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Article one, Geneva conventions - don't hide military behind civilians. if you do - yuo are culpable for their death or injury.

War crimes? HEZBOLLAH.

I can't believe I saw people marching down my streets waving hezbollah / lebanon flags. What a disgusting country.

I hate to be a crazy democrat nutbag for a second, but I thought that treaty doesn't apply to terrorists or 'enemy combatants'. Can't have it both ways.

I'm willing to support the right in their adventures against terrorism mini-series, but hey, let's not be hypocrits with rules that with ignore and apply at whim.

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Not to mention the leaders of Hamas are now in Isreali custody.

http://www.cnn.com/2006/WORLD/meast/08/19/...s.ap/index.html

I think I get it now. It was more of a distraction for the world when Israel went into Lebanon. Hamas is going to be dismanteled from the top down. No ceasefire has been arranged between Israel and the Occupied Territories. That leaves Israel to smash Hamas, then eventually take over Gaza and the West bank and claim it as their own.

With Shaer's arrest, four members of the Hamas-dominated Palestinian Cabinet and some 28 Hamas lawmakers are in Israeli custody. Four other ministers have been detained and released. Despite the roundup and a seven-week offensive in Gaza, the soldier, Cpl. Gilad Shalit, remains in captivity.

It was not Hezbollah they were after.

Also http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/5265934.stm

The raid took place in the eastern Bekaa Valley, Lebanese security sources and Hezbollah said. Three militants died, sources told Reuters news agency.

YA so much for a ceasefire. Israel will simply just not stop. ( yah yah, they wanna take out Israel ect ect.... whatever)

Even at this point if the Israeli soldiers were returned, Israel would still be arty'ing the south of Lebanon. Regardless of a ceasefire.

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Not to mention the leaders of Hamas are now in Isreali custody.

http://www.cnn.com/2006/WORLD/meast/08/19/...s.ap/index.html

I think I get it now. It was more of a distraction for the world when Israel went into Lebanon. Hamas is going to be dismanteled from the top down. No ceasefire has been arranged between Israel and the Occupied Territories. That leaves Israel to smash Hamas, then eventually take over Gaza and the West bank and claim it as their own.

Hamas should be left alone? :huh:

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This isn't complicated. Most of the Lebanese population oppossed Hizbullah, which is why it stuck to the areas where it had the most support and where it could intimidate those who might oppose its operations. Then Israel started bombing empty Hizbullah offices in residential neighbourhoods and the Lebanese, angry at the destruction Israel was inflicting on the entire country through its attacks on infrastructure and at the images of their fellow Lebanese being chased from their homes or dragged from the wreckage, now support Hizbullah, at least politically (and possibly temporarily).

Well basically, the support or non support is meaningless to Israel then.

Here's the other thing: no one expected Israel to react the way they did. So, if the choice is oppossing Hizbullah (and probably winding up in the trunk of a car), moving (in case of an Israeli air attack that no one antyicipated), most people would probably choose the path of least resistance and keep their mouths shut. That does not, however, make them responsible for Hizbullahs actions.

Got it long time ago. If they are powerless to opppose Hezbollah then they are definitely powerless to give Israel a downside while they eliminate Hezbollah positions. That rationale is probably a god part of Israle's targeting strategy as they target Hezbollah in "areas where it had the most support and where it could intimidate those who might oppose its operations." Pretty much the places where they had nothing to lose anyhow.

Again with the "how much worse can it get"? Well, if Hizbullah is such a threat now, imagine Hizbullah with more support, more money, more recruits, more and better rockets...all in all, your strategy of petulance will increase the danger to Israel in the long run.

We have both concured that Hezbollah is more a pain in the ass rather than a critical threat and that any support by the Lebanese people is irrelevent so, the danger is also miniscular with the support of people who have no say in the matter. Hence from an Israeli standpoint there is nothing to lose and only Hezbollah losses to gain. If they are not taking them out, they would be rearming for the inevitable future. You will note of of course that throughout the peace talks, land returned or given up or discarded or pretty much reclaimed or whatever wierd way you put things when they are aquired by people who demand they get it back and don't give a hoot how they get it (like if the Jews being pushed into the sea would be reguarded by you as 'being returned' rather than surrendured is a joke.) Hezbollah has still aquired weapons that have absolutely no offensive value other than to simply hurt. They cannot drive out entrenched forces, they cannot occupy land, they cannot mount an offensive - in short, they can only terrorize and so, their whole existance is just that.

There was no agreement to return Gaza. What part of "unilateral withdrawl" are you struggling with?

Semantics. They gave up land and the Palestinians reoccupied it.

KK

From my experience with you, you always blame Israel, even when they are returning land. Here, you try to find a down side for them when in reality, they are hated by all Arab people of the ME and have nothing to lose politically or on the ground

Black Dog

Gee and here I thouht Israel was in perennial danger of being wiped off the map or pushed into the sea: seems, then, that they have a lot to lose.

