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Saturday, June 5, 2010

Helen Thomas, Ace Reporter

The doyenne of the White House Press Corps, Ms Helen Thomas, has offered her view on the situation in the Holy Land.

UPDATE: 
Helen Thomas issued the following statement today: “I deeply regret my comments I made last week regarding the Israelis and the Palestinians. They do not reflect my heart-felt belief that peace will come to the Middle East only when all parties recognize the need for mutual respect and tolerance. May that day come soon.”
Found here.  But, it does still give us a good thought experiment.  Returning to the original post.

Her approach is for the Jews in Israel to get out of there and go back to Germany and Poland (and, one would assume, Russia, Ukraine and Spain, amongst others).

I have heard, from time to time, that the problem in the Middle East is Israel and if it just went away things would naturally become better.  Passing over the issue of if Israel has a right to exist—a not unsubstantial question— we have the basic question of how Israel would "just go away".  Would they do this voluntarily?  Would the other nations of the world force this nation to go away?  Would the surrounding Arab nations just attack and overrun Israel?

Then there is the question of if Germany and Poland, and the others, would be happy to receive returning Jews.  Would the former Israelis come empty handed or would they bring their tools and books and computers and industries?  If they came as refugees they would come as more workers to lands that already have high unemployment.  Thus, they would be a burden on the taxpayers of their new home.  If they came voluntarily they might well strip their former homeland of everything but the roads and telephone poles and the shells of buildings.  If I was in charge of the leaving, and it was voluntary, I would take the Wailing Wall with me, but what do I know?

In the end, the question is, would these refugees be welcomed or would they be barred from entry or would they be confined to some small strip of land and not allowed to again roam their ancestors' homeland in freedom?  If their ancesstors had, in fact, roamed in freedom and not been confined to the ghetto or mellah?  Which raises the question of if Jews would return to places like Moracco?  The past history of Jews in Europe and Africa is a history of confinement, if not in a ghetto, then in shtetls, in some Pale of Settlement.  Germany and other Western European nations were the exception, for a short period of time, which ended in the early 1940s.  Then the survivors mostly departed.

To quote General Petraeus about Iraq, "Tell me how this ends". 

Regards  —  Cliff

  And tell me what it is going to cost me as an American taxpayer.
  The Comments feature would work for conveying your insights.  Or an EMail.

1 comment:

kad barma said...

There's a point extremely poorly made beneath the stunning ignorance and insensitivity (I'd like to believe it's age-related dementia, but who knows) that there are people displaced by the re-placement of 6 million Jews into Palestine, and something MUST be done to recognize that.

However, free people should be able to settle where they prefer, (respecting the property and civil rights of those with whom they newly choose to share their lives), and no lawfully accepted immigrant to any country should be treated any differently than any native, and the entire premise of sending them back to whence they came is preposterous and vile.

Of course, Palestinians have to accept that 6 million Jews have been accepted into what is now known as Israel, (to which could also be usefully referred as occupied Palestine), and the "how this ends" question must be answered with safe and respected homes, businesses and religious sites for all.

Besides all this, I would also opine that Helen needs to be sent back to wherever it is that she came from, and restricted in the future from staining White House press events with her now-politicized wizened visage.