Monday, March 29, 2004

Victor Davis Hanson, eminent historian and classicist, expounds upon the question of when the West should drop it's support of Israel, and gives a list of actions that Israel must take:

[W]e should no longer support Israel, when...
  • Mr. Sharon suspends all elections and plans a decade of unquestioned rule.

  • Mr. Sharon suspends all investigation about fiscal impropriety as his family members spend millions of Israeli aid money in Paris.

  • All Israeli television and newspapers are censored by the Likud party.

  • Israeli hit teams enter the West Bank with the precise intention of targeting and blowing up Arab women and children.

  • Preteen Israeli children are apprehended with bombs under their shirts on their way to the West Bank to murder Palestinian families.

  • Israeli crowds rush into the street to dip their hands into the blood of their dead and march en masse chanting mass murder to the Palestinians.

  • Rabbis give public sermons in which they characterize Palestinians as the children of pigs and monkeys.

  • Israeli school textbooks state that Arabs engage in blood sacrifice and ritual murders.

  • Mainstream Israeli politicians, without public rebuke, call for the destruction of Palestinians on the West Bank and the end to Arab society there.

  • Likud party members routinely lynch and execute their opponents without trial.

  • Jewish fundamentalists execute with impunity women found guilty of adultery on grounds that they are impugning the "honor" of the family.

  • Israeli mobs with impunity tear apart Palestinian policemen held in detention.

  • Israeli television broadcasts - to the tune of patriotic music - the last taped messages of Jewish suicide bombers who have slaughtered dozens of Arabs.

  • Jewish marchers parade in the streets with their children dressed up as suicide bombers, replete with plastic suicide-bombing vests.

  • New Yorkers post $25,000 bounties for every Palestinian blown up by Israeli murderers.

  • Israeli militants murder a Jew by accident and then apologize on grounds that they though he was an Arab - to the silence of Israeli society.

  • Jews enter Arab villages in Israel to machine gun women and children.

  • Israeli public figures routinely threaten the United States with terror attacks.

  • Bin Laden is a folk hero in Tel Aviv.

  • Jewish assassins murder American diplomats and are given de facto sanctuary by Israeli society.

  • Israeli citizens celebrate on news that 3,000 Americans have been murdered.

  • Israeli citizens express support for Saddam Hussein's supporters in Iraq in their efforts to kill Americans.
Of course, the whole point is that Palestinians have done all of those things (and continue to engage in similar activities to this day). There are great gulfs of difference between Israel's behavior and that of the Palestinians; refusing to acknowledge that fact, and refusing to hold them to the same standards to which we hold Israel, reeks of a deep-seated racism - not against Jews, but against Palestinians.

If we truly believe they are human beings (as I hope all readers of this site do), then we must believe that they have the same capacities as the rest of us. That is, that they are fully able to live up to ethical standards and moral codes - and further, that they are able to live up to the same Western morality to which they so often appeal. When they do not live up to those standards, then, it is unbecoming of us to make excuses - 'they don't know any better,' or 'we can't expect as much from them.' Aside from being sickeningly racist, that condescension undermines all real hope for peace in the region. If you want to talk about moral equivalence between these two peoples, then you must truly talk about full 'equivalence': you must hold all human beings to the same standard - and that includes the Palestinian people.
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A webjournal of ideas, comments, and various other miscellany from a Texan university student (with occasional input from his family) living in Toronto, Ontario. Can you say "culture shock?"

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