Thursday, September 30, 2010

More evidence there has never yet been a serious "Palestinian peace partner"

Today comes news of the latest in the long litany of revelations of how the Arabs have been fighting a century-long war against any Jewish state or political presence in the land of Israel, while getting a deeply naive West to consider Arabs potential "peace partners" or at least an equally-aggrieved party in a conflict that is dubiously styled the "Palestinian (or Arab)-Israeli conflict" - a term which assumes two parties equally desirous of conflict - when in fact what we have witnessed is a century-old Arab/Muslim war against the desire for a Jewish presence in the land of Israel/Palestine:

Hamas Reveals that Arafat Gave Green Light for 2000 War - Defense/Middle East - Israel News - Israel National News

We now know that Arafat - a man who never had any authority to recognize a Jewish state - was never a serious partner for peace, and was in fact someone who had to unleash violence the more Israel wanted to make concessions for peace. He had to do this for two reasons: 1)However "secular", he had no authority in what has always been an Islamically-dominated culture (the secular, after all, is just another, less ritualized, form of the sacred) to acknowledge any right for any kind of Jewish political presence in land that Islam has previously conquered and ruled.  Arafat could play at making peace as long as this won his people useful concessions and foreign aid, but when it came to actually being asked to sign a deal that would recognize Israel, wrecking violence had to be unleashed as the only way out of a cultural impossibility.  2)In the Arab world view, those who sue for peace are seen to be weak and so deserve to be forced to submit.

None of this is to suggest that Israel doesn't have a moral responsibility to be always ready to negotiate and assist in various arrangements to facilitate Jewish life alongside Arab life, whenever the Arabs are serious about (in)formally recognizing the Jewish presence in Palestine.  But Palestinian culture is today one where endless and widespread antisemitic libels and hatred are expressed as normative, where no one "serious" can acknowledge Israel's right to exist.  For now, peace can only come as long as this Jew hatred is treated with the stony contempt and necessary force it deserves.  The forceful reality of the Jewish presence in the land of Israel must be asserted until it is accepted, if only silently.  One must not dream of final victories or final peace terms - there is only unnecessary violence in Utopian desires - but rather see that in fighting, step by step, for one's values and cultural presence, instead of showing fear and weakness, one engages the Other on a primitive level - the only realistic level in this case - and starts to create a reality, an order of shared existence that better recognizes powerful facts on the ground, and hence creates some degree of stability.

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