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Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Israel shouldn't make peace with failed states says...

If Martin Peretz had any credibility remaining with the Obami Left, he's just blown it. But what a sweet job he's done of blowing it away.
It is as if we have suddenly decided that a regime that tries to capture another country and loses territory in the process has the right to have it repatriated as if nothing had ever happened. Try, try, and try again, so to speak.

This is especially the case in the Levant where the diplomacy of boundaries going back to the fall of the Ottoman Empire—whose power had been wielded at a time from Vienna to Central Asia—was so scrawly and shifting that no one could know from one day to the next where this scepter held sway and that one did not. A propos these vagaries, in the diplomatic talks between France and England following the signing of the Sykes-Picot agreement in 1916 up to 1923 the biblical phrase “from Dan to Beer-Sheva” was the template of any map. But, of course, the words were more evocative than determinate, metaphoric than concrete. And so the cartographic war, from then and now, continues. What are Syria’s real claims to the Golan Heights? There were Syrian Arabs in the Golan prior to 1967. But no one actually thought of himself as ethnically or nationally Syrian. Instead, they replicated the diversity of hate, the permanent schismatics of difference. Moreover, the resident Alawite contingent—surprise! surprise!—is quite loyal to Israel. And there are Druze whose affinities are hard to judge since they are neither Arab nor Jew. In any case, what is Syria? It is certainly not a coherent or cohesive nation, what with its constant incitement of sectarian strife. And then there is the hydrostrategics of its geography, a permanent temptation for anyone governing from Damascus.

Spotted around Israel are failed states. I doubt that the states to the north, Lebanon and Syria, can be mended. Their essence was always difference. But certainly not as democracies where the rights of diverse groups are honored. Nobody sang hymns to variety and diversification in the lands of the Arabs. Have we already forgotten Iraq where the colonials established Sunni rule over a vast preponderance of Shia? In Syria, 10 percent of the population governs. The majoritarian rest, the Sunnis and their Muslim Brotherhood vanguard, have been cowering since 1982 ... until they had just cowered too much. Pity the Alawites when the Sunnis will strike for revenge. On the other hand, how much can you pity the Alawites who have been plundering and imprisoning and also murdering for four decades?

What had Obama in his head when he tried to jumpstart Israeli negotiations with Syria? Israeli withdrawal from the Golan Heights, what else? The answer is simple and transparent: Israel’s retreat from territories it had captured while they were being used by enemies trying to vitiate Israel itself. But this is the president’s steady trope. Israel should withdraw from the West Bank and ancient Jerusalem and East Jerusalem and, yes, the Golan Heights, too, without a shred of evidence that it would be protected, could be protected from attack by armed soldiers, armed aircraft and armed terrorists, by a deadly admixture of regular troops with guerrillas somehow coddled by human rights organizations which define the latter virtually as civilians. Do you believe that the Arabs truly want peace? Does President Obama? Well, I don’t. There is always the ministration that NATO could force the keeping of a peace. But Obama has blown that alternative, too, by virtually opting out of its venture against Qaddafi and leaving the leadership to Great Britain and France, whose bona fides are suspect.

Why am I not a believer? Because the only unifying strand in the disparate state systems of the Arabs is their struggle against the Jews, the Zionists, the Israelis. Nothing else motivates them so doggedly. The Christians also are targets of the various Muslim governments under which they live, and their numbers are falling in every country of the region—except Israel where those who kneel at the cross are experiencing what one might even call a revival. This is especially so in Jerusalem where, quietly but decisively, the communicants of Jesus are hitching their future to Zion. Ironic, no?
Read the whole thing. Peretz seems to finally get why the entire 'peace process' - with all of the Arabs - is nothing but an attempt to destroy Israel.

Obama won't be happy he's figured that out. Heh.

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