They do have a lot to lose. Their focus is on their own people and safety rather than how Lebanese society takes care of cancerous terrorist organizations. If Lebannon cannot deal with curtailing Hezbollah from targeting them then too bad, they will do it themselves with a heavy hand. The repercussions are minimal as you have stated there is no love lost towards Israel anyhow that makes a difference and Hezbollah has or will take what they need so, who cares?

Well, they failed there as well. They look weaker and more vulnerable than ever.

Yes, very weak. Taking the entire south of Lebannon and then, having to have a UN force come in to stop them from moving further north which they will if Hezbollah continues from that area.

Ironic, given that I'm calling for policies that will make Israel safer and more secure in the long run, while yours will lead to more instability and more Israeli deaths. With friends like you...

Safer? Once again I recite Black Dog's fucked up policies on Israeli defense and foreign affairs. Sacrifice the random man woman or child to terrorists rather than confront the inevitable using forces they have to keep the tide of hatred down to an acceptable level. A tide on a sea that is commited to their destruction if given the opportunity. I'm talking about making it leak proof. Walls, nukes, modern army and no qualms about taking out those who attack it. The region has already been unstable for over a century and, will continue to be as long as there are medieval supporters to every Jew hating Arab clan so, you will have lots to write about for the next few decades.

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You will note of of course that throughout the peace talks, land returned or given up or discarded or pretty much reclaimed or whatever wierd way you put things when they are aquired by people who demand they get it back and don't give a hoot how they get it (like if the Jews being pushed into the sea would be reguarded by you as 'being returned' rather than surrendured is a joke.)

Try to grasp the nuance here. I've no doubt people who want the land back don't care how they get it back. But, from Israel's strategic standpoint, it's vital they give the land back to someone who can run the place and not allow it to turn into a security threat to them. You can't absolve Israel of responsibility for what happens when they bug out and then whine about the unsavoury parties that set up shop in the turf they vacated.

Semantics. They gave up land and the Palestinians reoccupied it.

But you can't ptretend it was part of a "land for peace" deal whichwas the point you were trying to make in the first place.

They do have a lot to lose. Their focus is on their own people and safety rather than how Lebanese society takes care of cancerous terrorist organizations. If Lebannon cannot deal with curtailing Hezbollah from targeting them then too bad, they will do it themselves with a heavy hand. The repercussions are minimal as you have stated there is no love lost towards Israel anyhow that makes a difference and Hezbollah has or will take what they need so, who cares?

There's your problem. You think Israel can do as it pleases and act with as much force as possible and will not face any long term repurcussions because it can't possibly be any more hated. Be careful what you wish for.

Safer? Once again I recite Black Dog's fucked up policies on Israeli defense and foreign affairs. Sacrifice the random man woman or child to terrorists rather than confront the inevitable using forces they have to keep the tide of hatred down to an acceptable level. A tide on a sea that is commited to their destruction if given the opportunity. I'm talking about making it leak proof. Walls, nukes, modern army and no qualms about taking out those who attack it. The region has already been unstable for over a century and, will continue to be as long as there are medieval supporters to every Jew hating Arab clan so, you will have lots to write about for the next few decades.

You're contradicting yourself. You've clearly acknowledged that an increased application of force to solve problems will increase antipathy towards Israel (you just say that it is an irrelevant consideration). Now you're saying that increased force will "keep the tide of hatred down to an acceptable level". Which is it? You certainly can't be suggessting that more force will make Israel less hated.

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You will note of of course that throughout the peace talks, land returned or given up or discarded or pretty much reclaimed or whatever wierd way you put things when they are aquired by people who demand they get it back and don't give a hoot how they get it (like if the Jews being pushed into the sea would be reguarded by you as 'being returned' rather than surrendured is a joke.)

Try to grasp the nuance here. I've no doubt people who want the land back don't care how they get it back. But, from Israel's strategic standpoint, it's vital they give the land back to someone who can run the place and not allow it to turn into a security threat to them. You can't absolve Israel of responsibility for what happens when they bug out and then whine about the unsavoury parties that set up shop in the turf they vacated.

Semantics. They gave up land and the Palestinians reoccupied it.

But you can't ptretend it was part of a "land for peace" deal whichwas the point you were trying to make in the first place.

They do have a lot to lose. Their focus is on their own people and safety rather than how Lebanese society takes care of cancerous terrorist organizations. If Lebannon cannot deal with curtailing Hezbollah from targeting them then too bad, they will do it themselves with a heavy hand. The repercussions are minimal as you have stated there is no love lost towards Israel anyhow that makes a difference and Hezbollah has or will take what they need so, who cares?

There's your problem. You think Israel can do as it pleases and act with as much force as possible and will not face any long term repurcussions because it can't possibly be any more hated. Be careful what you wish for.

