Bethlehem Church Palestinian Christians

Why are Palestinian Christians Fleeing?

The Jesuit magazine America recently reported that Arab Christians are fleeing in droves from Bethlehem, the hallowed city of Jesus Christ’s birth. In 1990, Christians made up a majority of the city’s residents; today they make up only about 15%. “With thousands more fleeing the city every year,” reports America’s correspondent Jeremy Zipple, “you can’t help but wonder, will there be any Christians left here…in the not too distant future?”

Zipple’s question is rhetorical. He clearly believes that Christianity in Bethlehem may be nearing its end.

But why? Why are Christians fleeing?

At first Zipple says “it’s complicated.” But he goes on to list one reason, and one reason only: “Since 2003 Bethlehem has been circumscribed by a 26-foot military grade wall.”

Zipple is, of course, referring to the separation barrier that was constructed by Israel during the Second Intifada to keep out suicide bombers who tried to cross from the West Bank into Israel. Although the vast majority of the barrier is a chain link fence, in Bethlehem and a few other metropolitan areas it becomes a tremendous gray wall. Since its construction, the barrier has become the international symbol of Palestinian resistance against Israel.

“[T]he separation wall…cuts family from each other. People get humiliated at checkpoints. People do not have many opportunities to improve their living standards. So, therefore, Christians who can afford to, are trying to leave this country,” says interviewee Hanan Nasrallah, a Palestinian employee of Catholic Relief Services.

Nasrallah’s calculation is simple: Israel built a wall; the wall makes life difficult; therefore, Palestinian Christians are leaving.

According to Nasrallah, both Palestinian Christians and Muslims face the same challenges. It is only the Jewish occupation that is causing them both misery.

And yet the Muslim population of Bethlehem is growing. Muslims, in fact, are not fleeing. They are arriving—in large numbers.

Surely there is some significance in this disparity between the two populations. Why is the Muslim sector of Bethlehem growing while the Christian sector is falling? Both face the same exact set of circumstances. Could it be that this disparity tells the true story?

It is important to note, first of all, that Jewish sovereignty does not, ipso facto, lead to Christian emigration. Inside Israel proper, the Christian population has been growing steadily for decades. Today, Christian Arabs are serving in the army and at various levels of the Israeli government.

As far as the decrease of Christians inside the Palestinian territories, Zipple is on the right track when he mentions the separation barrier—but he doesn’t go far enough. The barrier is indeed a factor, but far more important is the reason that the barrier was built in the first place: rising Islamism inside the Palestinian territories and bad governance on the part of the Palestinian Authority.

It is no coincidence that Bethlehem was mostly Christian until the 1990s. Until then, Bethlehem was ruled directly by Israel through a military administration. Although they were not full citizens of Israel, Palestinian Christians (and Muslims) could travel freely inside the country, visit the beach, and shop in Jewish neighborhoods. That all changed in the mid-1990s when Israel agreed to let the PLO rule parts of the West Bank and Gaza under a famous treaty called the Oslo Accords.

The Oslo Accords were intended to lead to peace between the two peoples. Regrettably, it led to the greatest outbreak of violence the two sides had ever seen during the Second Intifada.

The Palestinian Authority—the government created by the PLO to manage the West Bank and Gaza—is, by its own constitution, an Islamic state that embodies the principles of shari’a. Christians living under the PA are “accorded sanctity and respect,” but, as is the case under all shari’a-based systems, Christians are relegated to the status of second class citizens. Of course, it is illegal to convert from Islam to Christianity. Let’s not even mention the fact that sale of land to Jews is a crime punishable by death.

Discrimination against Christians under the Palestinian Authority isn’t just legal—it’s also social. Living as a Christian, one is constantly reminded that he or she is not a member of the majority culture.

Shortly after taking power in the West Bank, Yasser Arafat ensured that Bethlehem and a few other cities would always have Christian mayors. However, he also pursued policies that encouraged Muslim immigration into those same cities and thereby changed the demography from the bottom up.

I’ve spoken to numerous Palestinian Christians who describe how Muslim terrorists would commandeer Christian homes and use them to direct sniper fire on Israeli soldiers. Others speak of systematic discrimination in hiring, housing, and education. Of course, all of these conversations take place in private meetings and hushed tones. Christians in Bethlehem rarely interact with Muslims beyond the marketplace, and are, in fact, very much afraid. But in public, Palestinian Christians speak like Hanan Nasrallah—equating their situation with their Muslim neighbors and lauding the happy coexistence between the two groups.

They don’t have a choice. They are hostages inside their own city.

America would have us believe that Israel is forcing Palestinian Christians to flee Bethlehem because of the wall it built to stop terrorism. In reality, Christians are fleeing for the same reason they are fleeing Iraq, Egypt, and Syria: the rise of Islamic intolerance and violence against anyone who denies the revelation of Muhammad.

Palestinian Christians don’t like the wall, it’s true. But their main problem is that they are stuck living on the wrong side of it. It is not surprising that many Palestinian Christians call for a “one state solution” that will tear down the wall and reintegrate them with the Jewish state. Until that happens, however, many are choosing to leave.

America didn’t go far enough in its analysis, stopping—like most news outlets—just soon enough to blame Israel for everything. American Christians who want to know the truth need to dig deeper, especially if they are truly concerned about the fate of their Palestinian brothers and sisters.

Robert Nicholson is the executive director of The Philos Project, a nonprofit organization that seeks to promote positive Christian engagement in the Middle East. He holds a BA in Hebrew Studies from Binghamton University, and a JD and MA (Middle Eastern History) from Syracuse University. A formerly enlisted Marine and a 2012- 2013 Tikvah Fellow, Robert lives in New York City with his wife and two children.

Photo Credit: Bethlehem at Night in 2009. By Sengaska via Wikimedia Commons.

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  • While protesting outside the Israeli Embassy in D.C. one time I had conversation with a born again Christian Palestinian from Gaza. This person told me that the biggest threat he faced came from Israeli settlers. In fact, these settlers posed more of a threat according to this person than Hamas did.

    I’ve talked to other Christian Palestinians who told me of the hardships, threats and losses they have suffered at the hands of the Occupation. So from the information above, what we can ascertain is that Christian Palestinians face a variety of significant threats. Most of these threats come from the current occupation. And I say that because the rise in Islamism is due to the unjust conditions inflicted by the Occupation. One Israeli settler I talked to told me that they use the Jewish word for inheritance to describe the land there and this tells us that at least some of these settlers feel entitled to land that is both owned and lived on by Palestinians. And what attracts Islamists there is that Muslims can identify more and more with Mohammad’s early experiences of seeing injustice–that is not my observation alone.

    • Dexter Van Zile

      The Israelis pulled out of Gaza in 2005, so your testimony about the Palestinian Christian stating that the “biggest threat he faced came from Israeli settlers” is more than 11 years old. Simply put, Israeli settlers haven’t been in Gaza since August 2005.

      Now your attempt to blame the rise in Islamism on the occupation is also very interesting. Islamism has been a huge factor in the every country in the Middle East, lots of places in Africa and also Asia. It has been a growing force since the 1920s. Hassan Al Banna and Sayyd Mawdudi were writing before Israel was created and before the Six Day War.

      I find your post unbelievable.

      • Dexter,
        Israeli residents pulled out of Gaza, the military never did. Plus, I never gave a date for my conversation so it seems that you’re a bit anxious in jumping to conclusions.

        And to be precise, th appeal of Islamism and extremism is due to the occupation. In other places, especially Africa, we see Western industry with its expolitation of resources being a cause. But one can never take out the occupation for the spread of Isalmiss regardless of where it happens? Why? Because of the gross injustices that are practiced by both sides there.

        As for before the Occupation, you have Nakba.

        • Dexter Van Zile

          You said settlers. And everyone who has the least bit of knowledge of the Arab-Israeli conflict knows full well they left in 2005. You say that you never gave a date for the conversation. Well, then, when was it?

          • Dexter,
            In other words, if I didn’t give an exact date for the leaving of Gaza, I know nothing. I don’t see how you can make that implication though I see why. Rather than discuss the issues, you’d rather attempt to discount what I have written so that people can ignore what I wrote. And that is nothing more than an authoritarian move.

            BTW, two other points here. First, the withdrawal of Israeli setters from Gaza was not the only occurrence that happened then. As Israel left Gaza, probably for logistical reasons, more and more land became confiscated on the West Bank and that still continues. Second, I can’t remember the year of the conversation. But if you want, check all that I have written rather than try to suggest or imply that none of it has merit.

          • Dexter Van Zile

            You spoke about settlers in Gaza. There haven’t been settlers in Gaza since 2005. And Christians are still trying to get out. Hamas has turned Gaza into a terrible place. And you want to blame Israel. I get it. We all get it. The Palestinians have done nothing wrong. It’s all Israel’s fault and anyone who questions your narrative is a bad person. Your motives are pure as the driven snow and how does anyone dare to suggest otherwise unless they are “authoritarian.”

            As far as the appeal of Islamism in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, it has nothing to do with the global rise in Islamic extremism that has taken place since the Iranian Revolution in ’79 which electrified Muslims throughout the Middle East.

          • Dexter,
            Yes, and I was reporting the testimony of someone else. And I didn’t give a time frame lf the conversation or of when they were last there.

            Now it seems to me that you just want to blame one side or the other. Hamas is a horrible organization, I can easily agree to that. But the Occupation and the previous attempt to ethnically cleanse Palestinians from the land play a huge role in what is going on there. Both sides have committed atrocities and I never said or implied that Israel alone was to blame. But you seem to imply that, in Gaza, only Hamas has done wrong. So in a sense, when you sarcastically try speak for me in saying that the ‘Palestinians have done nothing wrong,’ you are simply projecting what appears to be your view that only one side is to blame.

            Finally, why not look at the context in which Islamism has arisen from. First, you have the whole Middle East whose map was drawn by European And European powers were there in order to expolit the area of their oil resources. The people there could easily compare militarily superior foreign nations having their way in the land that is considered the heart of Islam. So you begin to see religious fundamentalists naturally blame diseertion of the faith for this discrepancy.

            Furthermore, you see two groups wanting to make Palestine their home. The one group consisted of indigenous Arabs. The other group consisted of European immigrants–for the most part, Zionism did not appeal to indigenous jews until beginning with the holocaust. But Modern Zionism has its roots in Europe of the 1800s. Gradually, a significant number of European Jews came to the conclusion that they would never be welcomed as fellow citizens in Europe. From time to time, they suffered great persecution. And so the movement to make Palestine a Jewish homeland stated in the 1800s. And, btw, Modern Zionism back then was diverse in terms of how Jews would live with the indigenous Arabs. And England divides its Palestinian mandate into two sectors. And at the beginning of the end of that mandate, Israel fights for more land and expels Palestinians in doing that. Afterwards, comes the attack on Israel from the Arab nations. And what resulted was that the indigenous Palestinians were denied a homeland because it was given immigrant Europeans.

            Then we could turn to the joint British-American coup of Mossadeg in Iran (1953), the coup that put the B’aath party into power in Iraq with the eventual subsequent support for Saddam Hussein until he Kuwait. In addition, we supported dictators in the region so long as they provided business or strategic advantages.

            Finally, there were our two wars on Irac. The first consisted of attacks on their troops and infrastructure with attacks on the latter target violating international law. Then there were our joint sanctions with the British but blessed by the UN which was responsible for the deaths of hundreds of thousands of Iraqi children. Then a couple of years after 9/11, we invaded iraq without getting any confirmation of WMDs from the UN inspection team. Our invasion did not give the inspection team the time it requested to finish its work.

            Now the purpose of all this writing is an attempt to provide a partial amount of contecxt for the religious and militant reactions that we see there. Of course, the above does not include our support for Osama bin Laden when he was working with others to try to overthrow the Afghanistan government that was supported by the Soviet Union.

            We see many atrocities commited by various Islamic terrorist groups. But there are contexts for those atrocities. And part of that context includes Western, American and European, atrocities committed for various reasons.

          • Dexter Van Zile

            Your characterization of Israel fighting for more land ignores the offers Israel made in 2000 and 2008 which the Palestinians rejected and Israel’s acceptance of the Clinton Parameters at Taba in 2000/01.

            Can you name one bit of territory that Israel has withdrawn from that it has not been attacked from?

            You provide context for Islamist violence, but deny context for Israel’s actions.

            Why?

          • Dexter,
            Be specific regarding the offers. What was exactly offered and what were the specific objections of the Palestinians?

            BTW, regarding Clinton’s work, it was Israel that walked away from the table, not the Palestinians. Regarding Bush’s roadmap. not long afterwards when even the Israeli gov’t acknowledged a signficant drop in violence, Israel conducted two raids that killed Palestinians and the roadmap collapsed.

            Finally, you act as if the Palestinian attacks are without reason. Don’t you understand that it is the Occupation and the ongoing grab for more and more land and the control water resources, resources which are in the occupied territories, the destruction of farmland, the detention, torture, and killing of Palestinians in jail.

            Now Israel’s action do not justify Palestinian terrorism and attacks against Israeli citizens. Its continued attacks on Israeli citizens closed at least one window of opportunity when there was a buildup of sympathy from Israeli citizens. But the Occupation itself is immoral and brutal. So even if you had a ceasefire, and Israel has broken most of these, the Occupation is going make terrorism understandable, though not justified, and attacks on Israeli soldiers justified.

          • Aliquantillus

            There’ more “occupation” in your head than there is on the ground of Palestine. Maybe you should be less “occupied” by this bogus problem.

          • Aliquantillus,
            Where do you live? I don’t live there but I’ve talked and listened to people who have. And that doesn’t include the Jewish and Palestinian authors who live there whom I’ve read.

          • abeleehane

            I live “there” …and I can safely say that all the indignities you attribute to the Israeli have no basis in reality…there is no torture, unnwcessary killings(self defense), theft of land or control of water or other resourses…These claims are nothing but a rehashing of a never checked Palestinian Arab narrative..

          • abeleehane,
            And where do you live in Israel? You know, for many years, I could say from my living experience that all of the atrocities attributed to US foreign policies have no basis in reality. Unfortunately, my living in the US and the restricted main media sources that came with that ensured that I would no atrocities.

            So tell me why I should take your word over the words of others who also live in the area who say quite the opposite? Realize that I know there are atrocities being carried out by both sides.

          • mnemos

            @Curt – You have a perspective which is potentially interesting – that is why people are questioning you. (Probably some are just defending a position, but from some of the comments above it seems to me there is interest as well.) You said you talked to someone at a protest and he gave you insight, but that insight was about Israeli settlers in Gaza – which would therefore be from before 2005. You seem to think it is still relevant, and I can think of potential reasons why – for example because the article is about the West Bank, and there are still settlers in the West Bank – but why do you think it is relevant? In your first comment you mentioned Muslims reacting to injustice as a source of Islamism. I have to say I don’t find that convincing because while Muslims may be reacting to some injustices against themselves they don’t seem inspired by any of the gross injustices committed by other Muslims – eg. the consistent murder and expulsion of non-Muslims across the Muslim world for their failure to convert, which according to the Quran is unjust. I also don’t accept many of the other explanations of it based on various current events, since from my perspective I see this episode of Islamist violence as similar to many other episodes in Islamic history. In particular I see it more closely related to the anti-rationalism of Al-Ghazali than to any current event. Do you have a counter-argument for that – eg why is this different than the wholesale slaughter of Jews in Spain in 1066? Lastly – how do you reconcile the idea that Israeli settlers are the issue when the Christians are not being displaced by Jews, but by Muslims, and Christians are fleeing Gaza where there are no settlers? If I don’t accept the “Islamism is the Israeli’s fault” argument I don’t really have a way to explain that.

          • mnemos,
            my perspective is simply nontribal. I don’t believe in being tribal about supporting Israel or in supporting the Palestinians or in supporting my own country. That comes from my socialism and my reading of the Bible.

            As for what is relevant, the conversation I reported is continually reaffirmed in the experiences of other people. And most of my sources tend to be Jewish because I find that some peope easily dismiss Arab sources.

            As for your comments about Muslims not respond to the injustices of Muslims, my first guess is that you do not have much access to the opinoins of Muslims. I see Muslims opposing the actions of groups like Al-Qaeda and ISIS all the time. Even if you go back to 9-11, Hezbollah protested against the 9-11 atrocities.

            But there is something else, we are removed from experiencing what Muslims experience in the Middle East. So I would not take our lack of exposure to Muslims as any indicator of how Muslims feel about what is done in their name. We should note that Muslims are the ones most often targeting by Islamic terrorists.

            Another matter is that we take for granted the actions of Israel and western governments, both past and present, which occur in the Middle East. So we often see their terrorist attacks as the first attack. We don’t see the pre-existing conditions adequately so that we would see those attacks as retaliations.

