The Israel / Palestine mire (again)

argatoga

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You are both smoking something that I wish you would share. The entire idea of Zionism is religious to begin with, why do you think Jews set up their own state where they did as opposed to just buying up a bunch of islands somewhere (plenty are for sale) and declaring them their own country? It's the same thing from the other side, Muslims believe it's their holy land and having "infidels" on it doesn't sit well with them.
The Palestinians didn't go to the Levant, they were already there (hence Palestinian, another name for the area of Syria, Lebanon, and Israel). Most of the Semitic people who were in the area were Arabized after the Arab conquest (including Jews). So for them it isn't because it was a Muslim holy land, it was because they had already been living there for millennia.

As for the reason why European Jews flocked to Israel, it was escape. While there were those who came because they saw it as a holy land, the majority came because of Anti-Jewism in Europe. W.W. 2 had just happened. While the Germans were the most extreme, there was still anti Jewish sentiment in the rest of Europe. Regardless of if it was holy, Israel provided a much less begated atmosphere in the Jewish communities. Judaism is also more than a purely religious identity, there are Jewish Atheists.
 

prizrak

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The Palestinians didn't go to the Levant, they were already there (hence Palestinian, another name for the area of Syria, Lebanon, and Israel). Most of the Semitic people who were in the area were Arabized after the Arab conquest (including Jews). So for them it isn't because it was a Muslim holy land, it was because they had already been living there for millennia.
Yes they did live there for a long time no doubt but the biggest reason that the Palenstinian state didn't happen in 1948 when Israel was established was religious.

As for the reason why European Jews flocked to Israel, it was escape. While there were those who came because they saw it as a holy land, the majority came because of Anti-Jewism in Europe. W.W. 2 had just happened. While the Germans were the most extreme, there was still anti Jewish sentiment in the rest of Europe. Regardless of if it was holy, Israel provided a much less begated atmosphere in the Jewish communities. Judaism is also more than a purely religious identity,
I know very well the reasons behind establishing a Jewish state but location choice was purely religious. There were plenty of places that Jews could have taken for themselves but they chose this one very specific place...
there are Jewish Atheists.
Well aware of that being one of those ;)
 

argatoga

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Yes they did live there for a long time no doubt but the biggest reason that the Palenstinian state didn't happen in 1948 when Israel was established was religious.
I know very well the reasons behind establishing a Jewish state but location choice was purely religious. There were plenty of places that Jews could have taken for themselves but they chose this one very specific place...

I agree, a lot of the early settlers did go there for religious reasons. However, as there grew a larger Jewish community less religious Jews then came to be part of the large Jewish community. This created a snowball effect.

Religion isn't the fuel behind the Palestinian fire though. It is an ethnic matter. Robert Pape did a study of twenty years of Palestinian suicide bombings and found the reason behind them were not religious, but were done due to the perceived threat to an ethnic homeland. This is similar to the suicide bombings done by the Tamel Tigers and even the Japanese Kamikazes.
 

argatoga

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I found this discussion by Pape (interlaced with Sam Harris speaking the popular Western beliefs about terrorism).

 

LeVeL

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And this is why Stewart is a fucking retard.

Anyways, here's the speech. Great job, Bibi!

 

Cryptopygia

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And here's a good reason to cross-post this from the random thoughts thread... (Not that LeVeL's going to read it, since it can't be used to validate his beliefs.)

Israel?s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Tuesday urged U.S. lawmakers to reject the nuclear deal being negotiated between Iran and world powers, warning that it would help Iran acquire nuclear weapons and threaten Israel?s survival. Iran?s regime could not be trusted to abide by any agreement, he warned, and he urged the United States to increase pressure on Tehran until it agreed to dismantle much of its nuclear program and change its regional behavior.

The White House has long warned that abandoning the current negotiating framework would open a path to war ? an argument he rejected. But the Israeli leader?s characterization of the deal and of Iran?s current nuclear efforts have long been challenged by Western governments involved in the talks.

Here is a reality check of four of Netanyahu?s key arguments.

1. ?Iran?s quest for nuclear weapons? threatens Israel?s ?survival?

Netanyahu presented as an established fact that Iran is seeking to build nuclear weapons and that it would use such weapons to destroy Israel. But neither claim could be considered an established fact.

Tamir Pardo, head of Israel?s Mossad intelligence agency, in December 2011 reportedly told foreign ambassadors that while it would present a strategic challenge, an Iranian nuclear weapons capability would not threaten Israel?s existence. And Netanyahu?s former Defense Minister, Ehud Barak, in 2009 said, ?I am not among those who believe Iran is an existential issue for Israel,? adding that ?Israel is strong, I don?t see anyone who can pose an existential threat.? When asked in 2011 whether Iran would drop a nuclear bomb on Israel, Barak answered, ?Not on us and not on any other neighbor.?

