Posts Tagged ‘Gaza Blockade’

A Jewish homeland vs. a Jewish ethnic state

Posted on December 2, 2010 at 3.26 pm

Q. Hi there!

Regarding your Israel-response: Imho one has to reconsider whether or not “Israel was established through unjust force”, as you wrote – I guess that’s an undercomplex point of view; or it needs more proof. Just to outline a possible argument: Israel is not, as you stated, comparible to “any other modern state”. It’s genesis is a direct result of the Shoah.

If a state has any right to exist at all – I guess we’ll agree on that – it’s to secure the fundamental rights of its citizens (“life, liberty, and estate”, to quote Locke). Confronted with gangs of killers such as Hamas or Hizbollah one has to put an emphasis on the first aspect. What I want to make clear is that this issue is not necessarily a question of Religion (given the fact that Judaism does not know missionary work at all), it’s rather a question of ideology (“false consciousness” as Marx said; one of the few notions I share with him) – and the right of self defense, indeed.

Post scriptum: Chomsky is an idiot. ; -) — gazed, from tumblr.

A. Hi!  From what I’ve read, the establishment of a modern Jewish state was in the works well before the Holocaust occurred, though that certainly helped get things moving.  Consider, for instance, the Balfour Declaration, issued well before the rise of the Nazis.  Indeed, talk of the need for a national homeland for the Jewish people first came to prominence in Europe in the 19th century, not the 20th.  Christian Zionism too began as a movement in the 19th century, well before the Holocaust, and proposals for a Jewish state in Palestine were made as early as the peace talks after WW1.

But even if we accept that the establishment of the modern state of Israel is a result of the Holocaust (which I think is rather shoddy history), it didn’t have to be the result nor did it have to occur the way it did. Since it did happen, I’m more concerned with the latter point.


Let’s not bicker and argue about ‘oo killed ‘oo…

at 11.52 am

Q. What is your opinion on Israel? Do you think that it has the right to exist, and do you think that any of their violence has been justified? — nutopiancitizen, from tumblr.

A. Ahh, such a tricky subject — any answer is almost certain to offend someone.

First, on the the state of Israel’s “right to exist”:  It has about as much a right as any other modern state.  Let me explain what I mean by that.

Ideally, all states would only be established with the consent of the people in a social contract to produce minimal state and maximal liberty while securing the persons and property of the people involved in a just and legally fair manner.

Unfortunately, this pretty much never happens.  Even the United States, which had some pretty good things going for it at the beginning, was still created by a society which enslaved and devalued Africans and other nonwhites, intentionally gave native people smallpox (I mean, look at this.  The mindset which would intentionally infect anyone with this is utterly beyond my comprehension), and generally raped, pillaged, and plundered — albeit to a much lesser degree than often happened in the old world.

The modern state of Israel was established through unjust force, yes, but…well, so were just about all the other states in the present world to one degree or another.  And to abolish the state of Israel would without doubt require yet more unjust force — not to mention hypocrisy, since I don’t see anyone suggesting we give America back to the Indians.


End the Gaza Blockade…for Israel’s Sake?

Posted on July 26, 2010 at 8.21 pm

That’s the argument Ivan Eland of the Independent Institute makes in a new article:

As the United States should do with its ridiculously counterproductive embargo against Fidel Castro’s Cuba—which has used the U.S. sanctions as an external threat to win internal support and blame all of the island’s economic problems on the United States—Israel should dismantle all aspects of its counterproductive blockade, not just relax a ban on imports. Increased commerce among Gazans and among Gaza, Israel, and the world would undermine the Islamic radicalism on which Hamas prospers.

Read the entire (very interesting) piece here.