Wednesday, January 26, 2011

The nation born at Versailles

In reading about the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, both through Juan Cole and The Guardian, I keep thinking about the peace process after World War I, and how France's forcing of an extremely punitive settlement at Versailles basically crystalized German nationalism. Of course, it's not like Bismark did it differently when he beat the French.

But the Fatah/Palestinian Authority faction seems to have already made all the concessions they could without alienating the polity they nominally serve, and without a drastic reduction in American military aid, Israel has no need to consider making real concessions in return, because the occupation of Palestine is an acceptable status quo for them — especially given that any peace process, especially one that is so lopsided, won't likely reduce the amount of political violence from the Islamic nihilists in Hamas.

I realize it's a semi-fatuous comparison, but Israel reminds me the bullied kids often turn around to become bullies.

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