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Rorgg
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Postby Rorgg » Thu Apr 05, 2007 2:06 am UTC

Didn't we cover this long before the discussion degraded, and isn't the mini-history lesson of the Arab-Israeli wars a litany of mistakes of the Arab nations of the region?

The actual Palestinian people are largely people caught between a rock and a hard place in this, caught between Israel's need for security, the Arab nations attempts to destroy it and internal groups demanding Israel's destruction and attempting to torpedo any peace measures that would prevent that.

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Postby Vaniver » Thu Apr 05, 2007 2:12 am UTC

Didn't we cover this long before the discussion degraded, and isn't the mini-history lesson of the Arab-Israeli wars a litany of mistakes of the Arab nations of the region?
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Postby Xial » Thu Apr 05, 2007 4:45 am UTC

This time around I'm hoping that there will be more personal attacks, yelling, and CAPS. It should be far more interesting albeit less constructive.

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Postby 3.14159265... » Thu Apr 05, 2007 5:08 am UTC

Why arn't any of you offering any actual ideas?

Also why didn't anyone responde to the sites I offered mentioning the crimes of Sharon and Israel in general?
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Rorgg
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Postby Rorgg » Thu Apr 05, 2007 5:15 am UTC

Okay, you want a real, potentially achievable first step?

Every Arab nation needs to recognize Israel's right to exist. Full stop. Without that, this conflict is literally interminable, and there's absolutely no common ground from which to work.

As for your second point, it's rather irrelevant except as a catalyst to drive the discussion in the mud, since everyone involved here has acknowledged that the government of Israel has dirty hands as well.

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Postby Solt » Thu Apr 05, 2007 12:58 pm UTC

Rorgg wrote:Every Arab nation needs to recognize Israel's right to exist. Full stop. Without that, this conflict is literally interminable, and there's absolutely no common ground from which to work.

As for your second point, it's rather irrelevant except as a catalyst to drive the discussion in the mud, since everyone involved here has acknowledged that the government of Israel has dirty hands as well.


Ok I haven't read anything in the topic except the few comments on this page so I'm sorry if I'm ignorant of what's been said.

But I don't see why any Arab nation should recognize Israel's right to exist. The land used to belong to the Palestinians, and it was taken from them by force. Millions of Arabs were displaced at gun point so the Israelis could have a place to settle. I know of no other region in the world where such actions would be tolerated, why should we expect the Arabs to do the same?
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Postby Rorgg » Thu Apr 05, 2007 1:56 pm UTC

I'm sorry, but you're working off false assumptions. The land that was the 1948 border of Israel was comprised overwhelmingly of land purchased legitimately by Jewish settlers who had migrated into the area.

After the first Arab-Israeli war, which was based solely on the Arab nations' refusal to accept Israeli statehood under the UN plan, which also accounted for an Arab state of Palestine, the other Arab nations and Israel agreed to an armistice whereby the Arab nations (largely Egypt and Jordan) annexed most of the territory that had been allocated to the state of Palestine, removing it as a political entity.

Under those borders, which are still relatively close to the integral borders of Israel as accepted today, both Arabs living within Israel and Jews living within Arab-controlled lands migrated.

There are certainly legitimate grievances against Israel, but I would suggest before taking a stance on such a controversial issue you at least acquaint yourself with the basic facts.

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Postby Yakk » Thu Apr 05, 2007 2:51 pm UTC

A shorter version:

If the Arabs don't recognize Israels right to exist, Israel shouldn't recognize the Arab state's right to exist.

Israel's existence goes back to before the British mandate.

Pre-birth-of-israel, the clashes between Israeli and Arab in the region where relatively subdued. People wanting an Israeli state simply moved in and bought land from those who owned it before.

There where racist immigration policies that capped the number of Jews who would be allowed to immigrate into Israel at this time, but no caps on Arabs. There where revolts against British rule and against Jewish presence in the region.

The UN comprimise had a two-state solution, with Palistine containing majority Arabs, and Israel being majority Jews. It was considered unacceptable to the Arab states and governments.

So Israel came into existence at the objection of the neighbouring states. It won a war against all 5 neighbouring states and the local palistines (who where mostly disarmed after the Arab revolts a decade or so ago).

Even after victory, the other Arab states would not even talk with Israel officially.

Israel then claimed additional territory that made their position slightly more defensible.

Over the next 50 years, Israel continued to claim territory from Arab states who didn't accept Israels existence, wouldn't talk to Israel, and publicly declaired plans to wipe Israel off the map. Pretty much all of this territory was terrotory being used as a staging ground to attack Israel: be it the West Bank, the Sinai Peninsula, the Golan heights, or the southern slice of Lebanon.

Egypt normalized relations with Israel, and Israel pulled out of the Sinai. Lebanon has a huge military force within it's borders that the state cannot control (Hezboulla, Iranian funded), who regularly attacks Israel: Lebanon is not at peace with Israel. Syria is not a peace with Israel.

There are cease-fire lines, but there is no peace. I see no special obligation for Israel to make sacrafices for peace, when it never sought to annihilate the states it succfully defended against, while the other side was attempting to destroy Israel.

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Postby 3.14159265... » Thu Apr 05, 2007 3:00 pm UTC

Yakk wrote:If the Arabs don't recognize Israels right to exist, Israel shouldn't recognize the Arab state's right to exist.


But Israel doesn't recongnize the right for PALESTINE to exist. Not only is palestine a country, it has EXISTED before the occupation. Israel is an occupation, and you want people to recognize its right to exist (i.e. we are cool with u bieng here). While Israel has wiped out a country and doesn't recognize its right to exist.

Don't think this has anything with the jews for a second.

A buncha ppl for RELIGIOUS reasons occupied a place there are fights and now u want the neighbours to say ah well u r here to stay, ok lets be friends....


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Postby Vaniver » Thu Apr 05, 2007 3:02 pm UTC

I know of no other region in the world where such actions would be tolerated, why should we expect the Arabs to do the same?
I'm curious. Are you familiar with any history?
Possession of land only comes through violence, and will depart as soon as you refuse to continue using violence to uphold it.

And, as they pointed out, your facts are as wrong as your worldview.

A buncha ppl for RELIGIOUS reasons occupied a place there are fights and now u want the neighbours to say ah well u r here to stay, ok lets be friends....
Please, look into the history. There are only so many times we can correct you before it gets tedious.
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Rorgg
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Postby Rorgg » Thu Apr 05, 2007 3:53 pm UTC

You've gone way over the land into imaginary-land here, my friend. You're just utterly, utterly wrong:

But Israel doesn't recongnize the right for PALESTINE to exist.

Fact: Israel accepted the 1947 UN partition plan which would have founded a Palestinian state. (cite)

Not only is palestine a country, it has EXISTED before the occupation.

Your terms are very fuzzy here... you'll have to define "Palestine", "country," "exist" in this context and what you term "occupation" to evaluate this.

Israel is an occupation

Not according to the United Nations, the vast majority of nations in the world, or even the Arab nations with which Israel has normalized relations, such as Egypt.

and you want people to recognize its right to exist (i.e. we are cool with u bieng here).

That's much more colloquial than I would put it. You can not like your neighbor without attempting to bulldoze his home.

While Israel has wiped out a country and doesn't recognize its right to exist.

The cessation of Palestine as a political entity was done with the expiration of the British mandate of 1948. There was never a recognized nation to "wipe out." Furthermore, the majority of land that would have belonged to that nation was formerly annexed by Jordan and the other Arab states as part of the 1949 armistice agreeement. The creation of a new Palestinian state has been slow (too slow in my opinion) but note that the current Palestinian National Authority, which retains internal jurisdiction resultant from the Oslo accords does not claim national sovreignity.

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Postby space_raptor » Thu Apr 05, 2007 4:22 pm UTC

Solt wrote:But I don't see why any Arab nation should recognize Israel's right to exist. The land used to belong to the Palestinians, and it was taken from them by force. Millions of Arabs were displaced at gun point so the Israelis could have a place to settle. I know of no other region in the world where such actions would be tolerated, why should we expect the Arabs to do the same?


Sigh. Speaking for myself, because of this discussion I have recently learned quite a lot about the history of the area. It is quite an interesting place.

Circa 1948, I can think of plenty of places where people were displaced by gunpoint and their land was taken. The formation of Israel is special because that was not what happened there. At all. Yet the Arab states have repeatedly made war on the country, which was set up by the UN, the world's only authority on forming countries that is NOT backed up with guns.

