Reformist Muslim

Exploring possibilities for the future of Islam and other thoughts

Location: London, United Kingdom

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Pakistan and Israel

There is a big discussion in Pakistan right now about the merits and demerits of the government's decision to initiate diplomatic relations with Israel in the wake of the Gaza pullout s I thought I'd give my take.

Firstly, I don't think that Israel should have come into existence in 1948 in the way that it did with the eviction of Palestinians from their homes and the taking over of their land. Having said that, that was over 50 years and things have moved on since then. Despite the fact that millions of Palestinians have suffered, there is no sense in inflicting similar hardship on Israelis especially considering the fact that after the horrors of the Holocaust it does make sense to have a Jewish state somewhere in the world.

So, where does that leave a country like Pakistan? I think that no recognition sends out the wrong signals by suggesting that Israel itself should not exist rather than a Palestinian state should also exist. Therefore an ideal situation would be to have official recognition but to adjust diplomatic and economic relations based on the progress of the 'peace process'.

I don't however think that that sequencing of events is wholly possible and so I have to broadly agree with what the government has done. There are also strong arguments to make as to Pakistan acting in its own national interest as opposed to basing foreign policy on some utopian vision of pan-Islamic unity. I don't like to use them however as they suggest that determinations of good and bad should never enter foreign policy decisions which is a very Kissingerian view of diplomacy which I'm not very comfortable with. (On that, The Trial of Henry Kissinger by Christopher Hitchens is a must read)


Blogger Jordan said...

While I somewhat disagree with how you describe the events of 48, i find your postings refreshingly honest and insightful.

Your blog is a true gem!

8:13 pm, December 04, 2005  
Blogger reformist_muslim said...

Thanks for the comments jordan, always encouraging to see that people are enjoying the blog.

Just out of interest, from what side of the spectrum do you disagree with the 48 analysis.

10:15 pm, December 04, 2005  

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