Friday, April 18, 2008

With such friends...

Like so many Israel-bashers good old Jimmy Carter loves to bombard us with numbers in order to '''prove''' that Israel is evil, or at least the main or the only party responsible for - the continuation of - the conflict. While I, like him, do believe that Hamas should be somehow included in any possible ( 'peace' ) negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians, in my opinion Carter has turned himself into an incredible and unreliable candidate for the position of mediator between the two peoples. Not only his obvious bias is a reason for that opinion, but also his ridiculous claim that "For every Israeli killed [...] between 30 to 40 Palestinians are killed because of the extreme military capability of Israel ". I am absolutely opposed to reducing the conflict to a 'tis - 'tisn't argument about numbers ( earlier this week I wrote an article about that for the website of a Dutch newspaper ) but after Jimmy C. made this claim I had another look at one of my favorite websites, that of Betselem, an Israeli human rights organization that champions human rights for all the people involved in the conflict and that certainly is not too 'Israel-friendly'. There you can find very trustworthy and quite comprehensive statistics of the casualties of 'the' conflict from September 2000 until March 31st this year. In that period a total of 4608 + 67 + 44 = 4719 Palestinians were killed by Israel(is). Never mind that at least a third of those Palestinians was "Killed when participating in hostilities", or that another 577 Palestinians were killed by Palestinians. If Carter's proportional rubbish was true, 'only' 118-157 ( 4719: 30/40 ) Israelis should have been killed in the same period. Alas, the number of Israeli civilian casualties for the last eight years is 234 + 481 = 715. Add to that the number of casualties among Israeli security force personnel ( 242 + 87 = 329 ) and multiply the result ( 1044 ) with 30 or 40 and you get 31320 or 41760! In other words, Mr Carter was simply talking out of the back of his neck, only hurting his own credibility. And do his lies and exaggerations contribute in any way to the wellbeing of either Israelis or Palestinians? I doubt it sincerely. If you read this weblog regularly you know that much of my criticism is aimed at Israel's non-leaders, at some of the so-called Israel supporters abroad and at our own Hamasniks. Still, as bad as our own 'leaders', fanatics and some of our 'supporters' are, those on the 'other side' appear to be even worse. Most of the Western and Arab-Muslim 'supporters' of the Palestinians either wallow in the Palestinians' misery and in the many injustices that have been done to the Palestinian people ( for many Western pro-Palestinian activists these injustices and their activism are the perfect means to soothe their Christian and/or post-Holocaust conscience ), and in many cases they justify and/or sponsor the self-destructive ways of 'resistance' that particularly the Islamist part of the Palestinian population 'chose' in order to counter both the occupation and Israel's existence as such. With such friends....

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