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    When I was a young individual, I attended school with Jews, but I never knew any Muslims.  The Jews I knew were typical students, with some Jews being very studious while most were just good people.  The problems I would later encounter would not be with those Jews whose ancestry was beyond question, but with those people who aspired to be Jews but for whatever reason were not recognized as Jews.  Those who wanted to be Jews, but who were not accorded status as Jews, were intent on proving their ehtnic bona fides, and they could be as irascible as most people become when something desired is denied.
     The difference between the Jews whose status was unquestioned, and the aspirational Jews seems to be analogous to the circumstances in which the Israelis and the Gazans find themselves.  The modern Israelis, since the Balfour Declaration almost 100 years ago, have acquired the backing of the international community in securing their rightful place. The modern Israelis are visited by potential American Presidents, and feted at every turn by the movers and shakers and the other creators of ordered liberty.
     The Gazans, on the other hand, are constantly told that patience is a virtue, that they should accept their plight in life because the modern Israelis must have their safety guaranteed.  The Gazans, who aspire to be treated like the Jews in Israel, are denied that status in much the same manner as the aspirational Jews.    

    Like the aspirational Jews, the Gazans have decided that if they cannot have what they desire, then they will desire what they have, and that is bitterness and resentment at being shunted aside simply because while they appear to be different from the modern Israelis, they are similar in so many ways.  Their Qu'ran is a different religious text from the Torah of the Jews, but the Gazans segregate their women from men in the Mosque in the same manner that Orthodox Jews segregate their women from men in the Temple.  The Israelis publicly observe their prayers before the Wailing Wall while the Muezzin publicly call the Muslim faithful to prayer.  The Israelis and the Gazans are both the children of Abraham who have jointly decided to destroy the posterity of Abraham within their possession.  
     The Israelis and the Gazans are the mirror images of each other, with one side having real power while the other side only has a reflection of real power.  The problem lies in determining which side has the real power, and which side is only a reflection of the other.
     Fire is used to harden iron into steel, and that is the crucible in which the Gazans have been entrapped by the Israelis.  What was nominally just a collection of shop-keepers and desert nomads in Gaza has been turned by circumstance into a monolith of implacable hatred and envy for all things Israeli.  What was once just a collection of Torah students has been elevated into a society which believes that it has the right to micromanage every facet of the lives of people with whom they disagree.
     Thus, the Israelis have created the very foe they have always feared out of a people whom they displaced 65 years ago.  Instead of becoming a golem that would obey the commands of the Israelis, the Gazans have become a state which is gaining more credence with each day that passes without unconditional surrender.  The two-state solution, which has been derided by some, has suddenly appeared out of the vacuum that the Israelis created through the use of force.  But the second state is not in the West Bank under the leadership of Abu Mazen; it is in the hands of the Gazans, the people whose collective aspiration is simply to be regarded in the same manner as the Israelis.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Well written and heartfelt (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    YellerDog, originaloldpro

    I disagree, but thanks for sharing your thoughts.

    I think that any description of the situation that makes it binary - all about Israel and Gazans - ignores a lot of facts on the ground.

    Who represents the average Gazan? Hamas? Fatah? No one?

    This is a beautiful and profound line that I may grapple with for a while:

    The Israelis and the Gazans are both the children of Abraham who have jointly decided to destroy the posterity of Abraham within their possession.

    If you believe that ALL criticism of Israel is antisemitic, you're an idiot.
    If you believe that NONE of the criticism of Israel is antisemitic, you're a fool.
    If you call EVERYONE who criticizes Israel antisemitic, you're just an a$$hole

    by A Gutin Daf on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 10:01:06 PM PST

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