Palestinians and Israel

To the Editor:

Your editorials about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, such as “Life After Ariel Sharon” (Jan. 6), repeatedly miss one salient, vital point: that a majority of Palestinians still do not believe that any Jewish state belongs in the Middle East.

Most Palestinians feel that Israel was illegitimately thrust upon them to atone for European anti-Semitism and the Holocaust.

Therefore, it is not an accident that in the West Bank or in Gaza those Palestinians who advocate peace will not and cannot control those who use violence, nor that even when Israel essentially proposed a return to the 1967 borders, as Ehud Barak did in 2000, “mainstream” Palestinians rejected such a generous offer.

Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, and most Israelis, choose a peace of separation not because they prefer it, but because it is the only peace they see in the foreseeable future. Only when a significant majority of Palestinians recognize that a strong Israel is here to stay will there be peace in the Middle East.

Charles E. Schumer
U.S. Senator from New York
Washington, Jan. 6, 2006

(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com

What evidence does the good senator have? A poll this time last year showed-
metransparent.net/texts/akiva_eldar_majority_palestinians_support_two_state_solution.htm
Some 54 percent of the Palestinians support a two-state solution on the basis of the 1967 lines, with border corrections and no massive return of refugees, confirming that there has been a change in Palestinian public opinion since the death of Yasser Arafat.

The findings of a comprehensive public opinion poll among 1,319 respondents conducted at the end of December contrast with those of a similar poll done in December 2003, which showed only 39 percent of the Palestinians supported an agreement with Israel. And a parallel poll, conducted in Israel among a representative sample of Jewish and Arab voters, showed that 64 percent are now in favor of a permanent peace agreement, compared to only 47 percent who supported such a deal in a similar poll last year.

The pollsters presented the people with a series of articles that were reminiscent of the Clinton Framework of 2000 and the Geneva Accord deal of 2003, without naming the source of the particulars. Most of the findings of the joint poll point to a significant rise in the support for reconciliation between the peoples and a peace agreement, since Arafat’s replacement by Mahmoud Abbas.

Dr. Khalil Shikaki, head of the Center for Palestinian Policy and Research in Ramallah, conducted his poll in the last days of 2004, while the IDF was conducting operations throughout the West Bank and Gaza. Dr. Yaacov Shamir, of the Hebrew University’s Truman Institute, c onducted his poll with the help of Dahaf’s Mina Tzemach on January 9-10, at the height of Qassam rocket attacks on Sderot.

And more recently, May 2005, jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/arabs/postarafatpo.html

**Some believe that a two-state formula is the favored solution for the Arab-Israeli conflict, while others believe that historic Palestine cannot be divided and thus the favored solution is a bi-national state on all of Palestine wherein Palestinians and Israelis enjoy equal representation and rights. Which of these solutions do you prefer? **(JMCC, May 2-7, 2005)

                                 Two-state solution: an Israeli and a Palestinian             [right] 54.0[/right]
                                 Bi-national state on all of historic Palestine              [right] 27.3[/right]
                                 One Palestinian state             [right]*7.8[/right]
                                 Islamic state              [right]*3.1[/right]
                                 Others             [right]0.3[/right]
                                 There are no solution              [right]5.1[/right]
                                 Don't know \ no answer              [right]2.4[/right]
                             *The question was an open-ended one

Do you still support or reject the ongoing peace process between the Palestinians and the Israelis? (Center for Opinion Polls and Survey Studies, An-Najah National University, March 16-18, 2005)

                                 I support             [right]57.4%[/right]
                                  I reject              [right] 38.4%[/right]
                                 No opinion / I do not know             [right]4.2%[/right]

I pray your right Matt.

And more recently still truman.huji.ac.il/polls.asp

Joint Israeli-Palestinian Public Opinion Poll, September 2005

 **Summary of Results**

**(1) Mutual recognition of identity: Consistent majority support for a mutual recognition of Israel as the state of the Jewish people and Palestine as the state of the Palestinian people **

66% of the Israelis and 63% of the Palestinians support a mutual recognition of Israel as the state of the Jewish people and Palestine as the state of the Palestinian people after the establishment of an independent Palestinian state and the settlement of all issues in dispute. 29% of the Israelis and 35% of the Palestinians oppose such a step. Among Israeli Jews 67% support and 29% oppose this mutual recognition of identity.
Even more remarkable is the majority support for this step among Israeli Arabs: 63% support and 34% oppose it. This result indicates that despite their frustration and marginalization as citizens, they are willing to accept the definition of Israel as the state of the Jewish people, concurrently with the recognition of a Palestinian identity and a Palestinian state.
Similar levels of support among Israelis and Palestinians were obtained in December 2004, suggesting that support for this sensitive and disputed issue of national identity has made inroads in both societies.

55% of the Israelis and 53% of the Palestinians know that a majority in their society supports a mutual recognition of identity. These levels of awareness indicate that this step has acquired normative legitimacy in both societies. However the two publics seem to be less aware of the support for such a mutual recognition in the other public: 50% of the Israelis believe there is majority support for such recognition among Palestinians; and only 43% among Palestinians believe that most Israelis support it.

One has to wonder with Hamas gaining many of the local seats right now what will happen in the next year or two.

Gaza is not a very good show piece of Palistinian governance and peace.

[quote=gilliam]One has to wonder with Hamas gaining many of the local seats right now what will happen in the next year or two.