            So I would suggest a couple of books. The first book I would suggest has to do with Israel. It is called The Other Israel (see http://www.amazon.com/The-Other-Israel-Refusal-Dissent/dp/1565849140 ). In particular, I suggest that you read the chapter called the Matrix of Control by Jeff Halper. Such should give you a partial ( an online version of that chapter can be found here http://icahd.org/get-the-facts/matrix-control/ ).

            The other book I would recommend is an investigative journalists view of ISIS. The author, Jason Burke, wrote a book on Al-Qaeda which I used in a class I taught on terrorism. His newest book, The New Threat can be found at the link below

            http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25488771-the-new-threat-from-islamic-militancy

          • scottrose

            Take your socialism and your Bible, and your lack of support for your own country, and tell ALL of your garbage to The Horse Marines.

            You might also consider drinking a long tall steaming glass of STFU.

            You were educated at Westminster Theological ergo we know what you heard will happen to those who don’t accept Jesus as their “savior.”

            Take your anti-Semitic rantings and jump in a lake. You’re duplicitous. “FlamingEvangelical.”

            Let’s make a public service announcement telling people that you don’t support your own country, the United States.

          • scottrose

            Your claim that your perspective is “nontribal” is phony baloney.

            Firstly, you describe yourself as a “FlamingEvangelical” and Evangelicals are themselves a “tribe.” They always say that they put Christianity and Jesus above whatever nation they live in.

            So stop falsely claiming a nontribal perspective, when you are a member of the Evangelical tribe.

            Meanwhile, there are Arab-Muslim, and Arab-Christian, and Ba’hai Isarelis who support Israel, and frequently tell of their reasons for supporting Israel, but the only thing that is ever “constantly reaffirmed” in what you allege you hear, is negative stuff against Israel.

            Funny that you’ve apparently never met or talked with an Arab Muslim supporter of Israel.

          • Scott,
            Never denied that I belong to groups. Everyone does. The real issue is whether our group loyalty trumps our commitment to principles and morals. And one of the signs that indicates that is whether we can criticize our own groups when they treat others unfairly.

            Finally, I have never met an Arab supporter of Israel, but I have read about them. Much of the loyaly is due to two factors: they have more freedom than they would have in most of the surrounding Arab nations and also they enjoy a higher standard of living. But when you talk about a supporter of Israel, are such supporters allowed to criticize Israel for immoral actions toward others? See, I support equality for Palestinians in relation to Israelis. But I oppose the violence they practice on civilians, Israeli civilians as well as Palestinian civilians. As I wrote before, both sides have committed atrocities against each other.

          • mnemos

            I read the on-line excerpt you linked to and didn’t find it too convincing. Controlling the situation with the least amount of military force is practical regardless of the motives, and there are some in Israel that would like to claim all of the west bank – there is a sense in which neither is really as fundamental to the problem. The focus is on the wrong aspects of the problem. Gaza shows a more fundamental issue – after gaining some measure of independence they have spent no effort building a state and all effort on attacking Israel. What alternative does that leave for a 2 state solution? Without conflict the “axis of control” is just infrastructure and the state of Israel has shown a willingness to control the settlers at least in Gaza, but with no desire to build a state until after the destruction of Israel I don’t see a path to a 2 state solution.
            I get your point about Muslims opposing the actions of various groups, but it’s not quite what I mean. I read a book “Desert light” by someone named Brother Andrew – an open-minded guy willing to listen to anyone to get perspectives to allow him to preach the Gospel – in this book specifically in the middle east. At one point he is describing interacting with some members of Hamas in Gaza where a member of Hamas is describing how it is unacceptable that Palestinians should live in submission to Israelis to explain suicide bombers. There is no recognition that it is a tenet of Islam that all others should live in submission to Muslims. There is a sense in which Brother Andrew isn’t interested in that aspect of understanding, since it may not help him preach the Gospel, but to me it is a glaring lapse in understanding. I work with people of all types from all over the world, which includes Muslims among others, and we talk and get interesting perspectives from each other. When a conversation turned to history one Muslim colleague mentioned that he never understood how Al-Andalus fell when it had been established for 100s of years and we talked about it. His education in the Muslim country of his youth had skipped most of the violence and conflict of Muslim history. The Muslim infighting and the slaughter of non-Muslims in Al-Andalus that led to its fall had just been edited out, leaving a mystery. He actually believed that North Africa and the middle east were majority Muslim because people had willingly converted since there is no compulsion in religion. In that environment it is not available to react to your own history. It is not possible for Muslims in the middle east to recognize that some of the European Jews coming to Palestine were the ones they had driven out over the preceding years and that the ones coming from around the middle east were the ones that Muslims were again driving out at that time.
            I know my government has done terrible things in my name and that informs my perspective. Even though my perspective is limited, the perspective in the Muslim world is so much more limited that it is a significant barrier. This is not the case for Muslims in the West that we interact with regularly, but they are not the subject here.
            I read the on-line excerpt you linked to and didn’t find it too convincing. Controlling the situation with the least amount of military force is practical regardless of the motives, and there are some in Israel that would like to claim all of the west bank – there is a sense in which neither is really as fundamental to the problem. The focus is on the wrong aspects of the problem. Gaza shows a more fundamental issue – after gaining some measure of independence they have spent no effort building a state and all effort on attacking Israel. What alternative does that leave for a 2 state solution? Without conflict the “axis of control” is just infrastructure and the state of Israel has shown a willingness to control the settlers at least in Gaza, but with no desire to build a state until after the destruction of Israel I don’t see a path to a 2 state solution.

          • Mnemos,
            Not surprised by your reaction. Those who feel that Israel is entitled to the land will have difficulty in seeing Israel’s unjust actions. Such people don’t see the Palestinians as having equal claims to the Israelis. You need to consider the possibility that Israel has never been interested in a two-state solution. Rather, they are too interested in being practical by confiscating more and more land.

            As for Israel’s actions being practical, nothing could be farther from the truth. For while Israel and its supporters see Israel as doing what is necessary, they have no clue as to the moral anger that both the Palestinians and the Islamic world in general feel at the gross injustices visited on the Palestinians. For while you take for granted Israel’s right to oppress the Palestinians, more and more anger is arounsed and more and more targets come into being. Did you know that one of the reasons for the 9-11 attacks was Israel’s policies toward the Palestinians. So how is it practical for us to support Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians when our support for Israel causes us to be a target?

            Or consider how Israel is surrounded by enemies and that because of advancing technology, the proliferation of WMDs is inevitable. How is Israel’s treatment of the Palestnians practical?

            Those who live in privilege have a difficult time seeing injustice in how the oppressed are treated. And considering that, according to history, no nation or empire stays on top forever, how is it that Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians is practical?

            I do agree that I don’t believe that a two-state solution is practical, so realize that the withdrawal of settlers from Gaza was purely for practical reasons. That the amount of protection required in Gaza was not worth the number of settlers who were there. At the same time as the withdrawal from Gaza occurred, Israel was expanding settlements in the West Bank. In order to do that, they had to physically evict Palestinians from their homes, demolish those homes, and those people packing. Of course all of that was practical.

            When injustice is only judged by its practicality, then a spiritual death has occurred. BTW, in whose world did Gaza gain any independence? Just because the settlers were no longer there doesn mean that the military wasn’t. But I guess allowing IDF snipers to fire on Israel civilians and allowing the IDF to destroy crops and water supplies is practical. Do you know that Hamas, as awful a group as they are, has twice offered Israel full recognition? They did that in the Spring of 2006 and 2008 and Israel showed no interest in even negotiating. In ddition, Hezbollah has pledged that they will abide by any decision made by the Palestinians.

            BTW, if you want a good author to read on Islamic terrorism, I recommend the new book out by Jason Burke entitled The New Threat. I have used his material before when teaching a course on terrorism.

            http://www.theguardian.com/books/2015/sep/22/new-threat-islamic-militancy-jason-burke-review

            In the meantime, consider the link below:

            http://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/patrick-goodenough/islamic-leaders-yes-our-world-crisis-palestine-must-remain-central

          • scottrose

            It can be instructive to look at source documents.

            I’m not really addressing you, Curt Day, blogger “FlamingEvangelical” with your duplicity and your Jew-hating weltanschauung.

            It must be mentioned that when Middle Eastern Jews accepted the U.N.s 2-state plan of 1947, they had an announced intention of giving ALL inhabitants of the land equal rights. That wasn’t good enough for the Arabs, though.

            Even when Israel declared its independence in 1948, and Arabs were constantly visiting violence on Jews, the Jews included this in their declaration of independence:

            WE APPEAL – in the very midst of the onslaught launched against us now for months – to the Arab inhabitants of the State of Israel to preserve peace and participate in the upbuilding of the State on the basis of full and equal citizenship and due representation in all its provisional and permanent institutions.

            WE EXTEND our hand to all neighbouring states and their peoples in an offer of peace and good neighbourliness, and appeal to them to establish bonds of cooperation and mutual help with the sovereign Jewish people settled in its own land. The State of Israel is prepared to do its share in a common effort for the advancement of the entire Middle East.

          • Scott,
            If you are going to slander me, I will no longer respond, In the meantime, you should distinguish legitimate criticisms from racism. Remember that I said that both sides committed atrocities against each other. There is no innocent side here. And as a result, countless people on both sides have needlessly suffered and died and, as far as one can tell, that countless slaughter onb both sides seems to have no end.

            In the meantime, look up the definition of racism. Also realize that to be racially prejudiced against either the Jews or the Palestinians is to be anti-Semitic since both are classified as Semites in terms of their geneology and language even though the original meaning of the word had to do with German racists views against the Jews in Germany.

          • scottrose

            If you’d rather be known as a Jew-hater than an anti-Semite, we have no problem obliging you.

          • Scott,
            I am neither a Jew-hater nor an anti-semite. But it seems that when you don’t an opinion, you are willing to slander the people who express those opinions. And all you are doing is trolling so as to either vent or silence someone.

            My personal opinion is this, the group that is most responsible for the problems between Israel and the Arabs is Christian Europe. I’ll give you one more chance. If you want to know why, quit the slandering. Otherwise, this is my last correcspondence with you.

          • L_King

            Oh dear. I see we are dealing with someone who gets deeply and personally offended when his misconceptions are pointed out.

            Here you revive the old wives tale that Palestinians are semites, and that to be critical of Palestinian actions is to be anti-Semitic. Such passive aggressive accusations have been a staple of both anti-Semites and anti-Israel propagandists for decades and are a form of cultural appropriation and moral inversion at the same time.

            It’s incorrect on several levels.

            If one believes the Palestinian claim that they are descendants of the Philistines, from which the name Palestine is derived, then they are descendants of Ham, not Shem. The verbal trick of trying to classify Palestinians as Semites fails.

            But the real argument against this is that “anti-Semitism” was a term created in Germany by the anti-Jewish agitator Wilhelm Marr in the late 19th century. He wanted a “scientific” term to replace the one in common use – Judenhass, literally “Jew hate”.

            http://antisemitism.org.il/eng/Wilhelm%20Marr

            Now that you have been informed you should apologize for your error and never commit it again.

          • L_King,
            Then our conversation is finished. It appears that you see wrongs in others but not yourself. You insult and then blame me for being offended. It isn’t the offense that I am ending our converstaion on; it is the experience that notes that are constantly filled with insults lead to very uglly discussions where eventually all involved employ put insult s and I don’t wish to engage in those conversations.

            BTW, I am well familiar with the origins of anti-Semitism. We might want ask if that term can be applied for those who hate Palestinians since Palestinians are semites too (see http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article13889.htm) ). BTW, the actual term came about in Germany as you specified but the concept precedes that by centuries to Martin Luther’s time when he displayed both anti-Judiasm and anti-Semitic sentiments toward the Jews because of their refusal to believe. Luther’s treatment of the Jews in the latter part of his life was a very dark time in the Church.

            Your contention about Palestinians being descendents of Ham and not Shem seems to forget who the Palestinians are, for it is not monolithic group. Palestinians refer to those groups of people who lived in Palestine during the Ottoman Empire and into the British Mandate. This includes Arabs and local tribes, Christians and Muslims. That Palestinians who speak Arabic would be considered Semites for two reasons: language and lineage.

            Enjoy your self-annointed place of authority here. When you insist on speaking down and insulting, there is no reason why anyone who disagrees with you should want to converse with you. Again, it seems that you take certain offenses for granted

          • Phillip Pasmanick

            Thank you for pointing this out, you saved me the need to do so.
            Curt Day has made numerous bogus claims, but has not address the fact that since Israel’s TOTAL withdrawal from Gaza, the Christian population has plummeted to less than 40% of it’s size since the Jews are no longer able to protect them under Israel law.

          • Aliquantillus

            In what fantasy world do you live? What human rights do Palestinians have under their own PA government, not to mention Hamas? How do these dictatorial entities value Palestinian lives? And what human rights do Paleastinians have anywhere in the Arab world, except in Israel, which does have even Palestinian members in the Knesset and the High Court? Why should Israel negotiate with the antisemitic PA and Hamas dictatorships that tell us from day to day that all Jewish history in the Holy Land is a fraud and that Jews are not a nation? Fi donc!

          • Ali,
            The world I live in recognizes that external factors determines what rights a governing body gives its people. For example, did you realize that one attack caused a western nation to intern all of its own people who shared the nationalityh of the attacker?

            Or take Israel’s news media that must submit its work to military censors before publishing (see http://www.cjr.org/behind_the_news/speech_in_israel_is_not_free.php ). So while you zero in on the PA, you seem to forget the elephant in the room in this discussion: the Occupation. And while anyone can correctly cite the PA and Hamas with violations, the same can be said of the Occupation. At least the Palestinians voted in the PA and Hamas, they never voted for the Occupation.

            Why should Israel negotiate with an anti-Semitic Palestinian group? Let’s reverse the question, why should the Palestinians ever negotiate with anti-Palestinian Israeli gov’t thata seems intent on never recogniizing the Palestinians as being human, let alone having the rights that come with being human.

            Finally, why are you ticked? Why does cricitism of Israel make some people so angry? What, is Israel above all reproach? Do the rules apply to everyone else and not them? I know our foreign policy is based on the selective enforcement of International Law. Is that something we should share with Israel?

          • Aliquantillus

            The objective of the Palestinians is nothing else but the destruction of the State of Israel and the expulsion of all the Jews from the Holy Land, as their leaders have repeatedly said. And they have emphasized that no Jew at all will be permitted in the future Palestinian State, ever. So the Palestinian State, when established and recognized by the UN, will be the first modern state which will systematically and constitutionally based on an antisemitic lie. There is no possibility to come to a negotiated peace with such enemies.

            About a couple of weeks we have the feast of Purim, a good occasion to remember that Amalek must be destroyed, otherwise it will destroy you.

          • Ali,
            Don’t you read the words that you write? You are describing a diverse group of people as a monolith and doing so negatively. The group is based on ethnicity.

            BTW, what is the State of Israel? Is it not a state where Jews have supremacy over all other races in the nation?

            As for your historical analysis, though I could disagree with the Palestinian rejection of the division of the land in principle, I could also disagree with how the land was divided and can thoroughly understand the Palestinian rejection. Because what the Palestjinians were rejecting was the givng away their land to European Jews who not only conducted terrorist attacks on the British, but brought in more immigrants than the British allowed.

            Back then, you had two groups of people looking to create a state for themselves. The credentials of one group consisted of almost 2 millennia of sins committed by Christian Europe against its Jewish population. The credentials of the other group was that it was those team, the indiigenous people. Why should the Arabs accept this gradual invasion of their homeland by one group of Europeans because of the sins of another group of Europeans?

          • Aliquantillus

            What is the State of the UK? Is it not the state where the British have supremacy over all other races in the nation? You now clearly show your antisemitic bias. Jews are not a race, they are a nation and a people. And Israel is the nation-state of the Jews, just as France is the nation-state of the French and Germany is the nation-state of the Germans. A state is always for a particular people, not for others. The nature of the state is to uphold the sovereignty and independence of this particular people and nation. This doesn’t say that no others can live there, but only a fool would deny that the UK is for British people in the first place, or that they shouldn’t constitute its ethnic majority. In a similar way Israel is the nation-state for the Jews.

          • Ali,
            Let’s start with the UK? Are you arguing for British supremacy over all other races in the UK? And so anti-semitism to you is arguing against Jewish supremacy over the Palestinians? That really strays from the original use of the word. The original meaning had to do with hatred of a group because of their physical lineage. This was distinguished from anti-Judaism as a hatred of a religion. And all of this preceded the creation of the nation of Israel. So your use of anti-Semitism is illegitimate here. For what you are calling anti-Semitism is a mere opposition to a societal structure with the result that you wantonly label a call for equality as hatred while implying that supporting the supremacy of Jews is a love of people. By your principles, you would be called anti-German for opposing Hitler’s “purifying” of his nation. After all, in Germany, weren’t Germans superior to all other races and lineages.

