Thursday, June 24

Trading with the enemy

I received this note in an email:

Israel firms look for opportunities in Gujarat

A business delegation from Israel is exploring opportunities for tie-ups with agro-business entrepreneurs in Gujarat, an official said on Wednesday.
According to Gujarat Agro-industries Corporation Managing Director D Thara, a 30-member delegation representing, among others, 17 companies of Israel is currently on a visit to the state to explore the possibility of business tie-ups in the fields of agriculture, horticulture, dairy sector and irrigation.
"We have given them a list of entrepreneurs with whom they can interact," Thara said.
Leader of the delegation Yitzhak Kiriati said: "There is considerable similarity between Gujarat and Israel in terms of agro-zones and water scarcity."
The delegation represents companies with business interests in sectors like water management and drip irrigation, agro-feed, dairy, fisheries, greenhouse, seeds and storage facility.
Israel's consul general in Mumbai Orna Sagiv, who was present at a conference in Ahmedabad Tuesday said that her country was looking for tie-up opportunities with Indian companies in their area of agricultural excellence.
The Gujarat government gave a presentation where it put forward its objective of doubling its irrigated cropped area from the present 3.1 million hectare of a total cropped area of 10.6 million hectare.

So I replied:

that's good news, these firms have some excellent intellectual property, technology and know-how that our people can do with, we should open up even more to these firms. can do nothing but improve our farmers, citizens and and and.

I got a comment saying that Israeli persecutes and does land grabbing, so the trade off is not justified. And my response was:

Well, I suppose it matters if one draws an equivalence between people who just happened to have the same passport. In other words, you are saying that every Israeli firm and person is jointly responsible for the persecutions carried out by Israel, yes?
if that is indeed the case, one will not deal with Thailand, Indonesia, China, Australia, US, Saudi Arabia, UK, etc. etc. which have been accused of the same kind of persecutions or landgrabbing or both. We see the same logic when people draw an equivalence between people who just happen to share religions. I dont think I will like it if somebody tells me that I am not going to be given a job because I happen to share the same sex, religion or nationality as some country, group or religion somewhere. There is a reason why collective punishment is wrong.
For that matter, we are, at this moment, using not less than 2-3 Israeli inventions or discoveries or patents or technologies in the areas of high-tech, biotechnology, medical devices, irrigation etc.. If one is using a mobile phone, using a computer, the internet, etc. etc. then the chances are that one is using Israeli tech. Obviously one has made the judgement call that its worth using Israeli tech :)
We use Israeli technology when it comes to saving the lives of our jawans. The amount of help, tech, knowledge and knowhow that our indian military forces have received from Israeli is massive. So many lives have already been saved. Israeli technology has been used extensively in our communications networks, our medical infrastructure, our research and development infrastructure, and so on and so forth.
So I guess what I am saying is that the question of trade off just does not exist :) The Israeli companies, just like the British, Thai, Chinese, Australian etc. companies all come to trade, we welcome them and we trade right back. :)

Its frankly very amusing how people go all narrow eyed and tunnel vision when it comes to blaming Israel. The fact that the moral equivalence they draw is frankly illogical is besides the point. And you see this time and time again, specially with Israel. And pretty much because every other country, group or religion is excluded, this behaviour is very frequently driven by anti semitism. Simple way to test it, take 100 people who have expressed anti Israeli thoughts, find out where they have exhibited similar thoughts for another country. The vast majority will not have done so for another country. Investigating deeper, you will find that the only difference is that the country is Jewish, hence the anti semitic accusation sticks.


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