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Spengler

It’s About the Settlements, Stupid

December 17th, 2013 - 8:33 am

Jewish settlements in Judea and Samaria, the misnamed occupied territories, are not the obstacle to peace between Israelis and Palestinians. They are the acid test of peace. To argue that peace is conceivable unless the bulk of the settlements remain in place constitutes stupidity or hypocrisy. Leave aside the issue of whether Jews have the right to live in the historic homeland of the Jewish people. Ignore the fact that the settlers live overwhelmingly on what was waste land and turned into gardens, vineyards, and industries which have uplifted the lives of Palestinian Arabs more than all the aid that has passed through (or rather stuck to) the fingers of the kleptocrats of the PA. Leave aside also Israel’s requirement for defensible borders: that is a critical issue but not identical to the continued presence of settlements.

Accepting the settlements is the sine qua non of any viable peace agreement. It does Israel no good to defend Israel’s right to exist but to condemn the settlers, as does Alan Dershowitz, not to mention the leaders of liberal Jewish denominations.

I believe in land for peace. That is a tautology: In territorial disputes the two main variables always are land and peace. But that implies more land for more peace and less land for less peace. The Palestinian Arabs had an opportunity to accept an Israeli state on just 5,500 square miles of land in 1947, and refused to do so. The armistice lines of 1948 left Israel with 8,550 square miles, and the Arab side refused to accept that. In 1967 Israel took an additional 5,628 square miles of land in dispute under international law; Jordan does not claim it, and no legal Arab authority exists to claim it. It is not “illegally occupied.” It has never been adjudicated by a competent authority.

To demand the 1948 armistice lines (the so-called 1967 borders) is to refuse any penalty for refusing to make peace in the past. That is the same as refusing any peace at all. Wars end when one side accepts defeat, and abandons the hope of restoring the status quo ante by force of arms. 1947 was a catastrophe (“Nakba”) for the Palestinian Arabs, to be sure, but it was a catastrophe of their own making; until they accept at least some degree of responsibility for the catastrophe, they will not be reconciled to any peace agreement. That is precisely what Palestine’s negotiator Saeb Erekat meant when he eschewed any recognition of Israel as a Jewish nation-state because “I cannot change my narrative.” The “narrative” is that the Jews are an alien intrusion into the Muslim Middle East and eventually must be eliminated by one means or another.

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Top Rated Comments   
Just imagine if Britain and especially the US had been more vigorous in getting the Jews out of Europe from 1933-45, instead of being blocked by Anti-Semites like Breckinridge Long and Anthony Eden, most Jews would have opted not to go to Palestine and instead emigrate to countries with established Jewish communities. But as you say, no one wanted them. It is ironic is it not, that Europe did not want it's Jews so today they have their Muslims. What is happening and will continue to happen to Western Europe may be Divine retribution in a sense.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
Looking from a distance the situation here is Israel may seem, as someone here says, " dire ". However living here and having a blessed life here, puts things in an entirely different perspective.

I must admit first that I am a religious person. Judaism defines my daily life and also provides the historical perspective that informs my judgement. Four thousand years of recorded history and eyes open to the miraculous time in which we are privileged to live leave courage in my heart and a smile on my face.
What has been accomplished here in the homeland of the Jews is nothing short of miraculous. Remember it was not long ago that bloodthirsty Europeans and the morally bankrupt West turned their backs on us as we were being slaughtered in the millions. The dust from the crematoria, both literally and figuratively, has not settled. And while we Jews suffered beyond human description through this event the entire world is the loser. There are two undeniable conclusions that come from The Holocaust- the world was set back a thousand years as the cures for so many diseases, so much scientific and cultural advancement went up those chimneys and the world, society as we know it, has lost any moral right to continue. We who live in a
post- Holocaust world must look at the disease and moral bankruptcy of modern nations with open eyes.
Why should one be surprised by the fact that many nations of the world have turned their backs to the Jews once again. If there is one constant in those four thousand years of history I mentioned earlier it is that the Jews stand alone. Especially in light of this most recent Holocaust is there any reason to believe that things would be different?
Yet I have a smile on my face. Why? because the outcome is assured. Because everything that The Almighty has promised has come true. This is no longer a matter of simple faith. It has become a matter of proven history. The only ones who cannot see this are those either willfully blind or blinded by false ideology. False religions based upon misrepresentations of history and heinous philosophies still hold sway for much of the world. Those falsehoods are drawing to a close.
We Jews defy and define history at the same time. We live both inside of history and above it. It washes over us yet we live in a timeless vacuum illuminated by a inextinguishable light. In the darkest corner of the ghetto, in the most fetid foothold in the concentration camps, a spiritual light shone that would blind the very stars.
How many stories have we heard of one giving up his bread so another might live? Of scraps of candle wax saved to light on the Sabbath? Of acts of valor and heroism so great that the mind cannot understand them. For the world at large the Holocaust was condemnation. For the Jews it was the prelude to the final Redemption.
So as the world connives against us, we build, live, study, work , raise our children. We cannot be shaken from this Land. And while we have great military might, greater today than in two thousand years, that is not the true guarantee of our success.
The true guarantee of our success are the promises The Almighty has made.
And that is why I smile.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment








