Golan Height Druzes: When Oranges become Apples

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the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden—Genesis 3:2

 

by Roy Tov

 

“Green Apples are fruits.”

“Oranges are fruits.”

“Both are round and grow up in trees.”

“We have three clear signs. I can summarize that apples are oranges and thus green is orange.”

This is the purified nectar of a series of emails that one of my readers—openly related to certain government—sent me a couple of years ago. He was trying to support a non-valid comparison he had made in answer to one of my articles.
Western governments love invalid arguments.* “Weapons of Mass Distraction,” they call them.
Last year, the USA Government provided an extraordinary example of that. On December 5, 2012, international media showed footage from the Iranian television; at its center was a captured a low-tech US ScanEagle drone. The feat had been performed by Iran’s Revolutionary Guards; some of them were happily chatting next to the contraption.
A White House spokesmen reacted saying “there is no evidence” that the Iranian claim was true (see Iran Shows Captured Drone; USA Claims “No Evidence”). This truly odd statement can be rationalized by redefining:

Ev·i·dence [noun] 1: False claim made by a government.





 
 

 Wrong Colors

Wrong Colors
Introduction to Logic

 
Most civil servants assume that their slaves have never learned logic and thus they can say whatever they want. If you point out that their reasoning is illogical—”It’s irrational,” you add for further clarity—they attack: “My argument is no less valid than yours. This is a democracy and you will accept my argument. It is the government’s right to be irrational.” Yes, there is plenty of evidence of that.
Surpassing American Irrationality
On July 26, 2013, Attorney General of Israel** decided with the support of Israel’s State Attorney+ to sue the Druze Waqf and the town of Majdal Jams in the Golan Heights for illegal construction.
This was their answer to a bagatz++ Supreme Court process initiated by Regavim, a Jewish NGO.
“If Haredim were to invade Mount Meron (a pilgrimage site), shave it with bulldozers and build a neighborhood within the Nature Reserve, all the media would be dealing with the issue until the criminals would be taken to Court. When Majdel Shams and Mount Hermon are involved nobody cares,” said attorney Amir Fisher, who represented Regavim in the Supreme Court, after the decision was published.
“Nice try, Fisher!” I told to myself because he wouldn’t speak with me. “You are saying that apples are oranges,” I completed the thought.
Druze Soldiers

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Druze Soldiers in the IDF, 1949

 Allies and Enemies?
“You are a demagogue!” Some readers could claim at this point and add, “Your footnote on irrationality*proves that. Everybody knows that the Russell’s Paradox refutes that.
I was expecting this counterattack. It is wrong. The paradox shows just that the set definitions of the checked case are wrong. Druze cannot be allies and enemies of Israel at once; if it looks so, it is because the wrong parameters had been analyzed.
The first historical register of the Druze& is related to their fight against the Crusaders in the Chouf Mountains of Lebanon, during the Crusader rule in Syria (1099–1291). Nowadays, there are slightly over 100,000 Israeli-Druze living in fourteen towns located in the Galilee; they are full citizens and serve in the IDF, though mainly in ethnic-minorities units, and due to their command of Arabic as ruthless interrogators.
The Druze in the Galilee, under the leadership of Sheikh Amin Tarif, made an unconditional pact with the state as early as in 1948. Roughly 400 of them died as Israeli soldiers. Many years ago, Yitzhak Rabin told thousands of Druze in Daliat al-Carmel: “You don’t have to prove loyalty, you’ve done your share … now it’s our turn to repay you, to do and give; we owe you.”
The largest Druze town is Daliyat al-Karmel, next to Haifa and home to a popular market. More often than not they live in multigenerational houses, in towns spanning narrow valleys. Thus, they are Israel’s allies, true?
That is true in the Galilee. However, the Israeli Administration rules over a second group of Druze in the occupied Golan Heights. The northern, fertile part of the plateau was not colonized by Jewish settlers. Four Druze villages are located near Mount Hermon; many years ago, I met them regularly. Few of their denizens have accepted Israeli citizenship; the majority of them are still Syrians.
Birkat Ram

Birkat Ram and Mt. Hermon, Golan Heights

 
Attack and Sue!
 