To make it perfectly clear, the 1948 war did not result in the formation of Israel. It already existed. For one day only, perhaps, but it was formed legally, with no guns, no deaths, no pogroms against the Arabs. And millions of Palestinians were not displaced, either. The actual number which was displaced, in the 1948 war, is 711,000. Give or take. (From wiki) There were also hundreds of thousands of Jewish refugees as a result of that war, except they fled to Israel, which accepted them with open arms. None of the Arab nations did so for the Palestinians. Some Palestinians took refuge in the Arab nations, but they were for the most part not granted citizenship. There are laws in some Arab countries explicitly barring Palestinians from being citizens. Jordan was the only country to really allow Palestinians to become citizens. In Jordan in 1970,a large group of Palestinians were massacred because the Palestinians were trying to gain control of the country. Palestinians are not as welcome in Jordan, and they cannot become citizens there anymore.

I've said it before and I'll say it again: The true evil in this situation is not Israel, nor is it the Palestinians. It is the Arab nations.

They have brought war to Palestine time and time again. They support the terrorist groups that prevent the peace process from taking place. They refuse to accept Palestinian refugees as citizens, keeping them in the refugee camps. The largest contributor of aid to the Palestinians is the US, not the Arab League. The Arabs use the Palestinians as pawns, as a tool against Israel. The Palestinian situation is a creation of Arab making.

The Arab countries have never cared about Palestinians. They cared only about destroying Israel. If only it was about righting a wrong committed against the Palestinians. Instead, the Palestinians were caught between a rock and a hard place. The Arab countries wanted to finish the Holocaust.
Saying Israel has no right to exist was just their justification for making war. The truth is that before 1948 there was a lot of Jews living in Palestine(which was never a country), and a lot of Arabs. That is why the UN made the partition plan, so that the Jews and Arabs could live in the same area of land, where they had been living for years. Since there was finally a country where Jews could live as equals, Jewish refugees from all over the world, especially Europe and the other Arab countries, came to live there.

The Golan Heights, taken from Syria in 1967, is a strategic location from where most of northern Israel can be bombarded. Pre 1967, the width of Israel between the sea and the West Bank shrunk in places to 17 km. Those 17 km are very vulnerable to a military attacking from the West Bank, and an Arab force could cut Israel in half easily. The fact that Israel is, in fact, a very small country surrounded by several enemies is somehow ignored when it comes to discussions about borders and peace treaties. The land that Israel took in their wars provides them with a much better defensive situation. After a war, that seems like a justifiable reason to take land.

This seems to be turning into a history lesson. Well, at least it is useful discussion.

Frankly, if I had my way, we'd move all the Palestinians into Syria, Jordan, and Egypt, and let the Arabs deal with them. They should reap what they have sown.
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Postby Yakk » Thu Apr 05, 2007 6:17 pm UTC

OTTOMAN EMPIRE (dum de dum): Owns most of the middle east.
WWI (pow bang shaboom): Ottoman Empire disassembled by the victorious powers. The core becomes Turkey, the rest is split up into administrative regions by the colonial victors.

One of the regious is Palistine. Britian has a plan: there are already some jews in the region, and other jews want to move there. A jewish state!

WWI -> WWII: The meme of nationalism spreads in the middle east. People start demanding their own country!

Colonial powers are finding holding their empire together harder, and the massive oil reserves in the middle east give the locals leverage.

Britian partitions Palistine into Palistine and the Trans-jordan, adds restrictions to jewish immigration to Palistine and restricts the migration to the west side of the jordan river.

Arab revolts kick off: the Arabs know the British plan to create a state of Israel out of the British mandate, and they don't want it. They also revolt against British rule in general: there is a time-table for releasing the region, but they think it is too slow.

WWII: Britian recruits what help it can: Rommel in Africa is threatening some serious damage to her empire. A large number of Zionists enlist and fight on the British side.

Germany uses large amounts of anti-jewish propoganda in the middle east, to attempt to get the Arabs to join the Nazi cause and fight against the Allies.

Post WWII: the UN proposes a partitioning of the 20% of Palistine west of the Jordan into two intertwined pieces, giving each of the peoples (Arab and Zionist) their own state. Arabs reject this proposal, and Zionists support it.

1 day before Britian officially ends her mandate, the state of Israel is declaried. 1 day later, 5 Arab states declair war on it.

The local Arabs aren't that well armed: the earlier arab revolt resulted in the British disarming them. The local Zionists are well armed and trained: many of them recently served in the British forces during the war.

Logistical problems delay the invasion of the nearby Arab states.

In addition, the racial caps on Jewish immigration to Israel are gone, because the British mandate is gone. Large numbers of Zionists flood in to defend the new state.

This isn't a war of high-tech weaponry: it is a war of scavanged equipment from the 2nd world war. Battles between Egyptian spitfires (purchased from the Britiish) and Israeli planes (purchased from Italy, manufactured originally by the Nazis) are one particularly bit of irony.

That is the founding of Israel/Palistine. From a province in the ottoman empire, to a mandate of the british empire, to independence.

...

During the war, nearby Arab states encourage palistinians to flee Israel: large numbers do, out of fear of being killed by the Jews, and fear of being called a traitor for staying. The arab states also "encourage" their own Jewish population to flee. Between 500 thousand and 800 thousand Jews and Arabs (each) flee their homes. Most of the Jews flee to Israel, bolstering their population, and most of the Arabs flee to the surrounding Arab states.

The Arab states lose the war. They see the palistinians as a weapon they can use on Israel: so they deny them citizenship, force them to live in refugee camps, and generally treat them like shit.

Israel views the Jews who fled the nearby Arab states as a resource: so they provide them with places to live, citizenship, and put them to work.

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Postby Vaniver » Thu Apr 05, 2007 6:39 pm UTC

I must say, "pow bang shaboom" is perhaps the most amusing summary of WWI I have ever heard or read.
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Postby Solt » Thu Apr 05, 2007 8:04 pm UTC

Rorgg wrote:I'm sorry, but you're working off false assumptions. The land that was the 1948 border of Israel was comprised overwhelmingly of land purchased legitimately by Jewish settlers who had migrated into the area.


Oh yea, I totally believe that. Because a land that "overwhelmingly" belongs to Jews is very likely to displace 700,000 Palestinians upon its declaration as a sovereign state.

Vaniver wrote:
Quote:
I know of no other region in the world where such actions would be tolerated, why should we expect the Arabs to do the same?


I'm curious. Are you familiar with any history?
Possession of land only comes through violence, and will depart as soon as you refuse to continue using violence to uphold it.

And, as they pointed out, your facts are as wrong as your worldview.


Right. Remind me, where, exactly, has this happened in the last 50 years without international uproar? I'd like to hear your correct facts, if you don't mind.

And how much resentment still exists for possessions that happened in the last 300 years? The US government still doesn't think it's payed the natives back for what we took from them. The British, if I recall correctly, gave back everything to the original owners (without much violence on either side, who would have thought!). I would argue that possession is defined by a lack of violent attempts to overthrow the current inhabitants of a land. But that's just me.
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Postby blob » Thu Apr 05, 2007 8:28 pm UTC

Solt wrote:Right. Remind me, where, exactly, has this happened in the last 50 years without international uproar? I'd like to hear your correct facts, if you don't mind.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ethnic_cle ... th_century

Mass expulsions of Hindus and Sikhs from Pakistan to India. This was to create an Islamic state in an area which was historically related to the origins of Hinduism and Sikhism. The controversy surrounding this move resulted in the killings of Muslims, Hindus and Sikhs in riots. This was known as the partition of British India in 1947.[21] Well over 10 million people were violently displaced, making it the largest single instance of ethnic cleansing in recorded history.


Solt wrote:The British, if I recall correctly, gave back everything to the original owners (without much violence on either side, who would have thought!).

Not everything: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Northern_ireland

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Postby Solt » Thu Apr 05, 2007 9:01 pm UTC

No one stole any land in India. The partition was a condition of the British withdrawal, and there is resentment towards the British for breaking India into 3 pieces, but not so much towards the muslims/hindus for actually living in their respected parts. This is because both groups have lived together in India for several thousand years.

Your example is nothing like Israel's situation.

I wasn't asking about ethnic cleansings anyway. I'm asking about an instance of land being stolen by force by one group from another group and the international community saying "eh, they took it fair and square (violently) so it's fine by us."

