The brouhaha de jour this week apparently will be the upcoming vote in the United Nations (official motto: We don’t do a damned thing other than squander your money and throw lavish parties) on the resolution out of Durban III to admit Palestine as a full member of that body.
I believe Palestinians have every bit as much right to have a home state as Israelis or anyone else, but this resolution is wrought with worms. The principle problem is that it sets the border between the new state and Israel as the pre-1967 border, and compounds the mistake by naming east Jerusalem as the new nation’s capital.
Now there are certainly reasonable arguments on both sides of the issue, but to me the overriding question is: Shouldn’t borders be settled through negotiation between the disputing parties? Hasn’t the age of fiat in settling international disagreements gone the way of the buggy whip and, say, colonialism?
Unfortunately, the settlement of any Israeli-Palestinian question is not about politics, nor ever the right of each to be secure within their agreed-upon borders. No, that would be way too easy.
The real issue is perfectly demonstrated by a full page ad that appeared in this morning’s Dallas Morning News, and, I assume, a dozen or more other major papers across the country. That ad was sponsored by an organization revealingly named “The Jerusalem Prayer Team” (JPT), and lists among its arguments for opposing Durban III (remember, I’ve already provided a compelling argument against it as it stands), Genesis 12.3: “I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you.”
Wow! How do you argue with logic like that? It is so convincing it takes your breath away, not to mention your mind. It does though serve to point out the real problem in the Muddled East, namely Religion.
Christopher Hitchens famously said the “Religion poisons everything”, and in both the conflict at hand and the mindless ad referenced above that statement is indisputable. What we have, if you peel the onion to its digestible core, is two pre-rational, animal-sacrificing desert tribes locked in mortal combat over whose god promised them what and when.
These claims originate from peoples who didn’t know the earth was an orb, nor what caused lightening or disease. Yet today they hold much of the world poised on the edge of war, perhaps even nuclear war, over what can only be logically considered bat-shit crazy foundational dreams.
Hopefully the JPT will stick to prayer as opposed to any real effort to interfere, thus nullifying their expenditures and historical revisionism. And hopefully too the two parties to the dispute at hand will learn that the only way to achieve peace and a real future for their peoples is to conscientiously strive for a fair and permanent settlement of a conflict that has already endured far too long, and one arrived at without further reference to invisible friends and their non-existent promises.