Views on the Israel/Palestine conflict

Probably thee longest war/aggression in history, I was wondering what your opinion are?

When I usually discuss this with people I often see such a pro Israel side :mad:. It is rather disheartening or do people just not care about Palestinians and Muslims as they do Israelites and Jews? What I just don’t understand is why they don’t set up one democratic secular government with a constitution that protects religious freedom (I don’t mean at all to make this task easy it is monumentally hard but giving one side their state and ignoring the other as terrorists is worse), both sides seems to demand a religious state and sadly it seems the Holocaust and the evil that occurred have been butchered and used as a political tool for an Israeli state.

I’m against both.

They are treating that land like a war zone. It is the holy land, a gift from God, not just like any other piece of land where you can kill your human brothers.

I’m against both.

They are treating that land like a war zone. It is the holy land, a gift from God, not just like any other piece of land where you can kill your human brothers.

Agreed :thumbsup: I guess I put mine, I am for both and anyone else who wants to visit there.

Since I’m Middle-Eastern, I’m on the Palestinian side. IMHO, Christians in the West should support their brothers in Christ in the East first. Israel is an apartheid regime against Arabs.

But it is also the religious sites of Judaism and Christianity as well as Islam also it is of important value to many other people for other reasons, isn’t there a risk it becomes like Mecca where only Muslims are allowed in.

I think everyone should keep in mind that both sides have made mistakes. Israel as well as Palestine.
Also, to bring another side into this discussion, ever since the state of Israel was founded,it has been at war with one or more of its neighboring states constantly. Those states did or do not want israel to even exist.
Another point is that the Islamists (not the Muslims! The extreme and violent ones! Terrorists! 9/11) are against any form of religion other than their own, especially Christianity and Judaism. They interpret the Quran in a way that they can say: Muhammad said that we should kill all the none believers. It’s our duty. We are martyrs if we die as suicide assassins. Etc…

Israel has I know often made mistakes in e.g. how they treated the matter of some apartments that they wanted to build in Palestine or so (About a year ago?). But which country that was ever at war can honestly say they did everything right, were always fair and didn’t hurt anyone?

About that site, I would like to point out that they forgot one important aspect. Palestine fires a lot of rockets into the territory of Israel which destroys homes and lifes. And of course then Israel fires back. Who wouldn’t?

I’ve been there, and have seen some of the anti-Christian reactions described.

But the actions of a few youths does not represent all Israelis just as the actions of Hamas do not represent all of Palestine.

I’d be more sympathetic to the Palestinians if they were to formally give up killing as a means to make a point. However, I do believe there should ultimately be 2 states side by side, although it might take Solomon himself to make that happen.


The name “Palestine” is a Roman invention by Hadrian. What was the original name of the Roman province? The region has been under one occupation or another for over a millenia, including 500+ years by their fellow Muslim under the Ottoman empire. I don’t recall a push for an independent Palestinian state then, or from 1948-1967 when Egypt and Jordan had control of Gaza and the West Bank.

To me, the issue is less about land (its the size of New Jersey!) than it is having a non-Arab, non Muslim presence in the region.

I support peace on both sides: A Palestinian and Jewish state, provided they can both live in peace with each other. Israel needs to stop expanding its territorial “claims” by building settlements, and the ruling Palestinian parties need to come to grips that a Jewish nation will exist, and stop the rocket attacks/praise of “martyrs”.

Neither side is perfect, and both have committed atrocities against the other. The death toll is heavily on the Israeli side, but that isn’t out of lack of intent. You only have to read the charter for Hamas or Fatah (PLO) to see how deep the hatred runs.

