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This is an edited and expanded  comment I wrote to a diary:  As a Jew living in America, the past week has changed me forever.  The diary moved me very much as it did many others judging from its rec list.  My comment, on the other hand, got no response.  I may have said it poorly so I'll try again.

As a Goy who lived in Israel from 1963-1965 I feel pain about what is happening there today.  I went there to do my post doc withAharon Katzir-Katchalsky as my mentor.  I also did some work with his brother Ephriam as well.

He was murdered in a terrorist attack at Ben Gurion International Airport in 1972 in which 26 people were killed and 80 injured. His younger brother, Ephraim Katzir, became the President of Israel in 1973.
Aaron was, as many others around me were, a pacifist and wanted peace with his Palestinian brothers and sisters.  When we commemorated his wonderful life in 1982 we arrived as Israel went to war on Lebanon.  We gave homage to this peaceful man as planes loaded with bombs flew to bomb Lebanon.

Before I went to work in Israel in 1963 I read every piece of history I could.  I have always thought the Palestinians were  pawns and victims in a wider struggle where there were no honorable players.  I will explain this further below the break.

It has only gotten worse and I see the Israelis and Palestinians as victims of the worst kind.  Just as those deranged people in Europe who oppressed the Jews also made themselves   victims of their own ugly hate the Israelis seem to be creating their own place in hell.  The Palestinians are not helping matters but the relative might of the two groups is strikingly different. I have no interest in pointing fingers or blaming either group  There is more than enough of that going on. But I do believe that what the Israelis are doing goes deeper for some very important psychological reasons.

Franz Fannon  wrote about the psychology of oppression.  He was the first to make it clear to me that using power to dominate and oppress and commit genocide has its effect on the perpetrators.

So I am hurting for people, both Israelis and Palestinians I loved in a region I fell in love with.  Both sides are doomed to suffer the consequences of the colonial powers domination of the region.  Like Iraq the situation has a history.  Europe, the USSR, and the USA are the real villains here.  Read on below and we  can think about this hopeless situation.

Fannon's book

The Wretched of the Earth presents thorough critiques of nationalism and of imperialism, a discussion of personal and societal mental health, a discussion of how the use of language (vocabulary) is applied to the establishment of imperialist identities, such as colonizer and colonized in order to teach and psychologically mold the native and the colonist into their respective roles as slave and master, and a discussion of role of the intellectual in a revolution.
 This was about the French middle class who had to serve to control Algeria in Colonial times.  Clearly the situation in Palestine is more complex but there are important parallels.

The term Palestinian refugees

refers primarily to the patrilineal descendants of Arab refugees originating in the Mandate, as per the UNRWA definition. In 2012, the number of registered patrilineal descendants of the original Palestine refugees, based on the UNRWA registration requirements, is estimated to be 4,950,000. The number of original Palestine refugees has declined from 711,000 in 1950 to approximately 30 to 50,000 in 2012.
There are many conflicting accounts of how these people
left their homes, either driven by force, by fear, or by instruction of Arab leadership.
 It seems well established that they were caught in the middle.  Both sides made it impossible for them to stay.

Already when I lived in Israel in 1963-1965 it was clear that some bad things had been brewing since 1948. You do not allow generations of people to live in a situation like the world created for them.  There is nothing more dangerous than someone you have deprived of everything.  Someone who has nothing left to loose.

The legacy of colonialism and neocolonialism is replete with tragedy, war, and deep bitterness.  To condemn people for their actions is one thing.  To ignore the role of the world in creating the situation that led to those actions is another.  The arrogance of the Europeans, the USA, and the USSR in carving up nations and inventing new ones is beyond words.  Now we all are seeing an ironic outcome to this greedy desire to control and exploit oil rich and other countries as Global warming rewards us for our addiction to oil.

I see no answer.  I see no hope.  I want to avoid news about the horrors of the region.  Jim Coffman and I wrote about "Global Insanity" in our book.  Yet our words will never expose just how insane this species we call Homo sapiens really is.

Look at our own nation.  Look at he massive genocide we carried out on the people we conquered.  Is anyone surprised that we are complicit in this mess in the Middle East?

I really can't express the pain I feel about this.  So many good people slaughtered all the time.  How can we use the word "civilization?"  How can we go on doing politics as if we had the capacity to put an end to this very human kind of visciousness?  I know there are no answers to these questions.  I just wanted to share these thoughts to see if anyone has any hope.

Poll

The situation in "Palestine"

9%6 votes
20%13 votes
14%9 votes
38%24 votes
12%8 votes
4%3 votes

| 63 votes | Vote | Results

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (16+ / 0-)

    An idea is not responsible for who happens to be carrying it at the moment. It stands or falls on its own merits.

    by don mikulecky on Wed Jul 09, 2014 at 05:37:47 PM PDT

  •  I share your despair, but still hope. eom (7+ / 0-)
  •  It will (eventually) work itself out. (0+ / 0-)

    It will take a very long time of course, and lots of pain and suffering, but it will eventually work itself out.

