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Topics: Americans for Peace Now, Bush Administration, Iran, Israel, neoconservatives, Syria | 29 Comments »

29 Responses to “BUY GLUCOPHAGE NO PRESCRIPTION”

  1. Richard Witty Says:
    July 29th, 2008 at 10:27 am

    Given the ineptitude of the Bush administration in foreign policy during its tenure, perhaps it is better that the US is not involved.

    Since the Carter Camp David accords, the US has not succeeded in brokering peace in the middle east.

    We’ve made efforts, but no sale.

    Hopefully an Obama administration would be more able.

  2. Tom Mitchell Says:
    July 29th, 2008 at 10:45 am

    Israel should test if Damascus is sincere or just talk in an attempt to find an opening to the West. Hopefully, Damascus is more sincere now than it has been over the last 15 years.

  3. Bill Pearlman Says:
    July 29th, 2008 at 3:22 pm

    Classic Arab move in plating to the western media. When sovereign states deal with each other there are procedures. It’s within Syria’s power to invite an Israeli envoy to Damascus. Similarly it’s within their power to hop a plane to Jerusalem. But you notice they don’t don’t do that.
    BTW If you notice the level of discourse at mondo-weiss is sinking fast. Rich, my contention is that Phil Weiss knows exactly what he is doing and is very comfortable with his audience. And believes what they believe. Where am I wrong?

  4. Y. Ben-David Says:
    July 29th, 2008 at 11:42 pm

    Let’s be honest-
    suppose tomorrow, Kings Abdallah of Saudi Arabia and Jordan, Assad, Mubarak, Muhammed Abbas and a few other Arab leaders were to come to the Knesset, Sadat-style, and say the following:
    “we now extend our collective hand, representing all the Arab world to you in Israel, we want to welcome you to a new, peace-loving Middle East and we want to have normal, peaceful relations with you. All we ask is justice for the Palestinians and Syrians, based on a withdrawal to the pre-1967 lines and an in-principle recognition of the Palestinian Right of Return. We of course, recognize that it is not practical for all Palestinian refugees to return to Israel, so we would accept a cap of a few hundred thousand, subject to negotiations. In return we call on all Arab forces to halt all military action or violence against Israel, and call on all responsible Arab authorities to do all they can to prevent any such actions.”

    What would be Israel’s response? Even the most “Right-wing” government would not be able to turn such an offer down. Everyone knows this. So why do the Arabs refuse to make this gesture? It was Sadat himself who said “the Arab/Israeli conflict is 99% psychological”. In the euphoria that would follow such a bold Arab move, those who oppose dividing Jerusalem or oppose having Israel agree to recognizing the “Right of Return” (which in effect would have Israel acknowledge that its creation and defense of its independence in 1948 is a crime) would be swept aside.

    The reason is that the Arab world is not prepared to make peace with Israel. What happened to Sadat? He is reviled to this day in most of the Arab world as a traitor, in spite of the fact that he got far more Israeli concessions than any other Arab leader. The leaders I mentioned above know they would also join the list with Sadat as traitors. I, for one, don’t believe Syria wants peace at all, they want negotiations with Israel in order to get goodies from the West which had been boycotting them. But the prescription I stated above is there. If he wants to show that he really wants peace with a true demonstration of peaceful intentions to Israel, he will get the Golan, have de facto control of Lebanon, get billions in dollars in aid from the US and EU, a new American-equipped army, all for the price of having an Israeli embassy in Damascus.

  5. Tom Mitchell Says:
    July 30th, 2008 at 11:23 am

    Mr. Ben-David,
    And what will you and your friends say if there is such an offer?

