Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Israel: The State of the Jewish People, and Rightfully So

(BlueTruth would like to thank our friend "whitvile" for contributing this post)



The international campaign to invalidate Israel’s right to exist relies on disinformation and ignorance.
The fact is, the state of Israel has more legitimate claims to nationhood than any country on the planet. Here are some of the reasons:
1) Historical claim to the land. There have been Jews living on this land for over three thousand years, actually close to four thousand years. There are few indigenous peoples left on this planet (and fewer every year), but it is exceedingly rare, perhaps unheard of, for an indigenous people to maintain residency into modern times and recreate their ancient nation state.
2) Legacy from colonial rule. Most modern countries fall into this category, including the entire Western hemisphere, almost all of Africa, much of Asia, and the entire Middle East. Most modern Middle Eastern countries, including Israel, were controlled by Britain after the fall of the Ottoman empire in World War I. The borders of modern Middle Eastern countries were drawn by Britain. Britain promised “to establish a Jewish National Home in Palestine” in 1917. The borders of Palestine initially included Transjordan (now called Jordan), but this was separated and given to the Hashemite tribe as a reward for their support of Britain in the war. In 1937, Britain offered to separate the remaining piece into a tiny Jewish, and a larger Arab state. The Jews accepted, desperately hoping to save a remnant of European Jewry. The Arabs r ejected it, and launched a 3 year wave of violence against civilians (1936-1939). Notice a pattern here?
3) Conquered by force. This is the second most common source of national legitimacy in the world. Practically the entire United States was taken by force either from Native Americans, the British, or from Spanish colonists. Although all of Israel’s wars have been defensive, they resulted in Israel acquiring some of the territory of the countries that attacked her. Despite Israel’s right to annex the lands she has conquered, and her tiny, vulnerable size, she continues to offer land for peace.
4) Voted into existence by international body. This is an exceedingly rare occurrence. Despite receiving condemnation by just about every country at some point in her existence, a bizarre concurrence of political motives and anti-Semitism resulted in both the Western bloc and the Russian-controlled Eastern bloc voting for Israel’s independence in 1948.
In addition to the above reasons, one or another of which applies to every country in the world, Israel has two additional qualifications for statehood:
5)Property Ownership. Although most of what is currently Israel was government-owned, state land under the Ottoman Turks, and later the British, almost all the private land was bought by Jews (from absentee Arab landlords). While there were a few (maybe a hundred thousand) Arabs living on the land when the Jews began returning in large numbers in the late 1800’s, exceedingly few of them owned the land they lived on. Israel compensated tenant farmer/herders who worked on, but did not own the land.
6) Positive stewardship of the land. When Jews first began returning in large numbers over a hundred years ago, almost all of the land was uninhabitable. Most of it was either desert or malaria-ridden swampland. The few pieces of fertile land had been ravaged by years of neglect and sheep herding. One of the main Arab objections to Jewish immigration in the early 1920’s was that the land could not support more than a few hundred thousand people. There are now about 7 million people living in this land. Jews drained the swamps, discovered new methods of irrigation that literally “made the desert bloom,” and for much of its existence has been a primarily agricultural economy- exporting produce all over the world. Israel is the only country on the planet that ended the 20th century with more trees than it started with.
Furthermore, although the land is considered holy to three great world religions, when Moslems controlled the land they severely restricted the ability of people of other faiths to pray at their holy sites. The Jordanians did not allow Jews to pray at the Western Wall, and desecrated some of the oldest synagogues in Jerusalem- turning them into garbage dumps. Five years ago, Palestinians destroyed Joseph’s Tomb, a sacred Jewish shrine. Palestinians terrorists vandalized desecrated the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem when they sought refuge from Israeli soldiers. Most Christian Arabs have left areas under Palestinian rule due to persecution.
Under Israeli rule, there are no restrictions on any citizen’s right to pray at their holy places. Further, despite the fact that the Temple Mount in Jerusalem is the holiest place in Judaism, Israel has graciously allowed the Moslem religious authority (the Waqf) to maintain control of the site. The Waqf has shown its gratitude by refusing to allow Jews to pray on the Temple Mount, and allowing Moslem worshipers to throw stones on Jews praying at the Western Wall below. They have vandalized priceless archeological sites on the Mount with bulldozers, dumping tons of archeologically rich earth into garbage dumps.
Although “treatment of the land” has never been considered a criterion for nationhood, perhaps it should be. Certainly Jews have demonstrated a reverence for the land that was not shown by any of its prior rulers. The relationship of the land of Israel to the Jews is the same connection other indigenous peoples feel for their ancestral lands. Many Native American tribes feel their land is part of them, part of their identity as a people. It is the same for Jews.
For two thousand years Jews have longed to return to this land that is a part of them. Now the ancient longings and ancient prophecies have been fulfilled. Israel has come into being by all the means that any nation has claimed, and more. If any nation has earned the right to exist, it is Israel.

3 comments:

  1. Daniel E. LevensonNovember 4, 2007 at 8:49 AM

    I fully agree that Israel has a right to exist. my hope is that someday Israel will be able to live in peace without worrying about suicide bombers, rockets and stabbing/shooting attacks on soldiers and civilians alike. I would like to invite you to check out my website: www.literarycomments.com, which features a regular column called "My View" in which I write about issues relating to Israel and the Middle East.

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  2. "I see Israel as one of the great outposts of democracy in the world," Dr. Martin Luther King declared in 1968, "and a marvelous example of what can be done, how desert land can be transformed into an oasis of brotherhood and democracy."

    Thanks for the post...

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  3. This is from Ziff "The Rape of Palestine" (1938)

    Dr. W.E. Blackstone, quoting the foremost authorities on international law, pointed out in 1891 that since the Jews never gave up their title to Palestine, the general "law of dereliction" could not hold in in their case; "for they never abandoned the land. They made no treaty; they did not even surrender. They simply succumbed, after the most desperate conflict, to the overwhelming power of the Romans...and were captured or enslaved...Since then, having no sovereign nor political head through whom they could speak, they have disputed the possession of their land by continued protest through their literature and their public and private worship...
    Blackstone quotes the outstanding leading legal luminaries of his day, who agree that the Jewish claim was legally, at least, sound that the Jewish claim is legally sound. He points out that according to the logical precedents established by such authorities as Buswell, Wheaton, Clifford, Phillimore and others, "the forcible manner by which Israel has been kept out of the land, with no means of redress, is equivalent in principle to a continued state of war..."
    The greatest legal authorities have agreed that according to the foundation principles of international law there is no basis for prescription against Israel... therefore THE JEWS HAVE A VALID CLAIM ON PALESTINE AS LONG AS THERE IS A SINGLE ZIONIST ALIVE"

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