Posted tagged ‘West Bank’

Disturbed and Disappointed by My Fellow Zionists

January 21, 2009

For months now, I have been receiving emails from a woman named Chana who represented the Web site www.thelandofisrael.com. I always assumed they were filled with nice messages about the Land of Israel, and I simply never clicked on any of the articles because I didn’t have the time.

Today I saw a video link in the email titled “Tuesday Night Live in Jerusalem #25: Peace Now VS. Hebron.” Now I was intrigued for a minute because Peace Now is an organization I have been thinking of getting involved with for a while. I believe very strongly that Israel needs to evacuate Jews from the West Bank, and move towards an immediate two-state solution.

I watched the video, and was horrified by what I saw. Two men were standing on a stage speaking in English to a crowd of people. They tried to play it off like a weird mix between SNL and the Late Night Show. In truth they came across like televangelists of the worst kind. They had a room full of sheep that were baying at their every word.

They explained that they believe the Hebron was, and always should be, an important place for Jews to live. After the applause from the audience, they took a man-on-the-street approach, and went to visit both a Peace Now rally, and the settler neighborhood in Hebron.

I was so disturbed by the slanted position they took to this video. The blatant editing tactics designed to change the meaning of someones words were nauseating. The biased questions and unfair approach to the attendees of the Peace Now rally was stupefying. The positive slant to present the settlers as peaceful and the activists as violent was shockingly upside-down.

But I guess I don’t know what else I can expect. When people take their religious beliefs and insert them into the political arena, dangerous things can happen. The extremist settlers living in the West Bank need to leave. They need to recognize the humanity of the Palestinian people, and their right to self-determination. They need to give up their dreams of a Biblical Israel, and settle (no pun intended) for something within the 1949 borders.

Enough is enough. President Obama will hopefully put pressure on the Israeli government to force out the settlers, and that will hopefully put an end to this whole thing. Until then, I will be avoiding thelandofisrael.com like the plague.

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The Need for a Sovereign Palestine

January 14, 2009

What I have feared would come in the next couple of years seems to be here already. I have been warning my right wing Zionist friends that if there is not a two-state solution for Israel and the Palestinians soon, then the new demand that is going to be made is for a single country with two peoples. This is my nightmare.

For too long, Palestinians have been living without the basic Human Rights that many of us take for granted. Forget about their living conditions that could be easily improved with a little help from their oil-rich Arabian “friends.” I’m talking about the basic right of citizenship. Children have been born into refugee camps in the West Bank and Gaza, and are refused the right to self-determination. They are refused the right to be citizens of a country. Israel will not have them, and there is currently not autonomous Palestinian State.

This war has prompted people to think twice about the possibility for a Palestinian State to exist side-by-side with Israel. People are saying that Arab countries who would have otherwise agreed to a two-state solution are now losing credibility with their populations. Experts are saying that Israel will never be able to trust the elements of Hamas in Gaza to stop attacking Israeli civilians, and that creating a police presence in Gaza is the only way to create peace.

The reason for Israel’s existence was to create a safe-haven for the Jewish people. If Jews  no longer constitute a majority of Israeli citizens (which they would not be if all residents of Gaza and West Bank were given citizenship), the State of Israel as we know it will be over.

The Israeli government must do everything in its power to arrive at a two-state solution. The Israeli public must cry out in demands for an immediate end to this impasse. Jews around the Diaspora must rally behind this cause.

It is not the leftists and the peaceniks that should be demanding a two-state solution. Hawks and right wing Zionists must realize that this is the only option for Israel to survive. The status quo has been going on long enough, and it will come to an end one way or another.

It is up to us whether we have an independent Palestine comprising of Gaza and the West Bank, or an Israel that will no longer be Jewish.

Israel Takes High Road in War with Hamas

January 12, 2009

I just returned from a 10-day trip to Israel. On days 3 of my trip, the current war between the State of Israel and the Hamas organization located in Gaza began.

It was definitely scary to be in Israel during a war (although it was not my first time), and I appreciated getting the inside perspective from my Israeli family members (one of whom is currently serving in the IDF in the West Bank).

I am an ardent supporter of the Israeli government, and I am also an ardent supporter of Human Rights for all people (all people). I do not see a conflict between these two beliefs. I mourn the innocent Palestinians who are killed, and I pray for the speedy recovery of those injured. Israel is involved in a defensive war designed to stop missiles from being shot from Gaza towards Israeli civilian targets.

I was reminded of Israel’s moral superiority when my uncle told me about the Israeli army’s approach to bombing buildings used to store weapons:

First, a series of calls and sms messages are sent from the IDF to civilians (and even terrorists!) warning them that the building they occupy is about the bombed. That they have these phone numbers is only less amazing than the fact that warning calls are being made.

In response to the calls, many of the occupants of the building will gather on the roof of the building to prevent the fighter jets from bombing the building.

Anticipating this next step, the Israeli fighter jets are equipped with a special mini-explosion missile. This missile is shot at the corner of the building that is least occupied, and is used to scare the shit out of the people on the roof. Once they have fled the scene, the building is levelled. (Hundreds of lives have been saved with this tactic that the US Army would never have even considered during the current War in Iraq.)

In the highly publicized incident of a family of 16 being killed when their building was bombed, a call was made to those occupants as well. The Hamas leader whose home it was told his 4 wives and 10+ children to stay in the home with him, believing that the Israeli army would not attack the building if they were with him. Even though he was a target himself, the warning was issued because of his family’s presence. The missiles were fired, and the family was killed. He sacrificed his children to protect the weapons cache hidden in their home.

You tell me who’s moral.