Mike Huckabee says Palestine has no right to exist

(On an unrelated note, I checked with Jerome today, and will start some regular lite blogging on weekdays. Hence this post.)

I had the chance to meet Mike Huckabee in January 2008. As Republicans go, I'd always been impressed - but from John McCain to Chuck Grassley, Republican stars have a way of losing their shine, and Huckabee is no exception. From Think Progress:

On a visit to Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories this week, former Arkansas governor and Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee supported Israel's right to build settlements on Palestinian land. He also stated his opposition to a two-state solution, saying that there is no room for a Palestinian state "in the middle of the Jewish homeland":

Speaking to a small group of foreign reporters in Jerusalem, Huckabee, seen as a possible Republican presidential candidate in 2012, said the international community should consider establishing a Palestinian state some place else.

"The question is should the Palestinians have a place to call their own? Yes, I have no problem with that. Should it be in the middle of the Jewish homeland? That's what I think has to be honestly assessed as virtually unrealistic."

So Huckabee joins Eric Cantor in slamming the American president while on foreign soil - a far cry from the way their party called Dubya's critics unpatriotic. You also have to wonder why Huck ignores history - the middle of the Jewish homeland? Well, yes, it is the Jewish homeland, but the Palestinian people have also been there for centuries upon centuries. It's not just a Jewish homeland, but rather a two-culture homeland.

Matthew Yglesias' headline goes too far: "Huckabee Calls for Ethnic Cleansing of Palestinian Territories." No, he didn't say the people should be removed, just that Israel had a right to be the region's sole government, and that if Palestine has a state, it should be somewhere else. He didn't say the people should be forced to live in that state - that'd be like saying Florida Jews should be deported to Israel. Still, what he did say is pretty bad on its own.

I'd rather see the Republicans nominate Huckabee than I would Palin or Romney, but if Huckabee does emerge as a major 2012 contender, his opponents would be wise to focus on his foreign policy failings. This is not unlike his 2007 slips on Pakistan and Iran.

Tags: Israel, Middle East, Mike Huckabee, Palestine (all tags)

Comments

12 Comments

Re: Palestine has no right to exist

Another version of Huckabee's remarks from the Huffington Post.

Criticism of Obama's pressure on Israel to halt settlement construction came Tuesday from a former election rival - Republican Mike Huckabee, who is visiting Israel as a guest of a pro-settler group.

Huckabee, who campaigned unsuccessfully for the Republican nomination for president in 2008 and is said to be considering another run in 2012, toured contentious settlement points and told reporters that Jews should be allowed to live wherever they want in the West Bank, opposing creation of a Palestinian state "in the middle of the Jewish homeland."

The West Bank is part of the biblical land of Israel.

"Don't ask the Jewish people, whose homeland it is, to completely yield over their ability to live within the context of their country," Huckabee said.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/08/18 /israeli-settlements-quiet_n_262338.html

I like this comment: "The West Bank is part of the biblical land of Israel."

The West Bank is also part of the historical land of Arabic Palestine, but you never hear such comments in the American press.

by MainStreet 2009-08-18 05:21PM | 0 recs
Historically inaccurate

Well, yes, it is the Jewish homeland, but the Palestinian people have been there just as long.
No, Jews lived there before the Romans came ca 0 C.E. and occupied it continuously to the present. That's "occupied", not "ruled". Arabs didn't arrive until after the Western Empire fell, ca 500 C.E.  Dates VERY approximate, but Jews were there centuries, if not millenia before Arabs. I'm not arguing for or against that making a difference. Just correcting the historical inaccuracy.  After all, as a European-American, I don't propose giving the country back to the Native Americans, even if they deserve it.

by antiHyde 2009-08-18 06:58PM | 0 recs
Re: Historically inaccurate

Thanks, I'll say "almost" (because 1500 years is long enough when we're talking about the politics of just the past century).

by Nathan Empsall 2009-08-18 07:06PM | 0 recs
Re: Historically inaccurate

OK

by antiHyde 2009-08-19 02:11PM | 0 recs
I found it appalling

when I was taught in my Western Civilization class in college that the Arabs drove the Jews out of Palestine in the first century AD.

