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Israel And The Palestinians

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George Bush said he was pro democracy.

Why didn't he back the democratically elected government in Palestine?

Are they more or less violent than America?

hmm tough one

america supports palestine to the tune of 100m usd a year not bad for something they dont support ;)

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And so it continues. This time they have killed a hamas leader, and tried to destroy all the apparatus of Government. That'll teach them to try and have a democracy!

Some Collateral damage though, but its only Palestinians. As I'm sure lCTChris world agree, Palestinian lives are worth less than Israeli lives.

The agency's Commissioner-General, Karen AbuZayd, said 20,000 people a day had been without food aid for two weeks.

"People are doing pretty badly," she told the BBC.

"We do see for the very first time people going through the rubbish dumps looking for things, people begging, which is quite a new phenomenon."

However, Capt Benjamin Rutland of the Israeli Defence Force told the BBC that enough food and medical supplies were getting through.

Well that alright then!

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israel have actually shown restraint

i would think after that amount of time hamas deserves its gubbing ;)

But the point is that it is in terms of Gaza counterproductive. Israel is losing (has lost, in fact) the moral high ground by not letting food aid through. The resentment is growing, and an even more extreme faction than Hamas could come to the fore, given the right backing.

This is a grave error.

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And so it continues. This time they have killed a hamas leader, and tried to destroy all the apparatus of Government. That'll teach them to try and have a democracy!

Some Collateral damage though, but its only Palestinians. As I'm sure lCTChris world agree, Palestinian lives are worth less than Israeli lives.

Where have I said anything like that?

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Where have I said anything like that?

I never said you did. Interesting article btw stimpy.It didn't say anything I didn't already know, but hopefully it might educate some on here.

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I never said you did. Interesting article btw stimpy.It didn't say anything I didn't already know, but hopefully it might educate some on here.

was indeed an interesting article,but ill keep an open mind as the journo was very impartial which happens

ie no mention of women and children being used as suicide bombers etc etc

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I never said you did.

Why do you think I would agree that Palestinian lives are worth less than Israeli lives then?

Interesting article btw stimpy.It didn't say anything I didn't already know, but hopefully it might educate some on here.

That article paints a rather rosy picture of Hamas. There have been hundreds of killings in inter-factional disputes since Hamas won elections - they control the Gaza Strip due to the fact that they violently expelled Fatah. Christians in Gaza have been targetted by Hamas and there have been extra-judicial killings of civilians due to their non-conformance to Islamic standards.

I also don't think having a Phd is any guarantee of good government or of humanitarian concerns. Radovan Karadicz was a doctor, for example.

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But the point is that it is in terms of Gaza counterproductive. Israel is losing (has lost, in fact) the moral high ground by not letting food aid through. The resentment is growing, and an even more extreme faction than Hamas could come to the fore, given the right backing.

This is a grave error.

good point swampy,however i dont know how there could be anything more extreme than what has already gone before but there probably is :o

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And so it continues. This time they have killed a hamas leader, and tried to destroy all the apparatus of Government. That'll teach them to try and have a democracy!

advocates suicide bombings,this might have something to do was he was targeted,yet the artcle fails to mention them trying to wipe out the rest of the government which im sure they could easily do

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advocates suicide bombings,this might have something to do was he was targeted,yet the artcle fails to mention them trying to wipe out the rest of the government which im sure they could easily do

Ah, so if a politician has unpopular opinions then they deserve to be wiped out, along with their family?

Why do you think I would agree that Palestinian lives are worth less than Israeli lives then?

Just a general opinion based on your posts.

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Ah, so if a politician has unpopular opinions then they deserve to be wiped out, along with their family?

from an an israelie viewpoint yes!!

so is advocating a return to suicide bombing just unpopular opinion in your view??

id call it fecking madness personally

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from an an israelie viewpoint yes!!

so is advocating a return to suicide bombing just unpopular opinion in your view??

id call it fecking madness personally

Deserving of having him and his family wiped out by an airstrike? I would call that a little harsh.