If you can find such an example (you won't), you can cite precedent for the Arab nations recognizing the right of Israel to exist. If you find no such example, someone should probably explain why exactly then the Israelis should get the benefit of a double standard, why it should be ok for them to steal land but no one else.
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Postby Bluesprite » Thu Apr 05, 2007 9:22 pm UTC

3.14159265... wrote:Why arn't any of you offering any actual ideas?

Also why didn't anyone responde to the sites I offered mentioning the crimes of Sharon and Israel in general?


Ideas: I don't have any. The only path to peace is for Hamas and Fatah to get along in such a way that they acknowledge the right of Israel to exist, and for Israel not to stonewall like they have in the past.

How do you convince Israel not to stonewall? How do you convince Hamas and Fatah to get along? How do you convince them to accept Israel's right to exist?

You can't. They have to do those things.

Crimes: To be perfectly honest, I don't see them as relevant to the issue of peace in the region. Perhaps there should be a trial. Perhaps there shouldn't. Perhaps Sharon should be put in jail (isn't he still in a coma?).

But don't kid yourself. It's not going to change the situation in the Mideast.
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Postby Bluesprite » Thu Apr 05, 2007 9:23 pm UTC

Solt wrote:The land used to belong to the Palestinians, and it was taken from them by force.


Correction: The land used to belong to Transjordan, Egypt, and possibly Syria.

Edit: Fascinating observation: If the PLO had never happened, there would be peace in Israel today. Jordan and Egypt have both signed treaties with Israel, while Syria is in a de facto state of peace though formally still at war.
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Postby Bluesprite » Thu Apr 05, 2007 9:26 pm UTC

Solt wrote:Oh yea, I totally believe that. Because a land that "overwhelmingly" belongs to Jews is very likely to displace 700,000 Palestinians upon its declaration as a sovereign state.


I think you should look into why, exactly, so many Palestinians left their homes. I think the answer would surprise you.
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Postby Solt » Fri Apr 06, 2007 12:53 am UTC

Bluesprite wrote:
Solt wrote:Oh yea, I totally believe that. Because a land that "overwhelmingly" belongs to Jews is very likely to displace 700,000 Palestinians upon its declaration as a sovereign state.


I think you should look into why, exactly, so many Palestinians left their homes. I think the answer would surprise you.



http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Palestinian_exodus

I suggest you do the same. I wasn't surprised at all.
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Postby space_raptor » Fri Apr 06, 2007 12:56 am UTC

Solt wrote:No one stole any land in India. The partition was a condition of the British withdrawal, and there is resentment towards the British for breaking India into 3 pieces, but not so much towards the muslims/hindus for actually living in their respected parts. This is because both groups have lived together in India for several thousand years.

Your example is nothing like Israel's situation.

I wasn't asking about ethnic cleansings anyway. I'm asking about an instance of land being stolen by force by one group from another group and the international community saying "eh, they took it fair and square (violently) so it's fine by us."

If you can find such an example (you won't), you can cite precedent for the Arab nations recognizing the right of Israel to exist. If you find no such example, someone should probably explain why exactly then the Israelis should get the benefit of a double standard, why it should be ok for them to steal land but no one else.


I agree with Bluesprite. You are wrong on a few points here. I encourage you to look into the history for yourself, if you don't believe us. It's been explained a few times in the thread already. I know it's kind of a lot to read, and the thread kinda goes off the rails sometimes, but it's there.

Edit: Okay. Let's start slow: Israel's original borders were set up by the UN Partition Plan. Agreed or disagreed?

Since you don't have a problem with partitioning Pakistan and India, a partition here, ignoring the war for now, should be okay. Right?

Whether or not the UN partition was well thought out or not is a side issue for now. Fact is, nobody had any kind of sovereignty over the area until it was granted by the UN.

Certainly, after Israel declared it's independence, even before, there were conflicts, and atrocities, on both sides. But to say that ALL of Israel was taken from Palestinian Arabs by force is quite clearly false. At least to me it's clear. There was an original land of Israel. The conflicts after that are certainly controversial, but the original country was established legitimately.
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Postby Vaniver » Fri Apr 06, 2007 2:26 am UTC

Right. Remind me, where, exactly, has this happened in the last 50 years without international uproar? I'd like to hear your correct facts, if you don't mind.
Somebody already linked India, so I guess I shouldn't do that again.

What makes you think that the Arab nations are living in the last 50 years? What makes you think that we should only use the last 50 years to judge how history unfolds?

The US government still doesn't think it's payed the natives back for what we took from them. ... I would argue that possession is defined by a lack of violent attempts to overthrow the current inhabitants of a land. But that's just me.
(Incorrect fact omitted)
So, imagine two children. One of them has a ball. The other one wants it, and attempts to take it from the first one. Does this mean that the first child does not own the ball, since it is contested?

A lack of violent attempts, at best, supports possession. It by no means defines it.

I find your example of the U.S. curious. How many Native Americans are trying to violently retake what is "theirs"? Why do you think they are content with the poor reservations that we pushed them onto, and why do you think the Palestinians are not content with the less poor areas that their wars have pushed them into?

No one stole any land in India.
Yeah, those people killed and displaced? Their goods and land were delivered to next of kin. Every time.

The partition was a condition of the British withdrawal, and there is resentment towards the British for breaking India into 3 pieces, but not so much towards the muslims/hindus for actually living in their respected parts. This is because both groups have lived together in India for several thousand years.

Your example is nothing like Israel's situation.
It actually rivals it very well.

But, first, a side note. Islam hasn't been around for more than two thousand years- so your use of "several" is flawed.

First, a Western nation administered it. Second, that Western nation pulled out or was forced out, and left behind a multi-state solution. The people were shuffled around, with more than a little discomfort and death, until most of them were where they were "supposed" to be.

Then, the two split. India and Pakistan have had a few squabbles; the day after Israel was made, the Arabs swore to destroy it. So, we can't really blame the British for that.

I'm asking about an instance of land being stolen by force by one group from another group and the international community saying "eh, they took it fair and square (violently) so it's fine by us."
You mean, like the international community approving the division of Germany into four countries administered by other countries, because they won a war against Germany? Or, how about, the legitimization of revolutions for independence because they won the war? The difference between a new nation and a suppressed revolt lies in military might and tactics, not the dictates of the international community. (And the international community only really influences things when they send troops- yay for guns!)

If you can find such an example (you won't), you can cite precedent for the Arab nations recognizing the right of Israel to exist.
So... this 'international community' you like so much. They were kind of the ones that made Israel. Doesn't that mean they sort of approved of it?

It is ridiculous to claim that the displacement of Palestinians was cause for the Arabs to declare a war of annihilation on the Jews. If you think that's the only reason that war was declared, you need to look at the Arabs a bit harder.
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Postby Solt » Fri Apr 06, 2007 3:43 am UTC

space_raptor wrote:Since you don't have a problem with partitioning Pakistan and India, a partition here, ignoring the war for now, should be okay. Right?


Look, I'll say this again. No land was stolen in India. No outside group came in and, in a period of 50 years from their first arrival, managed to create a sovereign state for themselves. Both factions in India are descendants of people who have been living there for 6,000 years.

Vaniver wrote:So, imagine two children. One of them has a ball. The other one wants it, and attempts to take it from the first one. Does this mean that the first child does not own the ball, since it is contested?


Ok now imagine the second child succeeds in taking the ball from the first one. Does it now legitimately belong to him?

Why do you think they are content with the poor reservations that we pushed them onto


They aren't. We pay them millions of dollars a year. We exempt them from many rules that the rest of us have to live under. They have special rights such as casinos. They haven't forgiven us, and neither should the Palestinians forgive the Israelis.

Quote:
No one stole any land in India.
Yeah, those people killed and displaced? Their goods and land were delivered to next of kin. Every time.


The Indians themselves were demanding the partition along with independence as early as 1930, thank you very much. It was first proposed by the Muslim league.

Please stop bringing up India as an example. It is not a similar situation. The Palestinians did not agree to the UN proposed borders.


First, a Western nation administered it. Second, that Western nation pulled out or was forced out, and left behind a multi-state solution. The people were shuffled around, with more than a little discomfort and death, until most of them were where they were "supposed" to be.

Then, the two split. India and Pakistan have had a few squabbles; the day after Israel was made, the Arabs swore to destroy it. So, we can't really blame the British for that.


