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Monday, January 26, 2009

Who should pay for stopping rocket shipments to Gaza?

At Salon, the insufferable Glenn Greenwald complains about the new Obama administration continuing Bush administration policies on Israel, including the agreement signed by Condi Clueless and Tzipora Livni a few days before the Bush administration ended, under which the US is pursuing Iranian supply ships that are bringing weapons to Hamas (Hat Tip: Memeorandum).

What possible justification is there for the U.S. (as opposed to Israel) to use its military and the money of its taxpayers to ensure that the Palestinians remain defenseless? In exactly the way that the U.S. felt free to invade Iraq (with its decayed, sanctions-destroyed "military") but not North Korea or Iran (with its much more formidable forces), it's precisely because the conflict is so one-sided that Israel feels no real pressure to cease the activities that, in part, feed this conflict (beginning with still-expanding West Bank settlements and the truly inhumane blockade of Gaza).

Obviously, where one side has its foot on the throat of the other, the side with the far more dominant position has less incentive to resolve the dispute than the side being choked. And it's perfectly natural -- just not for Israel but in general -- for a party to want to maintain dominance over its adversaries and to want to prevent its enemies from obtaining weapons that can be used against it. It's entirely rational for Israel to desire a continuation of that particular state of affairs -- i.e., for only Israel, but not the enemies with whom it has intractable territorial and religious conflicts, to have a real military force.

But what does any of that have to do with the U.S. Navy and the American taxpayer? What possible justification is there for using American resources -- the American military -- to patrol the Red Sea in order to ensure that Gazans remain defenseless? That question is particularly pronounced given that the U.S. is already shoveling, and will continue to shovel, billions and billions of dollars to Israel in military and other aid. Why, on top of all of that, are increasingly scarce American resources, rather than Israeli resources, being used to bar Palestinians from obtaining weapons? And why -- as it is more vital than ever that we extricate ourselves from Middle Eastern conflicts -- are we making ourselves still more of a partisan and combatant in this most entrenched and religiously-driven territorial dispute over the West Bank and Gaza Strip?

I have a solution that won't cost the US a nickel. We'll go back to pounding Gaza until there's not a tunnel left in the entire strip, and then we'll send the IDF back in to blow up all of their weapons. If Hamas continues to misbehave by shooting rockets at Israel, we'll kill as many people as we have to kill to put a stop to it. Meanwhile, the US will sit silently in support (okay, maybe veto an occasional Security Council resolution, but that doesn't cost anything) and not make us stop.

Deal? I didn't think so.... (Too bad).

P.S. I'd be happy to see the US invade Iran to take out its nukes too - we'll probably have to take care of that ourselves eventually.


At 6:02 PM, Blogger Ron said...

I still think the best idea is to turn off the power and water. Won't cost any lives. Work in about 3 days (rule of 3s: cannot live for 3 minutes without air; 3 days without water, 3 weeks without food).

At 6:14 PM, Blogger USA Dave said...

Israel should just do whatever they need to do. We've already seen the world is against you so what difference does it make.

At 9:49 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

Its not like its costing American sailors their lives. I would think the Left would want to keep fascists from being armed. If that's not a worthy foreign policy goal, they should explain how allowing Hamas to be rearmed strengthens the search for peace in the Middle East.

I bet we won't hear the insufferable Glenn Greenwald explain that contradiction.



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