Monday, November 19, 2007

Bisecting the West Bank. Or Not.

Yesterday I linked to an article in the Guardian about the evil Israelis. One of the standard things about such articles is the lack of facts, and their substitution by statements that sound factual and convincing but are actually pure propaganda. In this case, the statement that Israeli construction in E1, east of Jerusalem, will for ever prevent a viable Palestinian state.

Which of course is nonsense. On various levels. To take just one: say there's a Palestinian state to the north of Jerusalem, and it's southern half is south of Jerusalem, and to the east there's a band of connecting territory that's a mere 10-15 miles wide, why is that different from the mirror situation along the coast, where Israeli territory is only some 12 miles deep? Well, actually, there is a topographic difference, in that the coastal area is flat, while to the east of Jerusalem the land falls steeply to the east, and a Palestinian road from north to south would have to go down and up again.

Or, perhaps, it could hug Jerusalem on its Eastern perimeter, without climbing up or down? Sort of like a bridge from, say, Washington DC to Alexandria, VA, where the Pentagon and Reagan National Airport reside? Does that bridge make Washington non-viable? And does the need for tunnels and bridges between Manhattan and everywhere else make Manhattan non-viable?

The reason I ask is that Haaretz today tells that precisely such a road is being built. Haaretz doesn't like it, naturally, and says that it looks like Apartheid, but to my jaundiced eye it looks more like a border between two nations who can't live together and wish to divide their land between us and separate from one another.

Reality can be so complicated, can't it?

1 comment:

Lydia McGrew said...

Frost was making fun of the proverb "Good fences make good neighbors" in his poem "Mending Wall." But he was wrong. There's a lot to be said for the proverb!