I don't remember the part in India where the British left behind a superior military for one side to use to forcibly displace the other.

You mean, like the international community approving the division of Germany into four countries administered by other countries, because they won a war against Germany?


I think you might be referring to the country that launched two wars of aggression in a 30 year period and systematically exterminated 6 million people and was considered a serious threat to world peace. What I don't understand is how this proves anything.

Or, how about, the legitimization of revolutions for independence because they won the war? The difference between a new nation and a suppressed revolt lies in military might and tactics, not the dictates of the international community.


The difference lies in the people. Revolutions= the people who own the land, who have always lived on it, are changing their government. New Nation= someone who arrived with the intention of founding a new, exclusive nation declared independence once their numbers were large enough, then used military force to expel most locals. NOT THE SAME THING.

If you think that's the only reason that war was declared, you need to look at the Arabs a bit harder.


You're right. It was obviously blind, illogical hatred.
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Postby Vaniver » Fri Apr 06, 2007 4:44 am UTC

No land was stolen in India. No outside group came in and, in a period of 50 years from their first arrival, managed to create a sovereign state for themselves. Both factions in India are descendants of people who have been living there for 6,000 years.
So... there aren't any people of British descent in India?
The annexation of India into the British Crown doesn't really count as the British "making a sovereign state for themselves"?

Just because a "people group" has been living in a region for a while doesn't mean that all individuals are from that group. Does it matter that the Jews *originated* in that region of the world, or does the diaspora destroy any 'right' they may have had to a homeland?

Ok now imagine the second child succeeds in taking the ball from the first one. Does it now legitimately belong to him?
That depends, really. We're assuming that the ball was given to the first child, instead of both of the children, or neither. The parent might even have said "here's a ball, fight over it". The ball might have been naturally occurring. If we're using the fight of children to model a war between societies, instead of a fight between individuals, spoils of war becomes a legitimate argument, and the second child now "owns" the ball. That doesn't stop the first child from taking it back the same way. [edit-I should add: The Israelis are the first child, here. The UN decided to give them the land; they didn't decide to walk up to someone else and beat it out of them. They did decide to walk up to someone else and pay them for it, but when fair transactions become a crime in your eyes, you have your own problems to work through]

If the second child kills the first, is there now a strong argument for it being his (as compared to, say, a third child)?

They aren't. We pay them millions of dollars a year. We exempt them from many rules that the rest of us have to live under. They have special rights such as casinos.
They're content to not try to kill us; that's the definition of content we're using to keep our scale with the Palestinians the same.

They haven't forgiven us, and neither should the Palestinians forgive the Israelis.
If the Palestinians should not forgive the Israelis, then one can argue that they won't. And if an enemy is resolved not to forgive you, the only sound option open to a nation-state is the destruction of that enemy.
"Upon this, one has to remark that men ought either to be well treated or crushed, because they can avenge themselves of lighter injuries, of more serious ones they cannot; therefore the injury that is to be done to a man ought to be of such a kind that one does not stand in fear of revenge." -Machiavelli

Do we want to provoke the Israelis into a war in which they attempt to do serious injuries to the Arabs, instead of light ones?

Please stop bringing up India as an example. It is not a similar situation. The Palestinians did not agree to the UN proposed borders.
But you're pretending that's totally the fault of the UN, instead of the fault of the Palestinians, or some sort of combined fault.

I don't remember the part in India where the British left behind a superior military for one side to use to forcibly displace the other.
You're right, the British didn't leave either side significant forces. However, I find calling the Israeli displacement of Arabs the significant factor in this debate silly. About as many Jews got displaced as Arabs did; why are you not weeping for them? Any hostilities resulting from land the Jews took by military action are hostilities resulting from a war the Jews did not cause.

I think you might be referring to the country that launched two wars of aggression in a 30 year period and systematically exterminated 6 million people and was considered a serious threat to world peace. What I don't understand is how this proves anything.
I am referring to them!
This is what it proves: Violence can settle things.

Revolutions= the people who own the land, who have always lived on it, are changing their government.
Such as, say, the American revolution. Oh wait, they were first, second, and possibly third generation immigrants.
You say people "own" land like ownership of land doesn't change significantly over time. If I sell my grandfather's farm, does that mean I no longer have some sort of ancestral claim to it? Well, pretty much, yeah. I can attempt to buy it again (like the Jews did with Israel), but I can't go to the person I sold it to and say "it's my family's farm!"

New Nation= someone who arrived with the intention of founding a new, exclusive nation declared independence once their numbers were large enough, then used military force to expel most locals. NOT THE SAME THING.
But, that's not what you asked. You asked if the international community ever approved of land taken (or, as you put it, stolen) by force.

For example, let's look at Zimbabwe, a rather fun place to live. People bandy about the word genocide when talking about Mugabe, but the UN has not made sanctions against it (although the USA and EU have). Land is being taken from whites, who have often lived there for multiple generations, and improved the land at great personal and financial cost, and given to political supporters of Mugabe, who have (on the whole) mismanaged the land.
So, who "owns" some parcel of land? The person who has been living on it for the last five years? The person whose parents and grandparents were living on it for the past hundred years? Or the person whose great, great, grandparents might have lived there (but we have no proof, thanks to poor deed records or genealogical records, or a society that didn't use deeds)? How about the person of the same ethnic group as the last person?

You're right. It was obviously blind, illogical hatred.
Glad to see you've come around.

Seriously, though. There's a significant portion of the population for who it is blind, illogical hatred. Should we discount them because a few have legitimate problems? Should we discount the legitimate problems because a few are illogical? No to either. But perhaps we should point some of the fingers of blame at those who caused the wars that caused the majority of those legitimate problems.

I don't see why you fault someone for choosing somewhere else to live, and moving there peaceably (i.e. the Jewish immigrants before the British mandate ended). It's like saying the 'white flight' from the cities to the suburbs caused city crime rates to climb. Does that mean the suburbanites are murderers? No, not really.
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Postby Solt » Fri Apr 06, 2007 6:51 am UTC

Ok look, what it comes down to is the facts. You are denying certain things. To prevent our responses from becoming essays in and of themselves, let me try to find the points where we disagree, and then we can find evidence to see who is right. We can do this constructively, see?


1- Did the Jews have legitimate claim to the land? This generally depends on how long they have been there and how much of the land they owned, exactly. Ok, let's pretend that the UN partition plan of 1947 proposed fair, legitimate boundaries according to where people lived, and the Jews were there, as you claim, legitimately. The Palestinians, for whatever crazy reasons, did not agree to these boundaries. Instead, the Jews acted unilaterally and declared themselves a sovereign state, using these boundaries as a guideline. Note that nothing that actually happened was sanctioned by the UN. Shouldn't a fair settlement be defined by Palestinian consensus? I know you might not think they have a right to an opinion or to decide the course of their future, but they really do. When the Jews declared sovereignty, the Palestinians had at least equal right to the new state as them.

2. Were the Palestinians forced out of their lands by the Israeli Military?

You seem to be denying that this ever happened. Perhaps you are suggesting that they left voluntarily, or because they simply did not want to live with Jews whom they hated so much because, well, they're Jewish.

I don't think you can deny this. I leave you with this

Yoav Gelber, Professor at the University of Haifa wrote:The position of these new escaping or expelled Palestinians was essentially different from that of their predecessors of the pre-invasion period. Their mass flight was not the result of their inability to hold on against the Jews. The Arab expeditions failed to protect them, and they remained a constant reminder of the fiasco. These later refugees were sometimes literally deported across the lines. In certain cases, IDF units terrorized them to hasten their flight, and isolated massacres — particularly during the liberation of Galilee and the Negev in October 1948 — expedited the flight.


Benny Morris, Professor at Ben-Gurion University (Israel) wrote:October 31, 1948, the commander of the Northern Front, Moshe Carmel, issued an order in writing to his units to expedite the removal of the Arab population. Carmel took this action immediately after a visit by Ben-Gurion to the Northern Command in Nazareth. There is no doubt in my mind that this order originated with Ben-Gurion. Just as the expulsion order for the city of Lod, which was signed by Yitzhak Rabin, was issued immediately after Ben-Gurion visited the headquarters of Operation Dani.


