Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Speaking Truth to the Powerless

This interesting letter by a man named David White, who calls himself an agnostic, is a fascinating read. Speaking as a New Zealander, far removed from the Israeli/Palestinian conflict, he doesn't say anything new exactly, but he says it in a very blunt way that I'm not sure a Jew or a Muslim could "get away with." What do you think?

An excerpt:

Why I Stand. As I said, I do not, and I will not, support the Palestinian cause. Why not? I have a number of reasons, and here they are: 1. You have made it clear beyond any shadow of doubt that you intend to destroy Israel and kill or drive out its Jewish population. This is genocide, pure and simple. You justify this by saying that Israel has committed many crimes against your people, and that you seek "justice". I say this in response- NOTHING WHATSOEVER is an acceptable justification for genocide. Loss of land, humiliation at being militarily defeated - others have suffered these and moved on to create new nations and opportunities for themselves.
Examples abound- the Germans thrown out of East Prussia in Europe, 1945, the Nationalist Chinese who fled to Taiwan in 1949, to name but two. Germans and Taiwanese have coped with military defeat and the loss of land. They haven't warred with their neighbors, nor have they launched terrorist attacks upon them. Both countries have more wealth than any Arab nation. Why can't Palestinians cope? Are Germans and Chinese better able to deal with adversity than Arabs?
2. You have accused the Israelis of "genocide" against you. Here's a question for you: Israel has atomic bombs and powerful military forces. If they really, truly wanted you all dead, they could easily do it. Why haven't they? If the Israelis went all-out, you would be, as we say in New Zealand, "dog tucker". Why did they spend so much time negotiating with your leaders? Because Israel wants peace and secure borders. You refuse to give them even those. You plan genocide and accuse Israel of the same crime. Prove it!

Although he doesn't comment on this directly, I was fascinated by a similar parallel: When anti-Muslim political cartoons were published in Denmark, Muslims rioted and destroyed and killed. When Iran puts on a gallery exhibition of anti-Jewish and anti-Zionist political cartoons, in their opinion to "test Western limits of free speech/expression," no one rioted, destroyed, or killed. No one really even questioned the right of the gallery to exist! Had it taken place in America, probably a demonstration would have occurred -- but not rioting! Interesting how those responses are certainly different....hmmm...

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