The Evil genie is out of the Bottle. It all began in 1967 when the Israeli Forces reclaimed all of Jerusalem but in a moment of weakness and misguided secular-Jewish largesse decided to allow the Muslim's Al Aksa Mosque to remain undisturbed on Temple Mount. Temple Mount is a Spiritual Vortex, given to the Jewish Nation to safeguard by the Holy ONE, the Omnipotent Force of all Forces in the Universe, with strict instructions as to what is allowed and forbidden on this most Awesome and powerful Spiritual Powerplant on planet earth. The Jewish People have no Spiritual claim to the Holy Land when they do not fulfill their 'part of the bargain', that is, their G-d given responsibility under the Covenant to serve as




Custodians of the Mount. In effect, fulfilling that responsibility, more than any historical claims or 'legal' titles of ownership is what gives legitimacy to the Jewish possession of Jerusalem and the Holy Land.




On a deep and subconscious spiritual level this truth is felt if not understood not only by the European Union and United Nations but particularly by our half brothers in the Muslim world who have rightfully concluded the weakness and spiritual faithlessness of the Jewish Nation in spurning G-d's Will. Their fraudulent possession of Temple Mount and the Israeli Government's complicity in reinforcing of this fraud by officially forbidding any Jewish prayer or even for Jews to set foot there has caused a world-shattering metaphysical imbalance, a short-circuit so to speak.
Since 1967 the cancer of Radical Islam has metastasized world-wide, threatening every civilization with physical and spiritual destruction. The 9-11 attacks, Islamic unrest and Sharia in Europe, everywhere Islam has a presence, the dread and unspeakable menace of two nuclear armed Islamic States, Pakistan and soon Iran just to name a very few nightmares. Is this a coincidence? Is it a coincidence that all three major religions hold Jerusalem as sacred ground to be fought and died for? A coincidence that Jerusalem is never mentioned in Islam's holiest book, Koran, yet thousands of times in Jewish Scripture!
The truth is that nothing can stop this Cancer from spreading. Not Armed forces, Drone assassinations, Civil laws or security checkpoints. Not even the false panacea of a 'successful' political settlement with Arab Palestinians in Judea/Samaria for 'Palestinian' Statehood there will turn the tide and return the 'Genie' to the 'box'. Those are nothing but band-aids on soon-to-be terminal cancer. And more and more as the nations of the world, including formerly friendly ones in European Capitols and Washington D.C. Quietly have begun to openly question the merits, even the 'legitimacy' of the Jewish State, the situation facing Israel has become dire. Far worse than Iranian nukes is this other threat. Sadly, more and more American Jews have come to question Israeli status in that region. The BDS movement grows on American University campuses, most troubling as it now includes growing numbers of young liberal Jewish students, men and women.

Militarily, politically, philosophically, morally ...Israel is becoming weakened on many fronts. It is not certain the Jewish State can survive much longer under the expanded front.

Unless...The Jewish Nation will do what should have been done in 1967. Remove the Al Aksa from Temple Mount. Restore the balance to the Spiritual Vortex as was intended by the Holy ONE. There Is No Other Way. Yes, it will be painful. The region and world will bleed with Muslim fury and world-violence. For a while. And then, the cancer will die as the Genie of Spiritual imbalance is returned to the Bottle. There Is No Other Way. And Time Is Running Out.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (56)
All Comments   (56)
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The reality is that there will never in the foreseeable future be peace in the MENA. If the Moslems were cowed into ceasing their depredations against Israel and the non-Muslim areas surrounding them, they'd begin fighting among themselves. It is a sick and barbaric culture to its very roots, literally a cancer on the planet.

If the Israelis gave up the '67 borders, the Muslims would want more. The Muslims will never accept a non-Muslim sovereign on territory they consider theirs. They will never accept territory once held by them in the Balkans to be anything other than Muslim controlled territory. They will never accept a non-Muslim sovereign on their borders. Their whole belief system required them to conquer the entire World and make everyone in the World Muslim, a dhimmi, or dead. It is a waste of breath and keystrokes to even talk of peace with them; the closest you ever get to peace with them is after you thoroughly smash them, they are afraid to mess with you for awhile.

