In Seattle now we have a bus ad campaign that is noting that the US sends 30 billion to Israel a year and that money is used to wage war illegally against Palestine. Nothing in there isn't true. Israel has consistently stolen land from Palestinians for the last 60 years and the international community punishes Israel for it's actions by sending it money. The international community stands behind Israel by saying, "I will defend Israel 'whatever the cost'". The laws they violate, the human rights problems, not an issue.
They bomb the hell out of the USS Liberty 100 miles off their coast for 2 hours and 40 minutes so that they can continue to attack retreating Egyptians (my accepted reasoning due to a documentary on it) during the 6 day war. Reaction... the 34 dead is worth 3 million dollars and we'll forget about it.
Israel has consistently been an embarrassing relationship to objective observers. So why do we stand by them no matter what they do? Why do we send them 30 billion when by measure of dollars in personal savings they are the richest country in the world and we are one of the poorest? For 60 years we have drawn line in the sand, and they have consistently crossed them. Why do we treat them like that little brother who's an ass but we'll defend them just because they are our little brother? I honestly don't understand it. Why is Israel treated differently than every other country in the world? We can't even criticize them politically with legitimate points on a bus? Is it pro-Jew? Guilt complex over the Holocaust? Anti-Arab thinking? Can anyone explain this?
Thanks for the correction.
Thank you. That is an excellent catch up. I suggest that anyone whom doesn't know the history of US/Israel relations, read the interview that Adriana attached.
It simply reinforced my view as someone looking back as politically conscious over the last 20 years but not really knowing the history and how it all evolved. It saddens me that we disregard law and humanity for a buck or political capital.
When I traced back the history of when christians stopped hating jews, I found a jewish acetone chemist. In the lead up to WWI, Brits needed acetone in their bomb factories and apparently this jewish chemist (research was a while back, can't remember names) promised some prominent Brit politicians an endless supply of the stuff in exchange for Brit support of Israel, which lead to "the letter" which lead to the Balfour Declaration in 1917. Christians have sucked up to Jews ever since., except for the holocaust, which Christians didn't do much to help their new friends, sorry bunch.
Chemistry, politics, guilt, greed, money, rule the world, always have, always will. The only interruptions to these great powers are revolutions, but our modern governments have learned to assuage the people's greedy dreams and have cut the risk of revolution to a trickle. Knowledge is now used against us, we are enslaved masses by our own intelligence.
I'm sorry, but it's really easy just looking at one side of the story and deriving whatever the heck you want from that.
There's so much more to this entire issue.
Many many Israelis don't want to be in the occupied territories either, but these things take time. 5 years ago Israel retreated from the Gaza strip entirely, and in return Israeli cities are bombarded with missiles on a daily basis.
Israel sends DAILY humanitarian aid into the Gaza, but the Hamas ceize control of that aid to control the people. In the meantime, while convicted terrorists are given all the rights and liberties under law including international law, red cross visitations etc, the Israeli POW Gilad Shalit never even saw the Red Cross, and nobody knows for sure if he's even still alive. The last two POWs, who were returned to Israel for 200 LIVING prisoners, were returned DEAD.
This entire thing is just a response to the original poster's first line. If I had to reply to all of that one-sided half-truthed bias of a post It'd take days.
The point is, regardless of how incredibly off topic this entire discussion is, that you have to live here to even begin to try and understand what goes on here. Don't get me wrong, I'm a left-winger by any Israeli standards and I believe that we have no business in the occupied territories, that we're not tough enough on soldiers violating human rights (which is a byproduct of any military campaign), and that there should be an independent Palestinian state. However, even I know that security comes first. If somebody shoots missiles at me on a daily basis for ten years, it's my right to put soldiers at the border and make sure he doesn't get new ammo. If buses blow up with women in children, it's my right to build a defensive wall around my country (which works, by the way. No successful suicide bombings since the wall was built). If a baby is shot to death by a SNIPER at a PLAYGROUND... I don't even know how to respond to something like that.
I know I'm slightly off topic, but I'm heavily offended by your premise. Why does the US fund Israel? I don't know. But Israeli would not exist without US support, we would vanish. We use american guns, with american ammunition, and we fly american planes. Could we be protecting american interests? Could it be that we're america's little bi*ches? possibly. Personally, I know that thanks to that money I can live in freedom and security, and that otherwise I would've been DEAD years ago. Seriously, dead. So frankly, I don't care why the US gives us money.