  6. Y. Ben-David Says:
    July 30th, 2008 at 1:40 pm

    Tom Mitchell-
    I, of course, would oppose it, but the political pressure to accept it would be enormous. I would oppose it because I don’t believe it would be sincere, nor more than was Sadat’s. Yossi Beilin said Israelis should agree to give up the Golan because “Israelis would be able to drive all the way to Paris if there was peace with Syria”. This is pure propaganda, Beilin knows that would never happen. After the peace agreement with Egypt, direct flights and bus routes between Tel Aviv and Cairo were opened. They were terminated long ago. Egypt maintains a Cold War with Israel and Syria (and the Saudis and everyone else who would go along with this) would do the same. Syria would do everything to prevent Israelis from running around his country, with long delays at the border, high entry taxes, and other forms of harrassment. Syria as a result
    of a peace agreement would get the Golan, billions of dollars from the US and EU, get US and EU acquiesence to his control of Lebanon, HIZBULLAH would maintain its position, etc. All Assad would have to do is agree to have an impotent, isolated, walled-off Israeli embassy in Damascus, just like the Israeli embassy in Cairo, which is in the same situation.
    Israel would only lose, its strategic situation would only deteriorate as a result of such an agreement. Syria would be immensely strengthened and Israel would sink into a fantasy of an imagined peace that would be broken when the Syrians felt like it.
    Pretty pessimistic sounding, isn’t it? But this is the nature of the Middle East.
    Sure, if everyone were to agree to cooperate, everyone, especially the Arabs would benefit, but they perceive the situation as a zero-sum game and that is what counts.

  7. Teddy Says:
    July 30th, 2008 at 2:04 pm

    Y Ben David:

    “I would oppose it because I don’t believe it would be sincere, nor more than was Sadat’s”

    You’re not seriously claiming that Israel would be better off without the current peace with Egypt, cold and disappointing as it might be? What’s the difference how “insincere” people are or what their motives are or how imperfect a peace treaty would be in the real world…Israel and America need to get Syria out of Iran’s orbit and to stop using Damascus to house terror offices and to stop funding Hizbollah (and stop giving refuge or Iraqi insurgents that want to kill American soldiers). It also wouldn’t hurt to give Syria more of an incentive to stop developing chemical and other weapons.

    Aren’t those impoortant enough reasons to give up the Golan, especially under a leasing arrangements that allows Israelis to live there?

  8. Peter D Says:
    July 30th, 2008 at 2:36 pm

    Y Ben David,
    You exhibit the usual racist (you’d call it pragmatic) view of Arabs as subhumans who are incapable of making peace. For you, they’re damned if they do and damned if they don’t offer peace to Israel because you don’t believe they will ever want it anyway.
    What makes this view racist is that it doesn’t take into account that the Arab animosity towards Israel has legitimate roots in Israel’s actions towards the Arabs. We (Israelis) can kill and wound and arrest by thousands and never understand how the Arabs get angry with us, while a single killed Israeli is an outrage. We can cover entire villages in Lebanon with cluster bombs so that years later Lebanese farmers (and UNIFIL mine-removers) get killed and maimed and never understand the Arab’s reluctance to make peace with us (can you imagine the gevolt Israel would have raised if a Hizballa’s dud shell would wound even one Israeli?) We can kill 200 people in Gaza in a course of one week without batting an eyelid but will still remind everyone how the 70 Jews killed in Hebron in 1929 is a proof of infinite Arab perfidy and hatred for the Jews. And the list goes on.
    Rather than seeing the Arabs as human beings like everybody else who get “upset” when their own are killed and imprisoned, you prefer to discount this as an inveterate and incorrigible hatred of Jews. (And not only is this view racist it is also ahistoric).

  9. Richard Witty Says:
    July 30th, 2008 at 2:39 pm

    Its also an open question if Israel would be sincere, or if it would harbor “secret” ambitions to annex the West Bank in particular.

    Would Israel pass the integrity in thought, word, and deed test?

