Monday, November 20, 2017

Shared Values

I am waiting for it to come up on Jeopardy. The answer is, “a nation run by barbaric beggars.” The question, “What is Israel?”

How much is it now? Netanyahu begs, “Give us $3.8  billion a year, and we won’t ask for any more,” unless Israel wants to fight another war, then it will be, ”Who knows?” And to keep the American tax-payer from rioting, we are told over and over again about our “shared values.”

Yet, Who values Israel’s program of occupation, the imprisonment of children, extrajudicial executions., the demolition of homes, and the stealing of land and water from a weaker people? Who supports an apartheid wall as in the West Bank and the deliberate starving of millions of people as in Gaza?  Unfortunately, we Americans do.

Jeff Halper tells it like it is:

This occupation is not perceived as an Israeli occupation. It’s perceived as an American-Israeli occupation. It is clear that Israel couldn’t maintain this occupation for a month without the political and military support that the United States offers.[i]

I condemn Israel for its brutal betrayal of human life. But I am an American which means that I also have my hand in that dish. Israel lives on my tax money and I object too little and too seldom. I ask myself, how can I enjoy my swimming pool when my neighbor, just over the wall, turns on his faucet and nothing…no water.

I am disturbed that so few Americans are disturbed by the gross injustice we blindly support.  One thing for sure. It’s not because we have shared values. I will never accept that.

Ilan Pappe points out how wrong it all is:

The official decision to colonize was a grave violation of international law. The Geneva Convention requires an occupying power to affect the existing order in the occupied territory as little as possible during its tenure. One aspect of this obligation is that it must leave the territory to the people it finds there. Another vital obligation, decreed in Article 49 of the Geneva Convention, states: The occupying Power shall not deport or transfer parts of its own population into the territory it occupies.[ii]

Of course, these guidelines were written for a nation seeking to be guided by moral values and with a desire to be considered civilized. Thus, it was not written with Israel in mind… or the U.S. One can’t claim moral values and be silent on Palestine.

Thomas Are
November 20, 2017

[i] Tom Hayes, Challenges and Changes in 25 Years Working on Israel-Palestine Issues, Washington Report on Middle East Affairs, May 2017, p.44.
[ii] Ilan Pappe, The Biggest Prison on Earth, (Oneworld Publications, London, 2017) p. 133.


  1. Thank you for continuing to educate. Please put Twitter and FB icons on your blogposts to make for easy sharing. I'd love to help spread your message.

  2. I'd be happy to reblog too on my site

  3. Jeopardy 1/16/2012:
    "Question: Galilee, Samaria & Judea in the south were the 3 traditional divisions of this ancient area with a still-current name.
    Answer: What is Palestine!"