Off Topic Messages

Middle Eastern "Democracy" Still a Good Idea ?

Fri Jan 27, 2006 7:47 pm

...And fighting for... :?: :shock: :roll:

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http://www.nydailynews.com/news/wn_repo ... 7706c.html

Experts Question Push For Democracy In Middle East
By HELEN KENNEDY, (NEW YORK) DAILY NEWS
Friday, January 27th, 2006

President Bush has made spreading democracy the foundation of his foreign policy, saying it is the key to peace in the Middle East.
But in recent months, religious Shiites swept aside Washington's favored candidates in Iraq. Hezbollah won parliamentary seats in Lebanon, as did the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt. Iran recently elected a fundamentalist firebrand president.

And now the Palestinians have put Hamas in charge.

Is democracy always in America's strategic interest, even when it empowers militants and fundamentalists?

"We should remember that Hitler was also democratically elected," Vigdor Lieberman, a right-wing former Israeli cabinet minister, warned darkly.

An Israeli official with ties to the government said the Hamas win vindicates private warnings to Washington.

"Israel has continually pressed on the Americans that democracy in the Middle East, after so many years of autocracy, will probably mean that moderate regimes will be ousted," the official said.

But experts shrugged off the chorus of "be careful what you wish for."

"What Hamas ran on wasn't 'death to the Jews,' it was 'change and reform.' [Iran's president] didn't run on 'wipe Israel off the map,' he ran on a platform of anti-corruption," said Pat Clawson, an analyst at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy.

Incompetence, not moderation, is what voters in the Middle East are rejecting, he said.

The White House, at least in public, has no second thoughts on its democracy-for-all stand.

"Once we've started down this road, I think it's very important we stick with it," Vice President Cheney said last week in Manhattan when asked about electoral gains by militants. "I think the basic principle is still sound."

"It doesn't mean you're always going to get a perfect result, but I would argue that we're going to get a much better result out of that process than we have [out of] the system that's been in place in the past that has produced the likes of Saddam Hussein, for example, or of Yasser Arafat."

But one administration official, asked yesterday about the Hamas victory, conceded, "This is not what we had in mind."

Still, experts say that extremists tend to tone themselves down when they become part of the political process. The Irish Republican Army - and even Arafat's now-defeated Fatah party - are good examples.

"Bringing groups to power forces them to have to be accountable to the people. The track record tends to be that they get more moderate," said Jillian Schwedler, a University of Maryland assistant professor who is writing a book about the Islamist parties in elections.

"There are Islamic political parties participating in Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt, Morocco and Turkey. Some of them have won quite large blocs," she said. "In every case, the extremists in the party have been shut out and the moderate voices have become more influential."

With Michele Greenin Jerusalem
*****************************************

Opinions :?:
Last edited by Gregory Nolan Jr. on Fri Jan 27, 2006 10:01 pm, edited 2 times in total.

Fri Jan 27, 2006 8:08 pm

Wow a reasonable statement from Dick Chaney.

Spreading democracy is always a good thing if you can do it. The problem is spreading it before people are ready for it. I don't mean that as any indictment of any people but to point out that a certain level of infrastructure must be there to ensure a democracy. Point "A" for any human being is survival. If the essential elements to survive- widespread housing and food, potable water, security, some semblance of healthcare- it is almost impossible for a democracy to survive. These things don't guarantee that a democracy will thrive. Saudi Arabia has a strong infrastructure but lives by dictatorial fiat. However, it can't get by without them. Before people need highfalutin' ideals they need to live first and people will do anything to survive first. Look at how the Taliban took over in Afghanistan. They were able to walk into a void left by a country left in ruins from years of war. Look even in WWII, the people of Germany tossed out a democratic regime for the most ruthless dictator in modern history largely because they wanted some sense of security.

Countries that can guarantee a decent standard of living with a change in regime, have the best chance of supporting a democracy.