  10. Bill Pearlman Says:
    July 30th, 2008 at 4:03 pm

    Peter:
    His point was that the Israeli people are so desperate for peace that any sincere gesture by an Arab leader would be me withy so many concessions that they wopuld make your head spin. But the Arabs are incapable of doing that. It’s not tin their DNA

  11. Peter D Says:
    July 30th, 2008 at 7:01 pm

    And, Bill, what qualifies you exactly to be such an expert on Arab
    psyche? Do you speak and read Arabic, are you well read in Arab writings
    and newspapers, have many Arabs you know personally? Even if you were
    all that, you realize that sweeping statements like “Arabs are
    incapable of doing that. It’s not tin their DNA”

    are just plain racist generalizations and, indeed, no different in
    nature from anti-Semitic remarks by some creatures on Mondoweiss that
    you decry so much. Do you realize that you become a mirror image of
    anti-Semites by spewing such bullshit?
    Please, address my point that any person, regardless of his or her race
    would be upset by seeing his or her people killed, maimed and imprisoned
    en masse.

  12. Richard Witty Says:
    July 30th, 2008 at 9:04 pm

    Bill,
    You obviously then haven’t met some of the Arabs that I’ve met.

    Among some of the veteran activists are many that are as gracious and considerate as human beings get.

    Not hot heads.

  13. Richard Witty Says:
    July 30th, 2008 at 9:05 pm

    Peter,
    Terror imprints deeply. Its not nothing. Not insignificant, not an exageration.

  14. Y. Ben-David Says:
    July 30th, 2008 at 9:45 pm

    Richard Witty-
    Please explain to me why EVERYONE in Lebanon felt they had to greet baby-head-crusher Samir Kuntar as a great “hero”? I am sure many didn’t feel that way, any more than the “veteran activists” you know, but they realized that they HAD to say it because the extremists call the tune. That is the reality that you have to explain.

  15. Y. Ben-David Says:
    July 30th, 2008 at 10:47 pm

    Peter D-
    I always find it amusing that when you “progressives” can’t refute what your opponents say, you resort to throwing out epithets like “racist”. I don’t believe, as Mr Pearlman seems to, that the Arab opposition to Israel is “genetic”, rather, it is in their culture. You, in calling me a “racist” make several assumptions that are incorrect…(1) that everyone in the world essentially thinks like you or SHOULD think like you, (2) that your way of thinking is somehow inherently “superior”, and (3) anyone who doesn’t think like you, is, as you stated “subhuman”.
    The fact is, is that the people of the world have different cultures and different values, and the values you hold, as a Westerner are those of a minority.

    The Arab opposition to Israel, or, in other words, having a dhimmi Jewish state in the midst of the “Dar al-Islam” (Realm of Islam) is an inherent part of their ethnic and religious identity. Islam is a missionary religion which preaches that eventually, everyone in the world is going to either adopt Islam as his religion or accept Islamic domination (the so-called “world Caliphate”). Obviously, there are differences of opinion about how and when this going to come about…but there is general agreement that Israel has no place in the Middle East. This is what the media in the Arab countries INCLUDING EGYPT AND JORDAN who have “peace agreements” with Israel tells their people every day. The official religious authority of Al-Azhar University which, is as I understand it, considered by many the supreme authority in the Islamic world, and operates in coordination with the Egyptian government, ruled during the big period of violence in 2000-2003 in Israel that suicide bombing is a virtuous act and that all Jews in Israel are legitimate targets.
    The official, state-controlled media in all the Arab countries, including those who have “peace agreements” are filled with virulent Judeophobic propaganda every day. They are not educating their people to live in peace with Israel, they are keeping them on a psychological war footing.
    They teach them that the Jews have no right to a state, they teach them that the Jews “betrayed Muhammed” and rejected Islam, that Jews are “decendents of monkeys and pigs”, and as Sayid Qutb, the Egytpian theologian of Islamic extremism who wrote the influential commentary “In the Shade of the Qur’an”, in a section dealing with the sura “The Cow” that the Jews “have been conspiring against Islam from the beginning”.
    Of course, not all Arabs enthusiastically endorse all these things, but the main question is not what some friends of Richard Witty think , but what do those in power think, and if their state-controlled media is constantly harping on these things, we can reach only one logical conclusion.

