Zionists as Colonial Imperialists

 

It is amazing to me that Jews, murdered by the millions in Europe before some of the remainder fled to Israel, are somehow compared to classical colonialists. In other words, in the eyes of the simple college student, Zionists are no different than the white men who spread out to colonize the world. Or as my mother used to put it: Don’t try to make me feel guilty for the sins of the Conquistadors: they were murdering and expelling the Jews in Spain the same time they were ravishing the Americas. 

I saw this today, and thought it was worth excerpting:

First of all, Jews did not come to Palestine in order to exploit its resources for an empire elsewhere – they didn’t have one. In fact, they didn’t come to exploit it at all, but rather to invest in it. It was a relatively barren land, which Jews developed, getting rid of malaria and making it far more productive.

And the Jews came not to become wealthy, but because they needed to survive and had nowhere else to go. Those who made it out of Europe saved themselves from extermination by the Nazis, and they were later followed by hundreds of thousands of Jews who were expelled from Arab countries following centuries of unequal status punctuated by the occasional massacre.

Nor did the Jews, even those who came in the early 20th century, have a plan to take the land by force, or to drive out or oppress the resident Levantine Arabs. In fact, the Jewish investment in the land attracted tens of thousands more Levantine Arabs. The Jews who came purchased land legally, and only obtained more land as a result of the 1948 war – which was started by the Arabs.

Not that I really object to colonial imperialism, mind you. The West’s culture and religion and assumptions of human rights and freedom is superior to that of primitive and pagan faiths. Colonialism has been given a bum rap: most of the time, it improved things, instead of the opposite. 

Either way, Israel without the Jews would just be a barren and largely empty land today, indistinguishable from vast swaths of the Middle East. 

 

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  1. cdor Member
    cdor
    @cdor

    So many falsehoods are promulgated by ignorant people who have few facts but many ingrained lies.

    • #1
  2. Chris Williamson Member
    Chris Williamson
    @ChrisWilliamson

    It’s the whole oppressor-oppressed paradigm that Arnold Kling talks about in his book “The Three Languages of Politics.”  People see everything through that view, so, naturally the more powerful Israelis are the oppressors. It fits without a lot of effort.

    Another paradigm in the book is about civilizing and civilization — development of humankind. For those of us with that view, what happened on October 7 was triumph of barbarism over civilization, and we are horrified.

    Regarding western colonialism, I have a friend from Ghana who is  an economics professor, and I visited him once when he had a number of highly-educated Ghanians at his house in Florida. I asked the question:  Was British colonialism a plus or a minus net-net, and to a man they said it was a curse. Fast-forward to the years I took cabs from Baltimore-Washington International to my home, and I would get cab drivers from Ghana. “What do you think of the effects of British colonialism?” I would ask. The answer was net-positive. “I’m speaking English, aren’t I?” was one of the responses.

    • #2
  3. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Great post. I’m so pleased about your explaining the Jews coming to Israel. Colonialism, my foot!

    • #3
  4. Comfortably Superannuated Member
    Comfortably Superannuated
    @OldDanRhody

    Chris Williamson (View Comment):
    It’s the whole oppressor-oppressed paradigm that Arnold Kling talks about in his book “The Three Languages of Politics.”  People see everything through that view, so, naturally the more powerful Israelis are the oppressors. It fits without a lot of effort

    The oppressor-oppressed paradigm is like looking into a room through a keyhole.  There’s a lot of room that can’t be seen through the keyhole.

    • #4
  5. Charles Mark Member
    Charles Mark
    @CharlesMark

    I agree with everything in the post about Israel.

    I dissent on the “benefits” of colonialism for the colonised, certainly in my own former colony. 

    • #5
  6. Paul Stinchfield Member
    Paul Stinchfield
    @PaulStinchfield

    Charles Mark (View Comment):

    I agree with everything in the post about Israel.

