Saturday, April 11, 2009

Why am I a friend of Israel?

Got this in an e-mail this morning:

{{Why are you a friend of Israel? Just curious.}}

Which got me thinking . . .

Israel is one of only two democracies in the Middle East. The fact that both of these democracies were created with the intervention of the United States makes them, in a very real way, our spiritual step-children. Democracy has the greatest potential for the greatest good for the greatest amount of people, and is a cool drink of water compared to the Arab thug-ocracies in the Middle East. Israel is the closest thing to an American-style democracy anywhere else in the world — in many ways, they have surpassed American-style democracy and encouraged a merit-ocracy. Pilots in the Israeli Air Force lead by experience, not rank.

The people of Israel - the Jews - have been at the forefront of intelligence and enlightenment for 5,000 years. Jews were instituting education, farming, crop rotation, and optional military service thousands of years before anyone else even thought of them. Jews wrote many of the first commentaries on religion; and the first diacritical thought . This is in spite of being some of the most persecuted peoples in the world for their encouraging intelligence, education, and higher standard of living. Jews have been systematically eradicated from cultures ar varied as Nazi Germany, Medieval Spain, Nebuchadnezzar’s Babylon, and and multiple points in-between. Even today Israeli Jews face daily acts of terror — rockets from Gaza, suicide bombers, and rioting Arabs — on a daily basis — and persevere.

Shoot, that’s damn near heroic. Americans love underdogs, and admire heroism. Israel is chock-full of both.

Does Israel do things wrong? Sure. Does America make mistakes? Oh yeah, absolutely. But we both learn from our mistakes. We practice some level of restraint when we use force. (Israel did not obliterate Gaza during the recent military force there — although they easily could have.) Israel as a state is the best hope and example for the rest of the Middle East.

Which is why I’m a friend of Israel. Israel is most likely to be a friend to me.


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