  16. Richard Witty Says:
    July 31st, 2008 at 8:47 am

    Y Ben David,
    Societies live in a state of natural tension, of diversity of opinions, of change of leadership and leadership logic.

    Israeli society, Levant Islamic/Christian societies, Arab societies.

    Consider the range of sentiment in Turkey, which like Lebanon, like Israel, is alternately closer to European values and institutions and Islamic.

    There are hate advocates in each of the countries described.

    AND, there are advocates of civility and mutual acceptance.

    Bill’s statement was that there were NO moderate Arab leaders, and that conflicted with my experience, and likely the experience of Israeli leaders that have the occassion to negotiate.

    Certainly, they are assertive, but that is a DIFFERENT beast than inevitably expansionistic.

    I’ve known individuals that were personal friends of the King of Jordan, and he is no xenophobe. The parliament of Jordan is similarly NOT hateful.

    To consider ONLY the risk and not the opportunity, strikes me as in fundamental conflict with the message of Torah.

    I’ve never experienced an occassion in which there was no risk in a relationship of any sort. That does not prohibit me from entering relationships. It defines where I must pay special attention (and in some occassions where I must keep my distance, even separation).

    I think in identifying ONLY threat, you deny what God has given you in life, intelligence, compassion, skill at the use of words, acknowledgement of God’s presence in all living, the ability to transform what is broken to what is healthy.

    The attitudes that you’ve expressed about the desirability of Jewish settlement (even in cases where title is imperfect and partially theft), are not that different than what you claim to oppose and defend against.

    I am your opponent on the question of whether Torah grants the right or even compels Jews to take others’ land, within ANY jurisdiction.

    Its a rationalization for personal or collective gain, NOT a path of righteousness, NOT a path of conformity with the instructions at Sinai.

  17. Peter D Says:
    July 31st, 2008 at 12:09 pm

    Y Ben David.
    I was calling your position racist because it promotes a questionable thesis of some universal Arab hatred of Jews and disregards a much more credible and convincing thesis of animosity stemming from Israel’s actions. Your thesis is unconvincing because you want us to believe that all the Arabs – indeed all the Muslim world, despite enormous differences between different countries, tribes, sects etc is united by some overpowering hatred of Jews indoctrinated by their state media. Undoubtedly, some indoctrination takes place – where doesn’t it? – but it is secondary, because for any propaganda to take hold and be effective it must rely on some deeper feelings than some “influential commentary” by some theologian or such.
    Explain to me, for example, how come the Shiite of South Lebanon who were always friendly to the Jews, indeed, even sheltered many in the War of Independence, who initially welcomed Israeli invasion of Lebanon suddenly morphed into Hizballa and its base of support? Is it because of some super-effective state-run indoctrination? Or the writings of an Egyptian Suni theologian? I think it is much more credible to any balanced person that it was Israeli actions that were mainly responsible for the alienation and animosity. The last Lebanon debacle succeeded alienating many more former Israeli sympathizers in Lebanon, including large numbers of Maronite Christians (not Muslims at all!) I am not disputing that there is self-serving propaganda run by some Arab or Mulsim regimes. But I repeat, it is secondary to the animosity inspired by Israel’s actions.
    Yes, peace with Egypt and with Jordan is a cold one. What would you expect? How could it be otherwise when 70% of Jordan population, for example, are Palestinians who see their brethren oppressed and killed every day? If anything, the state propaganda does not air the true feeling of the population.
    Muslim world is not monolithic in anything except in its opposition to Israel: the Suni hate the Shia and vice versa, even Jihadists are so terribly fractured that calling them all by a single moniker like “Jihadists” seems wrong – care to read this fascinating piece in the New Yorker – The Rebellion Within: An Al Qaeda mastermind questions terrorism? How can this universal opposition to Israel be explained by some overreaching indoctrination? Moreover, how can Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians and its neighbors be discounted as the main factor driving this animosity? Animosity that did not exist in this form towards Jews before the State of Israel was created?
    Your words above “the Arab opposition to Israel […] is an inherent part of their ethnic and religious identity” strike me as self-serving propaganda: “there is no need to improve Israel’s behavior or try to reach peace and justice just because whatever we do Arabs will hate us”. It is also extremely troubling to me that if you just replace a couple of words – “Arabs” with “Jews”, “Israel” with “Gentiles” – you arrive at sweeping statements on the nature of Jewish hatred of Gentiles that the anti-Semites like to use so much. They will also bring countless examples of writings and facts supporting their claims (read our friend Joachim Martillo, for example).
    I also take issue with your underhanded tactic of putting words in my mouth: you say