            So while you want to equate anti-Semitism, with the implication that it involves hatred, with the mere opposing of Jewish supremacy over another ethnic or race, let me quote from Jeff Halper, an Israeli-activist:


            An ethnocracy is the opposite of a democracy, although it might incorporate some elements of democracy such as universal citizenship and elections. It arises when one particular group–THe Jews in Israel, The Russians in Russia (and, more evidently, in the former Soviet Union), the Protestants in pre-1972 Northern Ireland, the whites in South Afica, the Shi’ite Muslims of Iran, the Malay in Malyasia and, if they had their way, the white Christian fundamentalists in the US–seizes control of the government and armed forces in order to enforce a regime of exclusive privilege over other groups in what is in fact a multi-ethnic or multi-religious society. Ethnocracy, or ethane-nationalism, privileges ethnos over demos, whereby one’s ethnic affiliation, be it defined by race, descent, religion, , language or national origin, takes precedence over citizenship in determin to whom a country actually “belongs.”Israel is referred to explicitly by its political leaders as a “Jewish democracy.”

            The Jews are a group of people defined by physical lineage. They are of the seed of Abraham as it descends through Isaac and Jacob. The Jews existed independent of the any of Israel for they existed both before and after. And to define them as a nation ignores this independent relationship.

            So while you argue for the right of differeing groups to dominate all others within their borders, you not only support Jewish atrocities through your definitions, you support many of the horrible atrocities from the past as well as many of the ones currently existing today. And if someone challenges you, you misuse the anti-Semitism as a defense, as a way of calling that challenge hatred.

          • Aliquantillus

            It is clearly your intent to destroy the Jewish people, my nation. I don’t discuss with those who try to destroy me.

          • Ali,
            Is it hateful to want Israel and Palestine to be one binational country where both Israelis and Palestinians live with each other as equals? I ask that because the way that the West Bank has been carved has precluded any possibility of a viable Palestinian state.

            Is wanting people to live at peace as equals the same as destroying to you? If it is, then don’t respond to my comments. I would just advise that you don’t try to market views with which you disagree with misleading terms.

          • L_King

            It most certainly is hateful if neither party desires to live together in equality or otherwise.

            It sounds like you are waxing eloquently on the virtues of a shotgun wedding.

          • alexa44

            Can you explain why the result of the Oslo accord were suicde bombings all over Israel. Can you explain why Israel leaving Gaza in 2005 resulted in rockets long before Hamas took over by force long before the blockade?

            What grab for more land are you talking about? care to show a source?

            Why were the arabs attacking Israel before 1967?

          • alexa44,
            Can you explain the assassination of Rabin. I ask because that is what started the fall of the Oslo Accords. But also, which Palestinian group was involved in the violence? Was that same group involved in the Oslo Accords?

            As for Israel leaving Gaza, it was israeli officials who stated that the costs of protecting the Gazan settlers was too high for the return. And with that Gazan withdrawal came intensified efforts to increase land confiscation and the building of settlements in the West Bank–realize that Hamas’ base was in Gaza.

            As for Israel grabing the land, please consult the maps at the location below:

            http://www.ifamericansknew.org/download/FourMaps.pdf

            Finally, the violence between arabs and Israelis became concerted and organized sometime during the British Mandate. The Arabs started first but that was because theyy saw the writing on the wall: the takeover of land by the Jews. The Jews responded and attakced both the Arabs but also the British. You have the attempts at ethnic cleansing of the land in the late 40s that preceded the Arab attack on Israel. And following that, you have had both sides attacking each other and committing atrocities. The ’67 war was started by Israel as was executed because of the strategy advantage that the results of the war could offer. Then after the, you have occupation.

            Now it seems to me that you have the tougher job jere. I am not trying to prove that one side is innocent and the other is guilty. Both sides are guilty. But the overall factor that affects everything is the Occupation and the continued taking of land during that time as well as the control Israel insists on having over the Occupied Territories.

          • scottrose

            When Jordan was made a country in the early 20th century, Jews were ethnically cleansed from it, none were allowed to enter, and the Jews run out of it were robbed of their possessions.

            Middle Eastern Jews accepted, but Arabs rejected, the two-state petition plan on offer from the U.N. in 1947. The plan foresaw an Arab state, a Jewish state, and Jerusalem as an international protectorate with no one religion dominating another.

            At that time, Jews were a substantial majority of people in Jerusalem.

            Instead of accepting the U.N.’s two-state plan, the Arabs attacked nascent Israel and Jordan, which had already ethnically cleansed itself of Jews, annexed the West Bank and ethnically cleansed it of Jews. Jordan’s annexation included East Jerusalem — the Arabs started massacring the Jews of East Jerusalem and those able to flee for their lives did so. Then, ISIS-like, the Arabs started destroying the historical evidence of a Jewish presence in the city, in many cases destroying structures that were hundreds and even thousands of years old.

            Of course, there are people like Curt Day who would have joined the ancient Romans in throwing the Jews out of the Land of Israel, and then in expelling the Jews repeatedly from England, France, Germany, Spain et cetera and who today demonize Israel with vicious lies, justify things like the Arab massacre of the Jews of Hebron in 1929 with the hateful excuse that the Arabs who murdered those Jews “saw the writing on the wall,” but luckily, still, most civilized people are swayed by vicious and duplicitous Israel-bashing bigots like Curt Day.

          • Scott,
            You missd an important when mentioning the ethnic cleansing of Jews from Jordan–which was immoral. In addition, you forgot that Iraq did the same thing. But that ethnic cleansing, which consisted of expulsion, was in response to a specific historical event: the formation of Israel.

            I believe that the Arabs were wrong for rejecting the two-state solution. But that isn’t the whole story. First, the indigenous Palestinians were looking at the end of the Ottoman Empire as an opportunity to create their own homeland. Like the predominant Zionist view, note that there were several versions of Zionism back then, saw Palestine as a oopportunity to create a Jewish homeland by creating a Jewish state where Jews would have supremacy. The Palestinians had a similar hope for Palestine only for themselves. Both saw that supremacy as a security blanket. But what irked the Arabs is that the Jews who were taking over the land were predominantly from Europe. The Palestinians were indigenous.

            In addition, the Palestinian population outnumbered the Jewish population but the land division did not adequately reflect the demographics.

            In short, there are sins committed by both sides. The Palestinians should have seen the European Jews as in legitimate need of a homeland. On the other hand, too many Jews looked at Palestine as a place they would reign supreme and would expel the indigenous Arab population. Not all jews believed that, there were several versions of Zionism back then. But the one that gain political power was the one that insisted on Jewish supremacy and at least partial ethnic cleansing.

          • scottrose

            Just shut up. The Jews were expelled from Jordan in 1921, when Jordan was formed.

            Yet here you are, alleging that the Jews were expelled from Jordan, because of “the formation of Israel”

            Israel had not been formed when the Jews were expelled from Jordan.

            And, even you (a stopped clock is right once a day) CONFESSED that the Arabs were wrong not to accept the two state solution.

            You lie through your Israel-bashing teeth. You falsely allege that Jews were expelled from Jordan because “of the formation of Israel” when in well-documented reality, Jews were expelled from Jordan in 1921, and modern Israel wasn’t formed until 1948.

          • Scot,
            I am simply speaking to what I know. And if you could provide documentation for your claim, then please do. That the Jews were expelled for the creation of Israel in Iraq is a fact. That the Jews were expelled by Jordan because of the conflicts caused by the creation of Israel is a fact. That any expulsion occurring before Israel became a a nation is is reasonable since and in response to Zionism could very well be truej since Modern Zionism started in the 1800s and there were concerns by Arabs during the British Mandate regarding the number of European Jewish Immigrants coming into the land as well as the Balfour Declaration.

            None of that rules out anti-semitism. In Palestine, there were problems between Jews and Arabs prior to the immigration of European Jews. At the same time, some Jews and Arabs enjoyed friendships. So it was a mixed bag.

            Now this is my last note to you. You slander me and you have nothing to show that your slander is correct. To criticize israel does not imply that one hates Jews. To claim otherwise is just a mark of extreme defesniveness. BTW, your substitution of “Jew-hater” for anti-Semitism suggests that you do not know the difference between anti-Judaism and anti-semitism and the historical backdrop for that difference. But to assume that a group is above criticism and to freely slander someone for offering criticisms is not worthy of any more responses.

            Finally, while you claim that I am tribal, your slanderous rantings toward me because one of your favorite groups was criticized is the epitome of tribalism. Since tribalism involves a high degree of loyalty to a group such that group loyalty trumps commitment to principles and morals so that what is right and wrong depends on who does what to whom, your abusive behavior toward me simply because I have criticized one of your groups is example of the tribalism I referred to. Ihope at sometime in the future, you can engage in arational rather than moverly emotional discussion

          • scottrose

            A lot of the Israel-bashing you offer here, is your interpretation of events, but you assert a lot of interpretations as fact, rather than framing them as opinion, and meanwhile you really have nothing to offer about how to achieve peace.

            Hamas and the P.A., not Israel, indoctrinate kindergarten children to believe that by becoming martyrs by killing Jews, they will be rewarded in heaven by Allah.

            Recently in Davos, Switzerland, Fareed Zakaria interviewed Netanyahu, who said he is prepared to negotiate for peace at any time with Abbas, “So where is he?” he asked.

            Meanwhile, Abbas can be seen in recent Arabic videos, praising jihadists for stabbing Jews and running their vehicles into Jews at bus stops, saying that they are spilling “pure blood for Jerusalem” and telling them that they will be rewarded as martyrs in heaven by Allah. (The same thing that Hamas and the P.A. teach kindergartners, while Israeli kindergarten children are being introduced to science and technology).

            For good measure, Abbas said that the “filthy feet” of Jews will never go near their mosque.

            You come here using anecdotes as “evidence,” one born again Christian from Gaza told you something, one Israeli told you something — it doesn’t matter whether it’s documented — if one civilian said it, it must be true!

            Meanwhile, we have on videos, easily found online, Netanyahu saying he will negotiate for peace with Abbas at “any time” and saying “So where is he?” and on the other hand, Abbas saying that jihadists stabbing Jews are “spilling pure blood for Jerusalem” and that the “filthy feet” of Jews will never go near their mosque.

          • alexa44

            What started the fall of Oslo is the suicde bombings that happaned while Rabin was alive. He would have lost the election had he not been killed because of those suicde attacks.
            It was mainly Hamas who took part in the violence but not only . Just like it was Hamas who shot rockets days after Israel left Gaza . Dosnt metter why israel left Gaza. It left and it resulted in rockets.
            At the same time Israel left Gaza it also left 4 Israeli settelment in Judea and Samaria
            It wasnt Hamas base in Gaza when Israel left it and rockets were flying It was PA contoroled.

            The arab attack in 1948 was the result of the Parttiion plan and not any ethnic cleansing.
            http://zionism-israel.com/israel_news/2008/02/israel-and-palestinians-according-to.html

            So Ill ask again. Why did Oslo and leaving Gaza result in terror.
            Why was Israel attacked between 1948-1967 . YOu gave no real answer.
            Anything about the ethnic cleansing of Jews from Jerusalem by Jordan in 1948? old Jerusalem where jews were the majority?
            Who was the legal soverign in Judea and Samaria buntil 1967? a Palestinian state?
            Who did Israel occupied it from?

          • Alexa,
            What started the fall of Oslo was the failure of Israel to continue to negotiate as well as its continued confiscation of land. We here have no clue what the Palestinians have to endure with this Occupation. And if one thinks that Israel is entitled to the land, then one will find it almost impossible to spot any faults on Israel’s part.

            And regarding violence, what we don’t see and hear about is the violence conducted by Israel on a daily basis and so when there is a Palestinian terrorist attack, we are never able to put the attacks in context.

            BTW, before the Arabs attacked, which was wrong, there was a partial ethnic cleansing of Palestinians from land originally designated as Palestinian land by the UN. But again, if one believes that Israel is entitled to the land, the only sins that will be seen are Palestinian sins.

            Finally, I answered the question of Gaza by what I cited. Why did the leaving of Gaza produce violence? Well, the violence was in response to other things than the leaving of Gaza? Why did Israel make such a big deal about the leaving of Gaza while it increased its confiscataion of land from the West Bank? As for Oslos, Israel failed to continue to negotiate while offering a deal that could never lead to a Palestinian state while confiscating land from the West Bank while conducting its normal violence against the Palestinians.

            We have choice here. We can choose to be tribal and see the sins of only one side or we can be pro-justice and cite the sins of both sides. But in addition, especially with the acts of both the IDF and groups like Hama, we need to be able to see more than just the immorality of their atrocities, we need to see how those immoral atrocities can be understandable. And we need that not to excuse behavior, but to find real solutions to the future. The Palestinians have already cut their own throat more than a few years back when theywere beginning to win a sympathetic ear of more and more Israeli civilians. But their continued suicide attacks have turned a significant part of Israelis into budding racists where even the Arab citizens of Israeli are subject discrimination and new bills in the Knesset. And for as long as Israel feels entitled to treat the Palestinians in wany way they want and feels entitled to take whatever land they want, they incur a more creditcard debt that will eventually lead future attacks where, as history teaches us, they will eventually lose.

            What started all of this was the atrocities and oppression suffered by the Jews and committed by Christian Europe that left too many Jews with the belief that they would have to establish exclusive claim to a homeland regardless of the welfare of the indigenous people there. On the other hand, you had 400 years of oppression by the Ottoman empire that left the Palestinians there with the belief that they should have the same kind of homeland that the Jews were seeking in Palestine That lack of recognition of the needs and rights of others while seeking one’s own welfare is at the heart of the conflict.

          • alexa44

            its continued confiscation of land.? where and when
            there was a partial ethnic cleansing of Palestinians from land originally designated as Palestinian land by the UN? where and when?
            budding racists where even the Arab citizens of Israeli are subject discrimination and new bills in the Knesset?
            what bills?
            what confiscation of land happaned just days after israel left Gaza and 4 settelment in Judea and Samaria that made Hamas so angry?

            Arabs in the area of the Mandate of Palestine just treated jews like muslims allways did with jews in muslim states massacring them for centuries and treating them as 2 nd rate people

            Arieh Avneri (The Claim of Dispossession, 1980), a ground-breaking researcher of Palestinian history, wrote: “Throughout history there are many instances of conquests which led, through a process of absorption and assimilation, to the formation of new national entities. Had the Arab conquest led to the formation of a crystallized Arab nation – no matter how small in number – it would have been difficult to contradict the claim of Arab historical continuity in Palestine. But such was not the case. The few Arabs who lived in Palestine a hundred years ago, when Jewish settlement began, were a tiny remnant of a volatile population, which had been in constant flux, as a result of unending conflicts between local tribes and local despots….“ In 1554, there were 205,000 Moslems Christian and Jews in Palestine. In 1800, the total population was 275,000. In 1890, there were 532,000 people in Palestine, as a result of accelerated immigration, impacted by Jewish-built trade, employment, health and cultural infrastructures. “The population in Palestine underwent radical changes in the wake of two destructive wars that swept the country – Napoleon’s campaign of 1799 and the invasion by the Egyptian army and the subsequent rule of Ibrahim Pasha between 1831 and 1840…. [It] caused many old inhabitants to flee and new elements to settle in the land (pp. 11-13)….”

          • alexa44,
            First, you could study Nakba.

            Second, there has always been troubles between Jews and Arabs in Palestine. However, the violence was sporadic and there were also many friendships between people of the two groups as well. There was that that is until the Arabs picked up on the idea tht Jewish immigration was leading to exclusive Jewish control and ownership of the land. Your contention that Muslims always slaughtered Jews is simply wrong and the overgeneralization involved, does not bode well for you. In addition, it is contradicted by the Jewish population of surrounding nations with the largest population being in Iran where Jews actually served in government positions.

            Now I don’t have access to all of my reference books and won’t for a while, but I will comment on what I have and what you wrote. According to Morris, the beginning of Jewish influx began in 1881 and the Muslim population of Palestine was 400,000 people, the Jewish population was between 13,000 to 20,000 and the Christian population being 42,000. So there were hundreds of thousand of non-Jews in Palestine at the beginning of Jewish influx. And you show neither how the majority of that 400,000+ population was not Arab nor how that is relevant to the charge of ethnic cleansing. Rather, you make insinuations about how the majority could not be Arab, you offer no facts. In fact you fail to mention how Pasha was initially welcomed by the rural leaders.

            In addition, the absence of an Arab conquest does not imply that there was no Arab continuity to the land. Such is a wrong use of the implication construct in logic.

