March 28, 2004

Autumn of the Mid-East Process Queens:

Restating the Goal in Isreal and Palestine

In a morally hamstrung article replowing Hannah Arendt’s “banality of evil” turf, LA Times Op-Ed Editor Nicholas Goldberg writes of “The Subtle Shades of Villainy.” Caught between reality and the Left’s fantasy ideology and world view, Goldberg’s conclusion is a question:

I don't feel sympathy for Yassin. He was a soldier in a war of his own choosing, and it killed him. But the cause of peace is not served by provocative, macho and arguably illegal moves, and it's hard to see how Yassin's assassination qualifies as anything else. Peace may seem distant, but it is still the goal, isn't it?
Goldberg means that to be a “rhetorical question” but it seems to me it becomes more interesting if the rhetorical is stripped out.

It is comforting to assume that peace is the goal in the Israel/Palestinian struggle. Indeed, all voices -- right, left, sincere, insincere, Israeli, Palestinian -- speak, as they have spoken for decades now, of "the peace process." This is a process that we are always within, a process that like some sick mobius strip loops infinitely in only one dimension. We are either “moving the peace process forward” or “retarding the peace process.” The “peace process is moribund” or “the peace process is revitalized.” There are dozens of ways to parse “the peace process,” and we have heard them all in heavy rotation for some time. All of this assumes that through “the peace process” “peace is still the goal, isn’t it?”

The last week and the stated policy of Isreal to kill the Hamas leadership seems to me to signal that while peace may still be the goal, it is “the peace process” that has been abandoned. Rightly so and a bit late, but abandoned still.

It seems to me that the new goal is not “peace through process, but “peace through victory;” a clear acknowledgement that Israel will no longer play a role in the neverending story of the peace process which only emeshes it in the neverending war. Isreal seems at last prepared, reluctantly, to seek peace in the manner that all wars become peace -- military victory.

Israel, through the years of the Intifada, has finally been brought to that point where the Big Promise of the Global Palestinian Ad Campaign -- “A Palestinian State Will Be Peaceful” -- is no longer bought. What Israel now understands, and is preparing to act on, is the proposition that only victory through unconditional surrender will bring peace and the possibility of a Palestinian state along with the survival of Isreal itself.

Over the years, the Process Queens who strut on the runway of the International Arena have made successful and comfortable careers out of “The Peace Process.” As long as there is a “process” the vast establishment in the middle east and Europe and the United States that battens of the Neverending Peace Story has secure jobs and access to the fountain of funding from various sources. A Peace Settlement would close this showroom of Process Queens overnight and their next jobs would neither be as lucrative nor as fulfilling. There has been little worry over this as long as the goal has been “Peace Through Process.” Since any peace achieved in this manner would be one that included the obliteration of Israel -- never a secret and glaringly obvious over the last two years -- the “Peace Process” never had to end.

The Belmont Club notes the state of disarray among the Process Queens today when he remarks in “The Smell of Fear:”

Neither Europe's old game of triangulation -- a grand name for unscrupulous scavenging -- nor the Middle Eastern ploy of making America both guarantor and enemy can be continued for much longer. Even if Sharon is ousted from the Israeli leadership, developments since September 11 have doomed the ancien regime. The old elite is out of moves. Even more suicide bombings will represent a continuation of the same old failed policies, a deepening of the pit rather than a way out. They may hope that a John Kerry victory in November will reset the clock to balmy years of Bill Clinton, but perhaps even that will prove too late to stem the tide.
That tide turned on one announcement and a few missiles last week. Israel has changed the goal to one of “Peace Through Victory,” military victory.

This may be why, in a larger sense, police leaves have been canceled throughout Israel and the army remains at a high state of mobilization. Or, it may just be a sane level of high alert as the Palestinians send in their frogmen, their axe-men, their retarded teenagers, and whatever other items from Hell’s shopping list they have left in Gaza General Store.

The new stated goal of Peace Through Victory also explains why Hamas was in such a lather last week to retract, again and again, the initial threats to take revenge against the United States for the killing of Yassin. If you ask yourself what it would take for Israel’s “Peace Through Victory” program to start towards the goal posts, the answer is clear: another terror attack on the United States linked in any way to Hamas. And any attack would, like the force of gravity, link all terrorist organizations into one in the mind of the United States. One attack on US soil would mean that Israel would be free to move against its enemies in any manner and at any level it chose. The United States would be busy elsewhere and welcome the company.

There could be many other incidents that would trigger this, but an attack on the US would be a clear ‘Go-Point’ for a full mobilization of the Israeli Armed Forces, full military operations in the Palestinian Territories, Syria and the Bekka Valley. This would be the start of the next Middle-East War, and it would not stop until the new goal, victory, has been reached. And not just within Israel. Once that goal has been scored, and peace achieved, the stage would be set for a whole new kind of process in the area to begin. One that does not have the obliteration of Isreal as part of "the peace process."

Posted by Vanderleun at March 28, 2004 9:31 AM | TrackBack
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