    I dissent on the “benefits” of colonialism for the colonised, certainly in my own former colony.

    What is your former colony?

    • #6
  7. Charles Mark Member
    Charles Mark
    @CharlesMark

    Paul Stinchfield (View Comment):

    Charles Mark (View Comment):

    I agree with everything in the post about Israel.

    I dissent on the “benefits” of colonialism for the colonised, certainly in my own former colony.

    What is your former colony?

    Ireland. 

    • #7
  8. Chris Williamson Member
    Chris Williamson
    @ChrisWilliamson

    Charles Mark (View Comment):

    Paul Stinchfield (View Comment):

    Charles Mark (View Comment):

    I agree with everything in the post about Israel.

    I dissent on the “benefits” of colonialism for the colonised, certainly in my own former colony.

    What is your former colony?

    Ireland.

    I heard a description of the Irish potato famine on the podcast In Our Time.  It was brutal, and so unnecessary.

    In his book Salt: A World History, Mark Kurlansky tells the story of the British making it illegal for citizens of the colony of India to pick up salt along their own seashore. England wanted Indians to buy salt from the salt works in England, in the northwest of the country.

    Gandhi’s 300-mile walk to the sea was all about picking up the salt. His ‘illegal’ action, defying the British empire, helped start independence for India.

     

     

    • #8
  9. Paul Stinchfield Member
    Paul Stinchfield
    @PaulStinchfield

    Charles Mark (View Comment):

    Paul Stinchfield (View Comment):

    Charles Mark (View Comment):

    I agree with everything in the post about Israel.

    I dissent on the “benefits” of colonialism for the colonised, certainly in my own former colony.

    What is your former colony?

    Ireland.

    Your view of colonialism is exceedingly understandable.

    • #9
  10. Charles Mark Member
    Charles Mark
    @CharlesMark

    Paul Stinchfield (View Comment):

    Charles Mark (View Comment):

    Paul Stinchfield (View Comment):

    Charles Mark (View Comment):

    I agree with everything in the post about Israel.

    I dissent on the “benefits” of colonialism for the colonised, certainly in my own former colony.

    What is your former colony?

    Ireland.

    Your view of colonialism is exceedingly understandable.

    The people of Ireland struck a massive blow against woke imperialism today! Two proposed referendums to amend our Constitution were defeated by huge majorities. One of them would have put marriage on a par with “other durable relationships”,  a phrase that was not defined and was left to be worked out  through litigation in the Courts. As someone with decades of experience in Family courts, I was horrified by the potential for chaos. Thankfully, so were most of my compatriots. I would add that all of the main political parties were for it, as were their close allies in the “traditional” media. The fight was won by a small group of minor politicians and online media. A rare but glorious day!

    • #10
  11. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    Charles Mark (View Comment):

    Paul Stinchfield (View Comment):

    Charles Mark (View Comment):

    Paul Stinchfield (View Comment):

    Charles Mark (View Comment):

    I agree with everything in the post about Israel.

    I dissent on the “benefits” of colonialism for the colonised, certainly in my own former colony.

    What is your former colony?

    Ireland.

    Your view of colonialism is exceedingly understandable.

    The people of Ireland struck a massive blow against woke imperialism today! Two proposed referendums to amend our Constitution were defeated by huge majorities. One of them would have put marriage on a par with “other durable relationships”, a phrase that was not defined and was left to be worked out through litigation in the Courts. As someone with decades of experience in Family courts, I was horrified by the potential for chaos. Thankfully, so were most of my compatriots. I would add that all of the main political parties were for it, as were their close allies in the “traditional” media. The fight was won by a small group of minor politicians and online media. A rare but glorious day!

    Those mugs didn’t really try to pass an amendment to the constitution without defining what the amendment meant, did they?

    • #11
  12. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    “This amendment intentionally left blank.”

    You know, for future expansion and stuff.