Fri Jan 27, 2006 8:14 pm

Hitler was not a democracy. Oh sure he was voted in, too bad there is the little thing as him declaring himself a murdering dictator after he hit office!!

I do believe democracy can be put into place. Some people think it should happen overnight.

It is going to take years. Bush never hid this fact. He stated that it is going to be a long hard war. The war on terroism has not ended. It is still going on. Though progress has been made.

With every protest against an American I cannot help but think....gee and they certainly are given plenty of freedom to do so! Why aren't the pictures of Americans with guns so they can protest being shown? There they are, just off camera, protecting the freedom for Iraq to speak out...even if it is against us.

Fri Jan 27, 2006 10:51 pm

Is it our business, that's the problem.

Germany was most certainly a Democracy before Hitler was allowed to overthrow it. His was a coup that would have never succeeded without the tacit approval of the German people and he was granted that approval because the country was in such economic disarray.

Fri Jan 27, 2006 11:24 pm

Didn't I already say that?

As for the "approval". When you got that kind of power, it is hard to argue.

Was this with or without gunpoint? :lol:

As for it being our business. YES We were at war with Iraq for trying similar crap the Germans did. They were threatening to act again. Warning after warning and Sadaam refused to cooperate.

Nuclear war is a real threat and the USA doesn't need the gamble.

I do believe the intent was there, the ability to use them, and that there is no solid proof the WMD were never there. We will never know.

What I do know is without Sadaam in power the world is a better place.

Sat Jan 28, 2006 6:37 am

Well, now we have a GOVERNMENT to move against instead of a roving band of murdering thugs. They're flushed out into the open.......cockroaches without the escape facilitated by darkness.

Really there is no change in the situation except the anonymity they enjoyed is gone.

If some of you think that the Fatah Gov't wasn't sponsoring and arming Hamas to do its evil........you're whacked.

Sat Jan 28, 2006 8:23 am

It's not a simple problem in the Middle East, it's a complex one.

While I don't condone violence or terrorism, we must bear in mind that the Palestinians have part of their country illegally occupied by foreign troops.

We never condemned the French resistance for the actions they took against the occupying Germans, did we ?

Or call them terrorists.

They are held up [rightly] as national heroes.

I know it isn't a straight comparison between the two situations, but I reckon the Arabs are criticised unduly.

Sat Jan 28, 2006 9:01 am

ColinB wrote:It's not a simple problem in the Middle East, it's a complex one.

While I don't condone violence or terrorism, we must bear in mind that the Palestinians have part of their country illegally occupied by foreign troops.

We never condemned the French resistance for the actions they took against the occupying Germans, did we ?

Or call them terrorists.

They are held up [rightly] as national heroes.

I know it isn't a straight comparison between the two situations, but I reckon the Arabs are criticised unduly.


Did you know that there was never any country called Palestine? Did you know that there is no such thing as a Palestinian people?


The ideas that the West Bank and Gaza are occupied Palestinian land, and that the Palestinian people are fighting for their land, have been accepted by most of the governments of the world and by most of the media in the world. But if you read on, you will see that these two claims are the biggest lies ever deliberately perpetrated on humanity.


Check out any map of the Middle East and see for yourself. You will find Palestine listed as a region as it always has been, but definitely not a country. We can locate the Mojave Desert on the map, but we still do not recognize it as our 51st state, let alone a country. Similarly, the region of Siberia is a region not a state. Or the Sahara is a region not a state, etc. Neither is Palestine a state. It never was a country, just a region.


Importantly, the Jews did not displace anyone, because no one permanently resided there. It was a land inhabited by nomadic, Bedouin tribes. The whole region was nothing but deserts and swamps. Only about 120,000 Arabs resided in an area that covered the territories, the state of Israel and Jordan. When Mark Twain visited the area, he wrote he found nothing but a wasteland.