Israel is not an apartheid state. The situation of Palestinians in the territories, which were won in a defensive war by the way, are different than those under apartheid South Africa. In Israel today, the Arab minority are full citizens with voting rights and representation in the government. Security requirements and violence in the territories have forced Israel to impose restrictions on Arab residents of the West Bank that are not necessary inside Israel’s pre 1967 borders. The Palestinians in the territories dispute Israel’s right to exist where Blacks did not seek the destruction of South Africa, only the apartheid regime. Palestinians in the territories are allowed to work in Israel and receive similar pay and benefits. They are allowed to attend schools and universities and run their own affairs. None of this was allowed for the Blacks in apartheid South Africa.

when you talk about the Israel/Palestine conflict, Lebanon comes to my mind.
I believe there is so much favoritism, support for Israel. I don’t know if it is because we try to follow what is written on the Bible or for financial and political support from the Jew/Americans. It seems to me that Palestine and Lebanon has suffered in great deal because of the Jewish abuse. So sad indeed, many generations have been suffering such devastation!

Not sure what you mean for “support for Israel”? I (probably a lot of Americans) believe it has a right to exist, but not perfect or right in every case, by any stretch.

I support its existence because I’m a student of history, and know they have a historic link to the land, and that it’s attitudes like the above implied “Jewish money and political support controls the US” that made historical injustices against Jews possible.

This comes up so much that one really should do a search and read all the good info in old threads before pontificating. Americans REALLY like conflicts to fall into neat categories of good guys and bad guys, but it just doesn’t apply in this situation (or most for that matter).

Palestinians and Israelis are human beings, good, but fallen. At the overall population level, neither one of them are devils disguised as people. Please remember that FIRST.

But I strongly believe that there are drastic differences in the quality of leadership in the two groups. The Israelie leadership at times is inclined to exploitation and oppression, no doubt. That’s the fallen part of the human equation, especially in conflicts. But let’s face it, they have all the guns and ammo they’d need to utterly exterminate every last Palestinian - and they haven’t. The Palestinian leadership in the last 70 years has been abysmal. They’ve been utterly focused on themselves and their own personal power, prestige and pride and, it seems to me, NOT so interested in getting the best deal possible for their people. I have very little doubt that if the situations were suddenly reversed and Hamas and the PLO had all the guns and ammo and a few nukes the situation for Jews would be a LOT worse than the current situation for Palestinians.

America reacted rather harshly when we were attacked by terrorists on 9/11. That terrible day is something Israelis have lived with constantly since the day of their indepence sooner after WWII. So in spite of their serious shortcomings and failures of justice, I am reluctant to blanket condemn the Israelis and take the Palestinian side. With the exception of a noisy minority of ultra-orthodox that constantly try to encroach on Palestinian land, the majority of Israelis would JUMP at the chance of a serious proposal for long term peace in the region. If the Palestinian leadership abandoned their STATED goals of wiping Israel out and started to ACT like they’ve actually changed in that direction, the Israeli populace would elect leaders that would accept it within 15 years. But Palestinian leaders won’t do that because of their warped sense of pride and vengeance that will settle for nothing less than domination. This sick value system results in their them instead proclaiming the virtue of suicide bombings and the sending of teenage kids with rocks against Israeli soldiers instead of having the guts to go themselves.

For all the over-reaction of the Israelis, the Palestinian leadership is still far worse, IMO. If they could just produce a Ghandi, they could build a real peace in that part of the world. On the other hand, if a Palestinian Ghandi arose, I suspect that Hamas would just kill him (or even some of the militant Zionist groups). Such is fallen man.

If foreigners arrived in my nation and pushed out my people, I would do what it takes to defend my family and my ancestral homeland from the invaders. Therefore, I sympathize with the Arab cause.

I cannot side with the Israeli position, which is the best I can tell, that God gave them that land so the Arabs can hit the bricks or die, their choice of course.

I don’t understand why any Christian would sympathize with that.

Well, many people don’t realize the atrocities of the Zionist regimes targeted Christians as well as Muslims (not that that should matter). But here are the religious demographics of the Palestinian territories according to wikipedia. “Muslim 98.7% (predominantly Sunni), Christian 0.7%” while Israel has a 2.1% population of Christians. So if we are talking purely numbers, I wouldn’t say they are supporting Jews over Christians.

