Retaking It All

Looking at the remains of what used to be home

I am happy for the people of the Jewish faith for finally having a country of their own where they can feel safe being Jewish. The question that comes to my mind is whether they are really safe there. It seems that, since its establishment, Israel has been the target of animosity by its neighbors. There have been talks of how Israel could have achieved peace with its neighbors and Palestinians.

Koh-i-Noor is claimed by at least four countries, and currently in possesion of the Great Britain. “Koh-i-noor (Mountain of Light)” by aiva. is licensed under CC BY 2.0

The Israeli-Palestinian conflict brings to mind the well-known diamond Koh-i-Noor.

Consider a precious stone that is claimed and fought over by two different groups of people, each with a legitimate claim over the jewel. Consider Petter belonging to group A. He has heard the story about a precious stone a large diamond that was once in the possession of one of his ancestors going back 11 generations. One day, the diamond suddenly disappeared. They could not catch the thief. The jewel was never recovered. The burglar who stole the diamond managed to sell it and escape with the money. The buyer sold the diamond to a dealer. After changing hands several times, the precious stone ended up in the hands of a respectful jeweler who sold it later to a wealthy man. The wealthy man passed away and his son inherited the precious stone. Now consider group B. The precious stone was passed down five generations and ended up in the hands of Paul from group B. Paul happened to be friends with Petter. One day he invites his friend Petter over for dinner. As he shows the riceless stone to his friend, the truth about the stolen jewel comes u. Now both Petter and Paul know everything about how the jewel has gotten to where it was at that moment. Petter demands the immediate return of the art effect to him as the rightful owner of the art effect. However, the art effect has been in Paul’s family for five generations. Paul’s ancestor was no thief but a respectful citizen and had legitimately purchased the art effect from a respectful jeweler. He is not sure if he should simply hand over that priceless stone to his friend. Who should get to keep the art effect?

“File:Koh-I-Noor.jpg” by AlinavdMeulen is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0

Paul refuses to hand over the precious stone arguing that since his ancestor purchased it legally, and he has inherited it legally as well, there are no laws that obligate him to return the art effect to Petter.
There is now a legal battle going on over the ownership of the diamond. Suddenly Petter decides to take the law into his own hands by stealing the jewel. The situation has now escalated to war. So what is the solution?
I think, if Petter and Paul each insist on keeping the diamond all to themselves, then inevitably it will be war. But what if they both agree to lend the precious stone to a museum and then split their share of the profit between themselves?
Today almost everybody acknowledges the right to the existence of the Jewish land Israel. However, it seems as though most Israelis have undermined the fact that at the time when Europeans of Jewish faith returned to their ancestral land, there were already other people there, who had lived there for several generations without failing to respect the sanctity of that Biblical land.
I wonder whether Israelis have ever considered compensating Palestinians for the loss of their land? Have Palestinians ever been granted any special privileges? What Israelis have done seems similar to what Petter is up to, (which is simply taking away what he perceives as legitimately his). I think the situation could have been very different had Israelis honored Palestinians (for being the previous inhabitants of the Holy Land), with compensations and granted some social status as well as special privileges. Then there would be peace in what is now the State of Israel. To me, Israelis’ failure to respect Palestinian’s rights may be the reason to blame for allowing foreign interference (by countries like Iran and Saudi Arabia) with an affair that would be non of theirs, to begin with. I wonder whether it is too late for the damage to be undone.

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