Tuesday, December 30, 2008

War Without End

The Israeli-Palestinian conflict is the crux of the biscuit vis-á-vis the whole goddam Middle East and is the main underlying cause of our problems in the region, especially under the Bush And His Neocon Masters regime. God's little joke of putting a lot of oil there is the other 'underlying' cause, without which we could have just GTFO a long time ago.

Israel as a state began in my lifetime. I was three years old at the time, and even after 60 years I ain't got a clue what to do about it. Well, actually I do, but it wouldn't be very nice, and my cure would be worse than the disease so be glad I'm not in charge. Or not. Nobody else seems to know what to do either. There is nothing reassuring about anything involved in the matter. Let me just say that oil, religion, territorial disputes, and centuries-old hatreds are a witches' brew that could leave a great smoking hole in the Earth, and just might.

Trying to follow up on Fixer's post above would be like trying to sing with Emmylou Harris as my opening act, so rather than even try something that in(s)ane, I just went looking for something by somebody smarter than I am on the subject, and I think I came fairly close with a post at Boztopia.com. The guy put a lot of work into it, with many, many links.

It also disgusts me to watch how international opinionators, bloggers, journalists, and so-called “experts” reduce the Israeli-Palestinian conflict down to simple black-and-white digestible chunks. If you’re a progressive, Israel is the big nasty bully, the evil empire terrorizing the oppressed Palestinians fighting for their right to what they consider their ancestral homeland. If you’re a conservative, Israel is the strong ally of the U.S. defending itself against those nasty terrorist suicide bombers who want to perpetrate another Holocaust. These positions become litmus tests, recyclable cliches’ that people of all sides spout like they’re watching some giant game of football, only the ball is a bomb and the playing field is the Holy Land.

As a wise man once said, terrorism is what the big army calls the little army. How different is bombing civilians from the air from a suicide run into a cafe or a school? Why is one considered an acceptable, desired part of modern warfare, while the other is considered barbaric and inhumane? Is it because air attacks enable distance for the supporter as well as the pilot? Can we make ourselves feel better about the carnage if we can’t see the faces of those whom we kill?

Each side thinks they are ordained by God to fight or defend the land they claim as theirs, given to them by blessed, bloody sacrament. Hamas’ Khaled Meshal has said that the “time for the third Intifada has come” in response to the bombings, ordering the militia to attack Israeli targets and soldiers in response. Israel, which was apparently plotting this operation even as it was negotiating a cease-fire with Hamas, seems bound and determined to do a big solid for the major oil companies with its continuing bombing runs, showing not even the slightest sign of remorse.

Where does it end?

I'll let you read the rest for yourself. Hint: he knows exactly what needs to be done, like we all do, but it ain't gonna happen the way things are or are likely to be until both sides get so disgusted with themselves as well as each other that some hero emerges and makes it stop. Don't hold yer breath.

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