I, like everyone else in my class, believed it until I had done my own research and discovered that actually it was the Romans who drove the Jews out of Palestian (or rather forced many of them to literally jump off a cliff) and the Arabs didn't arrive until some time later.

And they were just kinda like "oh hey look a fertile piece of land no one appears to be using anymore"

I was mortified that I was misinformed in a higher learning facility.

by DTOzone 2009-08-18 11:09PM | 0 recs
Re: I found it appalling

There is no historical account within Roman history that supports the view that the Romans drove anyone out of Palestinia. There was no forced exodus; it an event made up at a later time.

by MainStreet 2009-08-19 03:41AM | 0 recs
please, MainStreets, everybody knows

the Romans drove most of the Jews out. Nearly all mainstream history agrees with the supposition. Your claim is as crazy as saying Jews don't have a connection to the Land of Israel.

You're fringe. You've now proven it.

by Lakrosse 2009-08-19 07:02PM | 0 recs
Re: Historically inaccurate

It is hard to find support for the idea that Jews occupied Palestine "continuously." A better way to express it is to acknowledge the presence of a small number of Jews living mainly in Jerusalem throughout the post-Exodus period, Ottoman census data before 1850 putting the number at about 5,000.

However, history does not flow backwards, and using this Jewish presence in Jerusalem to justify ethnic cleansing, a cleaning out of the larger population of Arabic people, that filled the gap does not follow and any grounds. And there is no comparison to the American Indian situation, however as inhumane as the Palestinian one. The American Indians did not own land as personal property but as identified tribes ruled over specific regions. The Palestinians who were ethnically cleansed in 1948, by contrast, lived in over 470 villages and towns in which they owned property, homes, and farms and orchards. They had local governments (even when ruled by the Ottomans and British), schools, and ran businesses. There is no comparison here. A better one is the Armenian ethnic cleansing and massacres by the Turks.

by MainStreet 2009-08-19 04:02AM | 0 recs
I think Yglesias is right

I think if the government is somewhere else the people must be too, so that seems like ethnic cleansing to me.

by John DE 2009-08-18 06:59PM | 0 recs
Re: I think Yglesias is right

The non-secular Jewish government isn't in New York or Florida. Does that mean the people aren't there, either?

by Nathan Empsall 2009-08-19 11:04AM | 0 recs
Y*H W*H Says

In the sixth Book of the Old Testament, I.e Joshua, God explains that killing all other occupants of the Promised Land save rhe one city whose inhabitants are saved to fetch wood and draw water is just His Will. Any resemblence between that and the ideology that led to Shoah being a total coincidence.

Joshua is kind of good fun in a Sunday School kind of way, God stops the Sun in the sky, God provides that Joshua's trumpets bring down the Walls of Jericho. Oddly the Bible Stories for Children versions omit the next couple verses.

Until the supporters of Greater Israel whether Jewish or Christian Evangelical face up to the implications of Joshua I refuse to take them seriously. Because Y*H W*H gave Mose's successor some pretty disturbing orders.

I am not a believer but I take the Bible seriously, it is not a God Damned (literally) smorgasbord. Per observant Jews you go to hell for eating a pepperoni pizza, a cheeseburger, a Tex  Mex Taco or lobster bisque. O( course if you squint your eyes you can only see the anti-gay parts of Leviticus.

Evangelicals and Greater Israel advocate need to take their literalism seriously, Y*H W*H  laid out the Final Solution. Time to stand up to the plate and say what you  mean. Oh and you Jews just ignore all that Revelation's stuff, after all what are the odds that Evangelicals see the path to heaven paved with your dead bodies?

I am open to readings of the Bible that have their origins in The Sermon on the Mount, though even there you get some disturbing elements. But a sraight out reading stemming from Joshua or Revelations puts you in dangerous territory

by Bruce Webb 2009-08-18 10:40PM | 0 recs
I support a two-state solution

for pragmatic reasons, but still, Palestine DOES exist already, and it is called Jordan.

by Lakrosse 2009-08-19 06:59PM | 0 recs

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