And one last thing: Next time you go criticizing other countries you have nothing to do with, imagine having to spend your summer vacation in a bomb shelter because your city is bombarded with missiles. Imagine people you know dying every single day on their way to work, home, etc. Imagine being SURROUNDED by countries 5 times your size, who all want to kill you. Not conquer you, KILL you.
So yeah, the US pays Israel a lot of money. And yes, it may be because american politicians want the Jewish vote or because they need the Israeli intelligence on arab nations. Honestly? I don't give a damn. All I want is for my family and friends to LIVE. I want my grandfather's survival of the holocaust (yeah, I brought it up!) to have MEANT something. I want to LIVE in my HOME without being afraid! I want to keep having the best air force in the world, because that's the only thing that stands between me and all-out regional war.
And I want peace. I WANT PEACE.
I want to go surf in Gaza, have Humus for lunch in Hebron, play soccer with Palestinians and have a vacation in Lebanon. I want to visit Petra in Jordan, and travel to Egypt. I don't care if somebody's an Arab, palestinian, or whatever. I REALLY DO NOT CARE.
So PLEASE reconsider your preconceptions. Israel isn't some bloodyhungry military republic. We're an imperfect country run by imperfect people, who try to go by their daily lives with security and freedom. We make mistakes. We fuck up. Everybody does. We have corrupt politicians and messy elections like any other democracy, so things take eons to change.
But it's not one sided. For every 'Anti-Arab' in Israel there's a Pro-Peace activist standing behind him. For every soldier abusing the rights of a POW, there are THOUSANDS of Israeli protesters, and there's a court martial, and there's a public debate, and there's outrage. For every settler in the occupied territories, there are hundreds of people calling for evacuation of those territories.
So yeah, nothing you say is wrong by itself. But it's hardly the entire picture. I hope you at least reconsider your selection of facts, if not your opinions, the next time you go dismissing a nation's only life-line and it's right for self-defense.
Thank you for reading this huge spontaneous and unedited (as in not correctly paragraphed) rant. I didn't mean for it to get this long, I just had to get this all off my chest.
Thank you for your rant. It might open a good discussion.
In no way does it erase the questions about why the US get's involved contrary to the EU, UN, etc. For that baby shot by a sniper, vs the kids shot by soldiers for throwing rocks, it's been tit for tat. When Rabin makes a peace Accord, he gets killed. When Netanyahu bends, he's voted out and the treaty is tossed in the waste bin. The perception for me is that Israel doesn't want peace. It's rejected peace multiple times in multiple ways. So at what point does the US say, "You are an adult and choose your own path from now on?" It's like the parents of the kids whom let them live at home until they are 30 and wonder why they aren't driven. If Israel doesn't like our way, then why should the US continue to help them at their detriment?
even I know that security comes first
Isn't this security a two way street? Do you think that the Palestinians don't need access to arable land and potable water? You say that you bring it in, but from lands that you stole. At a rate that you deem fit. If Palestinians don't feel secure in their access to these things, don't you expect that they'll do what they have to in order to feed their families? You want to surf and hang out at the cafe. So do I. But when you make your neighbors life miserable and take from them, you can't expect that life.
The Holocaust. Your grandfathers suffering has nothing to do with you. Nothing. You have no claim. You have no reason to bring it up. I'm Native American. My family was the leadership in the Lummi Tribe in Bellingham, Washington. If it weren't for how the Indians were treated here, I'd be a wealthy land owner. Indians were slaughtered and ran over at will. And? It has nothing to do with me. I can cry about it or pick myself up and make the best of my life.
I don't buy the poor weak and scared Israel claim. You are the only ones with nuclear weapons. In the last major war you ran over your neighbors in days. I think that there are two commonalities here between US citizen and Israelis. Neither wants to give up and inch of comfort in their lives and they have military industrial complexes screaming fear everyone. We will both run over everyone and disregard the rights of all so that you can have hummus and I can have Hummers. I'm not saying that your country is worse than mine. I am saying that Israel is an embarrassing little brother. I am saying that it makes little sense as to why no criticism is allowed against Israel. I am saying that we have enough of our own problems and maybe rather than me working to provide you with enough money and power to go surfing, you should supply it for yourself?