Language contains a dark mirror.
It allows or even tricks Hutu into accusing Tutsi of planning the genocide of the Hutu, but when this happens, it is actually the Hutu who have in mind the slaughter of the Tutsi in their entirety.
The dark mirror in language has a poisonous base: all it takes, it seems, is a small suggestion that God favors . . . blue eyes, for example, not green, and an elaborating process takes over . . . blue eyes and blonde, pure of heart and race, superior to all the rest of mankind, and ready to prove it out of factories melting ore and transforming it into cold steel.
The dark mirror in language confuses the mind: it convinces the Ayatollah dressed in white that he is God’s emissary today even while he runs Evin Prison and doles out patronage to thugs who then keep suppressed the more true revolutionary forces of Iran; it convinces Hamas who agreeing to truce in 2009 that it may continue launching rockets at Israeli residential space — more than 1,000 of such attacks in 2012 alone — because it believes it has a divine right and cause, one that allows it to exceed limits not only as regards its ambitions for the Jews (articulated: genocide right to the last Jew hiding behind a rock or tree) but in regard to the minds and bodies of its own children and women whom it keeps placed around its weapons and materiel stores and before itself in battle.
The Jewish story begins not with conquest but with fleeing an ugly condition — enslavement in Egypt under Pharaoh. With the direct intercession of God and with the company of a great mixed multitude. Canaan and the Canaanites were in the future and for 40 years the hard scrabble of desert was to be the reward for leaving Egypt.
In the archaeology, Canaanite and Hebrew artifacts have been found in proximity, but, not yet, evidence of a battle royal, suggesting perhaps that the story is an idealization, a template, an illustration of an historic change in ways of life. Again, for reading, The Peace and Violence of Judaism (Oxford University Press) provides a straightforward compilation, neither always pretty nor ugly, of the defense and military doctrine of the Israelite.
For the record, about 20 percent of the population of modern Israel is Muslim and Muslims at their own discretion may elect to serve in the Israeli Defense Forces, and some do.
Beno, Goel. “Muslim woman: Arabs must enlist in IDF.” YNet News, June 28, 2012.
Hoffman, Jordan. “His deep, dark secret: He’s Arab, Muslim and serves in the IDF.” The Times of Israel, November 10, 2012.
Jewish Virtual Library. “Biblical Jerusalem: From Canaanite City to Israelite Capital”.
Oppenheim, James S. “Jews, Muslims, and the Halls of Dark Mirrors.” Oppenheim Arts & Letters, July 7, 2009. Excerpt:
“Muslims who determine the worth of women as half that of men . . . Jews who would determine that their study of the All may require (lesser) others to support them: these may be the first distorted mirrors in the hall of dark mirrors that would make Hamas and the haredi liberating forces–and all others “kafir”–such are the opposite mirrors that ascribe to the other one’s own worst and most distorted contemplations.
Those mirrors are there because the writers of the monotheist foundation texts found a way to elevate their audiences into an atmosphere engineered around divine right. Jews and the gentiles, Believers and the “kafir”, the righteous and holy and the sinners–how deep those divides that for their existence rely on not much more than stubborn ideation or “habits of mind” and the political power that comes of wielding intellectual levers and wedges that divide some humans from others in accord with their literary endowments.”
My perception of conditions have change but not my comprehension of the natural basis for the pursuit of health, individuation, and freedom.
Ruda, Bennett. “Muslims in the IDF–It’s Not Just the Druse.” Daled Amos, July 29, 2011.
Science News. “Earliest Known Hebrew Text in Proto-Canaanite Script Discovered in Area Where “David Slew Goliath.” Science Daily, November 3, 2008. Related update: Boyle, Alan. “3,000-year-old artifacts reveal history behind biblical David and Goliath.” Cosmic Log on NBC News, May 8, 2012.
Smith, Peter. “Christian Arab youth come under fire over desire to enlist in IDF.” The Right Context, November 3, 2012.
Wikipedia. “Israel Defense Forces”. Subsection: “Minorities in the IDF”.
Wikipedia. “Merneptah Stele“.
Wikipedia. “Muslim supporters of Israel”.
Yitzhaki, Michal Yaakov. “An Officer and a Muslim Zionist.” Israel Hayom, September 7, 2012.
Yossi, Yehoshua. “First female Arab soldier joints elite unit 669.” YNet News, April 4, 2008.
YouTube. “Muslims soldiers serving in the Israeli Army – Audio (1/2)”. Posted September 11, 2009.
“I’m joining the army in order to make a change, to make peace between the nations.” From the film Ameer Got His Gun.