Safer? Once again I recite Black Dog's fucked up policies on Israeli defense and foreign affairs. Sacrifice the random man woman or child to terrorists rather than confront the inevitable using forces they have to keep the tide of hatred down to an acceptable level. A tide on a sea that is commited to their destruction if given the opportunity. I'm talking about making it leak proof. Walls, nukes, modern army and no qualms about taking out those who attack it. The region has already been unstable for over a century and, will continue to be as long as there are medieval supporters to every Jew hating Arab clan so, you will have lots to write about for the next few decades.

You're contradicting yourself. You've clearly acknowledged that an increased application of force to solve problems will increase antipathy towards Israel (you just say that it is an irrelevant consideration). Now you're saying that increased force will "keep the tide of hatred down to an acceptable level". Which is it? You certainly can't be suggessting that more force will make Israel less hated.

The problem with your analysis is that you are trying to view Israeli counter-actions in isolation and as having no cause and were simply initiated unfairly.

The reason why your analysis always runs this way is because you simply start with the belief that Israel should not exist and therefore it is not allowed to defend itself. Since it should not exist, Arabs are justified in attacking it but it is not justified fighting back. That is all your arguement boils down to and so it is

ludicrous.

Israel's actions are as a direct result and reaction to terrorism, pure and simple.

For you and the other simplistic poster who want to portray Israel as the bad guy and the Arabs in the Middle East as sweet innocent people just trying to defend themselves, please continue. You perhaps can go on tour with our idiot MP's as well.

I will say it one last time. Every time Israel has gone into land other then what is in the pre-1967 borders it has been in direct response to terrorist attacks. When it has then left, terrorists once again attack within pre 1967 borders.

People like you refuse to acknpowledge this and even have the nerve to argue that the vacum of Israel leaving causes terrorism! One the one hand Israel is not supposed to leave its pre-1967 borders to prevent terrorist attacks but if it does and then leaves in an effort to achieve peace- it is still wrong!

Give it a rest.

Your double standard is tiresome.

Until you take the time to understand that the pre-1967 border is a de facto border you will never understand what is going on in the Middle East.

Your simplistic analysis of looking at the Middle East as an isolated snap shot that can simply be dismissed as Israel invading is pure and utter selective ignorance.

For those of us who take the time to read and talk to people in the Middle East and live there and try take the time to read Jewish and Islamic history, and understand the chain of events that has been going on since Biblical days, your simplistic analysis is laughable. It is the product of a lazy mind and someone who does not want to take the effort to understand the cause and effect and chain reaction of conflict that is not isolated but cascades after thousands of years of historical events.

What it will take to get you to understand what a de facto border is, is anyone's guess but I will say it once again-the pre 1967 borders of Israel are recognized by only Egypt and Jordan, all other Arab states are still at war with Israel and do not recognize even those pre 1967 borders. So all this bs about Israel invading and wanting the Gaza and West Bank is just a crock of sh..t.

This is about Israel surrounded by terrorist groups and countries that will not recognize it under any circumstance. Why play this game that the Arab world's refusal to recognize Israel is logical, acceptable and without consequence? Why-because at the heart of the matter you will not accept Israel's right to exist and so everything you say after that to me, is hippocritical, one sided and contradictory. In a conflict there is no right side. There are simply people with competing interests. Since you do not accept Israel's right to exist, you see only the Arab world as having the right to exist and so end up doing what is trendy these days, apologizing for terrorist acts and trying to depict them as acts of freedom fighters.

The fact is Israel was not in Lebanon when Hezbollah went into Israel and attacked it. The fact is Israel has no interest in the West Bank and Gaza and simply wants to be left alone. It did not go into the West Bank of Gaza for any reason other then to pre-empt terrorists from entering Israel. That is a fact not an opinion. Each and every act Israel has done in Gaza and the West Bank can be documented back as a response to a terrorist attack and for that matter has been.

I defy you are anyone else do describe one military excursion by Israel that was not done in response to a terrorist attack. I would love to hear you twist the truth on that.

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Dear Rue,

The fact is Israel has no interest in the West Bank and Gaza and simply wants to be left alone. It did not go into the West Bank of Gaza for any reason other then to pre-empt terrorists from entering Israel. That is a fact not an opinion.
No, it ...
is just a crock of sh..t.

You are confusing the State of Israel with the people of Israel.

http://www.israelnationalnews.com/news.php3?id=110269

Most refer to ceding the occupied territories as 'expulsion', and were against it. It is a very sore spot for many Israelis. Most of them believe that all of it is theirs, by divine providence, and giving up any part of it is wrong.

from...

http://www.israelnationalnews.com/article.php3?id=6477

Unfortunately, our leaders are still immersed in the twisted ideology of Oslo, which created an illusion of achieving "peace" by fleeing from our enemies and abandoning parts of our homeland. This policy of "disengagement" has injected a cancer into our national bloodstream,
It has been proven again that the Land of Israel is one. The Land has one soul, which cannot be torn apart and separated in order to be parceled out to our enemies. The evil notion expressed by our leaders - "Who needs Gaza? What are we doing in Gaza? If we amputate this superfluous limb, the rest of the body will be strong and healthy." - has been proven self-deceptive, in line with the distorted mentality of "disengagement".
A lot of them refer to the Oslo Accords (the creation of a Palestinian self-governing state from the occupied territories) as 'The Oslo War'.
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The problem with your analysis is that you are trying to view Israeli counter-actions in isolation and as having no cause and were simply initiated unfairly

See, right off the bat, you're wrong.

