I really wanted to use the term “steals” in the headline. But I figured I better use a slightly less confrontational term there and then really let loose in the post itself. The Knesset just “legalized” the theft of thousands of dunams of land it doesn’t own. It stole this land from private Palestinian landowners in a shady deal that is characteristic of Israel’s Occupation.
Headlines say the new law’s intent is to “retroactively” legalize the land theft on behalf of the settlement on which it is built. If an Orthodox Jew eats pig is there any way he can retroactively make it kosher? No, pig is treif. You can’t ever make it kosher. But Israel believes that the laws of kashrut don’t apply to the theft of Palestinian land. It believes that through pure legalism it can sanctify the unholy. If a rabbi couldn’t get away with this why should a country?
If you’re of a more secular bent, imagine this operation as the equivalent of money-laundering. You take dirty money earned through crime, extortion, prostitution or drug-dealing and you snap your fingers, presto-change-o, and it becomes cleansed of its sins. That is what the Knesset has tried to do. In a rather venal and heavy-handed fashion.
This is the first step in a campaign by the Israeli Right to annex the West Bank. You being with 4,000 stolen homes and eventually you steal the whole shebang. Annex it. As the world stands by helpless because it wants to be.
There are now 750,000 Israeli settlers. That is well over one in ten Israeli Jews. They and their enablers run the country. You might as well call it the State of Greater Israel. Or even the new Davidic Kingdom. Whatever they call it, they will run it into the ground.
They live on land no one in the world recognizes as theirs. They are violating international law. And they ignore it. Because it is convenient to do so. And the world lets them. Now Donald Trump will let them just as Barack Obama and all previous presidents have let them. And when Palestinians rebel, when they bear arms in a fight to retain the pittance that hasn’t yet been stolen–then they are bloodthirsty killers incited by Facebook, rather than that Israeli theft of all their lands and dignity.
In the rules of evidence there is a precept called “the fruit of the poison tree.” I’ve always wondered at this almost theological term dropped into secular jurisprudence. It means that if you secure evidence of a crime through means that is improper, then the evidence obtained is fatally tainted. Similarly, when Israel steals Palestine right out from the noses of 4-million Palestinians, this renders the entire basis of the Israeli state poisoned. You cannot say that a State that deals in crime and theft is a legitimate State. It is a State born in sin. Sin that can only be expiated by doing justice to the Palestinian victims.