Sunday, January 4, 2015

Palestinian, Hawaiians and other dis...

Palestinian, Hawaiians and other disenfranchised people have some legitimate gripes and some not so legitimate ones.

Hawaiians lost the ownership of their land, but actually under the old system, the King owned the land and the kanaka were little more than serfs. The King gave some of the land to his people, many of whom who did not understand the new system were tricked into relinquishing their claims. No doubt they did not get a good deal. On the other hand compare the condition of Hawaiian people today with the rest of Polynesia. For the most part kings bled their subjects to purchase luxuries they did not need and often could not use.

Palestinians lost their land three ways. Some sold it to Zionists. Some fled Israel on the advice of other Arab politicians, who promised them restoration. Some were driven out by Israelis. Of course as soon as they left Israel the Palestinians were told "But don't come here". So they remain trapped in two tiny enclaves adjacent to Israel. If the Arab world so loves their palestinian brothers, why can't they make room for them?

Those who study history realize that the same story has two outcomes. Some disenfranchised people just can't move on and become habitual victims.  Others make the best of the hand they have been dealt and prosper. No one has been kicked around more than the Jews, but everywhere they land they are soon envied for their success. Poles survived a hundred years of non existence as a country, 80 years of Soviet domination and then emerged as one of the strongest economies in Europe.

I do not lack sympathy for the disenfranchised peoples. but it is hard to think of an ethnicity that was not conquered at some time in their history. War seems to be the natural state of humanity. You cannot un-fire the gun or turn back the clock. Even if you could it won't turn out to be the way you remember it. Romantic images of pre-conquest peoples living on perfect harmony with nature ignore the fact that many of them suffered devastating famines.

Look to the Koreans, the Germans or the Vietnamese for inspiration and get on with it.

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