Gaza is not a very good show piece of Palistinian governance and peace.
[/quote]

Is this you changing the subject?

[quote=Matt25]Is this you changing the subject?
[/quote]

The Palestinians are the ones electing Hamas. One of Hamas’ major objectives is the getting rid of Israel. Therefore it is logical to deduce that Palestinians are in favor of getting rid of Israel.

And you thought I was changing the subject. Shame :nope:

[quote=gilliam]The Palestinians are the ones electing Hamas. One of Hamas’ major objectives is the getting rid of Israel. Therefore it is logical to deduce that Palestinians are in favor of getting rid of Israel.

And you thought I was changing the subject. Shame :nope:
[/quote]

Have more than 50% of the Palestinians voted for Hamas?

[quote=Matt25]Have more than 50% of the Palestinians voted for Hamas?
[/quote]

Haven’t had national Parlementary elections yet.

Therefore, it is not an accident that in the West Bank or in Gaza those Palestinians who advocate peace will not and cannot control those who use violence

Once again a comparison with the situation in Northern Ireland seems like it may prove useful.

Mike

[quote=gilliam]To the Editor:

Most Palestinians feel that Israel was illegitimately thrust upon them to atone for European anti-Semitism and the Holocaust.

Charles E. Schumer
U.S. Senator from New York
Washington, Jan. 6, 2006

(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com
[/quote]

And wouldn’t they be right? Did I miss something? Wasn’t Israel thrust upon the Palestinians by super political powers to atone for the Holocaust?

[quote=mom 07]And wouldn’t they be right? Did I miss something? Wasn’t Israel thrust upon the Palestinians by super political powers to atone for the Holocaust?
[/quote]

Yes. The United Nations made Israel on May 14, 1948, in one day, just as the Bible predicted (Isaiah 66:7-7).

The primary reason, in my understanding, is because of the Holocaust. That was 60 years ago, and, IMHO, its hardly an excuse for terrorism now.

If your family home was taken from your grandparents, your family were expelled from their native city and forbidden to return and you have spent all your life in a refugee camp with foreign soldiers regularly patrolling the streets you might, irrationally, feel a desire to lash out at the people responsible for this. 60 years is a short time to have your country taken from under you.

Yes. The United Nations made Israel on May 14, 1948, in one day, just as the Bible predicted (Isaiah 66:7-7)

A theological discussion regarding dispensationalist eschatology would be way off subject thread. So, I will say I disagree, and in my humble opinion find this theological position is one of the main impediments to peace in the region. This is a territorial dispute, period. Maybe someone else wants to pursue the topic but I prefer to leave it at that. :slight_smile:

The primary reason, in my understanding, is because of the Holocaust. That was 60 years ago, and, IMHO, its hardly an excuse for terrorism now.

The Palestinians (both Christian and Muslim) had nothing to do with the Holocaust so why punish them? Hardly seems right. No one here is condoning terrorism.

[quote=gilliam]I pray your right Matt.
[/quote]

He is, many Palestinians have said, regarding the wall, “We’d help them build it, if they’d want - Just so long as it’s on the 1967 boarders.”

Not everyone are extremists in Palestine. And you mustn’t forget the Christians, more of whom in the Palestinian Region regard themselves as Palestinians; not Israelis.

The Palestinians (both Christian and Muslim) had nothing to do with the Holocaust so why punish them? Hardly seems right. No one here is condoning terrorism.

No one is. Especially not the Christian Palestinians, very few of whom actually condone it. So why, may I ask, must the (cliché) Conservatives here support a country which caused mass immigration from this group? (Even attacks upon the creation of the state?) It is mainly Evangelical Protestants which support them on a scale of: “Wipe out Palestine.” I have no problems with Israel, if they’d retreat from occupied territories, and allow for the creation of a Palestinian state - As said, if they’re that xenophobic, the Palestinians will help to build the wall on the 1967 boarders.

Mike, the Israel-Palestine conflict is synonymous with N.Ireland, so much so, it’s surprising.

Please. :mad:

Who was it that drove the British out of England and forced them to flee to Ireland? How many millions of them were slaughtered before they decided to congregate together in Ireland and make a last stand? How many other nations have thrown out those of British descent who then found themselves unwelcome nearly EVERYWHERE else on earth except Ireland?

Israel has SOME similarities with Ireland. But at LOT of difference too. One was a conquest for national gain. The other a desperate struggle for survival in a hostile world. Motivation is a rather important difference in historical events.

Legitimate criticism of Israel can be made. But anti-semitism comes in both subtle and blatant forms. It is folly to pretend that the sentiment does not come into play in some people’s views on the subject.

[quote=manualman]Please. :mad:
[/quote]

I’m not suggesting that the two situations are identical. I am saying that there are many similarities in the positions that, given Northern Ireland is now rather more at peace, we could try to apply to the Israel/Palestine problem.

Legitimate criticism of Israel can be made. But anti-semitism comes in both subtle and blatant forms. It is folly to pretend that the sentiment does not come into play in some people’s views on the subject.

Some people, I agree, and I do occasionally feel uncomfortable when I see some of the people who, like me, don’t view Israel through rose-tinted glasses - because I know some of them are motivated by anti-semitism. Nevertheless, it is perfectly possible to detest anti-semitism and yet criticise the actions of Israel.

Mike

Many Israeli’s manage to do it.

[quote=Matt25]Many Israeli’s manage to do it.
[/quote]

:clapping: Well done!

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