Exchanging Rockets, Rather than Goods and Services

Playing cat and mouse with Gaza rockets

Dozens die in Israel-Gaza clashes

Justice, whether restitution of property or punishment for crime, is usually a noble goal, but peace, life, and co-existence are often more important.

Would that they could trade commodities and services, rather than rockets. As Jean-Baptiste Say noted in his important Treatise of Political Economy, “the sense of mutual interest begets international kindness, extends the sphere of useful intercourse, and leads to a prosperity, permanent, because it is natural.”

24 Responses to “Exchanging Rockets, Rather than Goods and Services”

  1. “No longer will the people of Israel have malicious neighbors who are painful briers and sharp thorns. Then they will know that I am the Sovereign Lord.” Ezekiel 28:24

  2. The prophecies of Ezekiel discuss judgments upon Israel’s idolatry as well as her antagonizers in neighboring lands. Of interest to discussions of trade, liberty, and law might be Chapters 26, 27, and 28, in which he laments the fall of Tyre. He recounts its beauty as a land of respected merchant peoples and craftsmen, doing business with many lands, but corrupted by violence, dishonesty, and by seeking wealth from the ruins of others. (Chapters 27, 28). The Lord responds “…and I will bring many nations against you, like the sea casting up its waves. They will destroy the walls of Tyre and pull down her towers…” Ezekiel 26:3,4

  3. Ummmmmm…..right.

    You agree, right, Tom? Yeah, we all agree. Sure. It’s ok, David. Everything will be all right. We think that the Lord is very ok and that whatever hesays must be right.

  4. There is no “trading” of rockets. Kassams have been launched into Sderot for some time, but now Ashkelon has been reached by Gad missiles made in Iran, and there has been more Kassams launched into Sderot. The final straw, which should have been reached months ago, was when a 47 year old father-of-four was murdered by a rocket in Sderot.

    The Palestinians wasted all chances to make peace, to work on a viable society…in fact, were they ever to give up their aspirations of destroying Israel, I believe that not only would Israel make a real peace with them, but Israel would share its technological know-how.

    The Israelis in Gaza grew crops in greenhouses, with new technology. The Gazan Palestinians, after the Israeli withdrawal, and after destroying the greenhouses and other infrastructure left behind, had the “chutzpah” (nerve) to ask the Israelis for the technology. Wrong time.

    If, however, the Palestinians do ever say “we want a life for our children” and not “Israel must be destroyed”, then Israel will help. Do I mean every Israeli? Of course not. But Israel does not want to trade rockets, the people there are sick of war, sick of dying, and do not celebrate the deaths of their enemies.

    The day the Palestinians stop giving out candy and having celebrations for successful suicide bombers (as they did in the latest one, in Dimona) might be the day that peace has a real chance. Till then, there is no chance of trade, of peace.

    Your sentiments are correct, though. Trade would benefit both sides, but trade will not break down the hatred. It’s not poverty that causes the Palestinians to fire rockets. Making peace instead of spending money on bomb-material and the tens of thousands of guns in Gaza, or the many “militia” outfits” in Gaza (or the West Bank) for that matter, is not conducive to a decent living for the Palestinians, nor for the resumption or increase in trade between the two peoples.

  5. Re Israel giving technology to Palestine — I worked with an Israeli economist whose university (a state university, in Israel) had several research programs on building the Palestinian economy. I understood from him that the idea was that with a peace settlement they’d be able to help build viable Palestinian economy. I don’t think there was anything unique about this university.

    If the Palestinian leadership decided that economic growth was more important than exterminating Israel, I think it could happen.

    As for “justice” …since “justice” in this case presumably means one side exterminating the other, yes, peace is far more important.

  6. Tom G. Palmer

    On the issue of justice and peace, I would say that being future oriented matters. When the Hungarian liberals made the deal with the Communists that led to the elimination of Communist Power, they promised that there would be no punishments for the crimes of the Communist Party and its leaders and members, past and present. They kept the deal because future peace and freedom were more important than justice for crimes past. There is no doubt in my mind that they did the right thing. Sometimes justice has to be given up for the sake of life. And life is certainly more important than revenge.

  7. Tom,

    I think that most people, certainly most Israelis, agree that trade is preferable.