    • #12
  13. Charles Mark Member
    Charles Mark
    @CharlesMark

    Percival (View Comment):

    Charles Mark (View Comment):

    Paul Stinchfield (View Comment):

    Charles Mark (View Comment):

    Paul Stinchfield (View Comment):

    Charles Mark (View Comment):

    I agree with everything in the post about Israel.

    I dissent on the “benefits” of colonialism for the colonised, certainly in my own former colony.

    What is your former colony?

    Ireland.

    Your view of colonialism is exceedingly understandable.

    The people of Ireland struck a massive blow against woke imperialism today! Two proposed referendums to amend our Constitution were defeated by huge majorities. One of them would have put marriage on a par with “other durable relationships”, a phrase that was not defined and was left to be worked out through litigation in the Courts. As someone with decades of experience in Family courts, I was horrified by the potential for chaos. Thankfully, so were most of my compatriots. I would add that all of the main political parties were for it, as were their close allies in the “traditional” media. The fight was won by a small group of minor politicians and online media. A rare but glorious day!

    Those mugs didn’t really try to pass an amendment to the constitution without defining what the amendment meant, did they?

    Overdose of hubris. 

    • #13
  14. aardo vozz Member
    aardo vozz
    @aardovozz

    Percival (View Comment):

    Charles Mark (View Comment):

    Paul Stinchfield (View Comment):

    Charles Mark (View Comment):

    Paul Stinchfield (View Comment):

    Charles Mark (View Comment):

    I agree with everything in the post about Israel.

    I dissent on the “benefits” of colonialism for the colonised, certainly in my own former colony.

    What is your former colony?

    Ireland.

    Your view of colonialism is exceedingly understandable.

    The people of Ireland struck a massive blow against woke imperialism today! Two proposed referendums to amend our Constitution were defeated by huge majorities. One of them would have put marriage on a par with “other durable relationships”, a phrase that was not defined and was left to be worked out through litigation in the Courts. As someone with decades of experience in Family courts, I was horrified by the potential for chaos. Thankfully, so were most of my compatriots. I would add that all of the main political parties were for it, as were their close allies in the “traditional” media. The fight was won by a small group of minor politicians and online media. A rare but glorious day!

    Those mugs didn’t really try to pass an amendment to the constitution without defining what the amendment meant, did they?

    Why provide information about the amendment in the amendment? If they did that, then everyone would know what the amendment meant.🤔

    • #14
  15. James Lileks Contributor
    James Lileks
    @jameslileks

    I’ve never had it explained to me how the Iberians came to the Americas, conquered the inhabitants, imported slaves, carved it all up into countries, and then became an oppressed class the minute their descendants headed north over the Rio Grande. Were they not colonizers? As in, double-plus extra colonizers? 

    • #15
  16. Joseph Stanko Coolidge
    Joseph Stanko
    @JosephStanko

    Percival (View Comment):

    Charles Mark (View Comment):

    Paul Stinchfield (View Comment):

    Charles Mark (View Comment):

    Paul Stinchfield (View Comment):

    Charles Mark (View Comment):

    I agree with everything in the post about Israel.

    I dissent on the “benefits” of colonialism for the colonised, certainly in my own former colony.

    What is your former colony?

    Ireland.

    Your view of colonialism is exceedingly understandable.

    The people of Ireland struck a massive blow against woke imperialism today! Two proposed referendums to amend our Constitution were defeated by huge majorities. One of them would have put marriage on a par with “other durable relationships”, a phrase that was not defined and was left to be worked out through litigation in the Courts. As someone with decades of experience in Family courts, I was horrified by the potential for chaos. Thankfully, so were most of my compatriots. I would add that all of the main political parties were for it, as were their close allies in the “traditional” media. The fight was won by a small group of minor politicians and online media. A rare but glorious day!

    Those mugs didn’t really try to pass an amendment to the constitution without defining what the amendment meant, did they?

    You have to pass the amendment to find out what’s in it. 

    • #16
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