The reason why your analysis always runs this way is because you simply start with the belief that Israel should not exist and therefore it is not allowed to defend itself. Since it should not exist, Arabs are justified in attacking it but it is not justified fighting back. That is all your arguement boils down to and so it is

ludicrous.

I challenge you (again) to show where i made any such statements.

For you and the other simplistic poster who want to portray Israel as the bad guy and the Arabs in the Middle East as sweet innocent people just trying to defend themselves, please continue. You perhaps can go on tour with our idiot MP's as well.

If anyone here is an idiot, it's you for putting words in people's mouths. If you can't deal with an argument without resorting to ludicrous strawmen, go back to the playground.

I will say it one last time. Every time Israel has gone into land other then what is in the pre-1967 borders it has been in direct response to terrorist attacks. When it has then left, terrorists once again attack within pre 1967 borders.

Israel still occupies land outside its pre-1967 borders. Anyway, I've already taken great pains to show how the manner of Israel's withdrawls have contriibuted to its problems.

People like you refuse to acknpowledge this and even have the nerve to argue that the vacum of Israel leaving causes terrorism!

I'm not wrong. Did you read my link on the commisson studiying the feasability of a unilateral wihdrawl from the West Bank? The report's authors concluded that following a unilateral Israeli pullout from the West Bank, Hamas would takeover and deploy rockets, which means Israel would need to take a step such as allowing the Palestinian Authority to establish a state on territory evacuated by Israel, and Israel would reach an agreement with it on demilitarization.

Until you take the time to understand that the pre-1967 border is a de facto border you will never understand what is going on in the Middle East.

A border is a border? Wow, hit me again with some more "analysis".

For those of us who take the time to read and talk to people in the Middle East and live there and try take the time to read Jewish and Islamic history, and understand the chain of events that has been going on since Biblical days, your simplistic analysis is laughable. It is the product of a lazy mind and someone who does not want to take the effort to understand the cause and effect and chain reaction of conflict that is not isolated but cascades after thousands of years of historical events.

Instead of wasting so many words and so much bandwitdth telling me I'm wrong, how about you tell me how I'm wrong. You know, debate the points I'm making instead of going on about hw I'm a Jew hater who doesn't understand history.

What it will take to get you to understand what a de facto border is, is anyone's guess but I will say it once again-the pre 1967 borders of Israel are recognized by only Egypt and Jordan, all other Arab states are still at war with Israel and do not recognize even those pre 1967 borders. So all this bs about Israel invading and wanting the Gaza and West Bank is just a crock of sh..t.

Fact: Israel invaded in 1967. Fact: Israel has spent an awful lot of money bulding settlements in the West Bank (Gaza was never strategically important, hence the tiny settler population there). If they didn't want it, why are they still there?

This is about Israel surrounded by terrorist groups and countries that will not recognize it under any circumstance.

I would disagree with the latter part of that point. As you opint out, both Egypt and Jordan currently recognize Israel's right to exist, which tell sme that nohings impossible. I'll bet the people of the Occupied Territories would also recognioze Israel's right to exist if it meant getting their own state.

Why-because at the heart of the matter you will not accept Israel's right to exist and so everything you say after that to me, is hippocritical, one sided and contradictory.

Where did I say I donm't recognize Israel's right to exist? Citation, please.

The fact is Israel was not in Lebanon when Hezbollah went into Israel and attacked it.

Since its withdrawal of occupation forces from southern Lebanon in May 2000, Israel has violated the United Nations-monitored "blue line" on an almost daily basis, according to UN reports.

The fact is Israel has no interest in the West Bank and Gaza and simply wants to be left alone.

A quarter of a million Jewish settlers in the West Bank does not speak to a lack of territorial ambition.

It did not go into the West Bank of Gaza for any reason other then to pre-empt terrorists from entering Israel

Here I thought it captured those territories in "preemptive" war.

I defy you are anyone else do describe one military excursion by Israel that was not done in response to a terrorist attack. I would love to hear you twist the truth on that.
Any observer with elementary skills in discerning cause and effect could see this latest suicide bombing atrocity coming. In fact, the vast majority of the nearly 100 Palestinian suicide bombings since they began in 1994 have followed an almost predictable sequence: Israeli attacks that cause major Palestinian civilian casualties or Israeli assassinations of important militant leaders are the most common trigger leading to suicide bombing cycles.