            Also, if you add to that that even today, Israel expels non-Jews who are not Arabs from their homes in order to confiscate land, you still have an ongoing problem with ethnic cleansing. To remove people based on lineage or ethnicity or religion or whatever other group that is involved is ethnic cleansing. That people left because of the threat of violence or violence was used or some other way of deliberately removing specified groups were used, you still have ethnic cleansing.

            See, you seem to believe that the Jews are entitled to the land so they could treat others, regardless of the hisitoricity of their presence in the land, any way they like. And it is that sense of entitlement that is the real problem here.

          • alexa44

            It is a known fact that jews were massacard in muslim coutnries for centuries long before Israel existed. Ignoring that is ignoring history
            It would not be difficult to put together the names of a very sizable number of Jewish subjects or citizens of the Islamic area who have attained to high rank, to power, to great financial influence, to significant and recognized intellectual attainment; and the same could be done for Christians. But it would again not be difficult to compile a lengthy list of persecutions, arbitrary confiscations, attempted forced conversions, or pogroms.

            G. E. Von Grunebaum, Eastern Jewry Under Islam, 1971, p. 369.

            it wasnt according to morris but to Arieh Avneri . It is a known fact as well that most of the arabs who lived in the mandate of Palestine area were immigrants from surrounding arab countries
            Actaully a Hamas leader himself admit that they came from saudia and egypt.

            Again and again you fail to show any source to prove your point.
            Israel expels non-Jews who are not Arabs from their homes in order to confiscate land, ? where and when?
            YOu dont have access. lol . Typica I am still waiting for sources to prove your other point. So if you have any do show them. Other wise Ill have to assume you have none.

            in the words of Benny Morris
            I would recommend that the likes of Norris and Landy read some history books and become acquainted with the facts, not recycle shopworn Arab propaganda.

          • Alexa,
            First, we could go both to the OT and modern Zionism to find Jews massacreing Muslims. Second, there is a difference between saying that there have been instances of Muslims massecreing Jews from saying the following:


            Arabs in the area of the Mandate of Palestine just treated jews like muslims allways did with jews in muslim states massacring them for centuries and treating them as 2 nd rate people

            Muslims didn’t always massacre Jews. Such an overgeneranalization besides being manipulative, shows bigotry. It is like the one woman I met whom I think was from Israel who said that all Palestinians were animals including their children and should be shot. And that is on the same level of thinking and immorality as groups like ISIS.

            As for sources, you will have wait though the sources are easily found. I happen to be struggling with bronchitis and that is cutting down what I can do. But all you have to do to see that today is to look up how new settlements that are coming into existence. Do you think that the settlement land was vacant? Or look at the maps over time to show land that did belong to the Palestinians in the past from land that belongs to them now. But just to get you started:

            http://icahd.org/2013/11/17/stop-the-demolitions-in-jerusalem/

            You can hate all muslims if you want. And all you do is to show yourself to be the same kind person as some who have persecuted Jews in the past. Do you honestly think the target of your hatred justifies it?

            Finally, I would suggetst that you read both Jewish and Arab sources instead of being so insular. Martin Luther King Jr said the following:


            The Western arrogance of feeling that it has everything to teach others and nothing to learn from them is not just.

            His statement has the same meaning whether you use the word ‘Western’ or substitute the word ‘Israeli’ or ‘Arab’ or whatever group that believes they are superior to others.

          • alexa44

            First, we could go both to the OT and modern Zionism to find Jews massacreing Muslims?

            So you calim that jews in the old time massacard muslims? do tell me where and when.

            Mamonised a great jewish rabbi wrote in 1172 there was no Israel than

            … on account of our sins God has cast us into the midst of this people, the nation of Ishmael [that is, Muslims], who persecute us severely, and who devise ways to harm us and to debase us…. No nation has ever done more harm to Israel. None has matched it in debasing and humiliating us. None has been able to reduce us as they have…. We have borne their imposed degradation, their lies, their absurdities, which are beyond human power to bear…. We have done as our sages of blessed memory have instructed us, bearing the lies and absurdities of Ishmael…. In spite of all this, we are not spared from the ferocity of their wickedness and their outbursts at any time. On the contrary, the more we suffer and choose to conciliate them, the more they choose to act belligerently toward us.

            British Vice Consul in Mosul, wrote in 1909:

            The attitude of the Muslims toward the Christians and the Jews is that of a master towards slaves, whom he treats with a certain lordly tolerance so long as they keep their place. Any sign of pretension to equality is promptly repressed

            I dont hate muslims I just despise people who prefer to avoid the truth about the way muslim treated jews for generation.

            http://www.solomonia.com/blog/archive/2009/05/ben-dror-yemini-the-jewish-nakba-expulsi/index.shtml

            YOu were talking about confiscating land in 1993 and 2005 whcih was the result according to you for the terror attacks against Israel after Oslo and leaving Gaza.

            So I am still waiting for that list.

            Most of the land didnt belong to palestinain as it was not a palestinian state. It was an area under the Ottoman and British occupation. Most of the land was state land and didnt belong to palestinian. Jews bought the land and didnt steal anything as even the Mufti admitted when he gave testimony in front of the Peel comitte in 1937/
            http://israelmatzav.blogspot.co.il/2011/11/mufti-tells-truth-arabs-sold-land-to.html

            Israel expels non-Jews who are not Arabs from their homes in order to confiscate land, ?

            again where and when.

          • Alexa44,
            I was waiting for you to catch that mistake. But the mistake is insignificant. How does the name of the group matter when the Jews then were slaughtering groups of people who did not belong to their group. And that is the point. And what was written in 1172 certainly doesn’t last the of time. What Crhistian Europe did to the Jews was far more horrific though that doesn’t let the Muslims who participated in slaughters off the hook.

            The point I was making to you was that not all Mulsims slaughter Jews nor have Muslims always slaughtered Jews. And that Jews are not innocent of slaguthering people as well.

            In reality, we got to stop getting caught up with the identity of the victimizer and the victim and denounce atrocities committed regardless of the identities of the victim and victimizer.

            In addition, that the land did not belong to a palestinian state is insignificant if we are concerned about theft. That there was never a palestinian state implies nothing about whether there were Palestinians or whether Palestinians owned land. Not all land that the Jews got was the result of sales and that is particularly true after the Occupation as it was during the intial removal of Palestinians from the land in the 1940s.

            It’s time to judge all groups by the same standards and when we do, we find that no group has a monopoly on being iether a victim or victimizer.

          • alexa44

            I must say I am not surprise by your answer. You would twist and ignore any historic fact to make the so call palestinian and muslim not guilty of anything. Jews as far as you are concern are the guilty ones you probably view them and the germans in the same standart.
            I wonder if you belive in the “protocole of the elder of zion” .

            Still so far you keep avoiding givning any source to prove your posts. it is so easy to blame but it is so hard to prove the blame. If you have any source to answer my questions from my last post I;ll be happy to see them.
            if not , please dont bother answering.

          • Alexa,
            First, what have I written that exonerates Palestinians and Muslims of guilt? I am not aware of anything.

            My point from my last comment is that all groups have at various times been guilty, Palestinians and Israelis and Americans as well as Christians and Jews and Muslims. It is for that reason that we can’t afford to get caught up in the identity of either the victim or the victimizer because such colors our views, and thus our tolerance/intolerance, of any atrocity. Palestinians and Muslims should be just as outraged at suicide bombers or missiles that that Israeli civilians as they are by IDF tanks and planes that destroy homes and attack Palestinian civilians. Likewise, Israelis should return the favor by being just as horrified at IDF tanks and planes attacking Palestinian civilians as they are at suicide bombers and missiles that that them.

            So how is that I have taken the partisan view you accuse of taking?

          • Jacob Sslovich

            You ask “Be specific regarding the offers. What was exactly offered and what were the specific objections of the Palestinians”

            At Camp David in July
            2000, Barak offered the Palestinians approximately 90 percent of the
            territories, including parts of east Jerusalem. The Palestinians not only

            refused; they launched a terrorist war in response.

            In December 2000, then US president Bill Clinton upped the offer to 95 percent of the territories and additional portions of east Jerusalem, including the Temple Mount.
            Barak agreed; the Palestinians said no again.
            At Taba the following month, Barak sweetened the offer still further, to 97 percent. .

            And the Palestinians still said – no.

            Another offer was made in 2008. The following is from an interview with former Israeli Prome Minister Olmert:

            “From the end of 2006 until the end of 2008 I think I met with Abu Mazen more often than any Israeli leader has
            ever met any Arab leader. I met him more than 35 times. They were intense, serious negotiations.”

            These negotiations took place on two tracks, Olmert says. One was the meetings with the two leaders and their senior colleagues and aides (among them Kadima
            leader Tzipi Livni on Olmert’s side). But Olmert would also have private, one-on-one meetings with Abbas.

            “On the 16th of September, 2008, I presented him (Abbas) with a comprehensive plan. It was based on the following principles.

            One, there would be a territorial solution to the conflict on the basis of the 1967 borders with minor modifications on both sides. Israel will claim part of the West Bank where there

            have been demographic changes over the last 40 years.”

            This approach by Olmert would have allowed Israel to
            keep the biggest Jewish settlement blocks which are mainly now suburbs of Jerusalem, but would certainly have entailed other settlers having to leave Palestinian territory and relocate to Israel.

            In total, Olmert says, this would have involved Israel claiming about 6.4 per cent of Palestinian territory in the West Bank: “It might be a fraction more, it might be a fraction less, but in total it would be about 6.4 per cent.Israel would claim all the Jewish areas of Jerusalem. All the lands that before 1967 were buffer zones between the two populations would have been split in
            half. In return there would be a swap of land (to the Palestinians) from Israel as it existed before 1967.

            “I showed Abu Mazen how this would work to maintain the contiguity of the Palestinian state. I also proposed a safe passage between the West Bank and Gaza. It would have been a tunnel fully controlled by the Palestinians but not
            under Palestinian sovereignty, otherwise it would have cut the state of Israel in two.

            “No 2 was the issue of Jerusalem. This was a very sensitive, very painful,soul-searching process. While I firmly believed that historically, and emotionally, Jerusalem was always the capital of the Jewish people, I was ready that the city should be shared. Jewish neighbourhoods would be under Jewish sovereignty, Arab neighbourhoods would be under Palestinian sovereignty, so it could be the capital of a Palestinian
            state.

            “Then there was the question of the holy basin within Jerusalem,the sites that are holy to Jews and Muslims, but not only to them, to Christians as well. I would never agree to an exclusive Muslim sovereignty over areas that are religiously important to Jews and Christians. So there would be an area of no sovereignty, which would be jointly administered by five nations,Saudi Arabia, Jordan, the Palestinian state, Israel and the United States.

            “Third was the issue of Palestinian refugees.” This issue has often been a seeming deal-breaker. The Palestinians insist that all Palestinians who left Israel – at or near the time of its founding – and all their spouses and descendants,
            should be able to return to live in Israel proper. This could be more than a million people. Olmert, like other Israeli prime ministers, could never agree to this: “I think Abu Mazen understood there was no chance Israel would become the homeland of the Palestinian people. The
            Palestinian state was to be the homeland of the Palestinian people. So the question was how the claimed attachment of the Palestinian refugees to their original places could be recognised without bringing them in. I told him I would never agree to a
            right of return. Instead, we would agree on a humanitarian basis to accept a certain number every year for five years, on the basis that this would be the end of conflict and the end of claims. I said to him 1000 per year. I think the Americans were entirely with me.

            “In addition, we talked about creating an international fund that would compensate Palestinians for their suffering. I was the first Israeli prime minister to speak of Palestinian suffering and to say that we are not indifferent to that suffering.

            “And four, there were security issues.” Olmert says he showed Abbas a map, which embodied all these plans. Abbas wanted to take the map away. Olmert agreed, so long as they both signed the map. It was, from Olmert’s point of
            view, a final offer, not a basis for future negotiation. But Abbas could not commit. Instead, he said he would come with experts the next day.

            “He (Abbas) promised me the next day his adviser would come. But the next day Saeb Erekat rang my adviser and said we forgot we are going to Amman today, let’s make it
            next week. I never saw him again.”

          • Jacob,
            Battling a cold right now so I will respond a bit at a time. Regarding the 9000 offfer of 90% of the land, why didn’t you include what the Palestinians found objectionable?

            From the electronic intifada:

            1. only proposed to relinquish control over between 77.5-81 percent of the West Bank excluding East Jerusalem, which most likely included Israel’s retaining of the Jordan Valley.

            2. wanted sovereignty over one-third of occupied East Jerusalem and all of West Jerusalem.

            3. wanted control of the third holiest site in Islam, al-Haram al-Sharif (which Israel refers to as the ‘Temple Mount’), where “Israel, incredibly, also demanded Palestinian agreement to the construction of a synagogue.”

            Source: “How Generous is Generous?” in CROSSROADS OF CONFLICT: Israeli-Palestinian Relations Face an Uncertain Future, FMEP Special Report, Winter 2000.

            On 27 July 2000, Noam Chomsky wrote in Z Mag that:

            The intended result is that an eventual Palestinian state would consist of four cantons on the West Bank: Jericho, the southern canton extending as far as Abu Dis (the new Arab “Jerusalem”), a northern canton including the Palestinian cities of Nablus, Jenin, and Tulkarm, and a central canton including Ramallah.

            The cantons are completely surrounded by territory to be annexed to Israel. The areas of Palestinian population concentration are to be under Palestinian administration, an adaptation of the traditional colonial pattern that is the only sensible outcome as far as Israel and the US are concerned.

            The plans for the Gaza Strip, a fifth canton, are uncertain: Israel might relinquish it, or might maintain the southern coastal region and another salient virtually dividing the Strip below Gaza City.

            BTW, my source is

            https://electronicintifada.net/content/misrepresentation-baraks-offer-camp-david-generous-and-unprecedented/3991

            Now considering what was written above, do you find the Palestinian rejection justified or unjustified?

          • Jacob Sslovich

            I have two
            main points about your remarks. First I find it incredible that you accept what
            is stated in a Palestine source such as the Electronic Intifada as truth. I cite to articles in Israeli sources which,
            you have to admit, are subject to
            vigorous critical scrutiny from the Israeli press including some very left wing
            organs while you cite from source which if a Palestinian would criticize would
            result in him being thrown off the roof of a ten story building.

            Actually why, given the
            history of complete fabrications by Palestinians in the past, should anyone
            believe anything in a Palestinian source? I am not referring to omissions and
            distortions that give the wrong impression such as stating how many Palestinians
            have been killed by Israelis is recent months without pointing out that most of
            them were killed while they were stabbing Israelis. I am referring to outright
            lies such as the thousands killed in Jenin, the sterilization of Palestinian
            women by poisoning the wells, funerals where the “deceased” then gets
            up and walks away.

            Many of these lies are maintained
            despite having been shown to be false. For a famous example, on the third day
            of the violence in the fall of 2000, 12-year-old Mohammed al-Dura was shot dead
            in his father’s arms while cowering behind a barrel and became the poster child
            of the intifada. At first, the American outlets, except (surprise) ABC,
            reported noncommittally that the lad had died in crossfire. But then Israeli
            spokesmen acknowledged probable responsibility, and thereafter reports said the
            death was caused by Israeli fire. Months later, after a painstaking probe, the
            Israelis concluded that the fatal shots likely came from Palestinian guns (a
            conclusion also reached by an investigative team from the German television
            network, ARD). But the story has been repeated and defended as being
            symbolically true. Palestinian spokesmen lie shamelessly. Arafat claimed to
            have ordered a “very serious investigation” of the Ramallah lynching.
            Palestinian spokesmen heatedly denied knowledge of the arms ship Karine-A. They
            all claimed a “massacre” had occurred in Jenin: Saeb Erekat estimated
            the death toll at between 500 and 1,500. Arafat at various times claimed
            massacres in a half dozen other West Bank towns. PA spokesmen described the
            “reconstruction” of an ancient synagogue that had been set on fire in
            Jericho. (Actually it was reconstructed. It was turned into a mosque.) All of
            these claims, and many more, sheer nonsense.

            The first time one innocently
            believes a story from Palestinian sources that turns out to be fiction it’s
            shame on them; by now it’s shame on you.

            But what I found truly shocking
            is my second main point. It is that you apparently feel that many of the
            objections to the peace offer are reasonable. Why exactly shouldn’t Israel have
            control of all of West Jerusalem? West Jerusalem was started in the 1880’s by
            Jews (for the most part non and even anti zionists) who had no room in the old
            city. Keep in mind that majority of the population of the old city has been
            Jewish for generations before the modern state of Israel came into being. What
            conceivable claim do the Arabs have to West Jerusalem?