    But, it requires institutions that are conducive to trust. These don’t seem to exist on the Palestinian side.

    There seem to be active elements that oppose steps in this direction that the authorities are unwilling and/or unable to control. And, there seems to be international consensus that Israel should not try to intervene.

    Until this changes, trade doesn’t seem to be an option. It’s now a question of how much death and injustice people accept. I don’t think you’re advocating accepting more death and injustice, rather than less, are you?

    If not, then what productive steps do you suggest Israel take?

  8. Unfortunately the Palestinian leaders – both Hamas and Fatah – understand all too well what would happen if trade replaced terror and that is why they will not allow it to happen. Economic prosperity would end their claim to foreign aid, most of which disappears into their private bank accounts, and it would create an independent middle class, which would threaten their hold on power. Ideology aside, the financial and political incentives to perpetuate the violence are overwhelming. No doubt this would be an interesting research project for public choice economists.

  9. I do not believe that Palestinian leaders whom are on the higher up would care little for Palestinian civilians. Here’s a quite disturbing quote coming from the deceased Yasser Arafat on the matter of Palestinian civilian death at the hands of the Israeli military:

    “This child, who is grasping the stone, facing the tank, is it not the greatest message to the world when that hero becomes a martyr? We are proud of them.”

    Now is this the man to which current Fatah leader-Mahmoud Abbas once looked up as his mentor? How about Hamas with their own deceased leader-Ahmad Yassin being kissed on the forehead by Arafat? I would have to say that what people like Arafat want is more civilian deaths whether it’s on purpose or not by the Israeli side so that they can be used as “martyrs” in propaganda.

    Is this the sort of leadership that Palestinians in general should look up to? Is Mahmoud Ahmadinejad any better either? I say that things would have been better of the entire region of British Palestine would be subverted by British colonialism to become a Capitalist center like Hong Kong except in the Middle East where Jews could have their government as well as their Arab counterparts.

    This is coming from someone whom is pro-Israel as well.

  10. Joshua is nuts. Congress has no business passing resolutions in this matter, but to term Israeli self defense “Zionist assault” is idiotic. Apparently Joshua believes it is acceptable that Palestinian militants fire rockets at unarmed civilians. Well, he’s wrong.

  11. Joshua Shoenfeld

    I don’t think its self-defense to expel a civilian population from their homes in order to create a state for Ashkenazi Jews. It is not self-defense to confine that population to ghettos and restrict their trade and travel. It is not self-defense to take what land they do have in order to build more walls and settlements. One does not have to like Hamas in order to find that the treatment of Palestinians is revolting. Leading Zionist thinkers believed that European Jews were racially superior to Arabs. Thus, they were entitled to expel the native population. I do not believe that a libertarian should embrace Zionism, an ideology that embraces nationalism, socialism, and racism.

  12. Joshua called the current attacks on Hamas a “Zionist assault.” Challenged on it, he switches to other subjects.

    Ron Paul did not use the term “Zionist assault” in speaking against H.R. 951, and in fact took the very reasonable position that Congress ought to stay out of this.


    It is unfortunate that Ron Paul’s campaign and libertarianism are co-opted by fanatics who see Zionism as one of the great evils in the world.

  13. “Leading Zionist thinkers believed that European Jews were racially superior to Arabs.”

    This is perhaps one of the most idiotic comments I have ever heard and quite frankly anti-Jewish. Hey “Joshua” is that your real name, have you ever care about comments from the late Yasser Arafat on Jews or perhaps there being Israeli Arabs living peacefully in Israel having the right to vote?

    How about some of these comments from the late Yasser Arafat?

    “We plan to eliminate the state of Israel and establish a purely Palestinian state. We will make life unbearable for Jews by psychological warfare and population explosion. . . . We Palestinians will take over everything, including all of Jerusalem.”

    “I have no use for Jews; they are and remain Jews! We now need all the help we can get from you in our battle for a united Palestine under total Arab-Muslim domination!”

    “We Palestinians will take over everything, including all of Jerusalem. Peres and Beilin have already promised us half of Jerusalem. The Golan Heights have already been given awayâ??subject to just a few details. All the rich Jews who will get compensation will travel to America.”