Wikipedia wrote:Gelber also underlines that Palestinian had certainly in mind the opportunity they would have to return their home after the conflict and that this hope must have eased their flight: 'When they ran away, the refugees were confident of their eventual repatriation at the end of hostilities. This term could mean a cease-fire, a truce, an armistice and, certainly, a peace agreement. The return of escapees had been customary in the Middle East's wars throughout the ages'.


All citations are from this wikipedia article on the Palestinian Exodus which I recommended to you to read earlier, but that you obviously did not look at.

3. Were the Palestinians forced out of their lands by the Israeli Military unfairly?

Apparently you would argue no. Some shit about kids and balls. All's fair in war. My point concerning this matter relates to the question which we have gone off on a tangent trying to answer. In the modern era (meaning the last 50 or so years, WWII being a major redefining moment of human civilization), forcibly displacing people from their land and effectively stealing it from them is not tolerated. There are no examples in the modern era where such a thing has happened and been tolerated. Hell, look at what happened when Saddam Hussein invaded tiny Kuwait. (In response to what you said about Mugabe, he's going to get what's coming to him and a lot of people realize that. In any case, he IS popularly elected, and he DOES have legitimate claim to the land, by any measure. We are not discussing bad leaders here.) By pointing out that such things are frowned upon these days, I hope to cite the closest thing the world has to 'moral standards.' If most of the world believes that it is wrong to forcibly take someone's land, why should the Arab nations and Palestinians have to accept that the Jews took their land fairly?

And certainly, if the Palestinians were indeed forced off their land (we're talking parts that even the UN said should belong to Palestine), they were not treated fairly.

4. Who started it? (hint: the Jews)

You say it wasn't the Jews. I wonder who it was then? The 6 Arab nations that declared war on them made the jews go ballistic on the Palestinians? Sure, the Jews had a right to defend themselves in the war of independence. But did the Jews have the right to make a unilateral declaration of sovereignty in the first place? I say no, placing the blame for starting the war on them.

5. Maybe the Jews didn't start 'nothing or it's impossible to place blame. Why oh why are the Arabs still mad?

Blind, illogical hatred, was it?

Maybe because the Jews have largely refused to let the Palestinian refugees (yes there are refugees... 4 million of them now, to be exact) return to their own land. Not even to the parts that were supposed to be theirs according to the UN plan, but which the Israeli's took during war and forced the Palestinians to leave.

And don't listen to my opinion about this. Ask the Jews themselves. Ask Ariel Sharon (well you can't, he's dead now) why exactly he started an unprecedented pullout of Jewish settlements from the West bank and the Gaza Strip. Ask Olmert why his hard line conservative views regarding the Palestinians has earned him a fabulous 3% approval rating from the Israeli public. Ask the dozens of Israeli professors that are siding with the Palestinian side of the story.


For there to be peace in the Middle East, Israel needs to admit their wrongdoing and make serious concessions to the Palestinian people and try to repair some of the damage they have done for the last 50 years. It's unfortunate that they've waited this long, what with Hamas going legit and all. It'll make things that much harder. There is no other solution, short of forcing the Palestinians to abandon their land completely or killing them all.


And don't try to characterize me based on what I've said. I've tried to look at this fairly and with an open mind. Personally, I like the Jews. I've got Jewish friends and I respect the Israelis for the excellent science and technology they put out. I've also got a Palestinian friend and I respect him as well. This isn't about my personal life or situation, it's about justice.
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Postby Rorgg » Fri Apr 06, 2007 1:43 pm UTC

Solt wrote:let me try to find the points where we disagree, and then we can find evidence to see who is right. We can do this constructively, see?

The Palestinians, for whatever crazy reasons, did not agree to these boundaries. Instead, the Jews acted unilaterally and declared themselves a sovereign state, using these boundaries as a guideline. Note that nothing that actually happened was sanctioned by the UN. Shouldn't a fair settlement be defined by Palestinian consensus?
The Palestinians refused to negotiate. There was, with the expiration of the British Mandate, no internationally recognized authority there at all.

I know you might not think they have a right to an opinion or to decide the course of their future, but they really do. When the Jews declared sovereignty, the Palestinians had at least equal right to the new state as them.

Who said that? You're putting words in mouths. The Palestinians of course had rights to at least some of the land in the area, but they not only refused to accept the proferred portion, but refused to negotiate the issue.

2. Were the Palestinians forced out of their lands by the Israeli Military?

Nobody denies this. Some Palestinians were forced out. Some stayed. Some left voluntarily. Some stayed. Some Jews left land they legitimately owned as individuals. Some were forced out by war. Some left voluntarily.

3. Were the Palestinians forced out of their lands by the Israeli Military unfairly?
I think we can all agree that a lot of people had unfair things happen to them, on both sides as a part of the whole situation.

But did the Jews have the right to make a unilateral declaration of sovereignty in the first place? I say no, placing the blame for starting the war on them.

I don't. See above.

For there to be peace in the Middle East, Israel needs to admit their wrongdoing and make serious concessions to the Palestinian people and try to repair some of the damage they have done for the last 50 years.

You don't think a cessation of the state of war with the other Arab states and a normalization of relations with acknowledgement of right ro exist is a sine qua non for that?

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Postby Vaniver » Fri Apr 06, 2007 4:19 pm UTC

1- Did the Jews have legitimate claim to the land?
I would say yes. The UN proposed a two-state solution; Israel agreed, the Palestinians refused to negotiate. Israel moved forward with it's half of the two-state solution. It was immediately recognized by the majority of the UN nations (which strikes me as implicit, if not explicit, UN approval). It was also immediately declared war on by the surrounding Arab nations.

2. Were the Palestinians forced out of their lands by the Israeli Military?
At least a few were. By the way, I did read the Palestinian Exodus article, and it's not as damning as you make out. But, the rest of this response is better covered in the next question.

3. Were the Palestinians forced out of their lands by the Israeli Military unfairly?
I would claim that for the majority of the Exodus was fair, but that doesn't mean all of it was.

But, let's look at Israel's response. A year afterwards, they say, "very well, we are willing to take back a hundred thousand of those who have been displaced". The Arab nations rejected it; not on its merits, but because it would require recognizing Israel.

If most of the world believes that it is wrong to forcibly take someone's land, why should the Arab nations and Palestinians have to accept that the Jews took their land fairly?
If the world actually believed that it was wrong to forcibly take someone's land, there would be outrage at every tax repossession.

The world believes that it is wrong to forcibly take land without just cause. The world, apparantly, believes that the Jews had just cause (on the whole, at least).

And certainly, if the Palestinians were indeed forced off their land (we're talking parts that even the UN said should belong to Palestine), they were not treated fairly.
The thing is... many Palestinian villages were cleared by allied armies so they could use those villages as military encampments. Israel pushed out the people of several settlements they saw as security threats. This is where we get back to the "all's fair in war" argument- they *should* be recompensed somehow or allowed to return once the war is over, but it's pretty hard to argue that the war is over when the democratically elected Palestinian government has as one of its goals the total destruction of Israel.

Who started it? (hint: the Jews)

You say it wasn't the Jews. I wonder who it was then?
How about the Babylonians, or the Romans? They were the ones that scattered the Jews from their original homeland. It's hard to pretend that Jerusalem wasn't built by Jews originally. While I consider it silly to say the Jews have an explicit claim to Jerusalem because of that, many Zionists clearly believe so and have acted legitimately to repossess it.

The 6 Arab nations that declared war on them made the jews go ballistic on the Palestinians?
Look at the two-stage theory from the Palestinian Exodus article.

Essentially- the Exodus was largely voluntary, until the war happened, at which point the Israeli military sped it up and finished it.

But did the Jews have the right to make a unilateral declaration of sovereignty in the first place? I say no, placing the blame for starting the war on them.
The British Mandate said it would pull out at a certain point.

The Jewish response? "Well, there's a two-state solution that has been proposed. Let's follow through on our half and organize a state."
The Arab response? Well, there wasn't a unified Arab response, and thus there wasn't a state to replace the British once they left.
As a result, nearby Arab countries and a pseudo-country declared war on a state that had already constructed itself, and was thus able to defend itself.

Should the Israelis have patiently waited for the Arab consensus, when the Arabs were unwilling to negotiate? Should they have put off organizing a military until after they were invaded? Placing the blame on them requires yes to either or both, and I don't really see how you can answer yes to either or both.

Why oh why are the Arabs still mad?

Blind, illogical hatred, was it?
You're missing the point.