This escalating cycle of violence can be traced to the first Hamas suicide bus bombing inside an Israeli city on April 4, 1994 following the February 1994 Hebron Massacre, when the American-Israeli settler Baruch Goldstein murdered 29 praying Palestinians in a mosque. Since then, the Islamic militant groups Hamas and Islamic Jihad have made it a routine policy of responding to civilian massacres and assassinations with suicide bombings.

And Israel's assassination of the leading Fatah militant Raed Karmi on January 14 2002 led a militant group associated with Arafat's Fatah party, calling itself the "Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade," to deliver its first suicide bombing on January 27. This group has conducted nearly a dozen new attacks since that time.

Yet this striking pattern has become even more frequent and predictable since Ariel Sharon became Prime Minister in February 2001 and escalated military assaults on Palestinian civilian areas and adopted a systematic assassination campaign of Palestinian militant leaders. The startling fact is that four times as many suicide bombings--around 80--have occurred since Ariel Sharon became Prime Minister than in the seven previous years combined--around 20.

...

But what is even more incriminating is the extent to which Sharon has systematically ordered violent Israeli military incursions and assassinations during major cease-fires by militant Palestinian groups as well as diplomatic efforts to ease the hostilities, resulting in new suicide attacks.

Ariel Sharon ordered the assassination of the two leading Hamas leaders in Nablus on July 31 2001, which put an end to a nearly two-month cease-fire on Israeli civilians observed by Hamas. Haim Shalev, an editorialist in a leading Hebrew daily Ma'ariv, gravely warned on August 1 that because "Israel has violated the cease-fire" it should expect a new wave of suicide bombings, which indeed came on August 9 in a brutal attack on a Jerusalem Sbarro pizzeria.

More notorious was Sharon's decision to assassinate leading Hamas militant Mahmud Abu Hanoud on November 23, 2001 just when the Hamas was upholding an agreement with Arafat not to attack targets inside of Israel and a few days before US envoy General Zinni was to arrive in Israel.

In a widely cited article from November 25 2001, the conservative military commentator for one of Israel's leading newspapers Yediot Aharanot, Alex Fishman, noted that this assassination had the effect of "shattering in one blow the gentleman's agreement between Hamas and the Palestinian Authority." He continued that "Whoever decided upon the liquidation of Abu Hanoud knew in advance that [a terrorist attack inside of Israel] would be the price. The subject was extensively discussed both by Israel's military echelon and its political one, before it was decided to carry out the liquidation."

The brutal bombings that followed Abu-Hanoud's assassination gave Sharon the ideal pretext for his subsequent declaration of war upon Arafat. Moreover, it effectively scuttled the Zinni mission and Sharon obtained an unprecedented open backing from President Bush for more aggressive policies during his scheduled visit to Washington the next week.

More recently, it was widely reported that the July 22, 2002 assassination of leading Hamas militant Salah Shehada in Gaza, which also killed 15 civilians, 11 of them children, came within hours of a unilateral cease-fire declaration by both the Palestinian nationalist militia Tanzim and Hamas. Sharon had been briefed by EU go-betweens, yet he went ahead anyway.

And now, the December 26 executions of members from all three militant Palestinian groups took place while representatives from Fatah, Hamas and other factions were meeting in Cairo to formulate a cease-fire to last through the Israeli election on January 28 later this month.

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Why-because at the heart of the matter you will not accept Israel's right to exist and so everything you say after that to me, is hippocritical, one sided and contradictory.

--

Where did I say I don't recognize Israel's right to exist? Citation, please.

Actually that was me who said that. I do not recognize Israel's right to exist.

And Rue, please point out to me on a modern map of the world where the country/state of Palestine exists. All I see are the occupied territories of the West Bank, and Gaza Strip, not countries of themselves.

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Why-because at the heart of the matter you will not accept Israel's right to exist and so everything you say after that to me, is hippocritical, one sided and contradictory.

--

Where did I say I don't recognize Israel's right to exist? Citation, please.

Actually that was me who said that. I do not recognize Israel's right to exist.

And Rue, please point out to me on a modern map of the world where the country/state of Palestine exists. All I see are the occupied territories of the West Bank, and Gaza Strip, not countries of themselves.

There has never been a country/state of Palestine, and there is no reason for that to ever change.

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Why-because at the heart of the matter you will not accept Israel's right to exist and so everything you say after that to me, is hippocritical, one sided and contradictory.

--

Where did I say I don't recognize Israel's right to exist? Citation, please.

Actually that was me who said that. I do not recognize Israel's right to exist.

And Rue, please point out to me on a modern map of the world where the country/state of Palestine exists. All I see are the occupied territories of the West Bank, and Gaza Strip, not countries of themselves.

There has never been a country/state of Palestine, and there is no reason for that to ever change.

I wonder why that it? I believe Palestine did exist prior to WWII and having part of it carved out for Isreal.

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There has never been a country/state of Palestine, and there is no reason for that to ever change.

I wonder why that it? I believe Palestine did exist prior to WWII and having part of it carved out for Isreal.