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Deserving of having him and his family wiped out by an airstrike? I would call that a little harsh.

harsh id call it severe,but as i answered from an israelie viewpoint you have a high ranking official of hamas calling for people to strap on the suicide belt and to start blowing themselves in public places again which could kill hundreds/thousands of them again what did he expect?

ill ask again is suicide bombing just an unpopular opinion as you seem to have evaded the question???

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harsh id call it severe,but as i answered from an israelie viewpoint you have a high ranking official of hamas calling for people to strap on the suicide belt and to start blowing themselves in public places again which could kill hundreds/thousands of them again what did he expect?

Presumably not to have himself and his family wiped out? Military leaders are one thing, they are fighters, but politicians and their families? How is that going to help matters?

ill ask again is suicide bombing just an unpopular opinion as you seem to have evaded the question???

Its not an opinion I agree with, but it is an opinion. Its a bit of an extreme opinion, but that's what it is, an opinion.

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Presumably not to have himself and his family wiped out? Military leaders are one thing, they are fighters, but politicians and their families? How is that going to help matters?

it eradicates someone shouting for a return to suicide bombing,it helps to sway others from shouting for the same ie shout bad things you get killed

to become an hamas politician he has to have been in hamas military they go hand in hand

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Presumably not to have himself and his family wiped out? Military leaders are one thing, they are fighters, but politicians and their families? How is that

politician???

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Just a general opinion based on your posts.

I don't think I've said anything to put across that impression. It's also hardly a general opinion, it's a pretty specific opinion.

Interesting article on the conflict from Benny Morris, an Israeli historian, in the New York Times the other day. Pretty depressing really - it's hard to get much optimism out of anyone in the current situation.

MANY Israelis feel that the walls — and history — are closing in on their 60-year-old state, much as they felt in early June 1967, just before Israel launched the Six-Day War and destroyed the Egyptian, Jordanian and Syrian armies in Sinai, the West Bank and the Golan Heights.

More than 40 years ago, the Egyptians had driven a United Nations peacekeeping force from the Sinai-Israel border, had closed the Straits of Tiran to Israeli shipping and air traffic and had deployed the equivalent of seven armored and infantry divisions on Israel’s doorstep. Egypt had signed a series of military pacts with Syria and Jordan and placed troops in the West Bank. Arab radio stations blared messages about the coming destruction of Israel.

Israelis, or rather, Israeli Jews, are beginning to feel much the way their parents did in those apocalyptic days. Israel is a much more powerful and prosperous state today. In 1967 there were only some 2 million Jews in the country — today there are about 5.5 million — and the military did not have nuclear weapons. But the bulk of the population looks to the future with deep foreboding.

The foreboding has two general sources and four specific causes. The general problems are simple. First, the Arab and wider Islamic worlds, despite Israeli hopes since 1948 and notwithstanding the peace treaties signed by Egypt and Jordan in 1979 and 1994, have never truly accepted the legitimacy of Israel’s creation and continue to oppose its existence.

Second, public opinion in the West (and in democracies, governments can’t be far behind) is gradually reducing its support for Israel as the West looks askance at the Jewish state’s treatment of its Palestinian neighbors and wards. The Holocaust is increasingly becoming a faint and ineffectual memory and the Arab states are increasingly powerful and assertive.

More specifically, Israel faces a combination of dire threats. To the east, Iran is frantically advancing its nuclear project, which most Israelis and most of the world’s intelligence agencies believe is designed to produce nuclear weapons. This, coupled with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmedinejad’s public threats to destroy Israel — and his denials of the Holocaust and of any homosexuality in Iran, which underscore his irrationality — has Israel’s political and military leaders on tenterhooks.

To the north, the Lebanese fundamentalist organization Hezbollah, which also vows to destroy Israel and functions as an Iranian proxy, has thoroughly rearmed since its war with Israel in 2006. According to Israeli intelligence estimates, Hezbollah now has an arsenal of 30,000 to 40,000 Russian-made rockets, supplied by Syria and Iran — twice the number it possessed in 2006. Some of the rockets can reach Tel Aviv and Dimona, where Israel’s nuclear production facility is located. If there is war between Israel and Iran, Hezbollah can be expected to join in. (It may well join in the renewed Israeli-Palestinian conflict, too.)

