Location: Granite Falls, North Carolina, United States

I'm an ordained United Methodist minister no longer pastoring churches, a former media producer with skills ten years out of date, a writer trying to sell my first novel, and a sales associate keeping body and soul together working for the People's Republic of Corporate America. I'm married to the most wonderful woman in the world, who was my best friend for 17 years before we married.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

On Israel

I haven't taken on foreign policy much here, beyond objecting to the Iraq War.

But something is going on with Israel now, and I feel compelled to say something. Anything(?)

I have strong, yet mixed, feelings concerning the whole Mid-East situation. I believe Israel has a right to exist and to defend itself. Yet I also believe the Palestinians have a right to a peaceful home nation. The way Israel is laid out, the Palestinians have two pieces of land allotted to them, much the way Pakistan had it when the Indian sub-continent was divided. One country in two parts so far divided by hostile territory would have a hard time keeping itself governed. Thus, the existence of Bangladesh.

Israel withdrew from the Gaza Strip, which may be too small to form its own country, unless you look at Andorra, Monaco, and Montenegro. It would need a lot of help from outside, but what it is getting is hostility because they had the temerity to elect a government our government and the Israelis disapproved of. Thus, hostilities continue.

Now, Hezbollah is attacking from Lebanon, and Israel is pursuing hostilities there, too. The majority of the world, it seems, wants Israel to dissolve and disappear. But the United States is not going to let that happen. I don't believe it should happen, either.

That said, I also believe that Israel is forgetting some of the lessons of history. They are treating the Palestinians almost the way Hitler and Stalin treated the Jews, which caused the formation of Israel in the modern world to begin with.

Yes, Israel has committed some atrocious actions, and yes, they still are. On the other hand, the Palestinian leadership doesn't seem to know what to do except keep pushing Israel's buttons so they have something to struggle against. What's the matter? Are they incompetent when it comes to actual governing?

It seems to me that if the Palestinians had followed the example of Mohandas (Mahatma) Ghandi, using non-violent resistance to achieve their ends, then by now they would be enjoying peacefully their own nation.

But that doesn't seem to be what the leadership on either side wants.

Radicalism in whatever form, from whatever side it comes, can't stand peace.


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