Vox, the Internet’s most popular anti-Israel site, has produced an easily digestible ten-minute history of the entire Arab-Jewish conflict for progressives who find Wikipedia too intellectually demanding. (Fingers crossed for the seven-minute video explaining The Reformation.)
It begins with this proposition:
When you talk to people about the Israel-Palestine conflict, the myth that you’re likeliest to hear — even more than the myth that they’ve been fighting for centuries, or that it’s all about religion — is that the conflict is too complex to possibly understand, a mess so far beyond human comprehension that we shouldn’t even try.
No one really says this, right?
Vox can find absolutely no relevant history worthy of note on this topic before 1900. Why not begin in 1600 BC? Or 500 BC? Or 639? Probably because it’s the earliest Vox can start its fairy tale without mentioning Arab pogroms of the 1920s and 1930s (later thrown into a cycle-of-violence platitude.) I suppose we should be thankful history didn’t start post-1967, as it usually does.
Anyway, Vox tells us that “a little over a century ago,” the area — before the colonialist Jews showed up — was a pretty peaceful place. Which, again, necessitates ignoring a few thousand years of invasions, empires, carnages, and a diaspora of the Jews, who had at least a thousand years of history under their belts before any Arab showed up.
But yes, as Mark Twain famously wrote when visiting Palestine in 1867, it was a desolate and peaceful place where he “never saw a human being” while trekking around the interior. Vox would have viewers believe it was a hotbed of restive Palestinian nationalism. Just as Jews were embracing Zionism, the Arabs, contends Vox, were forming “a distinct national identity” under Ottoman rule. George Eliot’s successful proto-Zionistic novel “Daniel Deronda” was released in 1872 and Theodor Herzl’s “The Jewish State” in 1896, both around long before any post- or-pre-Ottoman Arab nationalism was born. The notion that everyone involved had more or else come up with the idea of distinct nationalism on “the same piece of land” is complete bunk.
From there, we learn that the Holocaust happened. Vox has a picture. No mention of the Jerusalem mufti’s alliance with Hitler — a worthwhile piece of information that would have told us something about the disposition of many of the locals. We learn instead about the Arab rejection of the United Nations’ partition plan and the attack of numerous Arab armies. Vox stresses that, while Israel won, it took more than what the U.N. agreement allotted. Why Israelis didn’t return to the partition lines after Arabs rejected the agreement and plotted their extermination remains a mystery to this day.
From there, we jump ahead all the way to 1967 — with no mention of the Palestinian fedayeen attacks on Jewish civilians that killed hundreds, the numerous attempts by the Israeli government to reach out to its neighbors, or even the 1956 conflict.
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