Israel is anything but subtle, to the extent that instead of using a straw, it recently used an entire house to break a camel’s back.
In June 2013, massive protests erupted in The Triangle,&& where the largest concentration of Israeli Palestinians live.
The house that broke the camel’s back was located in Bar’aa, near Katzir Junction. It was built forty years ago, and five years afterwards, a demolition order was issued due to the lack of a construction permit. Two days after its destruction in 2013, protests broke.
“I must destroy your home, you don’t have a permit,” the policeman said.
“You refused to give me one,” the Palestinian dared to answer. In this case, this was proven. Even the President got involved in the futile attempts to get the permit.
“You are a terrorist criminal,” the policeman countered and destroyed the man’s house. Attack and Sue is Israel favorite tactic.
Second-class Palestinian-Israeli citizens are still several classes above Syrian-Druze living in the Golan Heights. Vast parts of the latter ancestral lands were illegitimately confiscated by Israel and made into a ski facility and national parks. Other parts were made into military strongholds on Mount Hermon (see IDF Soldiers Desert Mt. Hermon Stronghold).
Israel bases its actions on the Golan Heights Law which annexed the territory in 1981. United Nations Security Council in UN Resolution 497, reacted “the Israeli decision to impose its laws, jurisdiction and administration in the occupied Syrian Golan Heights is null and void and without international legal effect.”
Sheikh Amin Tarif

Druze Sheikh Amin Tarif
Allied with Israel and was awarded the Israel Prize

 
 
 
A long time passed since. The beautiful and peaceful villages are growing and need new houses. They are Syrians. Israel doesn’t give them construction permits. In despair, they entered lands illegitimately confiscated from them and now are being sued for that.
Where is United Nations Security Council? Why is it controlled by Western regimes supportive of Zionism? Why Syria can be attacked by the West and Israel not? Why Iraq, and Mali, and Libya can be attacked by the West and Israel not? Why Western governments claim that Justice is relative?
“My argument is no less valid than yours. This is a democracy and you must accept my argument. It is the government’s right to be irrational,” the civil servant said, “Accept that, otherwise, we will destroy you.”
———
 
full version and free subscription at http://roitov.com/articles/druzewaqf.htm
* Logical fallacies, as these statements are formally known, are the antithesis of “reductio ad absurdum.” Reduction to absurdity is a useful technique for proving something wrong; logical fallacies are useful tricks used to fool the innocents that wrong is right.
The core of reductio ad absurdum is simple; it is based on the fact that an argument cannot be both true and false. Hence, if the contradiction of a claim can be derived logically from the claim itself, it is proven that a false assumption was used. IN the example above, my answer to the trickster was short: “taste an apple and an orange, they are different!” His intentional fallacy was hidden under the choice of irrelevant parameters.
In a perfect world, illogical statements would be automatically nullified and prosecuted. A government would legislate a law saying that an organization—call it corporation, company or municipality—enjoys in the eye of the law the status of a person and … swishhhhh, the Logical Police would appear like Rambo in Vietnam and take the president to jail.
** Attorney General of Israel (HaYoetz HaMishpati LaMemshala, literally The Legal Advisor to the Government) is the head of the executive branch legal system.
+ Israel’s State Attorney (Praklitut HaMedinah) is the legal representative of the State of Israel in its courts.
++ Israel’s Supreme Court of Justice usually operates as the highest appellate court in the country, but it features also a special operational mode as a court of first instance, called in Hebrew bagatz (acronym for High Court for Justice, not to be confounded with the formal name of the court: The High Court). In this instance, everybody under the jurisdiction of the Court can initiate a process against the State of Israel if he feels one of his rights has been legitimately oppressed by the State; this is the result of Israel lacking a Constitution and formal recognition of Human Rights.
& Druze practice a monotheistic religion related to Shia Islam; this uniqueness causes them to favor ethnic settlements, most of their towns feature over 95% Druze population. Thus, once all the available space in a town’s steep territory is used, they need new lands for a new town. Israel knows that awarding them lands is a safeguard against Palestinian expansion, thus recently Netanyahu Announced a Druze settlementnear Kibbutz Yehiam.
&& “The Triangle” (Hebrew: HaMeshulash; Arabic: al-Muthallath) is the largest concentration of Israeli-Palestinian towns in Israel. They occupy a strategic position between Highway 65 and the northern edge of Gush Dan, Tel Aviv’s Metropolitan Area. These towns and cities disconnect the continuity of the Jewish settlement, dissecting Haifa and the Galilee from the rest of the country. It is the largest concentration of Israeli-Palestinians towns in the country. See The House That Broke The Camel’s Back.
 
 

Author Details
Roi Tov is a graduate—among others—of Tel Aviv University and the Weizmann Institute of Science. In addition to his memoir, Tov is published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Molecular Physics and other scientific journals. He won various travel writing and photography awards. In his writings, he tries to reveal life in Israel as a Christian Israel Defense Force (IDF) officer—from human rights violations to the use of an extensive network of underground agents. He was recognized first as a refugee and subsequently as political prisoner of Bolivia.
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