Monday, January 5, 2009

damn them all

How are we supposed to feel about the latest war in the Middle East?

Are we supposed to sympathize with someone? Who?
Are we supposed to be cheering for someone? Who?
Are we expected to sink more of our tax dollars into working on some solution? To what end?
Do we have to give more aid? Why?

I think there has never been a time in my competent awareness when the Israelis were not being attacked or they were not attacking someone. It is hard for me to recall any period of time when the streets of some Arab capitol were not filled with ululating women screaming at the sky, or packs of men parading up and down dusty Levantine streets carrying coffins and banners and hollering their hatred for the U.S. What are we supposed to do about it, now?

I know that Bill Clinton worked hard on trying to reach some solution. Up to the last day of his presidency, he had the warring, feuding, praying parties struggling with the problem. Eventually this deal fell apart, too, like all the other efforts at racial/religious/cultural/national reconciliation in that painful and nasty corner of the world. [Read about the Clinton initiative according to TIME MAGAZINE here: CLICK ]

No one is more cynical than I am about the effects of religious fanaticism on the welfare of mankind, and for that reason, possibly, I have lost any right to speak of it at all. I'm inclined to damn them all for their obstinacy and belligerence. I define a religious fanatic as anyone who knows what it is I am expected to believe about God, Heaven, and Eternal Salvation. To my way of thinking, you all out there have as much as you can handle figuring out what you believe; just leave the rest of us poor dupes to our own peaceful ponderings.

I believe the religious books of these religions are filled with the warfare of the nations. How righteous are the chapters detailing the bloody triumphs of one sandy tribe over another. This is evidently the will of God we see at work. Well, then let us savor their misery.

I know that the Bush administration with its light-weight foreign policy and inept Secretary of State, has done nothing to solve the problems in the land of perpetual warfare between Allah and God, but then, maybe they can't. Why not simply let them fight and kill each other unremittingly for the next few generations?

In this process, thank your lucky stars for the separation of church and state in this country, and never, ever, let anyone, especially the legions of the religiously arrogant, take that away from you. If you lose that, you will lose every freedom you have.


margaret said...

Yes, enforcing patriarchal monotheism is bloody work, to be sure. I don't pretend to understand completely the whole situation in the Middle East, but I don't think the whole Israel/Palestine thing is about religion. It's about power and money. And our tax dollars have funded Israel's military for too many years for us to beg off. There is too much blood on our hands as a nation to simply turn away. This is Bush's last hurrah, the closest thing he'll get to that war with Iran he wanted so badly (Let's hope it's too late for that one, anyway)

Bud said...

Thanks for the comment Margaret. I don't agree with you that the current Israeli-Palestinian war is about money. Power, I agree is part of the root cause.

margaret said...

Yes, maybe not about money from the perspective of the Israelis and Palestinians, but why the great interest and support on the part of the U.S.? Like I said, I don't have a complete understanding of the history of the conflict. However, I just see a pattern of protecting economic interest of those in power when tracing how the U.S. chooses to invest in another country's warfare. And Israel couldn't do it without us.