    This because, I believe, the entire 1-state versus 2-state debate is by now purely academic, with no bearing on reality whatsoever. And this not only because the 2-state solution is simply no longer possible in practice because of the extent of the Israeli settlements and appropriation of water resources (by now indispensable to pre-1967 Israel) in the so-called Palestinian Territories.

    Rather, simply because in reality pre-1967 Israel and the Palestinian Territories are already in practice - de facto - one state. All of it is governed by the Israeli state (notwithstanding some autonomy in minor, local issues to Palestinian enclaves), its external borders are quite fixed, there is only one armed force (IDF), one currency, and so on. I-P is in reality already one state.

    The problems are purely internal to it. And they have to do in the first place with the rights of the Palestinians within this already-existing one state. Israel has postponed facing this internal issue by not officially annexing the Palestinian Territories thereby postponing the recognition of the Palestinian demographic component as possessing full citizenship. But this will have to be faced sooner or later, otherwise this already-existing one state will continue to be an apartheid state. And this must eventually come to an end.

    We're shocked by a naked nipple, but not by naked aggression.

    by Lepanto on Wed Jul 09, 2014 at 06:21:44 PM PDT

    •  You make no sense? (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      corvo, OHdog, RudiB

      Do you disagree with my diary?  You say

      The problems are purely internal to it.
      which is contrary to every piece of history I cited and more.

      An idea is not responsible for who happens to be carrying it at the moment. It stands or falls on its own merits.

      by don mikulecky on Wed Jul 09, 2014 at 06:32:49 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  disregard that comment's title please (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        OHdog, RudiB

        I meant to ask how you came to ignore so muich

        An idea is not responsible for who happens to be carrying it at the moment. It stands or falls on its own merits.

        by don mikulecky on Wed Jul 09, 2014 at 06:36:53 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  His/Hers sounds like a libertarian-left response (0+ / 0-)

        I think he's conflating Israel and the occupied territories with the history of the "Republic of South Africa" nee "Union of South Africa".   He's trying to claim that a failure to integrate the Palestinian population is apartheid when, in reality, any such attempts in the immediate term would be an obvious attempt at annexation with significant flashback.  Also, integration is not possible with the current generations.  Look at the reduction in suicide bombings since the Israelis built the wall, these are not people who will get along well.

        However, given that there were 50 years of foreign rule over the SA Union before independence that consolidated political systems and cultural norms despite tribal differences, he has a point, even if he used emotional baggage language.  So, I guess we might have to wait another 20-30 years and see what happens.

        The ground for taking ignorance to be restrictive of freedom is that it causes people to make choices which they would not have made if they had seen what the realization of their choices involved. A.J. Ayer, Sir. "The Concept of Freedom "

        by Memory Corrupted on Thu Jul 10, 2014 at 07:37:27 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  one word: transfer. n/t (0+ / 0-)

      Dogs from the street can have all the desirable qualities that one could want from pet dogs. Most adopted stray dogs are usually humble and exceptionally faithful to their owners as if they are grateful for this kindness. -- H.M. Bhumibol Adulyadej

      by corvo on Wed Jul 09, 2014 at 06:36:23 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  There is hope (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Brecht, jan4insight, amyzex

    The tragedy and hope for the situation is that Israelis and Palestinians share so many traditions.

    I did a diary pointing out the virtually word for word similarity between two extracts, one from the Torah, the other from the Qur'an and quoted words of the Beatitudes about Peacemakers.  

    But it is more than a matter of a shared religious ethos. The senses of humor, the traditions of welcoming strangers and the generosity in charity are so similar they could share a single secular community - something both sides could learn from the Samaritans who straddle both entities.

    "Come to Sochi, visit the gay clubs and play with the bears" - NOT a Russian advertising slogan.

    by Lib Dem FoP on Wed Jul 09, 2014 at 06:21:48 PM PDT

    •  How does this erase hate and stop the killing? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      corvo

      I don't understand.

      An idea is not responsible for who happens to be carrying it at the moment. It stands or falls on its own merits.

      by don mikulecky on Wed Jul 09, 2014 at 06:34:03 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Learn the lessons (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Brecht, amyzex

        Centuries old hatreds like those between France and Germany; earlier last century France and Britain and Northern Ireland plus more recent conflicts like those between the tribes of South Africa have all been effectively resolved by the simple recognition by each side of the humanity of the other - looking at the similarities rather than the differences.

        When "the others" are no longer "peoples of who we know little", armed conflict becomes almost unthinkable - it's the philosophy that drove the Founding Fathers of the EU and a continent that had seen wars sweep over it for centuries has had almost seven decades of peace among its members.

        It's a long term hope agreed but without hope why not just nuke all of them and save them long term suffering? The politics of despair and hatred are Republican. This is a Democratic, dare I say progressive, site.

        "Come to Sochi, visit the gay clubs and play with the bears" - NOT a Russian advertising slogan.

        by Lib Dem FoP on Wed Jul 09, 2014 at 07:32:20 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I don't follow you (0+ / 0-)

          how is this to come about?

          An idea is not responsible for who happens to be carrying it at the moment. It stands or falls on its own merits.

          by don mikulecky on Wed Jul 09, 2014 at 07:41:10 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Try asking the Native Americans how (0+ / 0-)

          their problems "worked themselves out".