The Israeli security establishment?s confidence may be based on Israel?s own, undeclared nuclear arsenal ? numbering more than 150 warheads, according to former U.S. President Jimmy Carter ? and on the fact that its combination of land, sea and air delivery systems give Israel the means to destroy every major city in the Islamic Republic within hours.

Netanyahu?s insistence that building nuclear weapons is Iran?s intent is open to question, not simply because Tehran denies it. Iran has accumulated nuclear infrastructure permitted for peaceful use, which gives the country the ability to produce bomb materiel. And there are unanswered questions over whether it may have been researching weapons design before 2003, when the U.S. invasion of Iraq toppled Tehran?s archenemy, Saddam Hussein.

Still, the consensus among international intelligence agencies, including Israel?s, is that despite putting the option to build nuclear weapons within reach, Tehran has not taken a decision to do so ? and, according to the U.S. National Intelligence Estimate, Iran would make such a decision on the basis of a pragmatic cost-benefit analysis, based principally on its reading of whether external threats to the regime?s survival necessitated a nuclear deterrent.

2. Iran?s regime is implacably revolutionary, hellbent on ?conquest and subjugation? and can?t be trusted to abide by any deal

Netanyahu painted Iran as a revolutionary regime that cannot be trusted to make international deals. He pointed to Iran?s support for groups such as Hezbollah and for the Assad regime in Syria to claim that Iran was hellbent on regional conquest and the destruction of Israel, warning that any deal with Iran should be made conditional on changing its behavior in the region ? a reversal of Israel?s longtime opposition to seeking a grand bargain with Iran rather than a more narrowly focused nuclear deal.

The speech implied that Iran?s regime since the 1979 revolution has been so dangerous that it could not be engaged with as a rational actor and that its alleged drive for nuclear weapons to destroy Israel was deeply ingrained. But beyond Iran?s stated opposition to nuclear weapons, it?s not clear from the historical record that Iran is unable to abide by international agreements or immune to rational calculation based on self-interest.

Western and Israeli intelligence have concluded that Iran has largely abided by the November 2013 interim agreement that sharply limited its nuclear work and required shrinking of stockpiles, with the exception of a continued dispute over access granted by Iran to International Atomic Energy Agency monitors.

Analyst Peter Beinart notes that the track record suggests the Iranian regime?s aggressive behavior in the region remains tempered by a pragmatic concern for its survival.

?Iran is seeking to extend its power without doing something so aggressive that it provokes retaliation that imperils the regime?s survival,? he wrote. ?Iran isn?t doing truly reckless things like invading a Saudi ally in the Persian Gulf or launching chemical or biological weapons at Israel, either directly or through its terrorist proxies. And it never has.? He pointed to the regime?s acceptance of a cease-fire in the brutal eight-year war with Iraq rather than fight to the death and cooperation with the U.S. against the Taliban as signs of pragmatism.

Current and former intelligence officials in both the U.S. and Israel, moreover, have long assessed Iran?s behavior as based on rational self-interest calculations, revolutionary rhetoric notwithstanding. In an interview with CBS in 2012, former Mossad head Meir Dagan said, ?The regime in Iran is a very rational one.?

And U.S. Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper said in Senate testimony in 2012, ?We judge Iran?s nuclear decision-making is guided by a cost-benefit approach, which offers the international community opportunities to influence Tehran.?

3. The agreement between Iran and world powers ?all but guarantees that Iran gets nuclear weapons?

Netanyahu?s argument is that the deal currently under discussion will leave Iran with uranium-enrichment infrastructure that could be repurposed to make bomb materiel and that the agreement expires after 10 years.

The Israeli leader would clearly prefer a reversion to the approach of the George W. Bush administration that Iran should not be allowed any uranium enrichment capability on its own soil, despite this being permitted for civilian applications under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), to which Iran is a signatory. Despite sanctions and the threat of force by the Bush administration, Iran began enriching uranium in 2006 to energy-reactor grade and continued to expand its capability ? albeit under permanent international inspection, as required under the NPT.

Once Iran had established uranium enrichment as an intractable fact on the ground, world powers began negotiating in search of a deal based on agreeing stricter, verifiable safeguards against Iran weaponizing nuclear material, rather than on eliminating Iran?s enrichment capability altogether ? a goal on which Iran has shown no inclination to negotiate.