            You seem to be outraged by the
            claim that Israel wants to maintain control of the Temple Mount (which the
            Arabs call al-Haram al-Sharif) because it is the third holiest site in Islam.
            But it’s the first most holy site in Judaism and has been that before Islam
            existed. I point out that the “third holiest site in Islam” was not too important
            to Arabs until the Jews captured it. I also bring to your attention the
            difference between how the Jews and there holy sites were treated when the old
            city was captured by Jordan in 1948 and how the Arabs and their holy sites are
            treated today when Israel controls it. When Jordan captured the old city all
            the the Jewish inhabitants many of whose families had lived there for
            generations were expelled – not some, not most, ALL. The site of the Western wall was used as a garbage
            dump. The synagogues, including one that I know of that was built in the 1200s
            were destroyed. Today, under Israeli control, Arabs pray at the Mosques that
            have been renovated on the Temple Mount. In fact Jews are not allowed to pray –
            which I feel is a futile attempt by Israel at conciliation. Do you seriously feel it unreasonable for Israel
            to maintain control? As to what you call the”incredible” demand for a synagogue
            to be built, I have three comments. First, why the hell not? Why should the Arab
            desire to pray at their third holiest site trump the Jewish right to pray at
            its most holy site? Second, if some of the demands were unacceptable, why not
            make a counter proposal, one that does not involve the suicide of Israel as a Jewish
            state? And third, I have never seen that mentioned anyplace else as an Israeli
            demand. And to believe it because it is stated in a Palestinian source is as I
            point out above to be willfully naïve. Actually to blithely accept as fact the statements
            in the electronic intifada is either to be stupid, ignorant, or deliberately evil
            – most likely a bit of all three.

          • Jacob,
            I find your assumption about the information published by a Palestinian source, such as Electronic Intifada, to be problematic. After all, what was I addressing? Was it not the Palestinian rejection of the “generous” offer made in 2000? So all one has to do is to check the details of what was reported rather than to make an a priori rejection the info.

            But checking the details is not good enough for you. All you need to do is to check the source. For you wrote:


            Actually why, given the history of complete fabrications by Palestinians in the past, should anyone believe anything in a Palestinian source?

            Well, let’s play madlibs with that quote. And instead of using the word ‘Palestinian,’ let’s use another word. Suppose I substitute the word ‘Asian’ for ‘Palestinian’? Or suppose I insert the word ‘Black’ for the word ‘Palestinian’? Or suppose I substitute the word ‘Mexican’ for Palestinian’? Do you see your problem here? For you seem to say that your Israeli sources are trustworthy to interpret the Palestinian reaction to Barak’s offer while no Palestinian sources are.

            But you want another source anyway, so I will provide one. Scott McConnell wrote an article for The American Conservative in which he quoted and highlighted the analysis of Barak’s offer (see http://www.theamericanconservative.com/2014/01/03/kerrys-quest-for-an-israel-palestinian-peace-what-you-first-need-to-know/ ). Here is a part of one of the quotes:


            It is true that Barak’s proposal went further than any other previous Israeli offer to the Palestinians, especially in agreeing to a Palestinian state and to the sharing of at least part of Jerusalem. On the other hand, it is no less true that Barak’s proposals fell far short of a genuinely fair compromise that would result in a viable Palestinian state. Within a few weeks of Camp David, a number of Israeli political analysts had reached this conclusion. Particularly revealing was the forthright assessment of Ze’ev Schiff, the dean of Israel’s military/security journalists and a centrist in the Israeli political spectrum. According to Schiff, because of Barak’s ongoing violations of the spirit of the Oslo agreements—“above all . . . the relentless expansion of the existing settlements and the establishment of new settlements, with a concomitant expropriation of Palestinian land . . . in and around Jerusalem, and elsewhere as well”—the Palestinians had been “shut in from all sides.” Thus, Schiff concluded, “the prospect of being able to establish a viable state was fading right before their eyes. They were confronted with an intolerable set of options: to agree to the spreading occupation . . . or to set up wretched Bantustans, or to launch an uprising.” As both the Palestinians and Israeli political analysts began to draw up detailed maps, it became evident not only that Gaza and the West Bank would be divided by the State of Israel, but that each of those two areas would in turn be divided into enclaves by the Israeli settlements, highways, and military positions, the links between which “would always be at the mercies of Israel, the Israel Defense Forces and the settlers.” With little or no control over its water resources, with no independently controlled border access to neighboring countries, and with even its internal freedom of movement and commerce subject to continued Israeli closures, the already impoverished Palestinian state would be economically completely dependent on—and vulnerable to—Israel.

            There is much more to read there and so I would recommend that you read the whole American Conservative Article. But before I finish, I would like to draw your attention to the use of the word ‘Bantustan.’ BTW, the Chomsky quote referred to this. Why? Because it was the same concept used by the South African government during Apartheid in dividing up the different groups of non-White residents. Combine that with your assessment that there are no trustworthy Palestinian sources and I believe that we get a pciture of the main problem we have in this discussion

          • Jacob Sslovich

            Israeli sources are relatively
            trustworthy because they are subject to scrutiny by the various elements of Israeli
            society who would not hesitate to point out lies. Palestinian sources are not
            trustworthy because there are no such constraints on what they say. They lie all the time. That is the fact as
            borne out by their history of blatant fabrications.

            I did not realize that your email
            was limited to the offer made in 2000. What about the several later offers?

            What counter offer have the Palestinians
            made? Have they offered to accept anything that includes the acceptance of a
            Jewish state existing side by side with them in peace and security? Do you think
            Israel should even consider anything that does not have that as a minimum?

          • Jacob,
            The ones that are censored by the Military? Or how about when the Israeli gov’t condemns reports like the Gladsone report?

            Again, play madlibs with the statement you made and see how you sound. Or better yet, read the whole article I cited from The American Conservative. Before you condemn a source, you need to read the statements you are condemning. You didn’t do that. You wrote that because the source is Palestinian, it couldn’t be ttrusted.

            BTW, I only addressed the offer made in 2000 simply because there was enough material there to discuss the subject

            And what offer do the Palestninians owe Israel besides the end of violence? Israel has been taking Palestinian land, not the other way around. The country whose news sources you trust on sight is the aggressor here. In the meantime, you can read the article below:

            http://www.middleeastrising.com/israel-opens-dams-floods-agricultural-lands-and-homes-in-gaza/

          • Jacob Sslovich

            I don’t understand your first comment. Are you saying that the government condemning the Gladstone report in the equivalent of refusing to allow it to be available in Israel to anyone who chooses to read it. Are there restraints on those who wish to defend it?
            Your limiting your response to the 200 offer is cherry picking. Apparently you have nothing to say about the other offers.
            Now we come tot he crux of the issue. You feel that Israel “stole” Palestinian land and therefore the Palestinians have no obligations whatsoever. I disagree. You seem to feel that the Jews came storming into Palestine with Uzis blazing and seized land occupied by peaceful Arab farmers. This is wrong on so many levels. The influx of Jews into Palestine , which was part of the Ottoman empire, as part of the modern Zionist movement was by means of peaceful immigration where the newcomers joined the those Jews who ha been there for generations.. Land was bought from willing sellers at often inflated prices. Some in the Arab world did not like what was happening to the neighborhood so they instigated riots and massacres.
            It is the Arabs who have been the aggressors.
            Most significantly is that you apparently do not recognize the moral right of the Jewish people to the land of Israel. By what right do the Arabs claim that there should be an independent purely Arab state – where it is a crime to sell land to a Jew? The Arabs conquered Palestine at the point of the sword. What makes it theirs? The Jews were there before they were. The Jews are there now. You can’t steal what is yours. It is the Israelis who owe the Palestinians nothing. That the Israelis are willing to give up a parrt of their home is because they want peace and security. if they can’t get that , if an agreement is only stage one in the drive to wipe out Israel all together, then there is no reason they should give anything.

          • Jacob,
            My first paragraph is directed at your comment claiming that Israeli sources are ‘trustworthy.’

            And no, my selecing 2000 alone shows that there was enough information within that particular offer by Barak to deal with. So I will be glad to deal with the others as soon as you address what I posted.

            And please, don’t skirt the issue of how what is trustworthy or not for you here depends solely on the lineage of the source. If it is Palestinian, it is untrustworthy, if it is Israeli, it is trustworthy. Considering the censorship I cited or the fact that the Israeli gov’t cannot objectively respond to criticism, such as that put in the Gladstone report, indicates that not all Israeli sources are trustworthy.

            Finally, if you are going to try to depict my feelings about how the Jews came into Palestine during the British Mandate, realize that I was using Jewish sources in describing what was happening. So you can dispense with your attempts to manipulate by using hyperbole.

            There is a word that both you and some others need to learn here. That word is ‘EQUALITY.’

          • L_King

            As a Christian there is a word you need to learn: humility.

            Micah 6:8: W hat does the Lord require of you: Only to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with with God.

          • L_King,
            I find your dismissive attitude toward the legitimate complaints about Israel to be lacking in humility. And not one who seeks justice minimizes the sins of the groups they favor in a conflict. Equal measurements are an important part in seeking justice. And from what you have written, what is an acceptable Palestinian State for you does not show an interest in equal measurements.

          • L_King

            Goldstone report. Curt got it wrong, you repeated. Other than that I agree with you.

          • L_King

            Can we dispense with the hyperbole and the nonsense the article you cited presents. Much of it has been a staple of Arab propaganda for decades, or shall I quote you Arab sources that similarly prove that their intent all along has been the ethnic cleansing of Jews from all of Palestine and the Middle East. We could be at that game for quite awhile.

            The Arabs rejected the 1937/38 Peel/Woodhouse partition which would have created a Jewish State a mere 1258 sq km in size. The Zionists accepted both this proposal and the one in 1947. What Ben-Gurion might have done in your opinion and in that of the article is incorrect and contradicted by what he did say and do later on – he favoured supporting a Christian state centred around Mount Lebanon in the south of Lebanon and he ordered Yigal Alon to pull his troops out of Sinai in late 1948 where they were driving back the Egyptians. After 1967 when he was in opposition he favoured the return of Sinai to Egypt and the bulk of Judea and Samaria to Jordan in return for a peace agreement from both. As to what was the Corpus Separatum envisioned by the UNGA encompassing Jerusalem and Bethlehem, he was in favour of Jordanian sovereignty over the later, and a united Jerusalem under Israeli sovereignty. The Jordanian attack in 1967, and without doubt Jordan was the aggressor, legitimated Israel’s reunification.

            The Barak/Clinton parameters would have created a demilitarized Palestinian State. There would have been a temporary IDF presence for 3 years to be then replaced by an international force and a set of early warning systems. It was not, as described by you and its detractors, a set of “Bantustans”

            Arafat’s problem, to put it simply, was that he could not give up being a guerrilla fighter and a terrorist insurgent. Since the beginning of Oslo he had done absolutely nothing to create a governing body – he had simply taken foreign development monies and distributed between his cronies. Abbas, sadly, is not much better, and it is a dillemma of his own construction.

          • L_King,
            There is no hyperbole, so can we dispense with your dismissive attitude. And am I aware of some of the material you’re bringing up? Of course. But what makes views popular in an area depends on whether other more moderate views are given fair chances to work. And neither Israel nor the US have been working toward creating a viable Palestinian state. And in the midst of that non-creation is the brutal occupation.

            You can’t divide the West Bank into cantons where travel between is under control of the Israeli military and say that you creating a viable state. And even if you substitue an internation military presence for the Israeli one, which nation would accept such conditions? In addition, which nation under the constant attack of its neighbor is intelligently going to accept a demilitarized state? Here in America, neither of our political parties will not even accept an America that spends less on military than the next several nations combined. You talk about humility in one note but with recognition you define an acceptable Palestinian state that no other nation would ever accept unless it had been conquerred by an invading force. It seems nothing to you to define a Palestinian state that is acceptable that you would never accept for your nation.

            And what did Israel do after becoming a nation? It expanded its territory let alone the territory that was created did not take into account the then current population rates of each group. And we could go on like that all day. Both the Paelstinians and the Jews committed atrcotiies against each other with the one with most power committing the most.

            Finally, Arafat had to problems: his own sins and the sins of a miilitarily superior neighbor. We should note that context often teaches us more about a particular party than looking at their sins in isolation of the circumstances. Israel would never give viable offers for peace because they continue to want more land.

          • L_King

            What nation would have accepted such parameters. Germany. Japan.

            Case closed. Now go and sin no more.

          • L_King,
            Yes, after they were conquered and that is the point you are missing. You want the Palestinians to accept the kind of peace that conquered nations do? Do you see the problem?

            There is no case closed here. There are just minds that are closed.

          • L_King

            Yes, one can see your mind is closed.

            Germany and Japan were the success stories of the post WW II era.

          • L_King,
            Those who insist on putting in negative personal remarks are the ones who insist that their eyes remain closed. And that is what you have done from the beginning.

            Germany and Japan were aggressors along with the fact that there were no permanent civilian American settlements dividing up the country. What we have with the peace plans is this dividsion of the West Bank into Bantustans. Reminds you too much of South Africa? Then realize that the Israelis call their wall the Seperation Wall and that is the definition of apartheid. Don’t believe me? Then check on what Nelson Mandella said and what Desmond Tutu currently says about Palestine.

            Here, Israel is the aggressor. And if Israel weren’t the aggressor, then Palestine would have the same amount of land now as it had during Oslo and as it had during the ’67 war. One cannot, as Israel did, continue to confiscate land while saying that it iwants a peace with what was to become a viable nation. That is not to say that Palestinians are innocent. It is to say that the Occupation is the first stike and as long as Israel maintains the Occupation, it is the aggressor.

            The purpose of the ’67 war was to get more land. Yes, there was posturing on both sides, but Israel knew what was happening and decided on that war and it has never looked back in grabbing land. And that is the reason we have no peace today.

            So if you want to make me the subject of this discussion by using snide remarks, you can talk to yourself.

          • L_King

            All points that are irrelevant (and largely incorrect) to the Clinton parameters and the comparison to Germany and Japan.

            You asked what nation would accept such parameters. I answered with Germany and Japan. Both were defeated in war and both were rehabilitated under military occupation to become highly successful nations.

            Why would you not want the same for Palestinians?

          • L_King,
            You simply don’t engage with specifics that you disagree with. You wave your hand saying that points are ‘irrelevant’ and ‘incorrect.’ That Germany and Japan were aggressors and that played a role in those nations’ gov’ts accepting their respective occupations. That point is hardly incorrect or irrelevant. That is because the Occupation is the act of aggression and that started with a war that Israel started. That who is the aggressor played a role in the expectations puts on each side. The Palestinians were to be disarmed while Israel would still be occupying the land. In addition, there were no set borders in the Oslo agreement as well as the Roadmap for Peace agreement. Perhaps to people who feel Israel is both entitled to the land and above reproach for how it treats the Palestinians, you could claim that the points were irrelevant–though not incorrect. But to the Palestinians, those points were neither irrelevant nor incorrect. Such a view is not credible.

            The real issue isn’t what I would want for the Palestinians, the issue was this: was rehabilitation the destination for the path provdied by the US and Israel? Considering that Israel permanently confiscated some land to gain control of the water, it continued to confiscate land around Jerusalem which is the most hotly contested land, considering the proposed Batustans that were already physically in place, and considering how the US always protected Israel from being condemned in the UN for its actions, your claim that the conditions of the agreement would lead to a viable Palestinian state is not credible.

            Don’t you remember that the settlement freeze issue is why Sharon first rejected the Roadmap For Peace ? If you read view of a site that supports Israel, Sharon declared ‘his intent to remove all Jewish settlement from the Gaza Strip, and a smaller number from a portion of the West Bank (see http://www.blog.standforisrael.org/issues/peace-keeping/road-map-for-peace#ixzz42VaTSk2H ). But what occurred with the removing of the settlements in Gaza was an increase in the building of settlements in the West Bank. And immediately after the Roadmap For Peace was signed, Israel attacked Palestinian militants even though Israel itself admitted that there was a significant drop in in violence.

            You say that the plan was to rehabilitate Palestine? But to do so would mean that the settlements would eventually have to be removed because they acted as a barrier to parts of the West Bank and the issue of control of the water came along with that. But listen to what Sharon said, among other things, about dismantling West Bank settlements ( see http://www.theguardian.com/world/2003/may/14/usa.israel ):


            Our finest youth live there. They are already the third generation, contributing to the state and serving in elite army units. They return home and get married, so then they can’t build a house and have children?

            The construction of the security fence was meant, at least in part, to establish some permanent borders and that was done without negotiation. Of course the construction of seperation wall was deemed illegal. Or you could consider what the term settlers have for the land they possess and future land. They use the term for ‘inheritance’ meaning that they believe that they are entitled to the land.

            Do see problems with your assumption that the Oslo plan, or any of them, were meant to create a viable Palestinian state?

          • L_King

            Still irrelevant, and laced with the very ad hominems that you claim to abhor.

            The model used with Germany and Japan led to a permanent peace. Since that time Germany has never fired any missiles at the British people or any other people for that matter.