          An idea is not responsible for who happens to be carrying it at the moment. It stands or falls on its own merits.

          by don mikulecky on Wed Jul 09, 2014 at 07:45:55 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  It takes two (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            amyzex

            It takes one visionary from each side - a Monnet and Schuman or a Mandela and Botha - to come together and say the future must not repeat the past.

            With one visionary and one backwoodsman leading their groups it fails - as it did with Gandhi and Jinnah.

            The tipping point is when the horror and disgust at the suffering becomes too much on both sides. Here ironically might be where the fear of the M75 longer range missiles coming from Gaza provides the impetus for the Israeli public to demand change rather than vengence. The other route might be the loss of tourist income and fewer Jews immigrating, put off by the fighting, that will bring the two sides to the negotiating table  

            "Come to Sochi, visit the gay clubs and play with the bears" - NOT a Russian advertising slogan.

            by Lib Dem FoP on Wed Jul 09, 2014 at 08:21:48 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  I believe that the only hope lies in the secula... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    OHdog, ChuckChuckerson

    I believe that the only hope lies in the secularization of both societies. As long as extreme Jewish and Muslim religious authorities continue to dominate, there will be no peace.

    •  Secular people don't fight or practiceNationalism? (0+ / 0-)

      I don't get it.

      An idea is not responsible for who happens to be carrying it at the moment. It stands or falls on its own merits.

      by don mikulecky on Wed Jul 09, 2014 at 07:42:30 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Recent history (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ChuckChuckerson

        The history and antagonisms in the region are long and complex, but in the late 70's secular Israelis and Palestinians attempted to make peace. This was undermined by both Religious Zionists (the settlement movement) and by the Hamas (the Palestinian branch of the Muslim Brotherhood). Religious fundamentalist beliefs provide the philosophical rationale for the extreme nationalism that perpetuates the conflict on both side at this time.  

    •  If the Ultra-Orthodox were forced to serve in the (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Velvele, amyzex

      armed forces like all other Israeli citizens, the ones who like to stir things up would be less inclined to do so and would be exposed to and have to live with the more secularized Jews who love God and country just not the same way they do. Secularization of the other side may not be possible as long as the other Muslim countries want to use them as surrogates.

      Life is just a bowl of Cherries, that stain your hands and clothes and have pits that break your teeth.

      by OHdog on Wed Jul 09, 2014 at 07:43:15 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  And who will support this? (0+ / 0-)

        The "ultra-orthodox" as you call them represent what European antisemitism attacked.  They are very special symbols of what the 1948 war of independence was to have accomplished.

        An idea is not responsible for who happens to be carrying it at the moment. It stands or falls on its own merits.

        by don mikulecky on Wed Jul 09, 2014 at 07:49:52 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  It's already in train (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          METAL TREK, amyzex

          the religious exemption from national service is being abolished in Israel. The ultra-orthodox are increasingly unpopular as they are seen as "welfare queens", to put it in US terms, dependent on government handouts to maintain their large families and lifestyle without contributing to the defense of the country.

          "Come to Sochi, visit the gay clubs and play with the bears" - NOT a Russian advertising slogan.

          by Lib Dem FoP on Wed Jul 09, 2014 at 08:30:54 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I think you see surface things (0+ / 0-)

            Politics is a strange business.  Let an Arab try to say anything against the orthodox and see what happens.

            An idea is not responsible for who happens to be carrying it at the moment. It stands or falls on its own merits.

            by don mikulecky on Wed Jul 09, 2014 at 08:44:27 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  surely wrong on both counts? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          amyzex

          European antisemitism was principally about the secular, integrated Jews in banking, commerce and the professions (think Dreyfus) who were considered somehow the most threatening precisely because not open about their Judaism as the Haredim

          The 1948 war of independence was about establishing a socialist state of non-believing, secular Jews, not a religious state, in fact the founding fathers of Israel, such as Ben Gurion, made the concessions they made to the Haredim (such as exemption from military service) only because they thought they would remain an insignificant minority  - moreover the ultra-Orthodox were mostly anti-Zionist and were opposed to the establishment of Israel (and some still are, think Naturei Karta and Satmar)

          We're shocked by a naked nipple, but not by naked aggression.

          by Lepanto on Wed Jul 09, 2014 at 08:31:15 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Yes I know all that. It does not negate the (0+ / 0-)

            sentiments I observed about the orthodox.  Yes times may have changed but it is a strange double standard.  

            A typical joke was:  

            Q:  What is a mioxed marriage in Israel.

            A:  A Jew and an Israeli

            I don't know how many people are still alive that have numbers tattooed on them.  My barber and grocer did.  I did not make up the sentiment toward the orthodox and the feeling of a need to protect them.  Things may have changed but I can be sure if someone other than an Israeli denounces the orthodox they are in trouble.

            An idea is not responsible for who happens to be carrying it at the moment. It stands or falls on its own merits.

            by don mikulecky on Wed Jul 09, 2014 at 08:42:30 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  Zionism is more nationalistic than religious (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Lepanto

      Religion is being used as a wedge issue to divide and conquer.

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