Recently, my Facebook newsfeed surfaced an Indian Country article showing the Dine Nation in support of Palestine. With all of the issues on the Navajo Reservation, it struck me a little funny to see the protest banners for something so far away from the southwest. I realized how little I really knew about the conflict. Well, I’ve done my research and spent some time Saturday in several different coffeehouses chatting to my friend Michelle who is very passionate about human rights and knowledgeable about international conflicts. Michelle is unique blend of European, African, and Native American ancestry and she’s a really smart girl. We talk a lot about identity problems in the modern world, how much racism and hatred still lingers, and what we wish people could see. After these talks and reading, I have a lot to say…
Poor Palestine. The Dine are absolutely right. And I am simultaneously appalled and yet not surprised at all that the US is supporting Israel.
From what I have read, the Israel-Palestine region was actually quite peaceful in the 1800s. Conflict started arising when a group of (extreme) Zionist Jews came into the region with the intention of getting back their holy land. With Hitler ransacking and murdering Jews in the 20th century, Jews were flooding into the region. The conflicts increased as the indigenous peoples were getting overrun suddenly. Conflicts got to the point that the United Nations stepped in. The US supports the decision to make two separate states, one for the Jews, one for the people living there originally (who were initially about 4% Jewish, 10% Christian, and 86% Muslim). These new extremists moving in were delegated 55% of Palestine despite only being 30% of the population and currently holding 7% of the land at the time.
Why did this happen? Well there’s a lot of historical relations and covers about keeping peace through these actions. Honestly, what most of it comes down to is religion. And if you think about it,… it sounds like a really typical movie. Or like Harry Potter. You know the part where Harry has to destroy all of the Horcruxes and so he’s on a wild goose chase trying to get all of the pieces so he can make it into the final battle and… Yeah, this is not different. The Jews have to be in Jerusalem so the second coming of Jesus can happen and everyone will convert and something about Satan and Armageddon and this huge battle that destroys most of the city… SERIOUSLY PEOPLE? This is what you’re fighting over?? It’s like…literally Harry Potter.
And the US supporting this ridiculous thing isn’t a shock to me considering its religion-dominated history and giving up lands that aren’t its own to give. Yes, I’m talking about American Indian history and the reason why those Dine were protesting in favor of Palestine. It’s because it’s the same story, the only difference is the violence is nothing like the war going on in the Middle East. There’s no holy book telling the Dine to destroy the Christians and keep them out of their land; there’s just Creation stories that put their ancestral lands and corn crops in high religious importance to their culture.
A glance at how this is history repeating:
The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict
1. Zionist Jews flooded into a territory occupied by indigenous peoples to seek refuge.
2. The minority grew in numbers and began slowly taking over the land, burning whole villages.
3. As conflict increased, an external agreement was made to divide the land into allotments, force Palestinians into one section of their land, and delegate it to the different groups.
4. A disproportionate amount of land was given in favor of the pressuring religious group and intruders.
5. The US is in debt, yet tax dollars keep going to fuel the Israeli domination over Palestine.
6. The ultimate goal is for Jews to conquer Palestine and Israel – they have to have Jerusalem – and then they’ll all convert to Christianity when the Harry Potter movie plays out.
The American Indian Version
1. Christian outcasts flooded into a territory occupied by indigenous peoples to seek refuge.
2. The minority grew in numbers and began slowly taking over land, burning whole villages.
3. As conflict increased, an external agreement was made to make Reservations and divide the land into allotments, delegating it to different groups.
4. A disproportionate amount of land was given in favor of the pressuring Christian settlers who wanted to cleanse the Indians.
5. The US hasn’t resolved its internal issues with the Indians and has broken countless treaties, yet it continues to exploit other people and support conflicts not relevant to itself.
6. The ultimate goal for centuries has been to completely convert or eliminate the indigenous peoples and cultures that originally watched over these lands.
With the protests in Paris turning violent against Jewish synagogues and kosher delis, it’s so obvious how much we have not progressed. In fact, it’s worse now. Now, when something happens, we feel it everywhere. Our weapons are worse, our interconnectivity is more detrimental, and our ancient conflicts make us look like toddlers bickering in the sandbox over which one is smarter than the other. Le sigh.