            Had Arafat accepted the Clinton parameters there would be a Palestinian state today with a capital in Jerusalem. He simply had no plans to govern.

          • L_King,
            As I just wrote in a previous comment, your insistence on being insulting in our conversation has ended it. You don’t engage, you simply dismiss and distract with your accusations.

            As for your claims, you simply make them without grounds and look down on those who don’t believe.

          • L_King

            You insist on manipulating the conversation as if any disagreement with you is a personal insult. Very much like the Palestinian approach to “negotiating”. We know that Arafat turned down a workable deal that would have led to a Palestinian State. Concocting excuses are simply attempts to save face.

            Your analogies are misguided. Substitute Palestinian for German, and “Palestinian Land” for “German Land”. No Jews Allowed. The Palestinians need liebenstraum and the Jewish foreigners are conspiring against them.

            Both you and the Palestinians are in favour of ethnic cleansing of Jews from Judea and Samaria and “east” Jerusalem. All of your rhetoric points to that goal.

            Anticipating your objection to these terms, this graphic shows that “West Bank” is a neologism, as is “East Jerusalem”.

            bit.ly/225WmDV

            Both international and moral law would argue that Jews have every right to lease public land in the disputed territories and reside there. Since Oslo the number of new settlements is far less than Palestinian propaganda has suggested – the total is 3. Rather than expanding the Jewish communities of Judea and Samaria have been growing by infill housing within the bounds prescribed by the Oslo agreements. Palestinian settlements have been growing as well.

            Political reality would necessitate some compromise. As part of a final peace agreement no doubt some communities would be relocated. Most will remain. The Palestinians on their part, based on their demands to extirpate Jews, will have to concede territory, amounting to at most 2-3% of their total, and generous land swaps including a large block in Sinai by Egypt have at various times been proposed.

            The problem is getting the Palestinian side to commit to YES.

        • Dexter Van Zile

          And as far as your assertion that the military never pulled out of Gaza, that’s a bogus statement. They man the checkpoints in and out of the Gaza Strip, but typically only go in when Hamas fires rockets into Israel.

          • Dexter,
            Not a bogus claim. The military has always been there in various ways.

          • Dexter Van Zile

            Describe. Post proof. Demonstrate.

            Who, what, when, where?

          • Dexter,
            Take the blockade of Gaza as an example where Israel tries to completely control what goes into and out of Gaza. This not only restricts goods that are necessary for life, it prevents Gazans from fishing or from trading. (see http://www.haaretz.com/opinion/.premium-1.663996 ). This blockade is both a sea and land blockade.

            But there is also Israel’s aerial occupation of Gaza that has replaced the use of troops on the ground. This is documented in the most recent book by Israeli activist Jeff Halper called War Against The People. The Washington Post also reported on this practice by Israel (see https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/in-gaza-lives-shaped-by-drones/2011/11/30/gIQAjaP6OO_story.html ). What is the same as the troops on the ground occupation is that the Israeli military continues to kill Palestinian civilians.The difference is that this now done through the use of drones and all of this since 2006. The Washington Post article cites the Palestinian Center For Human Rights as reporting that 825 people have been killed by Drones with the majority of them being civilians. Thus, drones are not only used in performing targeted assassinations, their mere presence not only spies on Gaza but creates tremondous anxiety because of how they have been used to assassinate people. People who hear the drones don’t know if they will be fired on.

          • Dexter Van Zile

            israel has every right to control its boundary with gaza. And given that Hamas has launched rockets into Gaza using humanitarian materials that have been shipped into Gaza, it seems reasonable to expect Israel to exercise this right. As to stopping products coming in from the sea, the blockade seems reasonable as well given what’s at stake. Humanitarian goods are allowed in on a regular basis. These restrictions can be relaxed when Hamas stops attacking Israel and shows it has peaceful intentions. Israel pulled out of Gaza, things got substantially worse. And you are trying to portray Israel’s defensive measures as “occupation.” If Israel relaxes the measures it put in place, it will likely result in further violence against its citizens, to wit: The Tunnels.

            Every one of the security measures you describe as “occupation” are the result of aggressive acts by Hamas and other groups in Gaza. You are merely trying to hinder Israel’s efforts to defend itself with rhetoric. You are hindering an imperfect, but substantially free society as it struggles to defend itself from a terrorist organization that fair minded reasonable people regard as evil. That’s what you’re doing. It’s an irresponsible thing to do.

          • Dexter,

            When using the border to control what is essential to life, then they have misused that right to control their border when they cause severe deprivations. But just as Israel has the right to control their border with Gaza, the Palestinians have the same right to control their border. What you are missing with the siege is that Israel extends its right to control the border to Gaza’s access to the sea. They have no right control Gaza’s access to the sea nor do they have the right to try to control Gaza’s border with Egypt.

            If you want to point to the launching of rockets, again, the launching of rockets is tied to Israel’s siege of Gaza and its aerial occupation, neither of which Israel has a right to execute. And the Palestinians have every right to resist both the siege and the occupation so long as they do not target civilians. Unfortunately, the occupation and the siege target Palestinian civilians and they are the ones who suffer the most. This can be easily shown statistically.

            The problem with your statement that the restrictions can be eased when Hamas stops attacking Israel is that the restrictions are the reason for the attacks. And included with those restrictions is what Israel is doing in the West Bank. And isn’t just Arabs who suffer from the Israeli gov’t policies, Bedouins suffer too as their villages are constantly bull dozed.

            You are wrong about why Israel imposes the restrictions. Restrictions on food, water, and fuel for electricity have nothing to do the behavior of Hamas, whose creation was supported by Israel itself (see http://www.wsj.com/articles/SB123275572295011847

            ).
            The problem with your approach is that its black-white nature is not supported by history. Neither the Palestinians nor the Israelis are innocent. One only needs to look at Israel’s policies and occupation of Gaza and its constant grabbing of land and expulsion of Palestinians from their homes on the West Bank. These Israeli policies are just as brutal in their effects as the atrocities of suicide bombs.

            Tribalism bids us to root for one side against the other. But Tribalism is as destructive to our morals as it is physical being. Until we eliminate tribalism, there is no peace in sight. We need to remember that violence practiced by troops in uniforms can also qualify as terrorism.

            So how about this: Would you support the jurisdiction of the ICC over both Israel and the Palestinians?

          • Dexter Van Zile

            You didn’t answer my question. Please answer my question.

          • Dexter,
            I believe that the note my comment that you are responding to had no questions, just accusations that assume the complete innocence of Israel and the complete guilt of the Palestinians.

            And the blockade is an act of war, not a reasonable act. This was apparent the Kennedy Administration when they performed a blockade of Cuba. They knew that they had to call it something else and they knew that they had to get approval from the OAS for it not to be considered an act of war during the Cuban missile crisis.

            You also seem to be forgetting the multiple UN resolutions and the multiple ceasefires violated by Israel first

            In addition, the flotillas of peace activists who attempted to help those in Gaza have been turned by Israel.
            Why do you see Israel as being completely innocent and the Palestinians as being completely guilty?

            Finally, why not read how Israeli activist Jeff Halper describes Israel’s “free society.” In essence, Israel, according to Halper, has created an ethnocracy, not a democracy in the Jeffersonian tradition. And ethnocracy, according to Halper, exists with an ethnic group, a group defined by language, ethnicity, ancestry, or religion, gains control of the government and military to create laws that favor itself and maintain its dominant position in society. The inequality experienced by Arab citizens of Israel is quite significant.

          • Dexter Van Zile

            I asked a question. I repeated it. You haven’t answered it. I’m not even bothering to read your posts other than to scan for a response. Have a nice day. I didn’t see a response in this comment. Whenever you want to dialogue in good faith, and model a way to bring an end to the conflict, go right ahead and answer my question. It will be a confidence building measure. If you can’t or won’t answer the question, I’m not going to respond in a substantive manner to your points. Won’t waste the time to read them.

          • Dexter,
            If you don’t to read my posts, then don’t respond. I looked at the comment my comment was addressing and saw no question. If you want to repeat the question as a response to this comment, I will be glad to answer the question.

          • L_King

            I had to look up the definition of “Jeffersonian democracy”, Mr. Day. I came up with this from Wikipedia:

            “Jeffersonian democracy (sometimes capitalized), named after its advocate Thomas Jefferson, was one of two dominant political outlooks and movements in the United States from the 1790s to the 1820s. The term was commonly used to refer to the Republican Party (also called the Democratic-Republican Party) which Jefferson founded in opposition to the Federalist Party of Alexander Hamilton. The Jeffersonians were deeply committed to Republicanism in the United States, which meant opposition to aristocracy of any form, opposition to corruption, insistence on virtue, with a priority for the “yeoman farmer”, “planters”, and the “plain folk”. They were antagonistic to the aristocratic elitism of merchants, bankers and manufacturers, distrusted factory workers, and were on the watch for supporters of the dreaded British system of government.”

            Based on this definition, Israel today is more of a Jeffersonian democracy than the United States – and if you were a thinking individual, on that basis alone, you’d be a Zionist.

            Now in the free state of Gaza or the Palestinian Authority for that manner in any sense Jeffersonian? Are they not tribal ethnocracies? Where is your even handed analysis? As always, non-existent.

            By your own standards, you’re on the wrong side.

          • Mr. King,
            Halper’s point is that in Jeffersonian democracy, the nation belongs equally to all of its citizens, not a certain subgroup of them. He contrasts this with the ethnic democracies of eastern Europe where the country belongs to a particular ethnicity more than it belonged to the other citizens. Now you can argue whether Halper used “Jeffersonian democracy” correctly, his point being that when a nation predominantly belongs to particular religion, ethnic group, a group identified by the language they speak, lineage, or national identity, it isn’t a Jeffersonian Democracy, it is an ethnocracy. And that is what we have with Israel. It predominantly belongs to people who are of Jewish descent and that counts more in terms of owning the nation than being an indigenous person.

            So Israel qualifies as an ethnocracy more than a democracy. That its Arab citizens are not treated as equals is well documented in books like David Shipler’s book Arab And Jew or in recent articles that talk about how gov’t funds are distributed per capita. The inequality is also attested to by the growing racism in Israel. Israel just happens to be suffering from the same problems and sins that other nations are currently experiencing.

            As for the Palestinian leadership, there is certain corruption, just like in Israel, and there is a certain co-dependent relationship on the violence practiced just as in Israel. See, I don’t care about being on the winning side. Too much emphasis on which side we are on only leads to tribalism just as our 2016 presidential elections suffer because of tribalism.
            So about my question Mr. King. Would you agree to letting Israel, the Palestinians under both the PA and Hamas, and the US be subject to the rulings of the ICC?

          • L_King

            In my experience, Mr. Van Zile, Curt is a stuck needle. You can expose his biases, but at best all one will achieve is an example.

            The Curt Days of the world, IMV are part of the problem, not part of the solution. He sees the world purely in terms of good and evil, and believes that he is always on the side of good.

          • Dexter Van Zile

            Thanks!

          • L_King
          • Mr King,

            I have no doubts that there is corruption in the PA. In fact, one of the articles that will be lined to in this Monday’s blog article talks about that.

            At the same time, the constant stealing of land and control of water resources in the West Bank and the hardships they cause cannot be explained away by corruption in the PA especially when one considers the violence exercised against the Palestinians by the IDF. Again, both parties are at fault here.

            As for the siege of gaza and what is accessible vs what is needed, please consult the two links below:

            the http://www.btselem.org/gaza_strip/20100531_the_siege_on_gaza link

            and
            http://www.btselem.org/gaza_strip/siege
            Hopefully, the links show. They sometimes disappear when I put them in the comments. Please read up on the source if you have doubts

          • Dexter Van Zile

            Interestingly enough, in the article you cited, it reads: “Israel withdrew its soldiers and settlers from Gaza in the summer of 2005, ending a nearly 40-year presence in a territory its forces occupied in the 1967 Middle East War. In 2006 Hamas gunmen captured the Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit just outside Gaza’s fortified boundary, and since then, Israel has stepped up military operations and aerial surveillance in the strip.”

            Action, meet consequence.

            Also, I asked a while back if you could name one bit if territory that Israel had withdrawn from and not been attacked from. You never answered the question. Here is what I wrote, “Can you name one bit of territory that Israel has withdrawn from that it has not been attacked from?”

            The question was asked in good faith. Please answer it. It’s a yes or no question.

          • Dexter,
            What you are not considering is the proportionality. And something you may not be aware of is that a day or two before the kidnapping of Gilad Shalit, Israel kidnapped two Palestinians from Gaza. That is what trigger Shalit’s kidnapping.

            BTW, you have the question backwards. Those burden of proof is on those who promote violence. It is your job to list every territory where Israel was attacked after it withdrew. And, since the siege didn’t wait for the Shalit kidnapping, why are you not tying the siege, as well as the rest of the occupation with the attacks on Israel.
            Again, let make both the Palestinians and the Israel subject to the ICC.

          • Dexter Van Zile

            Like I said, you didn’t answer my question. You are not discussing the issue in good faith. When you answer the question, I’ll address your other points.

          • Dexter,
            I looked at the note that my comment address and that was the specific comment you responded to in saying I didn’t answer your question. There was no question in the comment I examined
            In the meantime, your notes are more about making accusations against me and looking and finding details and info I did not provide and overstating the case regarding Israel and the creation of Hamas. It is a matter of fact that the first intifada was a secular movement and caught many people by surprise including the PLO. Israel did help foster the creation of Hamas to help counter a secular intifada. And how did you read that documentation? You claimed that it was talking about how Israel created Islamism. That is not what the article said.
            Now if you want to continue to make accusations a part of our conversation, then you can talk to yourself. What is evident is that this is a debate about how many guilty parties there are in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. I claim that both the Israeli gov’t and the Palestinians are guilty while you seem to claim that only the Palestinians are guilty. Is that correct?

          • Dexter Van Zile

            This is the last time I’m going to respond to you until you respond to the question I have posted elsewhere, twice in this exchange. You know what the question is. Respond, or don’t.

          • Dexter,
            No, I don’t know what your question is and I asked you to repost it because I am not in the position of going back through that many comments. So it is your choice to either repost the question as a response to this comment or not.

          • janetb

            He asked the question a few times in this thread. It was:
            “Can you name one bit of territory that Israel has withdrawn from that it has not been attacked from?”

            I also await your answer. Thank you.

          • Janet,
            I could look at the maps to show you the constant confiscation of land some of which has not been the source of attacks. But more than that, you are forgetting that the Palestinians’ land is being occupied by the Israeli defense forces. And it is the occupation that incites attacks.

            See, the real threat to Christians here is that they will take a tribal approach to this conflict. And by a tribal approach I mean that their loyalty to one side or the other what is right and wrong is determined by who does what to whom. So some will rationalize all Palestinian attacks on Israel while others will return the favor. What both sides have in common is an embracing of a moral relativity.

            The only solution is for the US, Israel, and the Palestinians to come under the jurisdiction of the ICC so that the same rules apply to all.

          • janetb

            Hi Curt,
            1. Still haven’t answered the question….:-)….
            “Can you name one bit of territory that Israel has withdrawn from that it has not been attacked from?”

            2. I don’t think you will find “constant confiscation of land”. My sources are land registries. What are yours? Palestinian Arabs have always sold their property secretly (even today Palestinians have a death penalty for selling land to Jews). These sales (both past and present) are regularly presented to the world in the international media as ‘confiscations’ by the State of Israel. Most readers take such claims at face value and never even think of checking them out.

            Jews paid exorbitant prices to wealthy Arabs for crappy lands throughout the 1800’s and 1900’s. Still do. Instead of reading op eds, newspapers, and websites, try some primary sources—I recommend you have a good look at land registries (Ottoman and Jordanian–and Israeli). From 1878 through early 1948, there were very meticulous records kept on property transactions both during the Ottoman Empire period until 1916, and, through the British military and Mandate administrations. And of course, nowadays all sales of properties are easy to trace in Israel’s land registry. I’m sure it would make surprising reading for you….:-)….

          • Janet,
            First, your question requires a bit more intimate knowledge of the area than I have. But from that, you go with 2 assumptions: First, if I can’t name an area, then there must not be one; and second, that the areas from which attacks come are unprovoked rather provoked by the occupation itself.

            And yes, you do find constant confiscations of land. All one must do to see this is to compare maps from each year as well look at new or expanded settlement developments. And there is consistency in new new or expanded settlements announced in the news. And those settlements, along with the old ones, are on land that has been stolen.