    anyone who doesn’t think like you, is, as you stated “subhuman”

    Now anybody reading my comment #8 above can see that I said

    You exhibit the usual racist (you’d call it pragmatic) view of Arabs as subhumans who are incapable of making peace.

    Thus, you twisted my words that referred to your characterization of Arabs to make it look like I stated that you – a person who doesn’t agree with me – are “subhuman”! What a shameful trick!
    Lastly, I don’t think that everybody should agree with me. I do think dialog is important and that the more convincing argument will win in the end, even if I myself am not a very adept agent of this argument (if it is indeed correct – I don’t assume to have all the right answers.) I have no doubt, however, that there are “more superior” ways of thinking and “less superior” ways of thinking. Humanism is superior to racism. Believing that some ungodly trait is in the culture of some hundreds of millions of pretty diverse and dissimilar people is still racist, especially when a much more human and natural explanation exists.

  18. Richard Witty Says:
    July 31st, 2008 at 7:10 pm

    Peter D,
    There is within Islam an urge for peace and acceptance of Jews, and within Islam a contempt and permission to suppress Jews.

    You cannot say that Y David is wrong in identifying that.

    The most that I believe that one can say is that other relationships are possible.

  19. Y. Ben-David Says:
    August 1st, 2008 at 12:07 am

    Peter D-
    As indicated in the quote that you brought above, it was you, not I, who used the term “subhuman” to characterize the Arab refusal to make peace with Israel. The real problem is that it is all too human.

    You are quite right that the Arab world is not monolithic, and you are also quite right that there are Arabs who are prepared to make accomodations with Israel. I will give a couple of examples….let’s look at the Israeli Arabs. Most are living in peace with Israel. Yet, at the same time, their official representatives in the Knesset take the most extreme positions and enjoy provoking the Jewish population. The fact is a significant percentage of the Israeli do not even vote for the Arab parties, voting for Jewish/Zionist parties instead. So we see again that if pushed to state openly their position, the most extreme call the tune, but quietly, in the privacy of the ballot box, they may do something entirely different.
    During the Crusades, there were Arabs who made alliances with them and fought together with them against other Arabs. Simple pragmatism.
    In Hevron in recent months, contacts have resumed after years between the Jews living there and the local Arab population. The Arab leaders came out and said they have no problem with the Jews living there in peace (this was reported in the Ha’aretz newspaper and other sources…I spoke to one of the men who participated in them). Both groups came out and denounced the anarchist and radical groups who have been coming to Hevron and stirring up trouble with provocative acts. Do the Arabs in Hevron wish the Jews would simply go away? Of course, but seeing as that is not possible, they want a modus vivendi.
    That is the answer. Quiet work behind the scenes to build bridges, NOT impossible “peace agreements”. It was the Olso “peace agreement” that set off the biggest wave of violence the country had seen since 1948 and the result was massive bloodshed on both sides, a lot more hatred and the rise of the most extreme elements in Palestinian society. What both sides need is for the realists and pragmatists to get together and try to improve the situation on a day-to-day level. This will work, of course, only if Israel stands on the rights of Jews to live in Judea/Samaria. Today, most of Judea/Samaria is off limits to Jewish settlement, so the question of “expansion” is not on the agenda, but we all can see how the expulsion of Jews from Gush Katif not only inflamed the whole situation, but it caused a deterioration in the lives of the Arabs of the Gaza Strip.

