestine territory. It is the eventual growth of the national identity that created calls for a Palestinian state. Yet Palestinian nationalism could not produce a state. It was handicapped by a lack of cohesiveness. Divisions in tribal and familial lines were readily exploited by about every party present. Had the Palestinian nationality been the dominant factor in Palestinian society then, well then there would be a what if statement.
The argument for the need for a Palestinian state can be a rather touchy subject for Israel's neighbors. Jordan is 70%-80% Palestinian yet it is ruled by the Hashemites. The Hashemite Kingdom in Jordan had no problem massacring the Palestinians when the Palestinians tried to take over the country. Oddly, I have not heard anyone denounce the Jordanians.
The bottom line on the creation of Israel is that almost every country, except Canada, is born though fire and blood. My grandmother lived through Lodz Ghetto and survived the Auschwitz death camp. During which she witnessed the death of her entire extended family except for one brother who was separated from her for over 8 years. My grandfather and two of his sisters were sent to Israel days before the Nazis invaded Poland by his father; who saw the writing on the wall. Once there, my grandfather actually joined the British army and fought for the rest of the war. Feel free to take a look at the book of remembrance for those lost in the Holocaust from his town of Skala, Poland.
The 4 pages of survivors are ../images 161 to 164. The 44 pages of the dead are ../images 281 to 324.
Out of the ashes of Europe my ancestors realized that no nation would ever respect them unless the Jews had a homeland. My grandmother arrived in Israel in 1946 with only the clothes on her back. She lived in a small town between Tel-Aviv and Jerusalem, closer to Tel-Aviv. At that time she tells me that she could not go farther than a block or two without an escort for fear of Palestinian militants. Yet with perseverance and dedication, a nation was forged against all odds.
Zionist may in fact have less of a right to Israel than the Palestinians. That doesn't concern me. My people needed a safe harbor and could expect no hand outs. They took what they had to and believe me I know the Palestinians ended up with the shit side of the stick.
About the violence and terrorism. It has been present on both sides since the beginning. There is absolutely no moral superiority. What has happened in Israel since 1967 changed the landscape is disheartening. However, I am not apologetic at all about the creation of the state.