            Finally, fall for the tribalism trap where one sides with either the Jews the Arabs so that one can only see wrongdoing from one side or another. What the Jews paid for land in the 1800s and early 1900s is irrelevant. That much of that land is reserved for Jews only while dispossessing Arabs who lived there carries with it the same mentality as when we ethnically cleansed Native Americans from the land or enforced Jim Crow segregation. And it doesn’t take the reading of land registries to realize how wrong that is. If you do fall for tribalism, you fall for the sin of preferential treatment cited in James 2. Realize that Christian, secular, and Muslim Palestinians are the victims of that treatment. And the repercussions of that treatment contributes to other injustices and not just reprisals on Israelis.

          • janetb

            Curt writes:
            “And yes, you do find constant confiscations of land. All one must do to see this is to compare maps from each year as well look at new or expanded settlement developments.”

            This of course is a non sequitur unless you ASSUME that settlements are on confiscated rather than purchased land….:-)….

            Land can be confiscated only if it was 1) privately owned, and 2) taken rather than purchased. To support a claim that the Israeli government is constantly confiscating privately owned Palestinian land, you would have to give some evidence supporting (1) and (2). I personally would not make accusations (especially blanket ones) without any evidence. But that’s me. I gather that you, like many people, believe the blanket claim without checking your source’s claims. This is very common.

            I make neither of the 2 assumptions you credited me with. I simply repeated the gentleman’s question, as it seemed to me a good one, and you kept asking “what question?”.
            1. To claim ” if [you] can’t name an area, then there must not be one” would indeed be a very silly claim. Not mine!
            2. I did not say anything at all about whether Palestinian attacks are provoked or not.

            If you looked into the status of the various lands in question and the records of the sales, you would undoubtedly have a very different view regarding the alleged ‘dispossession’. Also, if you took a long and serious look at immigration and emigration records, you would find that the VAST majority of the Palestinians came to this area the same time the Jews were returning—there are a great many historical documents showing that Arab settlers had flocked to Palestine beginning in the late 1800s, drawn there by economic opportunities in areas that were being developed by Jewish settlers.

            Arieh L. Avneri, The Claim of Dispossession: Jewish Land-Settlement and the Arabs 1878-1948 (1982) – shows the diverse make-up and generally very recent arrival of the “Palestinian Arabs” in the 19th century. He gives specific details showing how the Egyptian and Ottoman governments throughout that century frequently transferred whole villages and even tribes into the region, especially from Turkey, Syria/Arabia, and Egypt, to replenish the population constantly winnowed by emigration, plague epidemics, endless bloody local inter-clan feuds, marauding Ottoman and Egyptian armies, high infant mortality rates and low life expectancy. Literally hundreds of Muslim villages and towns were established or sustained in this way. These transplanted populations were used to shore up frontier buffers between warring Egypt and the Ottomans, and to provide a tax base. He also gives details from the archives of the British Mandate Period showing considerable unregistered Muslim immigration into the area from the 1920s to early 1940s and that there was no illegal Jewish dispossession through land sales during those periods. In fact, in 1882 the Ottoman Turks’ census shows 141,000 Muslims in Palestine, while only 40 years later, the 1922 British census showed 650,000 Muslims! You might want to have a look at the article “Were the Arabs Indigenous to Mandatory Palestine?”

            http://www.meforum.org/6275/were-the-arabs-indigenous-to-mandatory-palestine

            These sources are heavily documented with PRIMARY sources, as opposed to simply stating claims without supplying any evidence.

          • Janet,
            Settlements that extend past the land from the ’67 borders are confiscated lands. There is no assumption there In fact there are several parts of the Settlements and the Wall of separation that have been deemed as illegal internationally speaking. And that one had to first expel Palestinians before building those settlements is further proof that the land is confiscated There is the evidence you require: the ’67 border and the expulsion of Palestinians from their homes.

            Real people, Christians, Muslims and seculars have been the victims of these expulsions. In the meantime, you exclude evidence from the writings of some, not all, early Jewish settlers whose plans were to ethnically cleanse the land and that includes evidence the diary of theodore Herzl.

            Now again, you seem committed to embrace tribalism here. And that give one a neat feeling of belonging. But the same blinds one to the sins atrocities by one’s favorite side. And that leads you to deny the existence of Arabs in the Palestinian Mandate . Quit with the selective evidence and the tribalism. If you are a Christian, you should be able to see the moral relativity that exists there. And you should take seriously the warning given by James about showing preferential treatment. For though the preferential treatment mentioned by James refers to wealth, it can also be applied to national identity and ethnicity. And it is that tribalism that is the real root of your argument.

          • L_King

            Israel was supporting of Mujama, the predecessor to Hamas, which billed itself as a community aid group. It had nothing at all to do with Hamas or the decisions it made, which is what you are trying to imply.

            Your basic underlying assumption needs some soul searching on your part – which is that the leaders and followers of Hamas, a branch of the Muslim Brotherhood, are simply lumps of clay, incapable of moral decision making on their part. You really should erase that kind of Kiplingesque pattern from your vocabulary.

            No-one believes you when you claim to believe that both parties are guilty because you only castigate Israel, and do so in the harshest and most unyielding of terms, never the Palestinian side. When you speak of the Palestinians you act as their apologist. Your own words are evidence of hypocrisy.

          • L_King,
            The underlying assumptions are correct, you might be misreading them. What Israel did was to use the Islamic group into a fighting group to oppose the PLO–much in the same way that the US tried to use Bin Laden et al to battle forces from the Soviet Union. We didn’t care what terrorist tactics they used on the population as long as they battled the Soviets.

            In a similar, but certainly not identical, way, Israel used the Islamic group that would become Hamas because of the secular nature of the PLO as well as a fighting force to oppose the PLO. Please note what was written in the article:


            Crucially, Israel often stood aside when the Islamists and their secular left-wing Palestinian rivals battled, sometimes violently, for influence in both Gaza and the West Bank.

            Here, we should also note that after Hamas won the election in Gaza that put them in control, the US tried to smuggle weapons in for elements from the PA so that it would fight against Hamas.

            We should also note that in 2006 and 2008, Hamas did offer to recognize Israel based on conditions and there were no attempts at discussing the offer made by Israel.

          • Mr King,
            I have no problems castigating the Palestinians which is exactly what I have done. I have repeated condemned their attacks on Israeli citizens. But the greater responsibility rests with those who have and exercise the most power.

            See, instead of just discussing the subject, you want to attack my credibility even though my words contradict your claims. Why? Because you seem intolerant of any accusation made about Israel. You are the one who seems to resist the idea that both Israel and the Palestinians are guilty. And one way you battle that is to try attack my credibility such as by accusing me of being biased here.

            So I will put the same question to you that I put to Dexter: Would you agree to putting Israel, the Palestinians, and I will throw in the US too under the jurisdiction of the ICC?

          • Niko Bella-Khouf

            Hamas has nothing to do with the Muslim Brotherhood.

            Palestinians have a right to defend themselves against genocidal Israelis hell bent on driving them into the sea.

          • L_King

            I see that Goebels had a grandson named Niko.

            Hamas is based on the terrorist ideology of Hassan al Banna and is a branch of the Muslim Brotherhood. It has the radical and exclusionary ideology that there is only one possible interpretation of Islam. Unlike Sufis, Ismaelis or Amadiyah Muslims, they aren’t particularly nice, nor do they play well with others. Next time try your asinine propaganda on someone who doesn’t know anything about wikipedia – like your grandad.

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hamas

            You could have defended yourselves by defenestrating Arafat, Abbas, Haniyeh and Mashal and instituted a moderate pro-peace government.

            Jews aren’t really up to this genocide thing, or driving anyone into the sea. That’s your schtick.

            http://www.israellycool.com/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/line-graph.jpg

            Allah is a mouse אללה הוא עכבר Enjoy the raisins.

          • janetb

            The front page of the Hamas Charter, written in 1988, explicitly declares Hamas to be the Muslim Brotherhood branch in Palestine.
            Ahmed Yassin, who wrote and edited the Charter, was a member of the Muslim Brotherhood movement before he founded Hamas.
            A quote from Hassan al-Banna, the Muslim Brotherhood founder, appears at the beginning of the Hamas Charter. It reads, “Israel will arise and continue to exist until Islam abolishes it, as it abolished what went before…”

        • janetb

          There has been no Israeli military anywhere in Gaza since 2005. Period. It was a TOTAL pullout of both military and civilians.

          • Janet,
            If you said there have been no settlers, you would have been correct. But the Israeli naval and ground troops surround Gaza. They still demolish homes. And Israeli Air Force planes and drones are constantly flying missions into Gaza all of the time. You also forgot operations like Cast Lead, which took place from the end of 2008 to Jan 2009. And there was another incursions sometime after that.

      • M Furkan Dhada

        Bulshit I doubt if u r even a Palestinian

      • Dexter,
        You’re looking for a time contradiction that doesn’t exist since I did not date the time of my conversation nor did my friend date the time when he was living in Gaza.
        Now, I am not attempting to blame Islamism on the Occupation. After all, what you call Islamism covers far more territory than the Occupation does. But what the Wall Street journal article I cited documents is that the creation of a specific group, Hamas, was supported by Israel. Creating straw men to counter a specific occurrence does not prove your case.

    • scottrose

      Duly noted, by the way, that your opening salvo here – you anti-Semitic troll, you duplicitous bigot — was “While protesting outside the Israeli Embassy in D.C.”

      You are a professional Israel basher and a TROLL.

    • L_King

      Wouldn’t the fact that you were at an anti-Israeli protest make this interview self-selecting. At such an event the tendency would be to amplify and exaggerate the narrative, which was the reason both of you were there.

      More to the point, you minimize and ignore the threat posed to Christians within the areas controlled by Hamas and the PA.

      The rise in Islamism is part of the general trend in the region, to which Palestinian Muslims are not immune. Instead of scapegoating other people, let’s put the blame where it belongs – on the individuals who chose this route. Today is International Women’s day. A UN report says that over 50% of Palestinian women have experienced domestic violence and abuse. Instead of blaming the men who abuse them and a society that tolerates even encourages men to beat their wives when they are disobedient, the report blames “the occupation”. Enough!

      • L_King,
        We were at an anti-Occupation protest, not an anti-Israel protest. And since it wasn’t my intention before the protest to interview people who were over there, the criteria for ‘selection’ was opportunity. I am a Christian and the person I happened to be talking was a born-again Christian.

        Your judgment that the narrative was exaggerated is rather presumed. And no, I don’t ignore the threats made to Christians by organizations like Hamas or the PA–though I personally have not found the PA to be that much of a threat. For one thing, the PA has already published two of my article on their website a while back even though they know I am a Christian.

        The rise in Islamism is trend but it is one not restricted to the region. And the most intoxicating part of Islamism is the appeal to restore justice. And certainly, the Palestinians have suffered a great deal of injustice at the hands of the Israeli gov’t directly and the the US gov’t indirectly. And though I would agree that Palestinian women who have suffered from domestic abuse must blame the abuser, that is not the hardship they suffer from . The Occupation is brutal. It shows how the world is being run today in that there is no rule of law practiced by either Israel or the US, it is the rule of force. So while we can rightly blame Palestninian men for the abuse they visit on the women in their families, the violence exercised by the Israeli gov’t when they bomb, raid, demolish homes, demolish crops and water supplies, arbitrarily arrest Palestinians, torture their prisoners, cut off electricity, and such can only be blamed on the Israeli gov’t. That is unless you want to blame all of that on Palestinian men too. And that is where I woulld say: ENOUGH!

        • L_King

          So you were protesting at the Palestinian consulate? Didn’t think so.

          As both Prince Bandar and President Clinton both pointed out, Arafat was criminal in abandoning Barak’s offer of a Palestinian State, but, as his wife Suha pointed out, he had an intifadeh to plan.

          Your statement the Islamists invoke a concept of Justice is correct, What is lacking is your understanding as to what “Justice” means in the Islamist context. It is most certainly not the same as what is commonly thought of as a Christian notion of justice, nor is it a particularly Jewish notion of justice. Yehoshaphat Harkabi several decades ago explained the logic quite simply:

          The Zionists stole Arab land.
          Since they are guilty they must either leave or be killed.

          It’s a very harsh form of desert justice. The premise is wrong. So is the conclusion. You describe it as “intoxication”. Also correct. The root of the word comes from “toxin”, meaning poison. That you have imbibed some of the same poison is problematic at best.

          • L_King,
            If we count international law, we find some of the biggest criminals are considered to be legal.

            I find it astonishing with all of the suffering that Israel visits on Palestine, that supporters of today’s zionism are so quick to point out the sins of others while being heavy handed to those who point out Israel’s sins. And that kind of audacity just doesn’t to Israel, consider how those who criticized the sanctions during Clinton’s Presidency were treated. For far worse than crime committed by Arafat, and he certainly was far from innocent, the sanctions that Clinton forced on Iraq killed hundreds of thousands of Iraqi children.

            Less punishing is the Occupation but that is only because of the differences in population between Iraq and the Occupied Territories.

            Listen, if you want to kill Zionists for stealing Arab land, I would suggest that such does not help. But suppose instead of killing Zionists for land theft, we had negotiated with the objective of creati9ng an equal palestinian state next to Israel, what do you think the chances of negotiating for peace would have been? BTW, you can’t negotiate with the aim of creating an equal Palestninian state for as long as part of that state is divided into cantons where Israel remains in control over both travel between those cantons and West Bank water. Such could never result in a viable Palestinian state.

            On ly now, the West Bank is too decimated to produce a viable Palestinian state. Thus, the only way you can have peace is to count the Palestinians as citzens of Israel who have equal rights in Israel as the Jewish citizens have.

            Finally, for all your accusations, and I happen to oppose Palestinian terrorism myslef, you do nothin except to try to provide deflector shields as an effort to protect today’s zionism from legitimate criticisms.

          • L_King

            The chance for peace is nil. Abbas cannot and will not commit to a final peace agreement even if he wanted to. He would be dead in a week at the hands of his own people who would not subsequently honour the agreement.

            Back in October 2014 Abbas promised to visit Gaza “in the next few months.” He still hasn’t gone. He won’t even visit Balata the refugee camp outside of Ramallah.

            He lacks the courage and wisdom that Sadat had to make peace.

            The reality is, and even Obama appears to recognize this, that one will have to wait until Abbas dies either of old age or a coup and see if the next leader is any different. And if it turns out to be Saeb Erekat, one will have to wait even longer.

            Some of your other claims are also nonsense. Clinton was not responsible for half a million deaths in Iraq – the UN Oil for Food Program was responsible for about 60% of that, and only indirectly. The half million, which gained notoriety when Leslie Stahl sandbagged the newly appointed Madeleine Albright with that misinformation, turned out to include projections of the number of children who would have been born who weren’t and were incorrectly skewed by the movement of internally displaced people in Iraq. (You should consult her memoire Madam Secretary on that one.) The major culprit however was Saddam Hussein.

            The fools running the program on the UN side were naive enough to believe that Saddam would take use the income under the program and equitably distribute it amongst the Iraqi people.

            Who’d have thunk that an Arab dictator would favour his own supporters and extended clan? Duh. Now apply the same logic to Arafat, Abbas and Hamas.

            People like you give liberals like me a bad name. I’ll let you think that one over for a while. When I have a bit more time I’ll criticize some of your other criticism as well, including your false accusations about cantons, water supply, relentless but incredibly slow and negligible expansion of “settlements” and other bits and pieces of hyperbole that armchair altruists such as yourself subscribe to as a false faith. Like most lies there are grains of truth here and there, but what are beams in your eyes need to be brushed aside for the cobwebs that they actually are.

            Until we meet again, Mr. Day.

          • L-King,
            The chance for peace is nil because Israel would rather continue to confiscate more land than live in peace with an enemy they have conquered. See, it’s the sins of all sides involved that keeps the conflict going. But it seems that some take for granted what Israel has done and demands

            So it isn’t just Abbas who is at fault here. Netanyahu is at fault too, unless one believes that the conqueror has the moral right to do whatever he wants with his conquered territory. You seem to only blame the Palestninians for not recognizing the reality of Israel’s might and right to demand what it wants. That is not justice according to the Scriptures.

            As for Clinton and the deaths of of the Iraqi children, yes, it he is responsible though not by himself. The first two people in charge of the UN program resigned in protest. The first person, Denis Halliday, called the program genocie. The second person, Hans Von Sponeck called it a war. In fact, Von Sponeck wrote a book about it called A Different Kind Of War where he attributed the suffering there to the inadequate aid and structure of the program. He did not attribute that suffering to Iraqi resistance. And we should not leave out the fact that the destruction of civilian infrastructure that started the catastrophe violated interanational law. The Sanctions themselves prevented the influx of adequate funds from fixing the infrastructure as well as held down economic developement in Iraq itself. And while you want to say people who oppsed the sanctions didn’t have a realistic view Saddam, we weren’t the ones who supported Saddam with materials for WMDs. However the US gov’t gave substantial support to Saddam until he invaded Kuwait.