  20. Richard Witty Says:
    August 1st, 2008 at 5:47 am

    :That is the answer. Quiet work behind the scenes to build bridges, NOT impossible “peace agreements”. ”

    Why not both? And REALLY do it, not rationalizing away.

    One of the key reasons that structural agreements are necessary is that Palestinians really do suffer as a result of their structural isolation.

    I think the Palestinian civil war with Hamas as a strong player, is a great deterrent to peace at all in the region, but still the Palestinians in the West Bank have seen themselves isolated from one another, and from the rest of the world.

    It is a recipe for dependancy, anger, ill health. And, there is a parallel to all racially self-fulfilling prejudice, that is as a society becomes more and more stressed, it exhibits more and more desparate behavior in all respects. So, to make a stressed society more stressed, just “proves the point”.

    A better point to prove is that involvement and genuine concern heals.

  21. Y. Ben-David Says:
    August 2nd, 2008 at 1:00 pm

    Here is a link to a good New York Times article about the tension between Muslims and Coptic Christians in Egypt. I give this as an example of the problems Muslims have with all minorities and those who refuse to accept their view of things. Relations with Jews and the Jewish state are a thousand times more complicated.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/02/world/middleeast/02egypt.html?_r=1&oref=slogin

  22. Tom Mitchell Says:
    August 2nd, 2008 at 2:55 pm

    Mr. Ben-David,
    Allowing that traditional Islam calls for practioneers of other monotheistic religions to be treated as tolerated dhimmi, isn’t the national religious Orthodox position towards Arabs the same? They want Arabs to live as guests in the West Bank and tolerate Jewish settlers taking their land, smashing their olive groves, harassing them on a daily basis.

    You keep on insisting that formal peace treaties won’t work with the Arabs. Yet Egypt has been at peace with Israel for nearly 30 years and Jordan has been in a state of legal peace with Israel for 14 years and in a de facto state of peace with Israel since before Egypt. Do you take this stance because for formal peace Israel might have to make concessions to its Arab negotiating partners?

  23. Y. Ben-David Says:
    August 2nd, 2008 at 11:53 pm

    Tom Mitchell-
    The reason that there has not been a war between Egypt and Israel since 1973 is NOT because of the “peace agreement”. It is simply because Egypt has not wanted a war. There has not been a war between Israel and Syria, either, since 1974, and this is in the ABSENCE of a peace agreement. Similarly, Israel didn’t fight a war with Jordan since 1967 (although Jordanian units did engage Israeli forces on the Golan in 1973) and this was without a peace agreement prior to 1994.
    Also, the fact that there is a peace agreement with Egpyt today does not mean that there will not be a war in the future. Most wars begin from a pre-existing situation of peace. If Egypt wants war with Israel, the “peace agreement” won’t prevent it.
    Again, if Egypt and the other Arab states would show peaceful intentions towards Israel, then Israelis would be willing to make far-reaching concessions. I recognize that fact. However, they do not. Israel is presented as a dangerous enemy state in their internal propaganda. So why should Israel make concessions for meaningless scraps of paper called “peace agreements”?
    Israel’s policy should not be “territories for peace” but rather “peace for peace”. As long as Israel keeps dangling concessions in front the of the Arabs, it only encourages the most extreme elements to think “they will eventually go under as long as we keep up the pressure with terrorism, missile attacks, etc”

    Your description of “tolerated” dhimmis is misleading. Dhimmis are “tolerated” only as long as they pay “protection money”. Once this was called the “jizya” tax. Although I believe this has been eliminated due to its officially discriminatory nature (doesn’t look good to Westerners) dhimmis are still expected by large sections of the Muslim community to be submissive, to hide their religious beliefs, to not assert themselves in public life, etc.

