Thursday, December 14, 2006

And Iran, Iran so far away...

In our continuing spirit of generous giving, we offer you -- Dear Friends!!! -- more thoughts from prominent members of the Collective Swill, the very power and rarity of whose words makes them unfit for weekly consumption. In short, we're not sure you're ready to handle them frequently.

This week, we're joined once again by Mickey Bones, an unruly thinker and iron-fisted administrator who has long served as a sort of Shadow Swill. Bones is the kind of writer who knows more dead languages than you do, who knows more about Irving Berlin than you ever will, and who enjoys the protection of more than a few gonnegtions. In short, give a hay-ho swillcome to Mickey Bones, whom we recently approached with questions about the conference in Tehran. The responses are characteristically pithy and cogent.
For those who are interested questions concerning the connection between the Holocaust and the existence of the state of Israel, here’s the answer: there is none. Moral justifications are not sufficiently persuasive to maintain the continued existence of states. Besides internal cohesion (i.e. nationalism), states are made possible by the political function they serve for other states (i.e. realpolitics).

Historically, the geo-political function of Israel has been to help a world power dislodge another world power from its control over the resources of the Middle East.


Balfour Declaration 1917: The British support Palestinian Jewry as part of a strategy to dislodge Ottoman control of the Middle East.

Outcome: Successful. The Ottomans lose their Middle East empire to Great Britain.

UN vote of 1947: The USSR supports a two-state solution as part of a strategy to dislodge British control of its Middle and South Eastern empire.

Outcome: Successful. The British lose most of their empire to the USSR.

Yom Kippur War of 1973: The USA supports Israel as part of a strategy to dislodge Soviet control of the Middle East, specifically over Egypt.

Outcome: Successful. Egypt becomes a client of the US, the USSR loses its Middle East Empire to the US.

The irony of this strategy is that once successfully executed, Israel the ally becomes a liability to the colonizing force, since local populations do not tolerate the existence of Jewish state power. It has usually taken a period of two or three decades before the former allies become outright enemies. The US and Israel are in that transitional period right now.

Probable future:

(1) Israel and America will part ways.

(2) Israel will find new allies that wish to dislodge American control over the resources of the Middle East.

(3) America will lose control over the resources of the Middle East.

If the Holocaust had any role in creating the State of Israel, it was to remind Jews of the obvious: power and political function are the only justifications that matter.

- mb


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nice piece. Just want to point out that the Holocaust has played a prominent RHETORICAL role in justifying Israel's various atrocities against Palestinians, Lebanese, etc.

12:34 PM  
Blogger Mickey Bones said...

Rhetoric, especially in the form of moral justification, is not sufficient to induce action.

There were adequate rhetorical moral justifications to argue for Jewish passage to Palestine (or anywhere) at the Evion Conference of 1938, where the West met to decide the fate of Jewish refugees from Germany/Austria. At that conference, only the Dominican Republic agreed to take in Jewish refugees. Other countries may have sympathized with the rhetoric or moral obligation, etc, but this was not alone sufficient to make them act politically.

The bottom line: The Evion Conference and the Holocaust were a political lesson for Jews. If you don't have power, nobody cares whatever you may say. Only power can pressure political action. In 1938 Jews didn't have power and nobody cared. Now we do, and people seem to care a lot.

Power is. Rhetoric isn't.


1:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What's the status of Chinese/Israeli relations these days?

As a former New Yorker, the notion of a Beijing/Jerusalem connection seems somehow like Destiny.

11:48 AM  

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