During the 19 years that the territories – including Jerusalem and Gaza – were occupied by the kingdoms of Jordan and Egypt, no on talked about a Palestinian state … not the Arab countries, not the United Nations. Nobody asked Jordan or Egypt to abdicate their ownership and give it to the Palestinians. Not even the Palestinians themselves said anything about a Palestinian state or a Palestinian people, because nobody heard of a Palestinian people. It never existed.


The fact simply is that there are no Palestinians. These people are Arabs like all other Arabs, and they happen to live in a region called Palestine. They are not a separate people.


What makes a separate people? Religion, language, culture, garb, cuisine, etc. The Arabs in Palestine speak the same language, practice the same religion, have the same culture, etc., as all the other Arabs. The few minor differences that exist between them are like the minor differences that exist between the Welsh, the Scots, and the Londoners. They are still all Britons. Yankees and Southerners have the same minor differences, but they are still all Americans. People in the south of France are quite different from the people in the north, but they are still all French. These inconsequential differences do not make a people.


The Arabs living in Syria or Jordan, etc., are also the same Arabs, but they are each a separate nation because they each have a separate country. The so-called Palestinians want a separate country because they claim to be a separate nation. They are not. They were never a separate people before the new state of Israel. How did they become one now?


Let us examine the truths here:


1) There never was a Palestinian state or a Palestinian nation. There are no Palestinian people, per se. Rather, these are Arabs living in a region that historically has been called many things, including "Palestine."


2) Israel did not go to war against a Palestinian state and occupy its land. Rather, Israel was attacked by six Arab countries at once. She defended herself, defeated her attackers, and won the so-called territories, not from the Palestinians, but from Jordan and Egypt.


3) Jerusalem was never the capital of any state but Israel. It was certainly never the capital of a country that never existed. Why should the Palestinians get any part of it? Because they want it? Because they have terrorists?


4) Jerusalem, under the current Israeli control, is a free and open city. Israel, as a democracy, guarantees freedom of religion within its borders. Contrast this fact with areas that have come under Palestinian occupation. What percentage of Christians have left in recent years because they cannot stand the harassment and persecution?


5) Most Arabs living in Palestine today are not indigenous to the region. It was not until after the Jews had changed deserts and swamps into a productive and thriving land that the Arabs started migrating there. Arafat himself was born and raised in Cairo, Egypt, NOT so-called Palestine.


The belief that giving the Palestinians a state will bring peace is a delusion. The truth is that they want it all. The short-term goal is a state consisting of the West Bank and Gaza. The long-term goal is a state which includes all of "historical Palestine," including Jordan.


How do I know this?


The late Faisal Husseini, Arafat's Jerusalem representative, a man who was cultured, sophisticated and considered the most moderate of all the Palestinians, shortly before his death on May 31, 2001, expressed his true feelings in an interview with the popular Egyptian newspaper el Arav. Husseini said: "We must distinguish the strategies and long-term goals from the political-phased goals which we are compelled to accept due to international pressures." But the "ultimate goal is the liberation of all of historical Palestine." Explicitly he said: "Oslo has to be viewed as a Trojan Horse."


He even added and clarified that it is the obligation of all the Palestinian forces and factions to see the Oslo Accords as "temporary" steps, as "gradual" goals, because in this way, "We are setting an ambush for the Israelis and cheating them." He also differentiated between "strategic," long-term, "higher" goals, and "political" short-term goals dependent on "the current international establishment, balance of power" etc.


All of historical Palestine! Does not this include all of Israel and all of Jordan?


What does this say to you?

Sat Jan 28, 2006 11:14 am

Since WWI when the United States became THE dominant power in the world there must have been 100 states run in a manner similar to Iraq. We didn't go around invading them and replacing the government with a government we consider more suitable.

To ignore the complicity of the German people in Hitler's rise to power is to miss the entire point.

Iraq, by the way, at this point was nowhere near the threat of Nazi Germany.

Scatter I agree with many of your points about Israel. What hurts the Palestinian cause for me is that in 1947 they were offered a part of Israel for a homeland. However, they wanted it all and lost in war against the Israelis. They get some sympathy back though because some of the Israeli land like the Gaza strip was obtained through annexation which is basically taking the property of another country as your own as the spoils of war.