    Regarding the “olive groves” myth that so many people take as some sort universal truth….the government set up a special cabinet committee to investigate it. In the end no one was arrested. Don’t forget all the “extremist settler groups” are infiltrated by the SHABAK, the police and army high commands are all in the hands of people who are not friendly to the settler movements (the Left sees to it that all the arms of coercion of the state are headed by people whom they approve of) and so if no arrests are made, it is not because of lax law enforcement, but rather because no crime was commmitted.

  24. Richard Witty Says:
    August 3rd, 2008 at 5:56 am

    Peace occurs when states or factions agree to talk out problems rather than fight them out.

    The actions that enable peace between Egypt and Israel and Jordan and Israel that is long-lasting is that they actively confer, and from the commitment to retain stability as preferable to states of anarchy.

    The United States and the Soviet Union avoided war partially because they had direct and indirect means to confer.

    An intention without the mechanism is less likely to succeed.

    “Israel’s policy should not be “territories for peace” but rather “peace for peace”.”

    This we agree on.

    “so if no arrests are made, it is not because of lax law enforcement, but rather because no crime was commmitted.”

    This is a rationalization on your part, most likely false. (“The secret police undertook a false flag operation for its own purposes”, to discredit us. Maybe so, maybe not.) You’d have to go and see for yourself.

    If you are sincere about seeking to establish kind relationships with Palestinian civilians, this would be an opportunity for you to actually investigate and see with your own eyes, and hear with your own ears, rather than just believe.

  25. Richard Witty Says:
    August 3rd, 2008 at 8:34 am

    Please note that one of the COMMANDMENTS is “thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor”.

    While that may charitably described as only applying to courts, I don’t regard it as that limited.

    I believe it is important not to rumor, not to guess, not to impugn carelessly (whomever is on the receiving end).

  26. Y. Ben-David Says:
    August 3rd, 2008 at 10:08 pm

    Here is a good article pointing out the myth of so-called “Palestinian national identity” (I realize that it is extremely not P-C to say that there is no such thing as a “Palestinian people” but that is the reality). Palestinians of Judea/Samaria despise those from Gaza and vice-versa (I still believe that Abbas is actually glad HAMAS took over Gaza, it made life much simpler for him because, among other things, it opened up the pursestrings from the EU and US).

    http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1215331182583&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull

  27. Peter D Says:
    August 4th, 2008 at 9:57 am

    Y Ben David

    As indicated in the quote that you brought above, it was you, not I, who used the term “subhuman” to characterize the Arab refusal to make peace with Israel.

    Whom are you trying to fool here? First you claimed I used the word to describe those who disagree with me, then you backtrack and charge that I characterized the Arabs this way? A little apology for twisting my words would suffice, instead, you’re digging further…

    In Hevron in recent months, contacts have resumed after years between the Jews living there and the local Arab population. […] Both groups came out and denounced the anarchist and radical groups who have been coming to Hevron and stirring up trouble
    with provocative acts

    Please, don’t insult my intelligence as well of other readers here. What “provocative acts”? Like this? Like this? What the hell are you smoking, buddy?
    So, the settlers were able to round up some Arab mashtapim who would be happy not to walk on the Arabrein streets and put up with the destruction of Arab property? Give me a break.

    That is the answer. Quiet work behind the scenes to build bridges, NOT impossible “peace agreements”. It was the Olso “peace agreement” that set off the biggest wave of violence the country had seen since 1948 and the result was massive bloodshed on both sides, a lot more hatred and the rise of the most extreme elements in Palestinian society.

    Oslo agreements failed not because the idea of peace is impossible but because there were enough people on both sides who diligently worked to undermine them. Because, among other things, Israel accelerated building the settlements instead of freezing them and the Arabs, seeing their putative state slipping between their fingers resorted to violence.
    Your “quiet work behind the scenes” is a good idea, of course, but it cannot come as a smoke-screen for continuing politicide of the Palestinians.

    What both sides need is for the realists and pragmatists to get together and try to improve the situation on a day-to-day level.

    And who would oppose to this platitude! What is needed is for Israelis to realize that the Palestinians are entitled to justice. “The Magnes Zionist” said it best here.