The real problem today, is the American left hates all things traditionally American, all things Christian, and religiously Jewish Jews. A religious Jew isn't a Jew any more than a conservative Black is a Black to the Left. This is compounded by the actions of the Soros Junta/Obama Administration about which I only have one question: If the Soros Junta were agents of a hostile Middle Eastern power, what would they have done differently in the last five years?
47 weeks ago
47 weeks ago Link To Comment
Points all well taken. But the spectacular success of Jews in the territories will by itself cause the Arab to hate the Jew no less, and perhaps more. It is a constant reminder that Arabs are not the equal of Jews and that is intolerable. A rising standard of living will produce fewer Arabs but not fewer competent enemies. Irish Catholics vs. Irish Protestants does not equal Jews vs. Arabs.
48 weeks ago
48 weeks ago Link To Comment
I agree with all the points about the settlements. HOWEVER, when you enter a negotiation, it is the pinnacle of BAD FAITH to continue to expand the settlements. If that is the case then there can be no objection to firing missiles from Gaza while the negotiations continue.
48 weeks ago
48 weeks ago Link To Comment
A pathetic, despicable and false statement.

Official settlement related construction by Israel is arguably w/in the bounds of previous agreements. You are essentially parroting the line of Obama-Biden-Kerry, which boils down to, Israeli zoning approval for apartments in Jerusalem causes Hamas "heroes" to shoot anti-tank missiles at school buses.
48 weeks ago
48 weeks ago Link To Comment
Another thing that casts background light on Spengler's essay here is to remember what was done with the Jews (stupidly) ceded the Gaza: the Jews had built up a complex of greenhouses that had become a giant in the European flower industry.

What did the Moslems do when they received this gift from the Jews, a ready-made opportunity to make money? They had a glass breaking party and destroyed the entire facility.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
Leave aside the issue of whether Jews have the right to live in the historic homeland of the Jewish people. Ignore the fact that the settlers live overwhelmingly on what was waste land and turned into gardens, vineyards, and industries...

Also, don't forget that much of that land was bought and paid for by Zionist Jews returning to Israel from Europe: they paid the purchase money in cash (not mortgages) to the absentee Moslem landlords, most in Jordan, and received title to the property in return, just like anywhere in the world.

So how is such land regarded as "occupied?" Funny, but one never hears about this when the news entertainers flap their jaws about the so-called Occupied Territories. And, pu-leeze, don't get me started with the claim that Israel is an Apartheid state. I go over the edge on that one.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
Wars happen........... Geography changes. It is a fact. Winners win, losers lose. Note that we are not having a similar debate about the entire Southwest of the USA - Mexico lost the war and they are not likely to regain the territory. Same with the so-called "Palestinians." They lost.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
To my limited knowledge, the reglious factor imparted Jewish identity to the long Jewish history in Europe. Apparently, in the 19th Century there was an acculutration of most Jews into German society such that felt Jewish identity (corraltive to Jewish religiosity) diminished. According to a German tv documentary some 170k quater and half Jews (using Nazi criteria) did fight for the Nazi Wehrmacht, a couple rising up to Feldmarshall. That bespeaks of a lost Jewish identity, indeed, its absorbtion into the non-Jewish majority's identity, then under Nazi control. After the war some 1/2 Jews (pardon the barbatity) rediscovered their Jewish identity, religiously based, and some did not and have long since disappeared culturally into German society.

I am uncertainly prodding about seeking the cutural force that breathes Jewish life into Israel in specific and Jewish culture in the US in general. It cannot just be the sad fact that Nazis simply went after "racially designated" Jews. That type of memory wears off eventually. What is needed, I believe, is a dynamic self-identity of Jews both in Israel and in the US (slowly Jews are being driven out of Europe with the massive Muslim immigaration and identity is alive). You feel betrayed by the liberal Jews. I ask, is a Liberal-Jew something like a German-Jew before WW I. The German part then seemed greatly to have absorbed the Jewish part leaving just plain German citizens fighting for the homeland. What gives LIBERAL Jews a "Jewish identity"? Is secularization progressively realizing a metamorphis of American Jews into Lberals with a quaint memory of way back then or with a quaint sentimentality for Israel? What justifies your lamenting a betrayal must rest on the belief that the American Jew, despite it all, is concerned for Jewishness? Or is my question based upon a false premise about Jewish identity? I believe to see problematic re support from secularized American Jews.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
Food for thought: a map of Cisjordania
http://www.lesmotsontunsens.com/files/carte-cisjordanie-occupee.jpg

Check the red areas and their size. These are areas inaccessible to Palestinians or subject to restrictions.

Check the number of checkpoints and the way they split the part of Cisjordania accessible to Palestinians in many very small areas. To get from one of these small tracts of land to another, you have to get through a checkpoint, with all attendant delays.