    “We know only one word: Jihad, Jihad, Jihad. When we stopped the intifada, we did not stop the jihad for the establishment of a Palestinian state whose capital is Jerusalem. And now we are entering the phase of the great jihad prior to the establishment of an independent Palestinian state whose capital is Jerusalem…We are in a conflict with the Zionist movement and the Balfour Declaration and all imperialist activities.”

    “We are not Afghanistan. We are the mighty people. Were they able to replace our hero Hajj Amin al-Husseini?… There were a number of attempts to get rid of Hajj Amin, whom they considered an ally of the Nazis. But even so, he lived in Cairo, and participated in the 1948 war, and I was one of his troops.”

    Now here’s a quote from Hassan Nasrallah, current leader of Hezbollah on justfying terrorism against Israel:

    “There is no solution to the conflict in this region except with the disappearance of Israel.”

    Now really Joshua, you are proof to show how anti-Semites/anti-Jewish types are really stupid.

  14. Joshua Shoenfeld

    Is it permissible to expel people from their homes and property because they are of the wrong ethnicity? Is it permissible to prevent that people from travelling, to engage in commerce, and to live their lives in peace because another group claims ownership of a parcel of land that does not belong to them? Why should the occupiers be immune from attempts by the oppressed to reclaim what rightfully belongs to the oppressed? How do you reconcile Zionism or any form of nationalism and collectivism with libertarianism?

  15. Okay Joshua, now you sound like a dishonest anti-Jewish crank. Serious Joshua, your “commentary” sounds a whole lot what is on the website of the Muslim Brotherhood which Ayman al-Zawahiri was a student of the MB and now is Osama’s No. 2 man.

  16. “Is it permissible to expel people from their homes and property because they are of the wrong ethnicity? Is it permissible to prevent that people from travelling, to engage in commerce, and to live their lives in peace because another group claims ownership of a parcel of land that does not belong to them? Why should the occupiers be immune from attempts by the oppressed to reclaim what rightfully belongs to the oppressed? How do you reconcile Zionism or any form of nationalism and collectivism with libertarianism? ”

    You do support the collectivistic leanings of the Palestine Liberation Organization, their sponsors Hamas and Hezbollah do you Joshua? Do you blatantly ignore Arafat being a member of the Muslim Brotherhood, KGB as part of his resume and supporting terrorism against Israel and only “caring” about Palestinian civilian deaths to agitate further terrorism against Israel?

    Do you even support Israel’s right to exist? Because if that’s the case, it sure sounds like a big lie.

  17. Please, this site: http://www.palestineremembered.com/

    Is very bias and does not present both sides Joshua. Does the site even display a gruesome atrocity committed by PLO terrorists against Israeli soldiers which breaks the Geneva convention of killing POWs with the Lynching in Ramallah?


    This atrocity even shocked members of the PLO themselves even though they were sponsoring many of the attacks through front groups.

    How about the Maxim restaurant suicide bombing?


    Does that site mention that atrocity committed by Islamic Jihad?

    How about the list of attacks committed by PLO front group Popular Resistance Committees?


    Really Joshua, I should be asking YOU how YOU can recouncile Palestinian “struggle” which includes the justification of terrorism against Israeli citizens and also even against Palestinians themselves. You are an example of someone whom recyles this brand of propaganda.

  18. Please Joshua, this is who you are parrotting as well:


    If someone like you is concern about Palestine or Israel, likewise with Ahmadinejad. Where is your comment with the latest terrorist attack that occurred recently in Israel? Or perhaps that Ahmadinejad uses civilian deaths of Palestinians to make them look like “martyrs” whom were never involved in terrorism to what Yasser Arafat had done.

  19. M: I am doubtful that “Joshua” is interested serious discussion, but I find your posts useful.

    You and other readers might find the Hamas Charter interesting. It calls for the killing of Jews (not Zionists) in Article 7, jihad across the world in the same article, insists that every Muslim has a personal obligation to kill (Article 15), prohibits all peace negotiations (Article 13), and establishes Islam as a totalitarian law covering “all domains of life” (Article 2).


    These are the people whose side Johsua takes, so he’s not much of a libertarian. I think your “dishonest anti-Jewish crank” is on target.

Leave a Reply

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>