I'm not nearly so pessimistic as you about the possibility of a homeland quenching their desires. I think the writer in the article makes an astute point about extremists toning themselves down with a legitimate place at the table. Further, any Palenstinian homeland would give the Palenstinians something to lose which is something they don't have now and makes brokering compromise next to impossible. Right now the Palenstinians are in a position where the worst that can happen is to maintain status quo. With a country to lose they could be much more open to compromise.

Not that I dispute your assertion of what they want at this moment. For the past 30 odd years, that extremist attitude has been THE blockade to piece in the region.

Sat Jan 28, 2006 8:44 pm

There is a potentially good result of Hamas' election win. When (not if, but when) they fail to deliver on their promises, and more importantly fail to improve quality of life for the people, then maybe the people will begin to see Hamas for the self-serving extremist organization it really is and not be so quick to demonize the west. Then perhaps the people will elect a moderate government. But I'm not too optimistic.

Tue Jan 31, 2006 1:15 am

Thanks for the interesting discussion, gents.

Here's more on the subject:

Exporting democracy: A U.S. experiment gone awry
By James Glanz The New York Times
SUNDAY, JANUARY 29, 2006

NEW YORK- The overwhelming sense among politicians and intellectuals in the Middle East last week was that America's little chemistry experiment had blown up in its face. President George W. Bush promoted democracy and free elections as his primary solution to the region's ills - and when Hamas won in a landslide in the Palestinian elections, Bush got results that could not have been more inimical to the interests of the United States and its ally Israel.


Like a powerful catalyst best handled with an eyedropper rather than a ladle, free and fair elections have recently unleashed political forces elsewhere in the region that can hardly be seen as friendly to the United States. The radical Muslim Brotherhood made major gains in Egypt's parliamentary elections, a Shiite clerical list allied with Iran won a plurality in Iraq, and Hezbollah - considered, like Hamas, a terrorist organization by the West - surged in last year's elections in Lebanon.



From one point of view that produces more than a few chortles in the Middle East, the United States has fallen victim to some grand law of unintended consequences. "You might remember the saying, 'Beware of what you wish - you might get what you want,"' said Abdel Monem Said Aly, director of the Al-Ahram Center for Political and Strategic Studies in Cairo.

But the wider question, Aly acknowledged, is whether the long-term benefits of democracy are worth the immediate perils. Can it be fine-tuned so it fits each of the volatile and diverse countries of the Middle East? And can a shot of democracy, however jolting at first, be trusted in the end to seduce and tame the forces it has set loose?

Right after the Palestinian elections, Bush praised the "power of democracy" but did not seem to fully accept the outcome in that case, saying that the United States would not deal with a political party that advocates the destruction of Israel, as Hamas does.

The president did not specifically rule out talking to a government of which Hamas is a part. Still, he did not sound entirely pleased that he had gotten what he wished for. And if democracy continues to produce results that are irksome to the United States, will other Americans call into question the export of their most glorious product, electoral democracy? "In the short term, there may be people who think that pushing democracy is contrary to our interests," said Robert Pastor, a former U.S. diplomat who is the director of the Center for Democracy and Election Management at American University in Washington.

But the choice of tamping down democratic movements once they get started does not really exist, said Pastor, who negotiated with Hamas to avoid violence during the first Palestinian elections in 1996. The United States would hardly be in the business of stopping a cycle of elections once they start. And the experience of Latin America shows that selectively trying to purge electoral slates of radical groups merely pushes them to carry out violent revolutions.

That is also essentially what happened when military-backed rulers in Algeria canceled the results of parliamentary elections in 1992 after they were swept by the Islamic Salvation Front, an organization determined to govern by Islamic law. "If Hamas had been excluded" from the recent elections, Pastor said, "they would have said that they have no other alternative to violence. And they would be right."

