Friday, March 07, 2008

Destroying the village to save it.

Ethnic cleansing is, legally, a form of genocide. The recent attack by an Israel Arab offers a compelling counterexample. If this attack is followed by others, Israel will be forced to institute repressive measures against its Arab population, leading to an Apartheid situation at best. I wonder, however, if episodes of ethnic cleansing on the part of intractable enemies may prevent true genocide from occurring. It is argued that much of the peace in Iraq was a result of the Shi'ite militias' effectiveness in reducing points of contact between hostile populations. Might we have to overlook ethnic cleansing in the name of peace and the prevention of genocide?

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