Realize that every Cisjordania Palestinian born since 1967 has lived this way. Except that the number and total area of inaccessible parts of Cisjordania has increased with time, just as the number of Israeli settlers in Cisjordania increased.

Look at that map again. Try to imagine what it is to live this way. How you would feel.

Remember that many white South Africans were convinced they were bringing development to backward blacks. Which in some cases may even have been true! But was no more than a fraction of the apartheid problem.

A peace treaty between Israelis and Palestinians would not have to result in Israeli settlers being thrown out of Cisjordania. They would have to change nationality and become Jewish citizens of the Palestinian state, just like Israel also has Muslim and Christian citizens.

However, the political prospects for such pragmatic solutions is presently dim. Both from Israeli and Palestinian point of view.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
Alexis F. wrote about the treatment of the poor Palis under the Israelis: "Try to imagine what it is to live this way. How you would feel."

Now let's ask one of the scores of Palestinians applying for Israeli citizenship (vs. PA citizenship) how they feel about it: "I prefer the hell of the Jews to the paradise of Hamas or Yasser Arafat." - http://www.gatestoneinstitute.org/3407/palestinians-israeli-citizenship
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
Illegal Palestinian construction throughout Judea and Samaria/West Bank and Jerusalem is extensive and apparently well organized and well funded. It should also be noted that the PA has reportedly signed agreements giving Israel control of "Area C". http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/175259#.UrH2_PRDtQU, http://www.jcpa.org/jlmbldg.htm and http://jcpa.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/illegal-construction.pdf.

'“Over the past two to three years, there’s been a battle for Area C,” said Marco Ben-Shabbat. “It’s not like what we saw before, with a single Palestinian building a private home illegally. It is much more organized.” ... those establishing illegal communities in AreaC are receiving orders from above ... senior officials in the Palestinian Authority (PA). The PA has signed on agreements giving Israel control in Area C – Israeli communities and other Israeli-owned land in Judea and Samaria – but in practice, insists that any Israeli presence in the area is “occupation.”'(from above cited INN article)'.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
Looking from a distance the situation here is Israel may seem, as someone here says, " dire ". However living here and having a blessed life here, puts things in an entirely different perspective.

I must admit first that I am a religious person. Judaism defines my daily life and also provides the historical perspective that informs my judgement. Four thousand years of recorded history and eyes open to the miraculous time in which we are privileged to live leave courage in my heart and a smile on my face.
What has been accomplished here in the homeland of the Jews is nothing short of miraculous. Remember it was not long ago that bloodthirsty Europeans and the morally bankrupt West turned their backs on us as we were being slaughtered in the millions. The dust from the crematoria, both literally and figuratively, has not settled. And while we Jews suffered beyond human description through this event the entire world is the loser. There are two undeniable conclusions that come from The Holocaust- the world was set back a thousand years as the cures for so many diseases, so much scientific and cultural advancement went up those chimneys and the world, society as we know it, has lost any moral right to continue. We who live in a
post- Holocaust world must look at the disease and moral bankruptcy of modern nations with open eyes.
Why should one be surprised by the fact that many nations of the world have turned their backs to the Jews once again. If there is one constant in those four thousand years of history I mentioned earlier it is that the Jews stand alone. Especially in light of this most recent Holocaust is there any reason to believe that things would be different?
Yet I have a smile on my face. Why? because the outcome is assured. Because everything that The Almighty has promised has come true. This is no longer a matter of simple faith. It has become a matter of proven history. The only ones who cannot see this are those either willfully blind or blinded by false ideology. False religions based upon misrepresentations of history and heinous philosophies still hold sway for much of the world. Those falsehoods are drawing to a close.
We Jews defy and define history at the same time. We live both inside of history and above it. It washes over us yet we live in a timeless vacuum illuminated by a inextinguishable light. In the darkest corner of the ghetto, in the most fetid foothold in the concentration camps, a spiritual light shone that would blind the very stars.
How many stories have we heard of one giving up his bread so another might live? Of scraps of candle wax saved to light on the Sabbath? Of acts of valor and heroism so great that the mind cannot understand them. For the world at large the Holocaust was condemnation. For the Jews it was the prelude to the final Redemption.
So as the world connives against us, we build, live, study, work , raise our children. We cannot be shaken from this Land. And while we have great military might, greater today than in two thousand years, that is not the true guarantee of our success.
The true guarantee of our success are the promises The Almighty has made.
And that is why I smile.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
It's great to have the Almighty on your side but it's also good to have the IDF.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
If I may recycle this hoary bit of wisdom from Bonaparte, "(I)n War, the moral is to the material as three is to one".

The success of the IDF depends on the factors described so beautifully above by MBY. Take that away and Israel morphs into Belgium.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
One way to confuse leftists: Argue that the settlers are illegal aliens and therefore opposition to them is nativist bigotry.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
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