If the catalytic reaction set in motion by elections cannot be stopped once it starts, then a better solution may be to promote democracy in a way that is tailored to the most dangerous realities of each country.



Marina Ottaway, a senior associate at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, divides countries into three categories that highlight what can most readily go wrong for Western interests when democracy is thrown into the mix in the Middle East and the wider Arab world.


In one set of countries, including Egypt, Morocco and Tunisia, a ruling authoritarian regime is considered ineffectual or corrupt and Islamic opposition parties would probably sweep any wide-open elections as good-government candidates.

In a second set, which includes Iraq and Lebanon, the underlying peril is an ethnically and religiously splintered populace, held together only by an autocrat's heavy hand, in which the differences threaten to tear the countries apart. Here, rival religious groups often have their own parties and militias.

Open elections in a third group - pro-Western monarchies like Jordan, Kuwait or Bahrain - would probably overturn the existing semifeudal social order in favor of Islamic rule, Ottaway said. In these cases, Islam's appeal is based on a claim that it creates a just social order.

The ascendancy throughout the region of political Islam is, therefore, the first problem the United States must solve as it pushes democratic reform.

The problem is not as fraught as Americans often make it out to be, Ottaway said. The appeal of the Islamist parties is often simply that they are well organized, untainted by the corruption of an entrenched regime, and able to provide things like child care and funeral services to local neighborhoods. Several political experts said that disgust with the inefficient government run by Fatah and its reputation for corruption, played a much greater role in the Hamas landslide than attitudes about Israel.

Some experts, like Amatzia Baram, an Israeli who is a senior fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington and a professor of Middle Eastern history at the University of Haifa in Israel, think that Hamas is more likely to maintain a confrontational stance.

In the worst case, that stance could spark a regional war, Baram said. But even he believes that if the new government does not provide basic services more efficiently than Fatah did, the electorate will give Hamas the boot, too.

Tue Jan 31, 2006 1:35 am

Scatter -

You wrote:
Did you know that there was never any country called Palestine?
Did you know that there is no such thing as a Palestinian people?


No I didn't know that.

Which people were made refugees by the advent of Israel, then ?

Which people have been having a go at the Israelis ever since ?

I'm sure I read somewhere that it was the Palestinians.

Tue Jan 31, 2006 1:38 am

Colin wrote:
I'm sure I read somewhere that it was the Palestinians.


That only proves the point...don't believe everything you read.

Tue Jan 31, 2006 1:41 am

EagleUSA wrote:Colin wrote:
I'm sure I read somewhere that it was the Palestinians.


That only proves the point...don't believe everything you read.


I don't.

But you haven't answered either of my questions.

Tue Jan 31, 2006 1:45 am

I will refer you to Scatter's earlier post, which clearly answers both of your questions and then some. He happens to be correct on all five counts.

Scatter wrote:

1) There never was a Palestinian state or a Palestinian nation. There are no Palestinian people, per se. Rather, these are Arabs living in a region that historically has been called many things, including "Palestine."


2) Israel did not go to war against a Palestinian state and occupy its land. Rather, Israel was attacked by six Arab countries at once. She defended herself, defeated her attackers, and won the so-called territories, not from the Palestinians, but from Jordan and Egypt.


3) Jerusalem was never the capital of any state but Israel. It was certainly never the capital of a country that never existed. Why should the Palestinians get any part of it? Because they want it? Because they have terrorists?


4) Jerusalem, under the current Israeli control, is a free and open city. Israel, as a democracy, guarantees freedom of religion within its borders. Contrast this fact with areas that have come under Palestinian occupation. What percentage of Christians have left in recent years because they cannot stand the harassment and persecution?


5) Most Arabs living in Palestine today are not indigenous to the region. It was not until after the Jews had changed deserts and swamps into a productive and thriving land that the Arabs started migrating there. Arafat himself was born and raised in Cairo, Egypt, NOT so-called Palestine.

