Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Israel to US - F*** You

While the Middle East veers around the edges of disaster our "friend" in the region counts on its lobby to keep a direct blow to Palestinian desires and US ideas of peace process from having any outcome. Israel is putting 1,600 new Jewish homes in East Jerusalem, land taken and occupied after the 1976 war.

There is no doubt that every nation has its own interests and will hew to them rather than another's in most cases. It is entirely reasonable and congruent with national sovereignty for a nation to look out for its own interests. Those interests can get pretty complicated when the region you live in is as unstable and possibly hazardous as the Middle East. It is a region of theocracy and military chest beating and a confusing and tangled history. Adding to all the nonsense of the area is the issue of being a virtual client state of the US.

For pretty serious economic and strategic reasons the US would like to see the area both stable and prosperous (somewhat more than a few "sultans"). The collision here would seem to be Israeli insistence that they should be free to claim land, on the simple basis of "we can." Such behavior runs directly counter to US efforts to get a peace process going and moving to some end that Palestinians can reasonably be held to. US interests in the Middle East are not Jewish - or should not be - but rather the fostering of forms of government we can exist with in some form of comfort. Judaism is not the interest of the US government, it is entirely meaningless in the construct of government in this country - but not politically. Given the politics of strengthening the hands of the mullahs in Iran knocking the snot out of peace between Israel and Palestinians ought to count for something.

In a part of the world where the primary support of a nation comes from outside non-Islamic white nations the default setting becomes Iran crazy if those other nations are not fair brokers. Whatever emotional connection Likud may have to East Jerusalem, it is conquered territory and conquered in recent memory. If the assertion is that due to force of arms Israel is permitted to behave in any manner it chooses, then the corollary must also be true - that countering force of arms is also as acceptable. This would mean that lacking, due to force of arms, a military that non-military tactics of force will be and must be utilized. To be sure, it is horrid to have buses full of civilians blown up, cafes shattered, or any of the other means taken by those with no military to fly bombs, shoot artillery, field infantry, and generally acceptably kill people and that is what you get.

We help fund the behavior of Israel, considerably fund that behavior. Our interests in the region are not served by that behavior. This would indicate that our money is being thrown away. It certainly is time to rethink the funding of behavior directly counter to US interests. It also will not happen. Theocracy is scarcely a dying business in the US.

No, announcing it during VP Joe Biden's visit will have no effect.


Kevin said...

I couldn't agree more, Chuck!

Zak Johnson said...

Often cited, but not often enough:

"So likewise, a passionate attachment of one nation for another produces a variety of evils. Sympathy for the favorite nation, facilitating the illusion of an imaginary common interest in cases where no real common interest exists, and infusing into one the enmities of the other, betrays the former into a participation in the quarrels and wars of the latter without adequate inducement or justification. It leads also to concessions to the favorite nation of privileges denied to others which is apt doubly to injure the nation making the concessions; by unnecessarily parting with what ought to have been retained, and by exciting jealousy, ill-will, and a disposition to retaliate, in the parties from whom equal privileges are withheld. And it gives to ambitious, corrupted, or deluded citizens (who devote themselves to the favorite nation), facility to betray or sacrifice the interests of their own country, without odium, sometimes even with popularity; gilding, with the appearances of a virtuous sense of obligation, a commendable deference for public opinion, or a laudable zeal for public good, the base or foolish compliances of ambition, corruption, or infatuation."

- George Washington

Phil said...

"This would indicate that our money is being thrown away."

That, and so many others.