Netanyahu is correct that such an agreement accepts Iran as a nuclear threshold state ? one that, like Japan or Argentina, has infrastructure that could be repurposed to assemble a bomb. But as Avner Cohen, an Israeli historian of his country?s nuclear program, said on Tuesday, ?Iran was already a nuclear threshold state before it signed the interim agreement [of November 2013],? adding that the NPT ?bans the development of nuclear weapons but does not explicitly ban member nations from becoming threshold states.? What is being negotiated currently between Iran and world powers is the width of that threshold ? i.e., how long it would take Iran to cross ? and the safeguards against doing so.

Cohen also noted that the deal extends the breakout time, which refers to the time it would take Iran to produce enough weapons-grade uranium for a single bomb ? although as Ali Vaez, the International Crisis Group?s senior Iran analyst, notes, there may be a few years more between having enough materiel for a single bomb and having an actual nuclear weapons arsenal.

The proposed agreement leaves Iran with the capability to build nuclear weapons but lengthens the time frame required to do so and reinforces the tripwires that would alert the international community and allow a forceful response.

After the 10-year limit expires, Iran would not be free to pursue nuclear weapons at will. The current deal requires Iran to accept limits on its nuclear work far beyond those required by the NPT to prevent weaponization; after it expires, the rules set by the NPT and the verification and inspection regimes ? and probably, also, the Additional Protocols that Iran has been willing to sign to accept a more intrusive inspection regime ? would still apply.

And that?s if Iran?s strategic cost-benefit analysis prompted it to pursue weapons.

4. By killing the current deal, the U.S. and its allies can get a ?much better deal?

?The alternative to this bad deal is a much better deal,? Netanyahu argued, suggesting that the current negotiations be allowed to collapse and that an escalation of sanctions and other pressure would bring Iran back to the table willing to offer terms more to the liking of Israel and Western powers.

This better deal would demolish much of Iran?s nuclear infrastructure and curb its regional ambitions.

But Netanyahu?s optimistic assessment of the consequences of tearing up the present deal omitted a few realities. For one, none of the six world powers currently negotiating with Iran accept the Israeli demand that Iran cannot be allowed to have any civilian enrichment capacity. The premise of the negotiating effort of the past seven years has been that Tehran would retain some enrichment capacity but with tighter limits and stricter safeguards than those required by the NPT.

More important, perhaps, the current sanctions regime depends largely on the willingness of foreign countries to observe restrictions imposed by the U.S. and European Union. (The U.S. has not traded with Iran since 1979.)

?If the United States should reject what is perceived to be a reasonable Iranian offer, there are growing signs that the coalition might begin to fray,? Gary Sick of Columbia University, a former National Security Council Iran specialist for three administrations, wrote in November. China and Russia would likely lead the way as many of Iran?s key business partners resumed full trade and investment ties, meaning that Tehran could ease the pressure of sanctions without the implementation even of the current deal.

Both countries have deepened trade with and investment in Iran, and China has engaged in military exercises with Iran?s navy.

Netanyahu provided no explanation of how his position would maintain the international coalition on which the sanctions effort depends or on how ? without going to war ? Iran could be persuaded to settle for his terms.

?On the core issue, which is how do we prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon, which would make it far more dangerous and would give it scope for even greater action in the region, the prime minister didn't offer any viable alternatives,? President Barack Obama said in response to Netanyahu?s speech.
http://america.aljazeera.com/articles/2015/3/3/netanyahus-hardline-on-iran-a-four-point-reality-check.html
 
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LeVeL

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And here's a good reason to cross-post this from the random thoughts thread... (Not that LeVeL's going to read it, since it can't be used to validate his beliefs.)
How would I know the bolded part without reading it? That said, lol @ the source.
 

M3lover

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There are two simple possible solutions to that conflict:
1) Remove all Jews OR
2) Remove all Muslims

There is literally no other way as both side believe that it is THEIR land by birthright. Maybe not 100% of both sides believe it but enough of a majority that a peaceful solution is simply impossible.
I am starting to believe this more and more. Of course they aren't the only solution, but it seems those are the options that are being worked towards. Just look at the area Israel covers from the start till now. They are slowly taking up the land one settlement at a time.

What I have a hard time seeing is where Israel is going to put the 1.6 million palestinians if they take the whole thing?
 

LeVeL

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I am starting to believe this more and more. Of course they aren't the only solution, but it seems those are the options that are being worked towards. Just look at the area Israel covers from the start till now. They are slowly taking up the land one settlement at a time.

What I have a hard time seeing is where Israel is going to put the 1.6 million palestinians if they take the whole thing?
1) Israel has given away more land in exchange for supposed peace than it currently has.
2) In 1947 the plan was to have an Arab state and a Jewish state side-by-side but the Arabs rejected it. Instead they attacked Israel the very next day after the British mandate ended. We wouldn't be in this mess if they had accepted a two state solution way back then but instead they choose the path of war.
 