Tue Jan 31, 2006 1:52 am

likethebike wrote:Iraq, by the way, at this point was nowhere near the threat of Nazi Germany.


It depends on how you look at it. Threatening to beat the U.S.A. at whatever the cost in the nuclear age is close enough. Still shall we sit back and wait???

We have been at war with Iraq before which puts them at primary agenda compared to all the other threats of the world. Hussein without a doubt was top priority and I am glad that we acted. It should have happened much sooner.

Tue Jan 31, 2006 2:04 am

Eagle quoted Scatter:

1) There never was a Palestinian state or a Palestinian nation. There are no Palestinian people, per se. Rather, these are Arabs living in a region that historically has been called many things, including "Palestine."


2) Israel did not go to war against a Palestinian state and occupy its land. Rather, Israel was attacked by six Arab countries at once. She defended herself, defeated her attackers, and won the so-called territories, not from the Palestinians, but from Jordan and Egypt.


1] Arabs living in a place called Palestine makes them Palestinians in my book. To argue against this is to split hairs.

2] The advent of Israel in the late 40's displaced many Arabs and made them refugees.

Exactly who Israel won the territories from [by war] is not relevant.

They should be given back for the sake of peace.

The Jerusalem situation is too complex to comment on !

Strange how the place is so sacred to two different religions !

Tue Jan 31, 2006 2:30 am

Colin wrote:
Strange how the place is so sacred to two different religions !


Actually, three, if you count us Christians. :wink:

Tue Jan 31, 2006 5:14 am

ColinB wrote:Eagle quoted Scatter:

1) There never was a Palestinian state or a Palestinian nation. There are no Palestinian people, per se. Rather, these are Arabs living in a region that historically has been called many things, including "Palestine."


2) Israel did not go to war against a Palestinian state and occupy its land. Rather, Israel was attacked by six Arab countries at once. She defended herself, defeated her attackers, and won the so-called territories, not from the Palestinians, but from Jordan and Egypt.


1] Arabs living in a place called Palestine makes them Palestinians in my book. To argue against this is to split hairs.

Well Colin........the Jews living in "Palestine" at the time outnumbered the Arabs. So whose land was it?? what criteria do you use?? On population, you lose. On historical ownership, you lose........there had been a constant Jewish presence there for a thousand years before Mohammed was a twinkle in his daddy's eye.

So upon what do you base your claims??



2] The advent of Israel in the late 40's displaced many Arabs and made them refugees.

Wrong. The Arabs there lived in harmony with the Jews since the turn of the century. The Arabs became refugees fleeing the invading ARAB armies. The Jews begged them to stay.

Exactly who Israel won the territories from [by war] is not relevant.

International Law and history argue otherwise. I suspect that you deem irrelevant what you cannot defend.

They should be given back for the sake of peace.

That's been done......and the Arabs attack from the acquired lands. So much for land for peace.

The Jerusalem situation is too complex to comment on !

Not really. You just have to actually know the history rather than rely on soundbites from the BBC.I hear a lot of deserved criticism of the American media, yet it never ceases to amaze me how blinded many Brits are to the agenda of their own. The BBC is a disgrace.

Strange how the place is so sacred to two different religions !


Eagle is right......it's three.

Tue Jan 31, 2006 2:18 pm

someone once said, none of the Arab countries want the so-called Palestinians!

None of them.

In a discriminating manner they all have kicked them out at some point in the past, telling them get out! Go find your own country.

Problem is, those people (and most are dregs/criminals/terrorists/suicide bombers) are trying to steal land away from Jews/Israel who have rightful claim. Jerusalem is meant to be a Jewish city.

If there is any such place as Palestine...
it's being coerced (and often violently) into existence
in the wrong location.
Last edited by Graceland Gardener on Tue Jan 31, 2006 2:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Tue Jan 31, 2006 2:42 pm

Scatter -

OK, my outlook may have been based on what the UK media has informed me over the years.

But it isn't biased.

