Friday, September 7, 2012

Kelly Clark's Pointing Finger (Part 2)

If you haven't read the first section of my response to Kelly James Clark's quite frankly ridiculous "insights" into solving the Israeli-Palestinian situation, please be sure to check it out because we're about to continue. He admits that making an agreement might be hard but....
" Both sides, but I'm afraid especially Israel, are afraid that they won't be able to perpetuate advantageous injustices. Some Israelis believe their Faustian bargain -- a massive wall dividing Palestinian farmers from fields, Palestinian workers from work, and Palestinian families and Palestinian friends, and Palestinians from their rights [and suicide bombers from their victims. Z] -- is a small price to pay for a dramatic decrease in Israeli deaths; separate but unequal has its advantages. And many perhaps most Palestinians and Arabs don't respect Israel's right to exist."
So yeah once again Israel is given the lions share of the attack, as if they do things only because they enjoy messing with the Palestinians and keeping their children alive is merely a side benefit. And of course no anti-Israel article would be complete without some race baiting, as "separate but unequal" was an obvious parallel to the Jim Crow laws. Too bad Israel isn't required to treat the Palestinians equally to their own citizens, not that Mr. Clark would actually have learned something before writing this. Finally, at the end we have the weak sauce "they don't respect Israel's right to exist." A small phrase to cover up a big problem.

If Mr. Clark treated the two problems equally he would have put it like this: "The Palestinians think that the Jewish people have no rights: no rights to live, no rights to own property, no rights to live their lives are free people. They deny Jewish history both in the Middle East and in Europe and seek to destroy the state of Israel and everyone who lives there. Oh and Israel built a security fence too." See what I mean? Anyway let's move on to another obvious example of anti-Israel bias:
"There is the carrot and there is the stick method of getting people to the table. Let's go with the stick on this one: the U.S. government will inform Israel that they will immediately cut off all funding of Israel, all donations of funds from U.S. citizens to Israel, and all military support for Israel pending their agreement to binding arbitration. That should do it."
If you're waiting for Mr. Clark to explain how he thinks that Palestinians should be "sticked" to make them recognize Israel's right to exist, you can stop. He just moves on, he doesn't think America should do anything to the Palestinians, only Israel. This is what Huffington Post bloggers call "being a fair and impartial mediator." By the way, I'm not entirely against this idea I just know that (a) it won't work, because it is unenforceable and of course the US government doesn't want to do it and (b) it won't solve the problem, because Israel is always willing to agree to make peace. But their enemies do not.

At this point he talks about who the arbitrators should be. Not a country, individual people. He says they should be women, "deeply committed to justice," they must be "deeply and seriously religious" (oh great) but they can't be "fundamentalist." If that doesn't make sense to you, just keep nodding. After more religious pandering (barf) he concludes with this:
"Put those eleven wise and virtuous people in a room, give them ample time to get up to speed on all of these issues, and let them decide."
Let's see if we can work together to figure out what's wrong with this plan, shall we?

Problem #1: Why should the Israelis or the Palestinians listen to these eleven people? Mr. Clark says that the USA should "stick" Israel, but then it's really the USA imposing its will, and not the eleven. In the same vein, why should the USA listen to the eleven if the eleven say something that the American people don't want? The problem is that these people, no matter how religious they are, have no actual power to enforce their decisions.

Problem #2: These people won't suffer the consequences of their ideas aka the Kelly James Clark problem. History has shown that imposed solutions don't work and besides: The Israelis and the Palestinians are the ones who have to live together, so why on earth would you get someone else to tell them how to live? Instead, why not get the two sides to sit down and make peace? Oh right, because one of them doesn't want to and that just happens to be the side Mr. Clark sympathizes with. What a conundrum.

Problem #3: It's already been tried. United Nations Resolutions 242 and Partition Plan being the most notable. Believe me, Mr. Clark, better minds than yours have tried to come up with an agreement and none of them have succeeded.

But of course the goal is not to have peace. The goal is to continue to drum up more hatred against Israel in the pages of the Huffington Post. This time was just more subtle than usual. You should also check out the comments thread for the article, as Mr. Clark is very active there.

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