Sunday, May 15, 2011


Deutsche Bahn--The German National Railways--has succumbed to boycott pressure and withdrawn from a consulting role in building the new railroad from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.  The ostensible reason:  six kilometers of the system would pass through territory beyond the Green Line. 

Never mind that the Green Line is the 1948 truce line--not a recognized boundary.  Never mind that the boundary line is supposed to be negotiated in peace negotiations the Palestinians refuse to conduct.  Never mind the railroad would serve over one million Israeli Arab citizens and, if there ever was peace and the acceptance of Israel as a Jewish state on a sliver of land, could very well serve citizens of Palestine, the 22nd Arab nation. 

Never mind that if the Palestinians had once said "yes" in 1937, 1948, 1980, 2001, or 2009, they would have had a state and the Germans would not have had a chance, at least in this instance, to demonstrate their genuis for doing the wrong thing. Don't confuse the hate-mongerers with little details like facts.

Der Spiegel reported that German Transport Minister Peter Ramsauer advised Deutsche Bahn that the project was "politically problematic" and may be in violation of international law.  When it comes to Israel, that seems to be enough for the government-owned company to pull the plug. 

Apparently the more than $2 billion in business that German companies do with Iran is not similarly problematic or possibly in violation of international law or good sense and sound morals.  Neither the Foreign Minister or any other German government official seems to be similarly troubled by the fact that Iran is developing nuclear weapons, has threatened to annihilate six million Jews in Israel (that number--such a coincidence!), is responsible for terrorism that has murdered innocent Germans, Americans, and others, and brutally represses gays, non-Muslims, and just about any of its citizens that dares object to its policies. 

That's A-OK.  But six kilometers through territory that was never under Arab sovereignty and that is open to negotiation is "problematic."  The words "wimps" and hypocrites" come to mind.

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