Saying Palestine existed is like saying Saskatchewan exists. Yes, as a part of something else. Palestine has always been just a part of something else, with nothing unique about its people, no unique language, religion, traditions, culture, etc. A big chunk was split off to form Jordan. Then, during the war, Jordon took another chunk of what remained, and Egypt took a chunk. What's left are two slivers of land which are too small, and too lacking in resources to ever be economically viable. The only sensible thing to do is join the rest of the West bank with Jordan, and give the Gaza to Egypt.

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Dear Argus,

The only sensible thing to do is join the rest of the West bank with Jordan, and give the Gaza to Egypt.
I agree it would make some sense, but Israel would not allow it. They would likely prefer the status quo, 'occupied territories' or negotiate the Olso Accords ad infinitum rather than simply hand them over to existing countries.

Also, don't you find it curious that you freely call a certain group of people 'Palestinians', yet deny that there was ever a country with that name? (I believe the Romans coined 'palestine')

There has never been a country/state of Palestine,
Britain thought so, and they managed it as one. I have an "Encyclopedia Britannica Book of the Year" from 1946 which lists 'Palestine's' currency (at the time, the pound sterling), it's gov't, population, etc. as though it was it's own country (though certainly under a mandate from Britain).

Which begs the question...to whom must a country apply for recognition?

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I wonder why that it? I believe Palestine did exist prior to WWII and having part of it carved out for Isreal.

Prior to WWII it was a British protectorate. Up until the end of WW1 it was part of the Ottoman Empire for a few hundred years. How far do you want to go back? The last time there was an independent state with Jerusalem as its capital was under the Israelites in 700 BC so that argument isn't very helpful on either side.

One way or another these folks are just going to have to figure out how to get along or our grand children will be having the same debate.

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Try to grasp the nuance here. I've no doubt people who want the land back don't care how they get it back. But, from Israel's strategic standpoint, it's vital they give the land back to someone who can run the place and not allow it to turn into a security threat to them. You can't absolve Israel of responsibility for what happens when they bug out and then whine about the unsavoury parties that set up shop in the turf they vacated.

Try to grasp the reality here. Israel doesn't need protection from terroristis. They need protection from their own concience and world opinion if they retaliate and or allow these hate mongers to simply starve to death and or be killed in serious retaliation bombing. Israel can eliminate all their enemies within the immediate region in a single evening. What is stopping them is their respect for humanity. Formally returning land to any authority which has no history of peace negotiations is a joke Black Dog. And your fantasy of returning land to an entity that is not intent on Israels destruction is impossible as all of them do so your point is crap. One day these moderates are in charge and the next those ones are in charge. Yassar Arafat is a prime example, terrorist through and through - and, corrupt to boot. Return to him and his anti Israel supporters?

But you can't ptretend it was part of a "land for peace" deal whichwas the point you were trying to make in the first place.

Never did. You the one quibbling on that. You said Israel never returned land then went off on how land can only be returned if such and such a condition arose. Fact is, other than Egypt there was no land to return to any party that was not intent on destroying Israel as a matter of policy whether that be public or private doctrine. Only a severe leftist moron would formally return land to those who were bent on their destruction to somebody like that. Hmmm, say .... you don't suppose that if you were Israeli that you would actually .... Nah. No way.

There's your problem. You think Israel can do as it pleases and act with as much force as possible and will not face any long term repurcussions because it can't possibly be any more hated. Be careful what you wish for.

Let's see Black Dog, has Israel been attacking Egypt lately? Nope. Reason - they are at peace with a country who has recgonized their right to exist. None of the other moronic tribes has given up that pipe dream of Israeli destruction so, what have they to lose other than killing more of their enemies? A thousand years of Jewish persecution, fifty of wars against their simple right to exsist while Jordan gets off free of charge and big instability in the region not related to Israel but on the surface blamed on it for lack of reason and to bring the population together in a handy catch all. I'd say that if Israel vanished overnight you would see a lot of Arabs going to war with one another for lack of a common enemy to unite their people. So, instability? Yep. Nothing new and not going away soon so what repercussions? Survival is what it is and having assholes taking pot shots at your women and children as a matter of left wing policy is a thing of the past. Hezbollah, with no hope of defeating Israel or threatening their existance gathers missiles galore to do one thing - hurt and harm, not destroy Israel. Why? To become a power for one reason - just to be in power. Think about that one Black Dog, they are no fools, they know their limitations and, step on their people to stay in power while Israel stuggles for survival and you, fall in lick step with the propagandists. True free thinker for sure.

You're contradicting yourself. You've clearly acknowledged that an increased application of force to solve problems will increase antipathy towards Israel (you just say that it is an irrelevant consideration). Now you're saying that increased force will "keep the tide of hatred down to an acceptable level". Which is it? You certainly can't be suggessting that more force will make Israel less hated.