Arab hatred today can be explained, in part, by the refugee situation. Arab hatred today can be explained, in part, by Israeli government actions.

We're talking about Arab hatred in 1948, when they first tried to exterminate Israel. If that cannot be explained by multi-generational refugees, or Israeli government actions, how do we explain it?
And no, they hadn't stolen land then. They bought it. The majority of land taken by force was taken during the Arab-started war.

Maybe because the Jews have largely refused to let the Palestinian refugees (yes there are refugees... 4 million of them now, to be exact) return to their own land.
They tried, and got spat at. I can see why they haven't tried again.

Still, compare the Israeli response to refugees to the Arab response. Israel welcomed the Jewish refugees; they needed more people. The Arabs made it illegal for Palestinian refugees to become citizens; instead of absorbing them into their populations, fixing the problem, they artifically extended their refugee status, to use as a weapon against Israel.

Not even to the parts that were supposed to be theirs according to the UN plan, but which the Israeli's took during war and forced the Palestinians to leave.
If you declare a war, spoils of war are in effect. You cannot risk your property and sovereignity attempting to annihilate me and then complain when I took part of it. Many of the lands taken by Israel were necessary to make it easier to defend themselves against the inevitable Arab attempts to destroy them.

And don't listen to my opinion about this. Ask the Jews themselves. Ask Ariel Sharon (well you can't, he's dead now) why exactly he started an unprecedented pullout of Jewish settlements from the West bank and the Gaza Strip. Ask Olmert why his hard line conservative views regarding the Palestinians has earned him a fabulous 3% approval rating from the Israeli public. Ask the dozens of Israeli professors that are siding with the Palestinian side of the story.
We never claimed Israel was perfect; just that they had a right to exist, and that they were a legitimate country.

The reason why the Jewish pullout happened is because the Israeli voters have reached a point where they are willing to exchange property for peace. However, they are dealing with people who have shown, time and time again, that they are willing to sacrifice peace for property. I don't think it's an exceptionally wise plan.

For there to be peace in the Middle East, Israel needs to admit their wrongdoing and make serious concessions to the Palestinian people and try to repair some of the damage they have done for the last 50 years.
Do you think Israel is correct in expecting some show of good faith from the Palestinians and their remaining allies before they make concessions? If not, why not?
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Postby Yakk » Fri Apr 06, 2007 7:33 pm UTC

Solt wrote:Ok look, what it comes down to is the facts. You are denying certain things. To prevent our responses from becoming essays in and of themselves, let me try to find the points where we disagree, and then we can find evidence to see who is right. We can do this constructively, see?


1- Did the Jews have legitimate claim to the land? This generally depends on how long they have been there and how much of the land they owned, exactly. Ok, let's pretend that the UN partition plan of 1947 proposed fair, legitimate boundaries according to where people lived, and the Jews were there, as you claim, legitimately. The Palestinians, for whatever crazy reasons, did not agree to these boundaries. Instead, the Jews acted unilaterally and declared themselves a sovereign state, using these boundaries as a guideline. Note that nothing that actually happened was sanctioned by the UN. Shouldn't a fair settlement be defined by Palestinian consensus? I know you might not think they have a right to an opinion or to decide the course of their future, but they really do. When the Jews declared sovereignty, the Palestinians had at least equal right to the new state as them.


Sure. And they can seek to enforce their own wishes.

Note that the Israelis claimed about 10% of the British Mandate of Palistine (the name of the chunk of the Ottoman Empire that Britian controlled after WWI), in which they had the majority of the population. It wasn't a very defensible 10%, but they owned more of the land, and where a majority of the population.

2. Were the Palestinians forced out of their lands by the Israeli Military?


I'm betting some where forced out.

I'm betting others left because Arab leaders encouraged them. I'm betting others left because they didn't want to live the new state of Israel, and didn't want to be there when the Arab nations crushed Israel.

Note that Israel has never ever been at peace with it's neighbours. Syria and Lebanon has not signed a peace agreement with Israel.

4. Who started it? (hint: the Jews)

You say it wasn't the Jews. I wonder who it was then? The 6 Arab nations that declared war on them made the jews go ballistic on the Palestinians? Sure, the Jews had a right to defend themselves in the war of independence. But did the Jews have the right to make a unilateral declaration of sovereignty in the first place? I say no, placing the blame for starting the war on them


The region was either:
A> Divided according to UN plan
B> Divided according to British (previous soverien) plan
C> Up for grabs

By any of the 3 above catagories, forming a soveriegn Israeli state was acceptable.

They owned the land, they lived on the land, and they where willing to enforce law in the land.

Maybe because the Jews have largely refused to let the Palestinian refugees (yes there are refugees... 4 million of them now, to be exact) return to their own land.


Note that "Refugee" refers to the people who flee a conflict, not their grandchildren.

"Palestinian refugee" may refer to their grandchildren, but that is a matter of debate.

Note that the only "right of return" agreed to by Israel says "if they are willing to live in peace", and includes the alternative "repayment of assets". It refers to all the refugees from that conflict, which would include the 500 to 600 thousand Jews who fled Arab persecution during that conflict.

Not even to the parts that were supposed to be theirs according to the UN plan, but which the Israeli's took during war and forced the Palestinians to leave.


If you reject a proposal of peace and enter into a war of annihilation, and fail in that war of annihilation, there should be consequences.

Germany lost land in Poland and in France after WWII for losing a war of annihilation, and it's people where ruled by victors until the victors considerd the German people to be willing to live in peace. Germany still contains large American military bases, left over from that 50 year old war.

And that was what the Arab states and the stillborn western of the state of Arab Palistine attempted: a war of annihlation. Not just once, but repeatedly. They spent decades refusing to even talk directly with the state of Israel. They used kept the Palistinians poor and in refugee camps explicitly to use them as a weapon to destroy Israel.

Each time, Israel took territory. It almost always gave some of the territory it took back. Note that after Egypt recognized Israel and became peaceful with it, Israel pulled out of the Egyptian lands that it had occupied.

From what I can read (see history post I made above) the wars of aggression Israel engaged always had an act of war by the other sides first: often it involved blockading the port via which Israel got oil resupply.

And that ignores the fact that the Arab states Israel warred against had never been at peace with Israel. The wars Israel engaged in where the ends of armstices, not breaking of peace: if you violate the terms of a cease-fire, you can't call foul when the other side restarts the war.

Of course, almost all of this happened as part of the cold war: so much of the hostility between the sides was pumped up/damped at the orders of the superpowers behind the states in question. As an example, Israel had to wait at least once for the Arab states to finish their preparations and do a surprise attack (it was a surprise, in that the exact day and month of the attack was concealed) in order to placate the USA's demands (in exchange, Israel recieved a resupply of fuel and munitions from the USA in the middle of the war in question).

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Postby Solt » Fri Apr 06, 2007 8:52 pm UTC

Ok I haven't slept in 26 hours so I'm going to keep this short and respond at length later after I sleep some.

Just a couple things that I feel like saying now:

Rorgg wrote:Who said that? You're putting words in mouths.


I was actually responding to Vaniver, specifically. Anything I assume "you" is saying is in reference to him, who was the only one to respond to my previous post at length.

yakk wrote:*A bunch of stuff about the rules of war*


I would generally agree with you, but you're forgetting an absolutely critical point.

The Arab countries were the agressors here, NOT the Palestinians. The Arabs are the proven enemies of the Jews, NOT the Palestinians. The Palestinians didn't do anything to the Jews, why do they deserve this? Ok, admittedly they've in the last few decades setup up militant organizations (they DO have a right to defend themselves). But before that? At the very beginning? What did they do to deserve being displaced from their lands, other than refuse to negotiate? They barely had a functioning society when the British pulled out, they didn't have the support or the will to organize themselves like the Jews did.

I think the blame is being misplaced and the Palestinians are suffering far, far more than whatever crime they committed deserves. This is wrong.
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Postby blob » Fri Apr 06, 2007 9:31 pm UTC

Solt wrote:The Arab countries were the agressors here, NOT the Palestinians. The Arabs are the proven enemies of the Jews, NOT the Palestinians.

Woah, abstract moment here - who do you mean by 'the Arabs'? The men and women on the street in Arab countries?

Although they may have a particular viewpoint against Israel based on news or propaganda, they are not the ones dictating policy. In a democracy, an individual has a minuscule effect on government, but in a non-democracy do they have any?

I won't get into your conflation of Jews and Israelis...

