How Big of a Deal is Israel's New Wall Alongside the Lebanese Border?
The Israeli army has begun building a wall that will run several kilometres along part of its border with Lebanon [...] the wall would be more than 2km long and 10 metres high
Many people hate walls. They are the opposite of communication and exchange and are associated with separation, oppression and imprisonment. The Berlin wall and the Israeli west bank barrier are notorious examples of how inhumane such walls can be. But is the one planned alongside the Lebanese border that big of a deal?
There has always been a wall. They’re just building a bigger “better” one.
The new wall is not creating new facts on the grounds or artificially dividing otherwise contiguous lands and peoples. People were not freely moving between the two sides and got suddenly shut off by the wall. This is a wall between two enemy states, states that have absolutely no plans of free exchange and movement between them in the foreseeable future.
The Israelis are replacing a wall that looks like this:
..with a wall that looks like this:
It looks ugly and it’s viscerally repulsive, but the only thing that effectively changes is that people from the two sides can no longer see and abuse each other.
And maybe that’s –dare I say it– a good thing: The wall helps avoid confusions like the one that almost led to a war in 2010, and cross border operations like the one that actually started a devastating war in 2006.