I will say, that if the climate (in the US) stays the same, both sides will end in disaster. If the religious right in America continues to use the same rhetoric and wins, it will lead to war. If the left continues is policy of appeasement and wins, I fear for the existence of Jews in Palestine. Even though I think the state of Israel is reaping what they sowed in the 50’s, I don’t want to justify the tactics of the Palestinians either. And I don’t foresee a peaceful solution anytime soon either.

Perhaps you would be so kind as to detail these “atrocities of the Zionist regimes” and which ones “targeted” Christians and which ones targeted Muslims?

I didn’t mean to imply they were different actions. But I was mainly thinking of the forced occupation of Yishuv forces in the early 50’s which displaced thousands of Palestinians (Christian and Muslim alike). Blood Brothers by Archbishop Chacour was the first book that opened my eyes that Israel was not innocent of aggression in this conflict.

I’m not aware of many people that think Israel is “innocent of aggression.”

But single accounts of the conflict need to be balanced by the view from the other side as well. If your only perspective of WWII came from a contemporary account written by the mayor of Dresden, Germany, you might not make valid conclusions about the nature of the war. Consider the following summary:

  1. WWII ends and a host of Jews are liberated from Nazi death camps. Liberated, not moved to new camps. What is the major characteristic of a free person compared to an imprisoned person? They can come and go as they please. Did the freed Jews want to go back to Germany, Poland, Austria and France? Uh, no. Can you blame them? There was one place on earth that held a common appeal for them (possibly two, but the USA was only taking a limited number and was rather far to sneak into).

  2. Zionism predated WWII, but was a fringe minority view in global Judaism. As noted in #1 above, the Holocaust made aspects of Zionism look like the only viable course of action for the survivors. The European powers TRIED to stop it from happening. Britain, especially tried to close the borders of Palestine, even going so far as to build CONCENTRATION CAMPS on Cyprus to house illegal immigrants caught trying to sneak into Palestine. Betcha didn’t learn THAT in history class. The noble Brits put former inmates of Nazi concentration camps right back into camps of their own (minus the gas chambers, mercifully).

  3. The Jewish immigrants to Palestine were NOT all of a mind. What massive group of desperate humans is? None. It is folly to characterize them as uniformly militant Zionists. The majority still wanted simple peaceful immigration into Palestine. They bought land legally and established Kibbutzes to house people and put them to work feeding themselves.

  4. But this was a big influx of foreigners. Guess what happens? Look no further than how Americans today react to Mexican illegals, whose numbers are proportionately far smaller the Jewish immigrants to Palestine. The Palestinians already there before WWII reacted badly to the mass immigration, especially since there WAS a small, but problematic number of militant Zionists in the immigration wave (groups like Irgun and Stern Gang). In short, the Palestinians reacted like American rednecks on steroids: they terrorized the immigrants, attacked kibbutzes, murdered randoms Jews in the street. The militant Zionist groups were no better.

  5. To address the growing violence, the UN tried to partition Palestine into regions in an attempt to keep the sides apart, but when this failed, they decided to pull out when it became clear that the Jewish parts of the partition intended to declare independence. During the interim, the UN (mostly British troops on the ground) made it illegal to import weapons, but the Palestinians enlisted neighboring countries to amass armies on the borders for the purpose of slaughtering all the Jews upon the pullout of the UN. This clear intention of genocide pushed even peacenik Jews into the arms of the Zionists and they frankly pulled off a Joshua style miracle of scraping together enough guns and ammo to fight off the combined arab armies long enough for them to begin fighting among themselves.