Yes, the situation is horrible for everyone involved; probably worst for Palestinians. The international community has every right to pressure Israel to better observe human rights. However it should simultaneously pressure Israel's neighbours into negotiating the situation into a position that makes it easier for Israel to do that. Military action inevitably leads to unwanted deaths, but threats against survival will inevitably lead to military action.

I can only imagine how South Asia would now look if India had refused to accept Pakistan's right to exist until it surrendered all claim to Kashmir and allowed the millions of Hindu refugees to return to their houses. Pakistan is basically a military dictatorship, yet I think not questioning its right to exist was the right move. Why? Because you cannot negotiate with an enemy whose immutable goal is to destroy you. Cornering Pakistan would only have made it more dangerous.

What is the alternative to destruction? How about evolution? Is there an alternative to blanket principles that will never allow a peaceful settlement? How about subtlety? Tact? I wish countries would employ more of it.

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Postby space_raptor » Fri Apr 06, 2007 9:48 pm UTC

Solt wrote:
space_raptor wrote:Since you don't have a problem with partitioning Pakistan and India, a partition here, ignoring the war for now, should be okay. Right?


Look, I'll say this again. No land was stolen in India. No outside group came in and, in a period of 50 years from their first arrival, managed to create a sovereign state for themselves. Both factions in India are descendants of people who have been living there for 6,000 years.


Some land was indeed stolen. This is not in dispute. But it is completely irrelevant when it comes to whether the Jews deserved to be partitioned a country or not.

Let's ignore the war, let's ignore the refugee problem for now. Pretend it is 1947 in Palestine. There is social unrest, there is tension, but there is no war. Let's look around Palestine. What will we see? There are approximately 630,000 Jews living in the area. They own land, grow crops, and are legitimate residents of the British Mandate of Palestine. They didn't steal their land from anybody.
There are approximately 1.2 million Arabs living in the area. It is clear that the Arabs and the Jews cannot share a country. So, the powers that be set up a partition of the land, so that each group could have an area of political control.

Where is the crime here? Where is the stolen land? Where does it say, well, the Jews only moved here 30 years ago, so they have no say in what happens to them now? Their property rights don't matter due to their time in residence? Bull. Either you obey laws and rights or you don't, and by law and by rights, the Jews were legitimate residents. Even if they moved in yesterday, they deserve to be considered when it comes to the future of the region. Keep in mind that it's 1947, and the area has not been autonomous in thousands of years. Basically since the Romans came. The Palestinian Arabs never had control over the area in any legal way. The Palestinians and the Jews were equals, and the UN had to give equal consideration to each when it came to partitioning things.

Perhaps you think that because there were more Arabs, they should get to have authority? Again, that ignores the rights of the Jewish landowners. Not to mention that the fate of the Jews under Arab authority would probably not have been lollipops and rainbows. There was already a Jewish-Arab conflict. The UN plan was trying to end that.

I am not arguing that Israel has not acted unfairly. I am only arguing that originally, Israel had a right to exist. It's actions in wars subsequent to that do not remove that right. The British and the UN wished to give control and authority back to the region's peoples, and they did that. The Jews took this to heart and declared independence. These acts, taken alone as a legal and ethical enterprise, are completely defensible.

Source for population numbers: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Palestine
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Postby 3.14159265... » Fri Apr 06, 2007 11:29 pm UTC

Thank god (which ever one u like) for you solt, I just got tired. Love reading your posts though, keep it going!!!
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Postby Yakk » Sat Apr 07, 2007 12:05 am UTC

Hamas claims that Israel should be destroyed.
Hamas is willing to engage in violence to cause this.

The stillborn Palistinean state engaged in war against Israel when it first came into being. The Arab states took time to get into position and attack: the first attacks where from the locals.

The Palistineans in the occupied West Bank and Gaza are not at peace with Israel. They elected a government that wants to destroy Israel.

Note that the West Bank was given to Jordan. It used it to attack Israel: it is adjacent to a location where Israel is 17 km thick. So Israel took it from Jordan and didn't give it back.

Gaza was used similarly by the Egyptians. The problem is, Egypt doesn't want it back if it comes with demands for the security of Israel, and Israel is unwilling to let it become militarized.

The failure of the first war against Israel resulted in the stillborn Palistinean state being cut up and controleld by the nearby Arab nations and Israel.

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Postby medfly » Sun Apr 08, 2007 2:00 pm UTC

3.14159265... wrote:You make good points Rorgg, and I agree with many except one. That is that your idea of who has claim to the land. As far as I am concerned NO ONE does.

The zionist movement was not based on the idea of living peacefully with others in jerusalem. It was based on taking over the then palestine, and then kicking out the Arabs, and creating a jewish state.

The problems I have with this are:

If it was for religious zionism, then its flat out as wrong as wanting to set up the Caliphate again or the crusades.

If it was just to set up a jewish state, then why there? Why not somewhere that was not already populated?


I am too lazy to read the whole 6 pages, but ill continue later.
are you aware of the existance of the balfour declaration from 1917? (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Balfour_Declaration_of_1917)

a few more points -

1. if terrorists arent citizen, what are they? aliens?
2. israel CANT use its nuclear weapons on a nearby country. itll be affected. theyre for show.
3. there are arabs living inside israel which are poorly represented and protected, but are in a strong connection with the ones living outside israel (like in the gaza strip). families seperated.
4. the left is poorly represented in the israeli government. it doesnt mean there arent israelies, jewish israelies who are interested in defending the palestinians (for more problems caused by this, see 3,6)
5. the people of israel are living under a threat aswell. it only takes one lunatic to download instructions from the internet and make a rocket out of a pipe and some liquid,
6. the arabs in israel and in the "occupied territories" are treated as second class citizen. i can see how this can lead to alot of frustration from their side.
7. religious zionists are seen as somewhat extreme in israel, so are the left wing people supporting the palestinians. the religious zionists are somewhat more supported because the left wing people are seen as a threat to the existance of israel in some cases. israel has experienced and is still experiencing dozens of terrorist attack attempts weekly. it has been to many wars. the people of israel are not ones who are going to give up what they had fought for.

now things that arent the fault of the people who live in the area:

there are millions of muslims living OUTSIDE israel. i dont see why the palestinians HAVE to live in israel.
the truth is, no arab nation wants to accept them (maybe jordan). theyre like gypsies, like jews have been living for hundreds of years - theyre people who are treated like shit everywhere and no one wants to have more than a little of them. there is need for a home for the palestinians, why dont you apply your "other possible locations for israel" for them?
they need it. they lack the leaders that will push the matter forward, they lack the connections the zionist organisations had.
in fact, even the zionists had trouble getting a land they can live in. it took something as awful as the holocaust to fulfill old agreements like the balfour statement.
do you really want the same to happen again? apparently, you do..
if israel had stronger left wing parties, and more resources (alot of them are wasted for military needs), i dont see a reason why the palestinians wouldnt be able to just live in israel together with the jews.

sorry for my awful writing abilities, lack of style and technique, and all the errors.
also, im not right wing, but i do happen to be a citizen of israel.

political map of israel (as seen by your average citizen, ok, maybe not so average):
extreme right-wing - religious zionists, people who dislike palestinians in general. ones who would settle in gaza strip.
moderate - probably supporting right-wing people, just not the extremists.
extreme left-wing - ones who demonstrate for palestinians and their rights frequently, blame israel of war crimes.

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Postby Hex » Sun Apr 08, 2007 2:46 pm UTC

The problem was the fact that Zionism has two aspects, religious and immigration. The UN granted state power to immigrants, and did not include a proper secular bias in their decision. I personally believe that governments should remain secular without exception.

For example, if 500,000 illegal immigrants crossed the border of Mexico into America, and expressed wishes to the UN to annex Texas to become apart of Mexico.. would they be granted it? Absolutely not, despite the fact that Texas is rightfully a part of Mexico.

But for some reason, Israel is an exception to that logic...


However, in the current time, Israel is supported by the Western states with nuclear technology and far superior resources for their military. The State of Palestine does not have an equal amount of power as Israel.

I'll liken it to a man coming into your house and taking your freshly baked pie. However, you were so proud of this pie you demanded it back. He points a gun at your head and says "I will give you a piece of the pie, but not more than what I want to give away." You cannot negotiate with someone who has a gun when you have nothing, you have to take what you are given. However, that isn't fair.