And it isn't limited to the BBC [they're not beholden to advertisers, sponsors or any pressure groups anyway].

Is it possible that your outlook has been formed by exposure to the US media which is open to big-business pro-Israel bias ?

We know the US is pro-Israel by the amount of cash you pump into the country.

But it hasn't brought peace, has it ?

Tue Jan 31, 2006 2:45 pm

ColinB wrote:But it hasn't brought peace, has it ?



Because the so-called Palestinians (and the PLO) won't allow any "peace" they bomb and bomb and bomb and detonate and suicide bomb again and again and again.

One of the best things to happen to Israel in recent times, is the death of that ugly old terrorist rat Arafat.

Wed Feb 01, 2006 12:53 am

ColinB wrote:Scatter -

OK, my outlook may have been based on what the UK media has informed me over the years.

But it isn't biased.

But it is rather narrowly and inaccurately informed. That gives an inevitable bias.And the fact that such misinformation and bias comes admittedly at the hands of the BBC and other media outlets should give an intelligent person such as yourself reason for pause.Why were you never informed over these many years about the other side of this equation?? You had the "Palestinian side presented, why not give you the rest of the story so you could make up your own mind???.The info is out there, but no one in the media ever felt the need to present those facts to you.

And it isn't limited to the BBC [they're not beholden to advertisers, sponsors or any pressure groups anyway].

They don't have to be beholden to anything but an outcome that they would like to see achieved, and the determination to use their influence to facilitate that outcome (regardless of the misinformation and slant they have to use).

Is it possible that your outlook has been formed by exposure to the US media which is open to big-business pro-Israel bias ?

I don't get my information from the Mainstream Media without checking the information for myself. Our media is as biased as yours.

We know the US is pro-Israel by the amount of cash you pump into the country.

But it hasn't brought peace, has it ?

No.......what it has done is preserve Israel from slaughter at the hands of those seek Israel's destruction(as well as yours and mine) based upon the tenets of their belief system.We have also stayed the hand of Israel from wiping the "Palestinians" from off the face of the earth in response to the constant onslaught of terror. If Israel chose to, it could destroy its enemies literally overnight. That it hasn't must be accredited to the influence of the USA as well.

Wed Feb 01, 2006 8:55 am

Scatter wrote:
ColinB wrote:Eagle quoted Scatter:

1) There never was a Palestinian state or a Palestinian nation. There are no Palestinian people, per se. Rather, these are Arabs living in a region that historically has been called many things, including "Palestine."


2) Israel did not go to war against a Palestinian state and occupy its land. Rather, Israel was attacked by six Arab countries at once. She defended herself, defeated her attackers, and won the so-called territories, not from the Palestinians, but from Jordan and Egypt.


1] Arabs living in a place called Palestine makes them Palestinians in my book. To argue against this is to split hairs.

Well Colin........the Jews living in "Palestine" at the time outnumbered the Arabs. So whose land was it?? what criteria do you use?? On population, you lose. ??
.


I don't think that's true. There were significantly more Arabs in Palestine than Jews. There were more Jews in Jerusalem, but not Palestine.

Wed Feb 01, 2006 1:16 pm

Scatter and Pete Dube need to read the history of Israeli terrorism against the British and the palestinian People.

Israel is an apartheid state influenced by Ultra Orthodox jews mainly from the USA and eastern Europe with far too much power gained from the massive amount of American armour and arms at their disposal.

We here in Europe see FAR more debate and information than the American media permits.

Our journalists and political commentators returning to Europe from the United States are dismayed at the ignorance of the Americans in general when it comes to foreign affairs.

And from what I read here who would blame them :lol:

The New York Tragedy has woken up America! Hence the Israeli pull outs from occupied land. Only a fool would think they wanted to pull out. American pressure on the Israelis is now working............at Last!!!

Lets hope the American people will wake up to their goverment's Oil War. Since when did America care for the people in Iraq who were bombed by the British many decades ago...........BECAUSE OF? well.............OIL of course!