Sunday, August 15, 2010

Israel is not Fascistic -- but Hamas is


Here are a few bits of pertinent history from Wikipedia:

"Arab nationalists led by Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser refused to recognize Israel, calling for its destruction. By 1966, Israeli-Arab relations had deteriorated to the point of actual battles taking place between official Israeli and Arab forces. In 1967, Egypt expelled UN peacekeepers, stationed in the Sinai Peninsula since 1957, and announced a partial blockade of Israel's access to the Red Sea Israel saw these actions as a casus belli for a pre-emptive strike that launched the Six-Day War, in which Israel achieved a decisive victory and captured the West Bank, Gaza Strip, Sinai Peninsula and Golan Heights. Jerusalem's boundaries were enlarged, incorporating East Jerusalem, and the 1949 Green Line became the administrative boundary between Israel and the occupied territories."

Did the Arab states say, "whoops, that was a bad idea, let's be friends?" Not at all. Their resolve to destroy Israel had not abated. However, the Arab states had been so soundly defeated by Israel that other means were resorted to:

"The failure of the Arab states in the 1967 war led Arab non-state actors to have a more central role in the conflict. Most important among them is the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO), established in 1964, which initially committed itself to "armed struggle as the only way to liberate the homeland" In the late 1960s and early 1970s, Palestinian groups launched a wave of attacks against Israeli targets around the world, including a massacre of Israeli athletes at the 1972 Summer Olympics in Munich."

The Arab states learned their lesson in the Six Day war: No more building up one's forces on Israel's border. No more letting Israel see what was coming. They decided to wait until Israel was not expecting an attack -- and catch them by surprise:

“On October 6, 1973, as Jews were observing Yom Kippur, the Egyptian and Syrian armies launched a surprise attack against Israel. The war ended on October 26 with Israel successfully repelling Egyptian and Syrian forces but suffering great losses.”

Israel wanted peace more than land, but why give up the Golan Heights, for example, when Syria could lob mortars into Israel from there. And why give up the Gaza strip when Egypt could mount another attack from there? Still, it looked like Egypt's views had changed once Sadat became the new Egyptian president. Israel gave back the conquered Sinai Peninsula as part of an agreement. Also, Israel maintained complicated negotiations with most of the nearby Arab states in hope (vain as it turned out) that peace could be achieved.

It should be noted that peace could be achieved quite simply if the Arabs would only quit trying to destroy Israel. If they would recognize Israel's right to exist then peace would be a simple thing to achieve. But Islamists and Traditional Muslims were never willing to grant that. Israel must be destroyed. Along with military and paramilitary attempts to destroy Israel, a constant propaganda barrage was been conducted against Israel. Ordinary people, people who don't have the time to read history, were swayed by unsupported or slanted allegations against Israel.

These same ordinary people didn't realize that the Gaza Strip borders Israel. Israel was willing to give the Gaza strip to Palestine in order to show that Palestine did have its own territory. Israel didn't begrudge them that. So in 2005 Israel withdrew entirely from the Gaza Strip. That wasn't very prescient of them, for the next year, the Islamist organization named Hamas gained control of Palestine. Hamas was committed to the destruction of Israel. Had Israel known that Hamas had a chance of winning the election in Palestine, I doubt very seriously that they would have given up the Gaza Strip in 2005.

While Israel does seem willing to treat with any Arab nation who wants, or pretends to want, peace with them, Hamas has never made much of a pretense of wanting to do that. And though hope of peace seems to spring eternal in Israel, they have wisely never hoped that an Islamist organization would want peace with them. As long as Hamas controls Palestine, the best Israel can do is to guard its border against them and to prevent them from building up a military force in the Gaza Strip.

Shame on Israel, the propagandists say, but the people who believe that also believe that Islamism is a religion rather than a fascistic parareligious but also a paramilitary organization. I criticized Blogblather for accusing Israel of Fascism. He seems to like that as a term of condemnation. But in the case of Islamism, it truly does have its root in fascistic theory. Youssef M. Choureiri in his book Islamic Fundamentalism describes Sayyid Qutb's fascistic roots.

From the standpoint of military strategy, Israel would be better off today, if it had been fascistic. Then it wouldn't have given back a single piece of land it conquered. In fact it would have set about conquering more land which it could easily have done at various times. Unfortunately for that strategy, Israel is a Liberal Democracy and its people are not inclined to be aggressive. They are essentially a place of refuge where Jews, persecuted by nations and peoples sharing some of the same philosophies as Fascist Germany, can go in hopes of being safe. It has been their misfortune that Fascism in the form of fascistic oriented Islamism continued to hound them, even in what they hoped would be their safe haven.

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