It will not stop until Israel is disarmed or Palestine is granted an equally powerful army and bombs, only then will [fair] negotiations begin.

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Postby medfly » Sun Apr 08, 2007 3:25 pm UTC

it was more like this:
long time-jewish people living in a part of the ottoman empire.
1882-1889-some jewish people immigrate to the ottoman empire, into what is now israel. they dont like the arabs and the fact they cooperate with some of the thieves and decide to defend themselves.
1914-world war 1 starts
1914-1918-hunger in the area of what is now israel. (locust plague, drafting, whatever)
1915-1917a very small group of jews decide to provide the british with some intelligence in the hope they will see the area of israel as a weak spot and take over it, in hope they will treat the people living in what is now israel better than the corrupt ottoman empire.
1916(?)-1917- a bigger group of palestinians decides to support the british too, with other means.
1917-britain gets a hold of what is now israel (and more)
1917-balfour statement
1917-anger by the palestinian side
1917-modification of the balfour statement
1917-1922-still anger
1918-world war 1 ends
1922-white paper
193x-194x-jewish people all over the world are treated as enemies because they were on both sides in world war 1
1936-holocaust begins (or the racist part, anyway)
192x-194x-jewish people hope to find refuge in other countries, some of them go to israel, others stay in places like germany in hope that the situation (racism) will change, because theyre used to racism and dont have hope of finding something else elsewhere. (going mostly to russia, america (america usually means to the USA, but also south america) and israel)
1939-1945-world war 2 begins
1936-194x-lots of slaughter. more refugees, more jews running to other countries
1945-end of holocaust
1945-195x-jews being afraid of going back to the country where they were born, so they try to get to israel/russia/america. america stops accepting lots of immigrants.
1945-1947-plan of starting a national home for the jews in israel as a way of ensuring the holocaust wont repeat
1947-agreement on the division of what is now the state of israel (and more) into two countries, israel and palestine.
1947-beginning of a more intense struggle between the arabs and jews inside israel
1946-1948-jews living in israel realizing they would need an army and working towards that goal. (they already have some groups, all of them will form an army)
1948-a year later, both countries are independent
1948-theres an attack on israel by actual armies as hope it wont last long with so little people.
1949-surprisingly, the training paid off and israel does survive, agreement on the armistice borders.
1949-195x-jews living in muslim/arab nations are now hated because of the israeli nations and decide to come to israel. they had hardly any connection to it or the holocaust, but are still hated.

(correct me on errors. feel free to add.)

its impossible to return land after a while. immigrants are normally seen as immigrants for only the first generation. more than that, theyre no longer immigrants once they settle in an area.
for some odd reasons, the case of the palestinians is seen as different, while in the same conflict, the jews who were forced to immigrate are seen as "settlers".
land cant be owned forever.

id also like to point out that the history of the palestinians in israel, and the history of the jews in israel are seperated because of a conflict - they tried to wipe out some facts to justify their actions (both sides).
i hope i wasnt being too one sided in here.

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Postby Hex » Sun Apr 08, 2007 3:40 pm UTC

Intentions to found Israel predate the holocaust.
It was not created as a safe haven.

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Postby Yakk » Sun Apr 08, 2007 3:53 pm UTC

Hex wrote:The problem was the fact that Zionism has two aspects, religious and immigration. The UN granted state power to immigrants, and did not include a proper secular bias in their decision. I personally believe that governments should remain secular without exception.

For example, if 500,000 illegal immigrants crossed the border of Mexico into America, and expressed wishes to the UN to annex Texas to become apart of Mexico.. would they be granted it? Absolutely not, despite the fact that Texas is rightfully a part of Mexico.


First, the pre-seperation immigration of Zionists into Israel wasn't illegal. There where evenracist immigration quotas that prevented more jews from moving in.

Second, there was no state in palistine before Israel came into being. It had been part of empires for centuries upon centuries.

Third, if Texas choose to seperate from the USA, and managed to repel the American counter-attacks, it would become a state in fact, and (barring UN veto) it would be recognized.

However, in the current time, Israel is supported by the Western states with nuclear technology and far superior resources for their military. The State of Palestine does not have an equal amount of power as Israel.


Israel and nuclear weapons:
http://nuclearweaponarchive.org/Israel/Isrhist.html
Note that the main allies Israel had in the "west" (including south africa) where states that needed Israeli help in making nukes: France and South Africa.

Second, yes the stillborn state of the remnantes of the mandate of palistine does not have an equal amount of power as Israel. This wasn't always the case, but it became the case over time.

As an example, Egypt bet on the Soviet horse, while Israel bet on the American horse. Egypt then broke with their Soviet masters to attack Israel -- their failure in that war (Yom Kippur war) led to Egypt changing sides in the cold war and aligning with the USA.

I'll liken it to a man coming into your house and taking your freshly baked pie. However, you were so proud of this pie you demanded it back. He points a gun at your head and says "I will give you a piece of the pie, but not more than what I want to give away." You cannot negotiate with someone who has a gun when you have nothing, you have to take what you are given. However, that isn't fair.


First, you have the presumption that the pie was yours. What if you didn't own the house yet: your landlord did. But you considered the house to be yours, because you had lived there longer.

The landlord decided that owning the house wasn't worth it anymore. You demanded that you be given ownership over the whole house, while the other tenate (who had been living there for 50 years, and whose familiy lived in about 10% of the house) demanded that he own his apartment within the house.

He bakes a pie. The landlord leaves. You say "I demand my pie! It was made in my house! I WILL KILL YOU UNLESS YOU LEAVE MY HOUSE!"

The man pulls out a gun, says: "get away from me! I will defend my family and my pie."

Your cousin shows up, armed with guns. He shoots your cousin. Your family flees from parts of the house, and his relatives (who lived with your cousin) flee your cousin's house.

He, and his relatives, now occupy about half of the house, includling parts of it your familiy abandoned. "YOU STOLE MY HOUSE! I WILL KILL YOU!" you shout, and your cousins sit outside yelling "YOU STOLE THIS HOUSE! I WILL KILL YOU!"

Your cousins move into 50% of the house, and bring guns with them.

Then you say "You only asked for 10% of the house originally, but you are now living in 20% of it. That isn't fair. I WILL KILL YOU! I demand that you move your familiy into the original 10% of the rooms, and my family gets to move back into the other parts. Sure, that means that your nursury will only be reachable by going through my master bedroom..."

They refuse. "YOU STOLE MY HOUSE! I WILL KILL YOU!" Your cousins, living in the other half of the house, attack again. He repells them, and kicks them out of another 10% of the house, and fortifies the doors.

How is that for an analogy?

It will not stop until Israel is disarmed or Palestine is granted an equally powerful army and bombs, only then will [fair] negotiations begin.


Israel had a weaker army and fewer bombs in 1947. It attempted fair negotations, and accepted the UN plan for the partition of the western 20% of palistine into an Arab and Israeli state.

The response was the Arab states surrounding it invaded and tried to annihilate it.

I see no reason to believe that arming Hamas, an organization dedicated to destroying Israel, with nukes would lead to fair negotiations. Unless you mean "nuclear bombs destroying every Israeli city" by fair negotiations.

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Postby Vaniver » Sun Apr 08, 2007 4:58 pm UTC

For example, if 500,000 illegal immigrants crossed the border of Mexico into America, and expressed wishes to the UN to annex Texas to become apart of Mexico.. would they be granted it?
Keep in mind that the population of Texas is 21 million people. At the time when Israel was split, Jews accounted for roughly a third of the population and Arabs accounted for roughly two thirds.

Absolutely not, despite the fact that Texas is rightfully a part of Mexico.
I turn your attention to the Texan war of independence. And, if we don't accept revolutions as state-making processes (if we don't do that, this conversation is pretty much already over), then all we have to do is look to pre-Spain America.

But for some reason, Israel is an exception to that logic...
That reason is the U.N. proposing a two-state solution to a land formerly administered by the British. The logic for the two situations is very different.

However, that isn't fair.
Do we expect life to be fair? We certainly desire our leaders to be fair, and I find it hard to see too much unfairness in the actions of the British, keeping in mind their debt (perceived or real) to the Jews.

It will not stop until Israel is disarmed or Palestine is granted an equally powerful army and bombs, only then will [fair] negotiations begin.
If Hamas gets a bomb, do you think they will follow mutually assured destruction, or do you think they were destroy the infidels that they have sworn to destroy?
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