Monday, February 19, 2007

And now, against the left:

This new used bookstore near me has two books displayed next to each other, one a biography of Reagan, next a book on "Anal Health and Pleasure." While it's true that I sometimes like that sort of thing, this one was a bit too obvious.

Also almost but not quite right: I was just invited, via Facebook, to a debate entitled, "Is Israel an apartheid state?" Free exchange of ideas should be encouraged and all, but this has about as much to do with reality as debating if Israel is in fact Nazi Germany all over again, or if Jews really do have horns. The idea that Israel is like South Africa, that Israel is imperialist, that the motivations of the Zionists were in any way (other than era-specific language) related to those of European colonialists, is so clearly off that holding a debate on the matter is giving such notions far too much credit. Unless, by "debate," what's meant is a basic explanation of the region's history.


Petey said...

"The idea that Israel ... is imperialist ... is so clearly off"

Is this one of those things like not realizing that the OC is set in California?

That one day you'll realize Israel's post-'67 behavior includes a significant component of imperial design, and you'll feel a sudden wave of shame?

Phoebe said...

If looked at completely out of context, certain aspects of Israeli policy resemble imperialism, as do certain aspects of, according to one op-ed once in the UChicago student paper, the very existence of that university in its South Side location. It's all imperialism, if you twist it enough. Exploitation for exploitation's sake, though, is another matter.

Petey said...

I'm much more interested in looking at things in context than out.

My moral standards differentiate urban gentrification from building settlements in occupied territories for the express purpose of making the return of those territories politically impossible.

UChicago is operating according to accepted legal standards. Israel, post-'67, is not.

Support of the Zionist project is not incompatible with seeing things clearly. David Ben-Gurion would not approve of thinking that Orange County is in Kansas.

Anonymous said...

i'd like to know what do you think about

Anonymous said...

It depends what you mean by 'European colonists'. Conservative, apartheid-era Afrikaners had quite a lot in common with some Israelis and their motivations were fairly different to those of nineteenth century colonists.