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(53,978 posts)
6. It's historical fact.
Wed Dec 6, 2023, 09:15 AM
Dec 2023

The notion that there's some kind of perfect and achievable societal "justice" for historically oppressed people is, forgive my bluntness, naive. We can't undo past wrongs.

The Jewish people lived in Palestine 2,000 years ago. That was your homeland by their calculus that was their basis for returning and setting up their own country. The Palestinian people live there 200 years ago and, although the land was possessed by the Turks, that was their home that is their basis for wanting to set up their own country. But all nationalities of the world don't get their own country, not the Druze, not the Uygers, not the Tibetans, not the Arapaho, even though justice says they each deserve it.

So how does a nation legitimately get a homeland? Historically, it's conferred when you pick up your guns and take it. I mean, if you can show me some exceptions to that rule, please do. I reckon South Africa is a counterexample. But even there, force was part of the equation.

In the case of Palestine, the world is asking Israel to give up some of the land it took from the people who took it from the people who took it from their ancestors. It's a little bit novel, but it's the best expediency towards achieving peace. Israel has a right to demand concessions and security assurances before relinquishing that control. I think most people would agree with that. They complicate the question by treating the Palestinians unjustly, particularly in the West Bank were they continue to colonize more lands under the threat of a gun.

But we shouldn't forget that the countries who have called the West Bank settlements illegal all have ancestors who did more or less the same thing... and did so more violently for the most part.

All these historical counterclaims are a bowl of spaghetti that can't be entangled by some objective standard of universal justice. There's no justice to be had as long as everyone is counting the scratches on the bones of the dead. It's an illusion and the historical rationalizations of Israel and Palestine are just decoration on the weapons they use to assert their mutually incompatible rights. At some point we have to say pushing forward is more important than keeping score. I say let there be Peace on Earth and let it begin with me.

The only workable starting place is where things lie right now. History is interesting, but it's bunk.

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