24 April 2007

Almost Sixty.

Well nearly.

The celebrations of the 59th Independence Day in Israel are a reminder of diligence, tenacity, guile and humanity which brought about the creation of the State of Israel, in the face of concerted opposition.

If we turn back the clock some 60 odd years ago what would we find?

At the end of WW2, many European Jews had been languishing in British concentration camps for up to 5 years, as Britain enforced the MacDonald White Paper severely restricting immigration to Palestine, even in light of widespread Nazi persecution. Soon after the end of WW2, Britain had decided to give up the mandate for Palestine (or in reality the remaining one fifth, as the other 4/5ths had passed to Transjordan). There were many proposals for the shape of a new state in Palestine: bi-national, federated cantons and finally partition.

Although the UN voted to partition Palestine, allowing the creation of a Jewish homeland, this was bitterly opposed by feudal Arab rulers and local dictators. Whilst many in the region welcomed the return of Jews to Palestine the invading armies from five neighbouring nations sought to “solve” the quaintly named “Jewish question” by force.

They failed and in the wake of their defeat the conflict in the Middle East has been allowed to fester on, deliberately stoked by local rulers, but the existence of Israel is a constant reminder that the use of military force to solve political problems will not succeed, and how the perseverance of the Israelis in the face of constant and unnecessary conflict should be applauded.

Roll on 60!

[PS: Israel is that really small country, middle to top left on that map]

1 comment:

Fabián said...

Especially to blame is UNRWA.