I am saying that Israel is pretty much hated anyhow by the applicable parties and that eliminating enemies as they pop heads up Whackamole style without reservations is more effective than allowing them to arm continually for the inevitable. In other words, there has been absolutely no peace overtures from Hezbollah - ever. Hence there is nothing to be gained for Israel for not killing them and those who hide, remain silent while allowing this activity, support, agree or whatever. Sure, innocent people will be killed, but when taking this from and Israeli perspective - too bad and so sad. Better their innocents than ours. When people get the message that they will see thier children dead if Hezbollah sets up, then they may decide not to support them. If they do not, then more Hezbollah supporters will come forth and also be taken out. If Hezbollah decides to make peace, Israel will stop. If Israel stops, then Hezbollah will continue.

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There has never been a country/state of Palestine, and there is no reason for that to ever change.

There wqas never a state of Israel prior to 1948 either. It had always been just a part of something else. yet for some reason, the UN felt compelled to create such a state for the purpose of housing a large group of displaced Europeans that none of the member states wanted to take. Why not extend the same courtesy to Palestine.

Try to grasp the reality here. Israel doesn't need protection from terroristis. They need protection from their own concience and world opinion if they retaliate and or allow these hate mongers to simply starve to death and or be killed in serious retaliation bombing. Israel can eliminate all their enemies within the immediate region in a single evening. What is stopping them is their respect for humanity
Formally returning land to any authority which has no history of peace negotiations is a joke Black Dog. And your fantasy of returning land to an entity that is not intent on Israels destruction is impossible as all of them do so your point is crap. One day these moderates are in charge and the next those ones are in charge. Yassar Arafat is a prime example, terrorist through and through - and, corrupt to boot. Return to him and his anti Israel supporters?

Again: you mentioned Jordan and Egypt as two countries that Israel has made peace with. Yet both these countries were, at one point, intent on Israel's destruction. Yet Israel was able to make peace and return land to those nations. Why?

Never did. You the one quibbling on that. You said Israel never returned land then went off on how land can only be returned if such and such a condition arose.

All this time and you still don't have a clue. My point was simply returning land is not a guarantee of peace, unless you're actually returning that land to someone with teh ability to ensure peace.

Fact is, other than Egypt there was no land to return to any party that was not intent on destroying Israel as a matter of policy whether that be public or private doctrine.

So was Egypt not intent on destroying Israel?

Let's see Black Dog, has Israel been attacking Egypt lately? Nope. Reason - they are at peace with a country who has recgonized their right to exist. None of the other moronic tribes has given up that pipe dream of Israeli destruction so, what have they to lose other than killing more of their enemies? A thousand years of Jewish persecution, fifty of wars against their simple right to exsist while Jordan gets off free of charge and big instability in the region not related to Israel but on the surface blamed on it for lack of reason and to bring the population together in a handy catch all. I'd say that if Israel vanished overnight you would see a lot of Arabs going to war with one another for lack of a common enemy to unite their people. So, instability? Yep. Nothing new and not going away soon so what repercussions? Survival is what it is and having assholes taking pot shots at your women and children as a matter of left wing policy is a thing of the past. Hezbollah, with no hope of defeating Israel or threatening their existance gathers missiles galore to do one thing - hurt and harm, not destroy Israel. Why? To become a power for one reason - just to be in power. Think about that one Black Dog, they are no fools, they know their limitations and, step on their people to stay in power while Israel stuggles for survival and you, fall in lick step with the propagandists. True free thinker for sure.

First: wipe the spittle off your keyboard. You're losing whatever semblance of coherence you may have had.

Second: you dodge the issue of how Egypt went from being at war with Israel from 1948 to 1978 to being peaceful neighbours.

Third: Israel can hunker down and continue to act unilaterally, but that won't help them acheive any lasting peace. If you prefer Israel to exits in a state of perpetual war, thus providing its enemies with fuel for the hatred and alienating and marginalizing moderates on all sides, well, no friend of Israel you.

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There has never been a country/state of Palestine, and there is no reason for that to ever change.

There wqas never a state of Israel prior to 1948 either. It had always been just a part of something else. yet for some reason, the UN felt compelled to create such a state for the purpose of housing a large group of displaced Europeans that none of the member states wanted to take. Why not extend the same courtesy to Palestine.

Try to grasp the reality here. Israel doesn't need protection from terroristis. They need protection from their own concience and world opinion if they retaliate and or allow these hate mongers to simply starve to death and or be killed in serious retaliation bombing. Israel can eliminate all their enemies within the immediate region in a single evening. What is stopping them is their respect for humanity
Formally returning land to any authority which has no history of peace negotiations is a joke Black Dog. And your fantasy of returning land to an entity that is not intent on Israels destruction is impossible as all of them do so your point is crap. One day these moderates are in charge and the next those ones are in charge. Yassar Arafat is a prime example, terrorist through and through - and, corrupt to boot. Return to him and his anti Israel supporters?

