“Real Time” host Bill Maher closed his final show of 2023 with a blistering takedown of the pro-Palestinian movement parading the “myth” that the slogan “From the river to the sea” can be achieved.
Maher began by linking Christmas to the war-torn region, citing how the “little town of Bethleham was “86% Christian” in 1950 and how today it’s “overwhelmingly Muslim.”
“And that’s my point tonight: Things change,” Maher said. “To 2.3 billion Christians, there could be no more sacred site than where their savior was born, but they don’t have it anymore. And yet no crusader army has geared up to take it back. Things change- countries, boundaries, empires. Palestine was under the Ottoman Empire for 400 years but today, an ottoman is something you’ve put under your feet.”
After listing several global geographic changes throughout history, Maher told his audience “eventually everybody comes to an accomodation, except for the Palestinians.”
“Was it unjust that even a single Arab family was forced to move upon the founding of the Jewish State? Yes, but it’s also not rare. Happening all through history all over the world. And mostly what people do is make the best of it,” Maher said. “After World War II, 12 million ethnic Germans got shoved out of Russia and Poland and Czechoslovakia because Germany had become kind of unpopular. A million Greeks were shut out of Turkey in 1923, a million Ghanaians out of Nigeria in 1983, almost a million French out of Algeria in 1962, nearly a million Syrian refugees moved to Germany eight years ago. Was that a perfect fit?”
“And no one knows more about being pushed off land than the Jews, including the almost holy kicked out of every Arab country they once lived in. Yes, TikTok fans, ethnically cleansing happened both ways,” Maher continued while showing a chart of the shrinking Jewish population in Arab countries.
The HBO star stressed that people “coped” throughout history, citing the Jewish family from “Fiddler on the Roof” repeatedly fleeing from the pogroms.
“History is brutal, and humans are not good people. History’s sad and full of wrongs but you can’t make them unhappen because a paraglider isn’t a time machine. People get moved, and yes, colonized. Nobody was a bigger colonizer than the Muslim army that swept out of the Arabian desert and took over much of the world in a single century. And they didn’t do it by asking,” Maher said. “There’s a reason Saudi Arabia’s flag is a sword. Kosovo was the cradle of Christian Serbia, then it became Muslim. They fought a war about it in the 90s but stopped. They didn’t keep it going for 75 years.”
After listing all the years Palestinians turned down a peace agreement with Israel, he took aim at its leaders and its allies marching at universities.
“The Palestinian people should know your leaders and the useful idiots on college campuses who are their allies are not doing any favors by keeping alive the ‘river to the sea’ myth. I mean, where do you think Israel is going? Spoiler alert: nowhere,” Maher said. “It’s one of the most powerful countries in the world with a $500 billion economy, the world’s second-largest tech sector after Silicon Valley and nuclear weapons. They’re here, they like their bagel with a schmear, getting used to it.”
He continued, “What’s happening to Palestinians today is horrible. And not just in Gaza, in the West Bank too. But war ends through negotiation. And what the media glosses over is it’s hard to negotiate when the other side’s bargaining position is ‘You will die and disappear.’ I mean, the chant ‘From the river to the sea?’ Yeah, let’s look at the map.”
Showing a visual, Maher continued, “Here’s the river. Here’s the sea. Oh, I see. It means you get all of it. Not just the West Bank, which was basically the original UN-partition deal you rejected because you wanted all of it and always have, even though it’s indisputably also the Jews’ ancestral homeland, and so you attacked and lost. And attacked again and lost. And attacked again and lost.”
Maher went on to cite Mexico, which previously had a border that reached the top of California and Nevada but they “chose a different path” and “got real” to eventually develop “the world’s 14th biggest economy now.”
“If I give you the benefit of the doubt and say your plan for a completely-Jewless Palestine isn’t that all the Jews should die, what is the only other option? They move. You move all the Jews… Where are we moving this entire country, Texas? Sure they have room. I guess we could put the Wailing Wall on the border and kill two birds with one stone. Or we could just get serious,” Maher concluded.