Comment on ‘Tantura’ Documentary Reopens Debate About Israel’s Foundational Story – The New York Times

A lasting settlement with the Palestinians will only be possible, he said, if both sides recognize each other’s historical narratives. And in Israel’s case, this meant recognizing that while Arabs also committed atrocities in 1948, many Palestinians “got thrown out of here by force.”“Saying, ‘Yes, it happened,’ doesn’t mean that we don’t have a right to be in this country,” he added. “But we can acknowledge what we did. We can acknowledge the other side’s pain.”

Source: ‘Tantura’ Documentary Reopens Debate About Israel’s Foundational Story – The New York Times

Much as I hate to link to anything from NYT due to the annoying ads and extortion tactics to be rid of them, I found this an interesting take. It is a strange twist when, in this kind of conversation, a hard core self labelled Zionist is the one who makes the most sense on the Israeli side.

For the record, I’m not on either of the most visible “sides” in this. Both are colonists. I’m loyal to those however, who are loyal to me, and though this country does have its jerks, by and large, Israel is a much safer place to be an African woman than the U.S.

I also think Israel should own up. The Palestinian leaders should as well, but as the ones with the most stable government and leadership, Israel has the most responsibility to clear the air. The worry about the perception of Israel being “born in sin” will not change with the addition of new information. There is enough information already that this is so, and this is so for almost every nation on Earth. I don’t know of any totally clean war. I don’t know of any country that has no dirt in its past. All the new information would do is confirm the humanity of Israelis. It might also serve to intimidate those who stereotype Jews as somehow passive or easily manipulated through their morality.

Seemingly positive racism is still racism. It often convinces those on the lower tier of its hierarchy to favor stereotypes about themselves that would endear them to the upper tier. Problem is that those stereotypes are part of the oppression, and it should disturb someone greatly when their presumed superiors pat them on the head and say “good slave”.

No, Jews are not good slaves. People have been f*cking around and finding out since the Babylonians. Somehow they made a strong culture that has survived exiles and extermination attempts. That didn’t come about from being overly passive or overly inhumane. They found a balance that worked for them. It’s still working.

Folks need to let go of this need to be right or righteous. I assure you that no Muslim with any kind of honestly has this need. No Christian either, when you scratch below the surface. For sure, nobody else does. We have actual words for when a warrior is in a sort of “total war” state of being that are the equivalent of “berzerk”.  Any need Jews have to be right and righteous in matters of war is due to being colonized and traumatized by racism. It is something that needs to be overcome.

Your enemies should know that when pressed, you are a monster who might not stop at what is fair. You might commit some war crimes. You should try not to, but it happens regardless of what leaders want sometimes because this is the nature of war. Humans were not built to do a lot of killing and then go home and be okay.

Your inner monster needs to be harder to awaken than others’ perhaps. It should take more than being disagreed with or protested against. It should be there though, lurking in the background, waiting for its people to be plausibly threatened or harmed. Israel’s hidden monster needs the cold light of day shined upon it like all others. First, to ensure that it does take a lot to reawaken it, and second, so enemies will understand that it is there and it is dangerous to awaken.

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