            You like to quote the Scriptures, so I will provide a Scripture I keep in my thoughts when protesting. That Scripture is the parable of the two praying. For regardless of the target of my protests, I know that both myself as an individual and the groups I favor in a particular conflict have their sins too. Therefore, the beginning of justice is the cessatation of specific sins committed by all parties involved. Then there should be the move to reconciliation. But nothing can be accomplished unless we acknowledge the sins of our own group as well as the sins we are protesting against. But you like to sit in a position where you can judge the actions of others while implying that your side has no sins. So unless you want to converse as equal rather than pretending to be superior, you really don’t feel compelled to write.

    • Gil Cohen

      I agree, my parents are Jews from Iraq… 1.1 million Arabs Jews refugees in total from Arabs countries in the 1950 had to run. this is the second refugees problem after the syrian refugees today. The press refuse to talk about it !!!

      And look today, how those countries, like Iraq, Syria, Libya … are becoming an amazing democracies after they got rid of the Jews and now getting rid of the christens
      If Israel didn’t exist, I am sure ISIS, the Shea Militia and the Muslims brotherhood would not as well…….
      your logic is flawless 🙂
      As the people you talk to!!!
      the settlers where providing 10% of Gaza people a job, which they could earn 4 times the average salary, and if you didn’t got hired by a settler you hated who was lucky, and campaign against the settlers .
      The problem, as in Iraq, was not the settlers (Jews), the problem is “that the settlers (Jews) are conceived as a problem” and unfortunately so do you, after they will see no benefit to keep you alive…
      trust me, I wish I was wrong… but that is the true.

      • Gil,
        All I did was to report what was reported to me, so if you want to misrepresent what I said, that is your perogative. The Jews who either left or were forced from their homes in those other nations during the late 40s and 50s were the victims of reprisals from the creation of Israel and the Israeli treatment of the Palestinians.

        See, while you want to portray me as blaming the Jews for all the problems in the nations you listed, I never said that. The real problem is tribalism whether that tribalism is exercised by Jews, Arabs, Americans, Muslims, Christians, or whoever else is involved. Tribalism occurs when loyalty to one’s group trumps commitment to principles and morals. Groups do not have to be racially or ethnically based for tribalism to occur. For example, tribalism will drive reluctant democrats to support Cllinton and reluctant Republicans to vote for Trump. And that is one of our 2 biggest problem both in that region as exercised by both Israelis and Palestinians as well as in the world by whoever is involved.

        • Gil Cohen

          Hi Curt,

          Apologies, I miss read what you wrote.
          one correction, if I might:
          the persecution of Jews stated in the 1920, and got worse as more independent were given to countries in the middle east.
          off course after the state of Israel aggravated that, but this is like persecuting Muslims in Europe because of ISIS… which is wrong.
          I believe you agree for that, that it is not a justification for their action, and they should be responsible for that as well.

          All the best
          Gil

          • Gil,
            I have misread notes myself, don’t worry.

            The persecution of the Jews occurred much earlier than 1920. It was occurring for almost 2 millennia throughout Christian Europe. The desire for a homeland was more than justified and it was justified prior to the Holocaust let alone after it

            There were indigenous Jews in Israel prior to the beginning of the Modern Zionist venture who experienced mixed relationships with Aras. Some were persecuted wile others had friendly relationships.

            As for your point, around 1920 was a good year to designate when the indigenous Arabs of Palestine started to be alarmed and react to the Zionist endeavor. They were the ones who used violence first but they also felt threatened by the increased presence of European Jews and the exclusive grab of land they were enjoying.
            There were multiple versions of Zionism that were on display back then. Some were quite inclusive while others were exclusive. Unfortunately, the form that took power leaned more toward exclusivity. Such was understandable considering Europe’s history of anti-Semitism, but it was still wrong.

            At the same time, the end of the Ottoman empire gave hope to some Palestinians that they too could gain their own homeland. As with some Zionist, homeland = own state with one’s group firmly in control.

            What we should learn from this is that domination over and persecution of others leads to a host of sins and hardships for more and more people in the future. That means that the current Occupation must end in a way that present and past hardships are used to justify dominating over others.

            As for groups like Al-Qaeda and ISIS, they are responding not just to the Israel-Palestine conflict, but to a host of Western interventions in Muslim homelands close to religious sites. They might have some legitimate reasons to be angry, but they have no justification for their terrorism.

            Thank you for your note and hope to correspond more on this subject with you.

            Curt

        • Gil Cohen

          Hi Curt,

          My apologies, I miss read your post.
          If I may correct you:
          1) 50% of the Palestinians left because they wanted to Jews exterminated, and they been told to do so, so it will be easier to the Arabs Armies to execute it.
          2) The prosecution of Jews started in Iraq in the 1920, and got worse as time progress. off course after the state of Israel was created, it aggravated it.
          We had no relation to Israel, before the persecution started !!!
          This is like persecuting Muslims in Europe for ISIS, and saying we can kill Muslims now because of ISIS… which is wrong. (i hope you dont preach for that)

          But I wonder, why you are obsessed with the Palestinians. At least Israel acknowledge it, and tried to do something, even if it is not perfect,
          While the Arabs world does not even want to discuss it… shame.

          Cheers
          Gil

  • leianders

    Ah, the” occupation” argument- there were attacks into Israel before 1967- the PLO was formed in 1964-Who occupied the West Bank and Gaza pre 1967?etc

  • Mike Harvey

    I am tempted to offer a broader comment on this story, but let me limit myself to correcting one point in the article. The author states that the Christian population in Israel in increasing, and a reader can be excused for believing he is referring to the native, i.e., Arab, Christian population. In fact, sadly, that is not the case. The native, Arabic speaking Christian population is emigrating at a heavy pace, mostly to the U.S. and Canada. At the same, many other Israelis are now identifying themselves as Christians, these include Ethiopian, Russian, Ukrainian and other immigrants whose parents claimed to be Jewish when they came to Israel. Their children are increasingly self-identifying as Christian. The second large group of “new” Christians are Messianic Jewish believers whose congregations are growing rapidly. We celebrate the acceptance of Jesus as Messiah by these children of Abraham, but mourn the departure of their brothers and sisters who, for 2000 years have kept their faith in Jesus as Savior in the land of his birth.

    • Phillip Pasmanick

      You contradict the author, claiming that Christian population in Israel is not increasing. I have yet to see any evidence that your statement is true. In fact, even Christian leaders are agreeing with this author, that in all of the mid-East, only in Israel, Christians are prospering.

      Since I see the above to be a figment of your imagination, I will assume the rest of your assertions are as well.

      • Mike Harvey

        Philip –pls read my note a little more closely. I agree the number of Christians in Israel is growing, but that growth is not coming from among the ancient, native Christian population, but from conversions among nominal and Messianic Jews.

        • L_King

          I agree with your point. Christians in Israel tend to be affluent in the sense of being middle class, and with that and a high emphasis on education especially for women tends to lead to smaller families. As such native Christians are more or less in a steady state within Israel.

          The point of the article is about Christians under Arab regimes – in this case the PA and Hamas. And the future does not look good.

  • Karen Naylor

    WOW. WHAT CAN ONE SAY ABOUT THIS UNLESS YOU ARE LIVING THERE. SOUNDS LIKE PEOPLE ARE BEING TREATED LIKE THEY ARE GUILTY AT THE CHECKPOINTS. THE WALL SHOULD HAVE BEEN A SAFETY NET. SOMETHING TO GIVE COMFORT TOO AS IT PROTECTED PEOPLE FROM TERRORISTS. WHAT WOULD HAPPEN IF THE WALL WAS TORN DOWN? THERE IS SO MUCH HATE CAUSING FEAR. IT WILL BE THERE WITH OR WITHOUT THE WALL. THE PEOPLE NEED TO PUT THE BLAME ON THE HATERS WHO CAUSE ALL OF THIS IN THE FIRST PLACE.

  • Kim2345678

    Have a loved one die from a terrorist attack and you will understand the importance of the security wall. The author of this article fails to give an accurate account for the REASON the security wall was built in the first place- MURDEROUS TERRORISTS. #STOPJESUSFORJIHAD

    • Carl Furillo

      You are right. The ‘accurate account’ should include the fact that Israel has illegally occupied the West Bank and East Jerusalem, and illegally blockaded Gaza for nearly 50 years – and the wall is an extention of that illegal occupation.

      • Shelly Gale

        Back on the meds, Carl!

      • Mamz Tatz

        What right do these white trespassers have to be there in the first place? The ancient inhabitants of the whole of that area in Bible times were black. God bless.xx

        • HappyRick

          +Mamz Tatz
          Based upon you statement, that white people are trespassers and that the ancient inhabitants were black, can you explain the following:

          While we were sitting with the Prophet in the mosque, a man came riding on a camel. He asked: “Who among you is Muhammad?” At that time the Prophet was sitting among us (his companions) leaning on his arm. We replied, “This WHITE MAN reclining on his arm.” Sahih Muslim no.63,vol 1.

          “Prophet Muhammad (pbuh)’s complexion was glowing WHITE” Narrated by Hazrat Uns(RZ), Sahih Muslim, no 2330

          “Prophet Muhammad (pbuh)’s complexion was a beautiful mixture of WHITE and red color” Masnad Imam Humbal, no 944

          The complexion of Rasool Allah (the Prophet of Allah) was WHITISH and reddish. Mashqat Shareef, vol 5, no 373)

          “The Prophet passed through the lane of Khaibar quickly and my knee was touching the thigh of the Prophet . He uncovered his thigh and I saw the WHITENESS of the thigh of the Prophet”. Sahih Bukhari 1:8:367

          “Anyone who says that the Prophet was BLACK should be killed.” Narrated Ahmad ibn Abi Sulayman, the companion of Sahnun. ,Ibn Musa al-Yahsubi, Qadi ‘Iyad, p.375. Rated as Nobile and Authentic.

          ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

          Here some more WHITE skinned Muslim Leaders in the Middle East:

          Yassir Arafat had white skin and blue eyes.

          Amin Al Husseini, the Grand Mufti of Palestine in the 1920s to 1940s, who worked for Hitler, had white skin, red hair and blue eyes.

          King Abdullah II of Jordan has white skin and blue eyes,

          Pres, Assad of Syria has white skin and blue eyes.

          The entire Saudi Royal family has white skin.

          So according to you, all of these Muslim leaders including your holy prophet are not Semites, but white trespasser, European invaders.

          • Mamz Tatz

            My enlightenment on the appearance of the Biblical Hebrews came from God, through prayer and meditation. I am a devout disciple of Christ and am blessed with being baptised in His Spirit. Peace.x

    • Mamz Tatz

      Remind me who who was living there first for thousands of years in peace?

  • L_King

    The story of Christie Anastas who had to flee Bethlehem because of threats to her family and resultant threats from her family will help readers of the article understand why Christians are fleeing Palestinian held areas. It’s not Israel.

    “The reality is Palestinian Christians cannot speak freely about the
    Muslim dominated environment in which they live. Their leaders often
    publicly condemn Israel while remaining silent about groups like Hamas,
    Hezbollah, and Palestinian Islamic Jihad. Occasionally, they might admit
    that Muslim hostility is a problem, but not very often and not very
    loudly.

    It is safe for Palestinian Christian leaders to condemn Israel – a
    democracy that has a tradition of respecting religious freedom and human
    rights. It is not safe, however, for Palestinian Christians to condemn
    the misdeeds of their Islamist neighbors who regard Christians as
    infidels and obstacles to the creation of an Islamic state.”

    http://legalinsurrection.com/2014/04/palestinian-christian-woman-threatened-after-video-critical-of-attacks-on-israel/

  • janetb

    Hi Folks,

    I have lived in Jerusalem since 1979. When Bethlehem was under Israeli control, we often used to go to Bethlehem on Saturdays (our one day of the week off from work) for a day out. There were great restaurants, and grocery stores which offered all sorts of foreign goods at a time when they were not yet readily available in Israel! It was a real treat to see all sorts of American products we had forgotten existed….:-)…. The best part of Bethlehem was the knaffe, a sweet dish based on cheese which you would get at sweet stands. And of course the best hummus. Also the markets with fresh produce which was so much cheaper than here in Israel. The city was always full of tourists. And Midnight Mass on Christmas was a big event, with special busses supplied by Israel bussing pilgrims and tourists to church. And of course Christmas in Bethlehem. That was all under Israel….

    All that ended when Fatah/PLO took over. The terrorist groups would forcibly take over Christian homes in Beit Jalla (adjacent to Bethlehem) and fire into the Jewish neighborhood Gilo. Beit Jalla was predominantly Christian, but as the Palestinians took over the area, many fled. Bit by bit the predominantly Christian area turned Moslem, and there were no more trips by Israelis and tourists to Bethlehem. We used to go hiking in that whole area, but alas no more. IT WAS ONLY YEARS LATER THAT THE PROTECTIVE WALL WAS BUILT. At least in that little part of the world, I know by experience that Jews and Arabs–Christians and Moslems–lived well together under Israeli rule.

  • It is a moslem duty to destroy all other religious sites and the peoples who will not convert to their way. .

    • Natalie M. Ckuj

      No it’s not. Are you just believing what you hear? If that’s the case, why haven’t Muslims destroyed all types of religious sites here in the states? They’re people with the same flesh, emotions, and needs as any other group. They are not told to terrorize based on religious beliefs.

      • You can be as much an islamic apartheid and supremacist apologist as you want, but when there are big enough numbers of them, yes the do destroy anything that is not islamic.
        Yes theyt are told to terrorize others for religious beliefs and especially no religious beliefs. Their Mhmd had an order in which infidels are to be killed.
        Mhmd canceled out all his peace verses in Median, fact. His last will and testament in Chapter 9, and here are his mandates

        9:3 Do not associate with unbelievers;
        give them painful punishment.
        9:5 Kill the unbelievers wherever you find them,
        besiege, sit-in-wait, ambush and capture them.
        9:10 It is the unbelievers who are the wrong.
        9:12 If the unbelievers defame or blasphemy us,
        kill them.
        9:23 Do not make friends with unbelievers.
        9:28 Unbelievers are filth.
        9:29 Fight unbelievers until they submit to Islam,
        or make them in humiliation pay money.
        9:30 The Christians say “Jesus is the son of Allah;”
        They are deluded. May Allah destroy them.
        9:33 Islam must triumph over all other religions
        9:36 There is no sacred month where fighting
        unbelievers is forbidden.
        9:39 Moslems who do not fight unbelievers will be
        punished and replaced.
        9:41 Fight with your money or your life for Allah.
        9:60 Your money/zagat will advance Islam.
        9:111 Moslems will kill or be killed and rewarded
        in Paradise.
        9:123 Make war on your infidel neighbors. Provoking unbelievers is a good deed to Allah.

        Unless you convert, you die too. 61% of this book deals with bad acts to do to unbelievers. Moslims are fundamentalists, not extremists ; they believe they are to follow ALL they are mandated to do. CLINICAL psychopath Mhmd’s mandates are not a buffet from which to pick and choose; all must be obeyed.

        • Santiago Bilal García

          Ann, my great-grandparents were palestinian christians who migrated to Latin America and I now the truth behind this and they descriminated by JEWS extremists and MUSLIMS extremist, both sides were intolerant to them and almost any palestinian christian it’s with Israel to the contrary of what news wrongly says. Islam use to respect us because they have Jesus as prophet while Jews says Jesus was an impostor. I agree sunni muslims do ad things and they have a lot of terrorist groups, but they came all from the same branches and you will NEVER see in Syria or Lebanon (Hezbollah) a shi’a, alewite or sufi killing christians, NEVER. It came sall from those Sunnis who are crazy. The problem is not Islam, the problem is Sunnism.

          Respectfully, please visit Bethlehem and spend a week or so there talking to as many Palestinian Christians as you possibly can. I did this and it was an eye opener as I’d been told so many times what you say, but it simply isn’t true. You will find that many Christians have lost their jobs, suffered and many even their homes because of the occupation. It is highly unlikely you’ll find anyone who loves The Lord and is a dedicated Christian blaming Islam, equally you’ll find almost every one of them has witnessed or suffered intimidation from the occupation forces. These are Christians, real ones, so please, go and find out for yourself.

          I don’t like when a person who never lived in Middle East judge about what’s going on there.

          Sincerely

          • I would never even get on an airplane now a days. Too old besides. I’ve been everywhere I wanted to go, the South Pacific islands which is mainly matriarchal.
            I will always blame Mohammad for the clinical psychopath he was and the problems he has caused over the ages. The people you cite may not kill Christians since they are not Sunnis, but these moslims are still duped by a con man who trumped up a moon idol into a phony god who had nothing to do with Abraham – all fabrication. Biggest hoax in human history.

  • abe1000

    The West Bank was occupied by Jordan from 49 to 67 and for some inexplicable reason the Jordanians did not grant the Palestinians a state. How rude.