Wednesday, May 14, 2008


And the Jewish people to whom I gladly belong and with whose mentality I have a deep affinity have no different quality for me than all other people. As far as my experience goes, they are also no better than other human groups, although they are protected from the worst cancers by a lack of power.
Albert Einstein, 1954.
[In the Israeli self image] violence only ever comes from the outside. Miracle and innocence are inscribed into the origins of the nation.

...In fact, to acknowledge the nakba is not to de-legitimise Israel, but it does require of the nation a different form of accountability for its own past...

...[But] the literature can give us hope, provided we recognise the fundamental and continuing injustice that has spawned
-- from Chroniclers of pain by Jacqueline Rose.
At 60, Israel is not a perfect democracy, a Jewish ghetto imperiled by Iranian Nazis or a puppet master indirectly controlling Washington. It is more democratic than its neighbors, more reliably pro-Western and more successful economically and militarily. It faces the classic dilemmas of a nation-state dealing with minorities, borders and neighbors. It is best understood as a real place, not a country of myth.
--from Seven myths about Israel by Gershom Gorenberg.
Today, many Israelis have no idea what it must feel like to be Palestinian - how it is to live in a city such as Nablus, a prison for 180,000 people. There are no restaurants there, no cafes, no cinemas. What has become of the famous Jewish intellect here? I am not even speaking of justice or love. Why does one continue to feed the hate in the Gaza strip? There will never be a military solution. Two peoples are fighting over one and the same land. No matter how strong Israel becomes, there will always be insecurity and fear. The conflict is eating away at itself and at the Jewish soul, and it has been allowed to do so. We wanted to own land that had never belonged to Jews and build settlements there. The Palestinians see this as imperialistic provocation, and rightly so. Their resistance is absolutely understandable - not the means they use to this end, not the violence nor the wanton inhumanity - but their "no".
-from 'Music gives me hope' by Daniel Barenboim.

No comments: