Strangelove wrote: Is building a house on land your family has owned for hundreds (thousands?) of years on the same level as executing POWs and mass-murdering civilians by way of say, chemical weapons? Cuz that's pretty strong language there Bucko!
Not on the same level, just as shop lifting and bank robbery are both crimes but not on the same level. It is however a war crime and a violation of the Geneva convention to forcibly remove a civilian population in an occupied territory and replace it with your own citizens. This is also why the EU insists that Israel stops labelling products from the West Bank as made in Israel. They are not.
As for the "your family has owned for hundreds (thousands?) of years" bit... No, of course, if you can show that you own the land, and that this ownership s in no way disputed, there should be no issue. But many of the settlements are built on land owned by Palestinians, who have been driven away. But I think your "thousands of years" claim actually is more of a religious than legal character, and thus I'd like to describe how I see the situation.
Two brothers share a house. One moves out, the other stays put. Roughly two thousand years later the brother who moved out shows up on the doorstep, saying, “Hey! This is my house!” The brother who stayed put says “No way, José, it’s mine. I have lived here for, like, forever!”
The problem is that both brothers are right, but they don’t recognize each other and both think the other guy is trying to rip them off.
An aggravating matter is that when they last saw each other they both spoke Arameic (a Semitic language closely related to both Hebrew and Arabic, still spoken by Christian Assyrians and Gnostic Mandeans). Today one brother has switched to the Arabic spoken by all his neighbours, while the other has revived the old Hebrew their granddaddy used to speak waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay ago and which was extinct as a spoken language for a couple of thousand years in between. Thus whereas the Hebrew brother says his father was Joseph ben David, the Arabic one says his was Yusuf bin Daoud.
Strangelove wrote: Sheesh, the only way one could even begin to construe this kind of activity as a "war crime" under the Geneva Convention would be if one took the position that Israel is OBVIOUSLY conducting ethnic cleansing by way of manipulating the population-balance of a territory.
LOL! And of course it is OBVIOUS that no such thing is happening, eh?
But YOU consider Palestinians to be "ethnic Jews" so no ethnic cleansing goin on here in your books amirite?
Well, it’s not just me. There’s been several studies, eg one by someone named Oppenheim:http://blog.godreports.com/2011/09/many ... -and-jews/http://mondoweiss.net/2008/09/israeli-h ... -jews.htmlhttp://link.springer.com/article/10.100 ... 4390000426
The picture below shows that Palestinians are right in the middle of the different Jewish groups. It also shows that the populations of Syria and Lebanon also fit in this cluster, whereas Ethiopian Jews show very little common ancestry with other Jews.
Sort of confirms my theory that geography tends to be more stable than religion… The Lebanese, Syrians, Palestinians and Jews all share a common ancestry, probably from the Phoenicians that lived throughout the region and by most sources are considered to be the same as the Kaananites. So, the Jews clearly hail from this region and have every right to live there, but so do the Palestinians.
Hm... then again, the Lebanese are a bit on the outskirts of the group. Probably more cousins than brothers. I assume that Sar is the Saudi Arabs, ie the ones who actually live on the Arabian peninsula, the "true" Arabs. As you can see the Palestinians are more closely related to the Jewish subgroups than to the real Arabs. Just like English speaking Christian Indians in Mumbai probably are closer related to their Hindi speaking Hindu neighbours than to Queen Elizabeth II. Language and religion are just cosmetics.
And it's still ethnic cleansing, as they are trying to get rid of those they percieve
to be of different origin.
It's a bit like if Henrik's wife accidentily slept with Daniel. It's still the thought that counts, eh?