To the south, Israel faces the Islamist Hamas movement, which controls the Gaza Strip and whose charter promises to destroy Israel and bring every inch of Palestine under Islamic rule and law. Hamas today has an army of thousands. It also has a large arsenal of rockets — home-made Qassams and Russian-made, Iranian-financed Katyushas and Grads smuggled, with the Egyptians largely turning a blind eye, through tunnels from Sinai.

Last June, Israel and Hamas agreed to a six-month truce. This unsteady calm was periodically violated by armed factions in Gaza that lobbed rockets into Israel’s border settlements. Israel responded by periodically suspending shipments of supplies into Gaza.

In November and early December, Hamas stepped up the rocket attacks and then, unilaterally, formally announced the end of the truce. The Israeli public and government then gave Defense Minister Ehud Barak a free hand. Israel’s highly efficient air assault on Hamas, which began on Saturday, was his first move. Most of Hamas’s security and governmental compounds were turned into rubble and several hundred Hamas fighters were killed.

But the attack will not solve the basic problem posed by a Gaza Strip populated by 1.5 million impoverished, desperate Palestinians who are ruled by a fanatic regime and are tightly hemmed in by fences and by border crossings controlled by Israel and Egypt.

An enormous Israeli ground operation aimed at conquering the Gaza Strip and destroying Hamas would probably bog down in the alleyways of refugee camps before achieving its goal. (And even if these goals were somehow achieved, renewed and indefinite Israeli rule over Gaza would prove unpalatable to all concerned.)

More likely are small, limited armored incursions, intended to curtail missile launches and kill Hamas fighters. But these are also unlikely to bring the organization to heel — though they may exercise sufficient pressure eventually to achieve, with the mediation of Turkey or Egypt, a renewed temporary truce. That seems to be the most that can be hoped for, though a renewal of rocket attacks on southern Israel, once Hamas recovers, is as certain as day follows night.

The fourth immediate threat to Israel’s existence is internal. It is posed by the country’s Arab minority. Over the past two decades, Israel’s 1.3 million Arab citizens have been radicalized, with many openly avowing a Palestinian identity and embracing Palestinian national aims. Their spokesmen say that their loyalty lies with their people rather than with their state, Israel. Many of the community’s leaders, who benefit from Israeli democracy, more or less publicly supported Hezbollah in 2006 and continue to call for “autonomy” (of one sort or another) and for the dissolution of the Jewish state.

Demography, if not Arab victory in battle, offers the recipe for such a dissolution. The birth rates for Israeli Arabs are among the highest in the world, with 4 or 5 children per family (as opposed to the 2 or 3 children per family among Israeli Jews).

If present trends persist, Arabs could constitute the majority of Israel’s citizens by 2040 or 2050. Already, within five to 10 years, Palestinians (Israeli Arabs coupled with those who live in the West Bank and Gaza Strip) will form the majority population of Palestine (the land lying between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean).

Friction between Israeli Arabs and Jews is already a cogent political factor. In 2000, at the start of the second intifada, thousands of Arab youngsters, in sympathy with their brethren in the territories, rioted along Israel’s major highways and in Israel’s ethnically mixed cities.

The past fortnight has seen a recurrence, albeit on a smaller scale, of such rioting. Down the road, Israel’s Jews fear more violence and terrorism by Israeli Arabs. Most Jews see the Arab minority as a potential fifth column.

What is common to these specific threats is their unconventionality. Between 1948 and 1982 Israel coped relatively well with the threat from conventional Arab armies. Indeed, it repeatedly trounced them. But Iran’s nuclear threat, the rise of organizations like Hamas and Hezbollah that operate from across international borders and from the midst of dense civilian populations, and Israeli Arabs’ growing disaffection with the state and their identification with its enemies, offer a completely different set of challenges. And they are challenges that Israel’s leaders and public, bound by Western democratic and liberal norms of behavior, appear to find particularly difficult to counter.

Israel’s sense of the walls closing in on it has this past week led to one violent reaction. Given the new realities, it would not be surprising if more powerful explosions were to follow.

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