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Whose Land Is Israel/Palestine Anyway? This Bleakly Funny Cartoon Has Some Thoughts

Animator Nina Paley unveiled a new video this week called "This Land Is My Land," which breaks down the ancient dispute over who owns the areas currently known as Israel/Palestine. Warning: there will be cartoon blood.

A lot of people have a lot of feelings about the Israeli/Palestinian conflict. Not as many of those people, however, are aware of exactly how far back the dispute over that particular piece of land goes. A new animated video released this week details the conflict’s history, and all parties involved, with South Park-like gallows humor.

From the time the titles roll, it’s clear that animator Nina Paley (who directed the feature Sita Sings The Blues) is having a laugh with this subject; albeit a laugh of frustration. This Land Is My Land reduces a complex, multi-faceted issue down to a matter of who killed whom first. We start with a heavily-bearded olive-skinned dude who is meant to represent Early Man. He is not long for this world. After the erstwhile caveman is struck down by a Canaanite’s spear, that Canaanite is then done in by an Egyptian’s arrow. This goes on and on until we enter the time of tanks and terrorists and possibly worse.

Contrasting all the violence is the Pat Boone song "The Exodus Song (This Land Is Mine," coming via the golden pipes of the late Andy Williams (RIP). The lyrics are intentionally keyed in to the onscreen action at times, as when the line, "So take my hand," is immediately followed by a hand-amputation.

There’s a handy viewer’s guide on Paley’s blog, which is helpful, since sorting out who’s who seems like a task almost as daunting as trying to solve the current Israeli-Palistinian crisis amicably.

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  • Frederick Lombardi

    Imperialism as you call it has no room in the collective. We keep kings under control, so that even they have to obey their own laws. It is a form of governance called democracy, perhaps you have heard of it. However, countries like britain and america who serve jewry, not imperialism, are the ones you need to be concerned with. Through jewry the baby boomer generation in america has selectively sold their children into slavery to the jew oppressor. Welfare reform was a guise to create homeless children for them to be able to sex traffic for instance. Despite what else you might think, the king ( a.k.a. head of the military) is directly responsible for the oppression of his people. This is why the house of david fell to begin with, if we read kings 11 it clearly states that solomon didnt follow GOD but married women who worshiped false gods like molech, of which his wives sacrificed unto and burned incense. Well, i have news for you, in order to sacrafice to molech, you must burn live children at the alter. It also says that Solomon didnt follow the ordinances and statutes of GOD. Most notably, Deuteronomy 15:7-9 which reads; 7 “If there is among you a poor man of your brethren, within any of the gates in your land which the Lord your God is giving you, you shall not harden your heart nor shut your hand from your poor brother, 8 but you shall open your hand wide to him and willingly lend him sufficient for his need, whatever he needs. 9 Beware lest there be a wicked thought in your heart, saying, ‘The seventh year, the year of release, is at hand,’ and your eye be evil against your poor brother and you give him nothing, and he cry out to the Lord against you, and it become sin among you. 

    This is a simple matter to understand. Solomon wrote this in place of common sense and following the law of GOD, it is proverbs 12:24; The hand of the diligent will rule,
    But the lazy man will be put to forced labor.
    Which quite simply means that Solomon purposefully held people into homelessness and forced them into debt and eventually permanent slavery. Of course calling them "lazy" was a good enough excuse for the sex traffickers and pimps of which I am sure took place. 

    Now let's take a look at a king who rose to power in contrast to Solomon who lost power and see what it says his law was versus solomon's. In proverbs 31 we read 31:9; 9 
    Open your mouth, judge righteously,
    And plead the cause of the poor and needy.
    This king rose to power through empowering his poor people, who in turn respected him and became member of his army, and had fair housing and healthcare I am sure. While solomons idiocy led to his demise. Understand? 

    Imperialism can only last if the people are satiated, the same is true with communism, which is why there is no soviet union today. The creation of the gulagh rapist and sodomite police within the creation of the police state in america, is leading to it's eventual demise. Here we see a common trend in america through its municipal statutes, and it is the same mentality that drove solomon's empire into the dust.

    This is a common trend in the united states that the "educated" use to cover up their collegiate fraternal failures and the creation of sex trafficking of children. "The out of site, out of mind mentality" was used when burning children to molech in israel by solomons wives.

  • Sylvie7

    Poor little Freddy.  Didn't take his medication today?  However, there is still the usual villain to blame.  Freddy uses big words and complex sentences, but sticks to the usual suspect.....  That makes the world easy to understand, doesn't it.

  • Benny Slip

    Where did you get all that sophisticated Jew hatred info.  Hitler's "Mein Kampf"comes to mind.

  • Bill Dukelow

    An animation like this only serves to confuse and dumb down what is a very complex situation (particularly the last 130 years of Zionist/Palestinian history). The writer/animator could have created a similar piece for any other part of the world that imperialism has touched. Only a subtle hint of the actual problem as it exists today... I'll hold my opinions on the actual situation to myself. I would propose the animator have some guts and create a 10 minute animation on the region since the late 19th century rather than the Tarantino-like costume party I just watched.

  • Zippy Zeppoli

     Agree. This is utter hipster, self-important rubbish that over-simplifies the conflict. Why not create a cartoon or infographic about various ways the problem *might* be solved. It's lofty, sure, but it's a better use of your hours of time animating than this bigoted refuse.

  • Alfredo Reynoso

    Why only since theate 19th century? Des history begin at the time more onvenient for youw own biases?

  • Motaz

    I shall keep my opinion on this matter to myself, as it is quite complex, but I will point out that in ""The Exodus Song (This Land Is Mine, " you used the last comma instead of a bracket :)

  • Andrewzibart

    you know what  10  trillion  dollars have been spent in armaments over the last 40 years.. ..I  think the film is a bit  simplistic but nonetheless theres be a huge amount of bloodshed in the name of righteousness... and Im not sure this is the way to go about it.... "right is might" mentality seem to be the ....It's ludicrous to me that Henry Kissinger received a Nobel Peace Prize and he's the primary neo con.... the first member of this  coalition..... does he deserve additional accolades.... in retrospect....don't think so.....  sorry.....PS  I'm a devout Jew.//