When I look at a map of the Middle East, I am forever amazed at what I see. There sits little Israel (in white on this map), completely surrounded by enemies — to the west Egypt; to the south Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Oman, United Arab Emirates, and Kuwait; to the east, Jordan, Iraq, and Iran; and to the north, Syria and Lebanon. Look at this map. Download it to your computer. Print it out. Tape it onto your bulletin board next to your desk. Show it to your children and their friends.
The land mass of these collected countries is 6,073,934 km2 (that’s “million”) compared to Israel’s 20,770. I’m sorry, folks, I can’t get all weepy about the poor Palestinians who have no place to live. They want Israel’s land. They want to push Israel out into the Mediterranean Sea.
Does that make any sense when they have as much territory that they have access to?
“But we were the first here,” whine the Palestinians. “This land is our heritage.” Have they read history? To be sure, the history gets muddled back in Abraham’s day. In fact, both civilizations, the Arabs and the Jews, claim to be descended from Abraham — the Jews from his son Isaac, and the Arabs from his other son Ishmael. Maybe they’re both right. I don’t know, but land possession should count for something.
I remember the six day war in 1967. I remember how Egypt and Jordan and Syria crossed into Israel with the intention of destroying the nation. I remember when Israel claimed the Gaza Strip and the West Bank of the Jordan River and literally destroyed the invading armies, including Egypt’s formidable tank corps. Now the Arabic peoples want to reverse that completely by calling “foul.”
For decades, the United States of America stood strong with the people of Israel in protecting their territory. Names like Moshe Dyane and Golda Meir were as well known in the US as were our own Congressmen and Senators. President Eisenhower threatened both France and Britain should they interfere with what was then the balance of power in the Middle East.
Not so today. Today we have an administration who bows in the presence of the king of Saudi Arabia. We have an administration who threatens the security of Israel if the Prime Minister of Israel does not apologize to Saudi Arabia and Turkey for his actions in defending his homeland. I don’t really blame Bibi Netanyahu for acceding to the White House’s demands. What else could he do?
Israel is a small but brave country. I can’t imagine living under the daily threat of launched missiles and suicide bombers. The people of Israel have made an oasis out of a desert. I have never been there, but my brother has, and he says that as you fly over the territory, there is a green line that marks the borders of Israel where crops and orchards abound. While surrounding the green is the wilderness through which Moses once led the children of Israel to the promised land.
We saw what happened to Beirut, Lebanon, at one time aptly called the Paris of the Middle East, when the Islamists decided to take over that country. It is a shambles, resembling modern day Detroit, Michigan. We can only hope that saner heads will soon prevail and Israel will once again receive our support that it well deserves. After all, isn’t it the American way to root for the underdog?
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