Thursday, November 25, 2010

Coexisting With The Arabs - Part 1 - 1981




There never was anything but bitter Arab hostility, resentment, and hatred of the Jewish stranger who wanted “his”-the Arab’s land.  Nothing the Zionist did contributed to this hate, except one thing: he existed.

In 1921, in 1929, and in 1936-38 there was no Jewish “occupation” troop patrolling the “West Bank.”  There was no such thing as “occupied Arab lands of 1967.”  All the reasons for bloodshed, violence, war, and hatred that today’s Arabs and confused Jews point to as being at “the heart” of the Arab-Jewish problem did not exist then.  Hebron and Shechm and Tulkarm and Ramallah and Bethlehem and Jericho were not under Jewish military occupation, and there was no need for world organizations and national governments to issue resolutions calling for withdrawal from and return of the “occupied territories to their rightful owners.” In fact, here was not even a Jewish state in existence, and by all logic the “Palestinians” should have coexisted peacefully and in friendship with the Jews.

They did not.  And it is important to recall the reality of the Palestinians’ “coexisting” with their Jewish cousins before the “Zionist aggression of 1967,” for it appears to me more than necessary to teach the past to a foolish generation that insists on repeating it.  It is essential to rid ourselves of the illusion that if only Israel would be more “flexible” and “reasonable” and “compromising,” peace can be attained.  It is vital that we cease babbling about the “obstacles to peace” that are the Jewish settlements of Kiryat Arba or Kedumim or Tekoa.  It is of paramount importance to realize that the Arab-Israeli conflict did not begin in 1967 or in the Sinai campaign of 1956 or when the state came into being in 1948.  The conflict began many decades earlier, and it is not an Arab-Israeli one. It is an Arab-Jewish conflict.  Jewish blood was shed in the land of Israel by Arabs long before 1967,or 1947 or 1927.  And the issue then was indeed one of “settlements.” But the conflict raged about the new Zionist settlements of Tel Aviv and Petah Tikva and Rehovot and Hadera and those in West Jerusalem.  The “hate affair” between Arabs and Jews began before there was such a thing as Jewish settlements in Judea-Samaria and will continue even if by some madness the Jews of Israel should agree to give up the liberated lands.

All kinds of foolish people today speak of the need to recognize the “Palestinians.”  I agree.  Come let us recognize them for what they are.  Meet them and know them, just as the Jews of the Land of Israel knew them, thirty-five and forty-five and fifty-five years ago, long before the “Israeli aggression of 1967.”
(To be continued next week “The Pogroms”)

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