• "God invented war so Americans could learn geography" -- Mark Twain.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

The Hypocrisy of Hope

The United States is being blackmailed into releasing Jonathan Pollard, the Jewish spy who handed over a treasure trove of Nation Security Secrets to Israel.

The backdrop to the blackmail is found in the  sordid bramble of the Interminable Peace Process Negotiations between Israelis and Palestinians.  The matter may be distilled as follows. 

As part of the tit-for-tat and quid-pro-quos of agreeing to continue to talk about talking, Israel and Palestine have agreed to various "confidence building" measures, including an exchange of prisoners.  The only problem is that Palestine has no Israeli prisoners.  What to do?

Enter Herr Professor Rath's Clown Act, otherwise known as Uncle Sam the Even-Handed Peace Broker.  (Yes, this is truly the genre known as vaudeville noire.)  The U.S.A. is desperate to keep "the process" going.  Thus, in order to provide momentum to the wheel, the U.S. is considering ponying up a prisoner for Israel on behalf of Palestine.

Enter Pollard.

Israel has a policy of not-abandoning its own, although in the case of Jonathan Pollard, the policy has often had to take a back seat to other equally existential policies.  But Israel now senses an opportunity to make good on its problem to stand-by Pollard.

Result:  A campaign -- on the front page of the New York Times no less!! -- to "FREE POLLARD"

ENOUGH IS ENOUGH !!!  cry the placards.  "FEE POLLARD"

Subtext:  A terrible injustice has been done!

Oh.... not the injustice of punishing a spy (that gets quietly dropped by the wayside). No!  The injustice of a life sentence!!

There ain't nuthin like taste of hypocrisy.

We agree that 29 years is "enough".  In fact, we think that 29 years is too much.  Barfo ascribes to the view, still held in the dwindling number of enlightened countries, that no sentence should exceed 20 years.

Why not?  Because in the Christian Era (which supposedly began 2000 years ago), justice goes beyond an eye-for-an- eye.

No man can live without hope; and a life without hope is death.  Equally as bad, a life without hope is meaningless and when one man is reduced to meaninglessness, all are.

The Twenty Year Rule holds that, at some point, even a reprobate must be given back his hope and a chance to realise his humanity in a meaningful way.

This rule flows from the same premise that underlies the Catholic rule against euthanasia and abortion in cases of rape.  The Church's preferential option is to bring forth hope even out of vileness. 

(The Church calls it a mandatory option - but It has no business imposing what must be seen and treated as a free and personal act of spiritual dedication.  The Church oversteps its bounds when it seeks to force people to mount the Cross.)

Back to Pollard.

Even granting that Pollard effected "immeasurable damage" on U.S. national security, he is a finite being with a finite life and should not be punished immeasurably. After 20 years he should be released.

So Chipster agrees that enough is enough.  But Chip pukes at Israeli/Jewish hypocrisy in the matter.

The correlative to the Twenty Year Rule is the Statute of Limitations.  Both rest on a policy of forgetfulness.  Hope rests on forgettingAt some point, the fixed and unchangeable past has to be relegated to the past and the future opened up to the freedom that gives substance to hope. 

And yet, demanding perfect and implacable "justice" for an "unspeakable" and "immeasurable" crime, Israel and Jewish organisations are scouring the world for feeble 92 year olds to haul them into court on the crime of Assisting a Holocaust, in some vague and tenuous manner of "involvement".

If Israel wants mercy, it should show mercy.