Interrobang

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[...] but instead they choose the path of war.
And we all know wars need to go on untill everyone on one side is dead. That?s the rule of war. There is no crying in baseball backing out of a war for the sake of peace!

:rolleyes:

The whole peace thing would be so much easier if both sides in the conflict weren?t actively working against it. But I?m rejecting the notion that there can never ever be peace because of what was in the past. I now live in a country that was a sworn enemy of my home-country once. My friends are people from all over the world who?s grandparents saw my grandparents as the devil (not trying to say they weren?t, just saying that feeling was a strong one) and wanted to kill them. Fast forward 70 years and you have a big german community living in France and all over the world. Because stuff changed. Because people wanted stuff to change. And stuff did change. But it only changed because people were ready to leave the past behind them (which is hard, not saying that?s easy) and walk into a different future. You?re never going to get to a different future if you only look towards the past.
Long story short: This conflict or any other are not set in stone. But untill the governments and people stop to actively work against peace, there is no chance for one.

prizrak said:
[...]
There is literally no other way as both side believe that it is THEIR land by birthright. Maybe not 100% of both sides believe it but enough of a majority that a peaceful solution is simply impossible.
I think to live in the place you were born in, is everyones birthright. Jew, Hindu, Moslem, Christian or any one elses. If you were born in Israel, you have every right to live there no matter what God(s) you?re praying to (or not).

M3lover said:
[...]What I have a hard time seeing is where Israel is going to put the 1.6 million palestinians if they take the whole thing?
The interesting question for me is, are we going to stand on the sidelines and let them do such a terrible thing.
 
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LeVeL

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Israel has negotiated peace countless times. They've even negotiated about a two state solution. They've given away more than half their land in exchange for peace. Yet nothing works. Instead the Palestinians elected a terrorist organization to lead them, a terrorist organization whose official charter calls for the destruction of Israel. Only one side wants to, as the silly bumper stickers say, coexist. The other has never tried to hide their intention to completely annihilate their opponents.

Palestinians aside, other regional players, such as Iran and Saudi Arabia, would love to wipe Israel off the face of the earth too, primarily over religion, rather than any sort of land disputes. Any Muslim country that imposes sharia law is at odds with western society, which Israel is a part of.
 

Interrobang

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I could now go and start working through all that, presenting counter-arguments wich in turn you would counter with arguments and no one would "win" that debate ... a debate that is made all over the world and the internet day by day.

I am not going to waste my time piling onto that stupid imaginary mountain of arguments going nowhere - first because I?m not "pro palestinian" and I cannot be bothered to "defend" them, but mainly because I have got better stuff to do.
IMO both parties in this conflict share responsibility. Both parties aren?t doing enough for peace. Both are to blame. Which is what you cannot see when you only look at the conflict from one side wich you IMHO are doing.
 

calvinhobbes

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IMO both parties in this conflict share responsibility. Both parties aren?t doing enough for peace. Both are to blame.
I think that should be amended to "people on both sides" - neither all Israelis nor all Palestinians are the same. Rabin wasn't murdered by a Palestinian, for example.
 

argatoga

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And here's a good reason to cross-post this from the random thoughts thread... (Not that LeVeL's going to read it, since it can't be used to validate his beliefs.)



http://america.aljazeera.com/articles/2015/3/3/netanyahus-hardline-on-iran-a-four-point-reality-check.html
On a geo-political level I see this as a reformation of Cold War like dualism. When the West flirted with Ukraine over NATO it woke the bear and polarized the world. We are now seeing the development of a Russian/Chinese East as an alternative to the West. Now countries like Iran can look to the East when they have problems with the West.


How would I know the bolded part without reading it? That said, lol @ the source.
Yes, because Qatar and Iran have had nothing but a loving relationship. Nothings says love like supporting Saddam fight Iran for an eight year bloody war.

You do know that most of the Arab world support Saddam's invasion of Iran? Iranians and Arabs have had issues with one another since the 7th century.
 

Firecat

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So now that Netanyahu has explicitly stated he is against a Palestinian state, can we all stop pretending that he supports one?
 

LeVeL

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So now that Netanyahu has explicitly stated he is against a Palestinian state, can we all stop pretending that he supports one?
He used to be quite vocal about supporting a two state solution, years back. I think in the time that he's been in power, he has realized that the Palestinians aren't interested in peace.
 

GRtak

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He is a professional politician, which means he spreads a lot of shit to make it look like he supports those he doesn't.
 
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