Jonathan Podhoretz on the ethnic cleansing of Gaza:
I have a nephew who is serving right now in Gaza. It’s his job, his duty, to help manage the forcible evacuation of the setlements. As it happens, he does not agree with the policy. But he is a soldier, and a good man, and he is doing his duty. When those resisting the evacuation — most of whom are now not residents of Gaza but people who live outside Gaza and have come in to take a stand — throw paint and sand and kick and fight, they are throwing paint and hurling sand and kicking and fighting against my nephew, an Israeli born and bred. So while I feel immense sympathy for the Gazans and certainly think that opposition to the evacuation policy is more than a respectable position, the behavior of those who are injure and provoke my nephew and his brethren in the Israeli military is, quite simply, beyond disgusting. They deserve no sympathy for their conduct. They are not pursuing civil disobedience. They are behaving in appalling fashion, as Sharpton-like goons and hooligans, and I hope they serve a nice stretch in jail.
I can’t say that I’m surprised. NRO’s Jews think that the Jews of Gaza should behave like good little Germans and obey the authorities, which is exactly the line taken by Mordechai Rumkowski, who hoped that cooperation would save the Jews of the Lodz ghetto. It didn’t.
Now, there are significant differences. The Jewish settlers are not being dragged off to Auschwitz and the Jews of Lodz were not compensated to the tune of 300 grand for their humble habitats. But the correlation is real nevertheless and it’s truly appalling to see how these supposedly conservative Republicans are openly supporting this overt ethnic cleansing.
As for the actions of Mr. Podhoretz’s relative, I seem to recall that with regards to matters such as these, the argument that a man simply doing “his job, his duty” is considered no defense.
Furthermore, the settlers are obviously engaging in pure civil disobedience. They are rather well armed, after all, and are capable of delivering more than a few kicks and grains of sand should they have chosen to resist violently.
Jonah Goldberg isn’t sympathetic either:
John Pod’s post reminds me again of how subdued the support for the Gaza Jews has been among the supposedly irredeemably Zionist corners of American media and politics. Indeed, I think we may have hit another tipping point yesterday. Several friends of mine and emailers — some Jewish, some not, but all pro-Israel — have started expressing attitudes along the lines of what John says below. The Gaza settlers have made their point and they’re starting to look bad.
I suspect he may be surprised about this. The Christian Right is unlikely to harbor much enthusiasm for Ariel Sharon now, and even if their support for his government is not completely withdrawn, it will be markedly more lukewarm than before.
UPDATE: ETHNIC CLEANSING: “The systematic elimination of an ethnic group or groups from a region or society, as by deportation, forced emigration, or genocide.”
My use of the term is correct.