Israel in Europe?

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A few days ago, a story run by the Jerusalem Post claimed that the European Union was studying the possibility of opening an opportunity for Israel to join Europe. It was definitely not an amazing affair, on the one hand because Israel is already represented in Europe on the level of the sports competitions, since the Israeli athletes are more and more invited to attending some European games in varied sports. On the second hand, Israel is not after all an Islamic state as Turkey for example, so that the fear that it plays a Trojan horse role in the European castle could undermine or postpone its entry in Europe, even if it is quite clear that no (Islamic) army is threatening Europe nowadays. However the naivety or the hypocrisy of some observers or political actors makes them believe that the Israelis are much closer to the hearts of the European citizens than the Arabs. This has never been proven. Besides, there are certainly much more Arabs in Europe and European of Arab origin than Israelis, not to speak of the Muslims who in France alone amount to about six millions, which is not a negligible force, by any means.

To be sure, wars did not burst out between Israel and European countries, although this is precisely what happened with the Arabs. But why should this be a good reason for the defenders of the Israeli admission to Europe? Didn’t wars burst out also between the Europeans themselves? Moreover, if we count the wars that opposed Europeans to Arabs and those that opposed Europeans to other Europeans, we may very well find at the end that the European wars were not only more numerous but also more destructive. Just think about two wars only: the first and the second world wars.

Thus, even if this question of Israel possibly joining Europe were serious, we would have to seek for the causes and the motives in other ways than the ethnic and religious ones. The latter cannot be really of any help or consistency, as it is obvious for anyone who cares to study the European history, that the modern Europe has been constructed on the basis of secularist and rationalist values and shaped by them, and anyway this is altogether the case of the western world. Yet, this rule does not prevent exceptions, since in open societies the only restrictions on social and political trends are a matter of law concerns. And the law –” as we all know – is a very broad field and liable to all kinds of interpretations. We cannot omit for instance that neither the rationalism nor the secularist and humanist values prevented the appearance of Nazism and fascism in the very heart of contemporary Europe.

Anyway, we have to observe too that the Zionists are very active in Europe, where they never stopped reminding these peoples of their old sins, concerning anti-Semitism. Some provocative events that occurred recently in France were sufficient to arise a diplomatic storm between M. Sharon and M.Chirac. The French president reacted to the rude intrusion of the Israeli Prime Minister in French affairs, in pointing out that Sharon was no longer welcome to France. It was well the first time that a European leader reacted with such anger to an Israeli Prime Minister’s blunder. True the “blunder” in question recurred many times, and the French have all reason to believe that it was deliberate. Afterwards, Sharon apologized, but it was too late.

It is noteworthy that the question of Israel’s possible admission in Europe seems not really serious up to now. But we cannot force the future, though we have to acknowledge that the issue sounds somehow silly in the light of what happened since the disclosure of the Oslo process. We were believing –” everybody did – that all what Israel sought was its acceptance in the Middle East region: in other words that the Arabs recognize the Israeli state as an element in the regional system. However, this issue seems today excluded of course, particularly since M. Sharon started drowning the little boat of the peace process in an ocean of blood and tears and hate. Thereupon, the drive of Israel towards Europe (or the drive of Europe towards Israel) would appear as a pre-recognition of the failure of the Israeli Middle East merging project, whose best defender was likely M. Shimon Peres.
Anyway, the only certitude here is that it is neither the admission of Israel in the European Union nor even its –” much unlikely- admission to the United States, which may guarantee its acceptance by the Arabs. It seems that this issue (the acceptance) was – and perhaps is still –” possible in only one case, which is: that Israel stops the delirium of megalomania and persecution and securitarist paranoia and that it changes its politics from the opposite to the opposite. We do not pretend that the wolf becomes a lamb. This does not happen to the states, as a rule, albeit the modern history proves that some countries changed their politics radically and succeeded: Germany, Italy and Japan, or even South Africa are only the most appealing examples, maybe because of the historical distance we have get by now to judge of the results with hindsight. But there are certainly many other cases in the world.

It is sure that one cannot force his way on others by means of violence and war and complain that they do not accept him. This is particularly the case for States. What is policy if it is not the art of attracting people? Yet when it turns to be the art of repelling people, then we can be sure that the policy makers are either poor fools or dictators or fascists. In that case, an old dictum says: he who deposits the seeds of wind must not wonder to reap storms.

Also, Europe would not actually offer a service neither to the Israelis nor to the Arabs nor to the peace if the issue of admitting Israel in the European Union were serious. In this time of oppression and misery for the helpless Palestinians, this may appear just as a provocation that absolutely nobody needs in the whole world. Such an act –” if it crystallizes- would not encourage Israel to continue the efforts for peace although it would help to maintain the concepts of supremacy and arrogance that led to the tragedies we are still witnessing.

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