    This will work, of course, only if Israel stands on the rights of Jews to live in Judea/Samaria. Today, most of Judea/Samaria is off limits to Jewish settlement, so the question of “expansion” is not on the agenda

    Here we go again. A quick look at some of the Peace Now reports shows it is a lie.
    And, if you insist on Jewish settlement in the WB, let’s also insist on the Palestinian settlement anywhere in their land too. What’s good for the goose is good for the gander. You are providing a recipe for a bi-national state, which I – unlike majority Israelis – don’t oppose on ideological ground, but on the grounds that it will probably result in even greater violence between the two people.

  28. Peter D Says:
    August 4th, 2008 at 8:40 pm

    Y Ben David

    As indicated in the quote that you brought above, it was you, not I, who
    used the term “subhuman” to characterize the Arab refusal to make peace
    with Israel.

    Whom are you trying to fool here? First you claimed I used the word to
    describe those who disagree with me, then you backtrack and charge that
    I characterized the Arabs this way? A little apology for twisting my
    words would suffice, instead, you’re digging further…

    In Hevron in recent months, contacts have resumed after years between
    the Jews living there and the local Arab population. [...] Both groups
    came out and denounced the anarchist and radical groups who have been
    coming to Hevron and stirring up trouble
    with provocative acts

    Please, don’t insult my intelligence as well of other readers here. What
    “provocative acts”? Like this? Like this? What the hell are you smoking, buddy?
    So, the settlers were able to round up some Arab mashtapim who would be
    happy not to walk on the Arabrein streets and put up with the
    destruction of Arab property? Give me a break.

    That is the answer. Quiet work behind the scenes to build
    bridges, NOT impossible “peace agreements”. It was the Olso “peace
    agreement” that set off the biggest wave of violence the country had
    seen since 1948 and the result was massive bloodshed on both sides, a
    lot more hatred and the rise of the most extreme elements in Palestinian
    society.

    Oslo agreements failed not because the idea of peace is impossible but
    because there were enough people on both sides who diligently worked to
    undermine them. Because, among other things, Israel accelerated
    building the settlements instead of freezing them and the Arabs, seeing
    their putative state slipping between their fingers resorted to
    violence.
    Your “quiet work behind the scenes” is a good idea, of course, but it
    cannot come as a smoke-screen for continuing politicide of the
    Palestinians.

    What both sides need is for the realists and pragmatists to
    get together and try to improve the situation on a day-to-day level.

    And who would oppose to this platitude! What is needed is for Israelis
    to realize that the Palestinians are entitled to justice. “The
    Magnes Zionist” said it best here.

    This will work, of course, only if Israel stands on the
    rights of Jews to live in Judea/Samaria. Today, most of Judea/Samaria is
    off limits to Jewish settlement, so the question of “expansion” is not
    on the agenda

    Here we go again. A quick look at some of the Peace Now reports shows it is a lie.
    And, if you insist on Jewish settlement in the WB, let’s also insist on
    the Palestinian settlement anywhere in their land too. What’s good for
    the goose is good for the gander. You are providing a recipe for a
    bi-national state, which I – unlike majority Israelis – don’t oppose on
    ideological ground, but on the grounds that it will probably result in
    even greater violence between the two people.

  29. Y. Ben-David Says:
    August 5th, 2008 at 6:43 pm

    Palestinian settlement (and, by this, I include Israeli Arabs) is expanding, all the time, all over both Judea/Samaria and Israel.

    In Hevron and the South Hevron Hills area, Leftist and Anarchist groups are arriving all the time in order to make demonstrations and to demand the Jews be expelled from the area. They stir up provocations by intruding on Jewish-owned land and marching through the Jewish areas of Hevron with signs. All this is desiged to encourage violence which they record with their video cameras which they come equipped with, whose main purpose, no doubt, is fund raising. The IDF commanders in the area have confirmed this (and recall, the IDF, like all branches of coercion of the state, is run by people who are not friendly to the settlers).

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