Monday, February 25, 2019

Thoughts about Israel

Yeah, I feel very conflicted about Israel.

My dad came here as a refugee from the Holocaust; however, even though his ancestry was Jewish, he was not Jewish.  He was Lutheran.  My mom was a WASP.

I’m not a Jew.  If I were in Israel, I would be not the same religion as the government.

I believe in separation of church and state — that the government should not establish any one religion.  That a government should be the government of all the people living there.

Jews were only about half of the people killed in the Holocaust. The others included gays, people with disabilities, Eastern Orthodox Christians, Gypsies and Armenians. Similar mass murder occurred under Stalin (20 million people), under Mao (28 million people), under Pol Pot (2 million people), in Turkey (1 million Armenians), in Rwanda (800,000 people) — even here in the Western Hemisphere the population of Native Americans declined by 90-95% (130 million deaths) due to European invasion (combinations of disease and oppression)-- not to mention the horrendous history of slavery.

I know that fear that says I need to flee to a safe place.  I understand why Israelis feel the way they do — the fear, the anger -- but there is no safe place.

Still, these Muslim countries that want to push Israel off the globe are no better — generally worse.  They engage in wholesale oppression of everyone, especially women and religious minorities. Israel is comparatively much more democratic and religiously tolerant — despite all the bad press that they get.

No one is trying to push the Muslim countries off the globe.  Who are they to try to push Israel off?

And, recently, Israeli scientists announced that they are going to have a cure for cancer within a year.  If they succeed, if Israeli scientists manage to cure all cancer, won’t we be glad that there was an Israel?

In fact, no one has clean hands. There are virtually no countries without appalling histories of human rights violations.  The human capacity for oppression seems unlimited. 

And where is there uncontested territory in this world? Certainly not here in the USA.

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