  6. It is an utter MYTH to assert that the Israelies largely forced the Palestinians out of their homes and land. What really happened in most cases is that just before the UN pulled out, the neighboring Arab armies suggested that Palestinian civilians evacuate so that the Arab armies could kill everything that moved when the UN was gone. Many Palestinians complied and when the Arab armies lost the first conflict, the new nation of Israel decided NOT to allow those evacuees to return after the battle. They asserted that by leaving the scene of the upcoming battle, the Palestinians had aided and abbetted the invading armies in their genocidal goals. Thus, by collaborating they had ceded their property as spoils of war. Palestinians who did NOT evacuate or collaborate did NOT lose their property and even became eligible for Israeli citizenship. I assert that if America ever survives a near annihilation like that we won’t be any more merciful to those who cheered our tormetors. Probably less (remember 9/11?)

Like all wars, there was horror and atrocity committed by both sides. But any serious investigation of the situation looking at facts and accounts from both sides will lead to the conclusion that the Jews in the late 1940’s had little other option but to fight or be slaughtered, while the leadership of the Palestinians CHOSE hatred, fear and attempts to achieve “peace” through domination and genocide.

This COULD have been a peaceful transition whereby Palestinians made good money off Jewish migrants desperate to buy land. Said Palestinians with their new wealth could have made great neighbors or could have chosen to emigrate to (at the time) prosperous Lebanon, or Jordan or Syria. But instead they listened to the fallen angels of human nature and chose xenophobia over peaceful coexistence. In the process, they gave Zionist militants credibility and made the task for Jewish leaders seeking a peacful settlement transition impossible.

I don’t deny Zionist atrocities nor the existence of whack Jewish/Zionist militant extremists. But characterizing Israel as a nation of such people is like suggesting that all Americans are ignorant and violent monsters who kill Sikhs because of what happened in Milwaukee yesterday. Palestinians aren’t an evil mob either, obviously. But for some reason I don’t yet understand, they continue to be lead by the worst sorts of people, men interested in power, glory and victory, not peace for their people.

Ramallah and Bethlehem were once overwhelmingly Christian cities, and not terribly long ago. Now, Christians are a tiny minority in both.

The only place in the Middle East where the Christian population is growing, not shrinking, is Israel.

The great majority of the people in what most think of as “Palestine” (Israel and the West Bank) are Israelis. 1/3 of the population of the West Bank is Jewish.

Gaza is a “Palestinian state”. Jordan is a “Palestinian state”. (most Palestinians live in Jordan, and most Jordanians are Palestinian). Is there some compelling reason why there should be three “Palestinian states”?

“Palestinian” is a tribal designation. Palestinians live all over the Middle East. So do Bedouins. Do there need to be three “Bedouin states” also? How many “Kurdish states” do we need?

Arabs are in the high ranks of the Israeli armed forces, the parliament and the judiciary. In what Arab state are there Jews in any position of power or influence?

There have always been Jews in “Palestine”. Never was there a “Palestinian state” until Gaza and Jordan.

I am, and that is the problem. I didn’t mean to suggest that the Israeli position in the early days was completely unreasonable or that the Palestinians were completely innocent. However, if you even mention Israel’s culpability in the present situation, I know many who would react with quite vehement rhetoric about supporting Israel. And in my experience, that is not the minority of Israel supporters.

We may learn 3 things from his book:

  1. We learn that he lives in the Galilee in Israel despite the lie of “ethnic cleansing”

  2. We learn that Israel is a free and democratic country that protects free speech, religion and the rights of all it’s citizens. So that the Archbishop is not only free to run his school but also to print and say the most outrageous things

  3. We learn that if one says the most illogical things about Jews and the Jewish State, someone will believe it.

Now, in the interest of fairness and balance, perhaps you’ll agree to read “Raquela: A woman of Israel” by Ruth Gruber?

Actually, this is the first bit of criticism I have heard about the Archbishop’s claims. This is part of the problem with how Americans view the conflict; no one really directly addresses the claims of the other side unless it is in way blinded by ideology. So, yes, I will read the book you suggested.

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