Again: you mentioned Jordan and Egypt as two countries that Israel has made peace with. Yet both these countries were, at one point, intent on Israel's destruction. Yet Israel was able to make peace and return land to those nations. Why?

Never did. You the one quibbling on that. You said Israel never returned land then went off on how land can only be returned if such and such a condition arose.

All this time and you still don't have a clue. My point was simply returning land is not a guarantee of peace, unless you're actually returning that land to someone with teh ability to ensure peace.

Fact is, other than Egypt there was no land to return to any party that was not intent on destroying Israel as a matter of policy whether that be public or private doctrine.

So was Egypt not intent on destroying Israel?

Let's see Black Dog, has Israel been attacking Egypt lately? Nope. Reason - they are at peace with a country who has recgonized their right to exist. None of the other moronic tribes has given up that pipe dream of Israeli destruction so, what have they to lose other than killing more of their enemies? A thousand years of Jewish persecution, fifty of wars against their simple right to exsist while Jordan gets off free of charge and big instability in the region not related to Israel but on the surface blamed on it for lack of reason and to bring the population together in a handy catch all. I'd say that if Israel vanished overnight you would see a lot of Arabs going to war with one another for lack of a common enemy to unite their people. So, instability? Yep. Nothing new and not going away soon so what repercussions? Survival is what it is and having assholes taking pot shots at your women and children as a matter of left wing policy is a thing of the past. Hezbollah, with no hope of defeating Israel or threatening their existance gathers missiles galore to do one thing - hurt and harm, not destroy Israel. Why? To become a power for one reason - just to be in power. Think about that one Black Dog, they are no fools, they know their limitations and, step on their people to stay in power while Israel stuggles for survival and you, fall in lick step with the propagandists. True free thinker for sure.

First: wipe the spittle off your keyboard. You're losing whatever semblance of coherence you may have had.

Second: you dodge the issue of how Egypt went from being at war with Israel from 1948 to 1978 to being peaceful neighbours.

Third: Israel can hunker down and continue to act unilaterally, but that won't help them acheive any lasting peace. If you prefer Israel to exits in a state of perpetual war, thus providing its enemies with fuel for the hatred and alienating and marginalizing moderates on all sides, well, no friend of Israel you.

Of course there was a state of Israel prior to 1948! See your problem is you continue to selectively ignore history and want to look at it from a very narrow selective perspective as if Jews suddenly went to the Middle East in 1949.

The fact is Jews lived in a nation in what is now Israel for centuries and then were displaced and forced out by Muslim warriors, Romans, Christians, Greeks, etc., but never stopped living in what is now Israel continuously since the Bliblical days and long before today's Arab nations and the Muslim religion existed.

You like to ignore this and pretend Jews just sort of wanted to go their for no reason.

Think about it. Try open your mind. Jews could have lived anywhere and at one point Churchill even suggested they move to Uganda and start a country there.

There is a reason they went back to a piece of dirt with no natural resources. There is a very real reason you have chosen to deliberately ignore in previous posts and said so in your posts. You keep stating when I try explain to you that Jews are aboriginals to what is now Israel and returned to this land because of their religious beliefs that they are spiritually connected to the land because of a promise from God to Moses to let them live there-that you found such a notion irelevant. Well that is precisely why Jews fight for this piece of land and started a country.

After 3.500 years persecution at the hands of Christians in Europe (try learn that part of history) and thousands of years of dhimmitude (second class segregation and yes sometimes slaughters) in the Muslim world, you wonder why Jews wanted a country?

Yes you can pretend Jews are Europeans and a European problem simply created in 1949 and dumped on Arabs but this is pure b.s. and just not a fair depiction of history. The fact is Jews have as much of a right to live and claim historic rights to Israel as do the Muslim people and Christian people of the Middle East.

And that is why I debate you and say, no stop being selective and denying Jews have any rights to a state.

The fact is to be fair and open-minded, Christians, Muslims and Jews, all should have rights to co-exist in the holy land.

The fact is that if you take a look at Muslim history you will see Muslims deliberately destroyed Jewish synagogues and holy sites and rebuilt their Mosques on top of them and this is precisely why we have such a

problem in Jerusalem. The Mosque of Oman was built on top of the Jews' most sacred Temple after it was destroyed.

The Wailing Wall is the last reminents of that Temple.

Now you for sure would not care to know but prior to 1967 Jordan occupied East Jerusalem by seizing it in the 1949 war. It sezied the area and the West Bank illegally. Trans Jordan or the Jordan we know today was never supposed to control or occupy the West Bank.

You ever wonder why Israel went in therein 1967? Oh sure you trendy leftists with no clue as to history because you do not choose to read it are unaware that prior to 1967, the West Bank and East Jerusalem were launching pads for continuous terrorist attacks in West Jerusalem. Not only that but were you aware Arab people would urinate on the Wailing Wall to deliberately show hatred towards Jews that went and tried to pray there?

Israel took East Jerusalem because it felt this part of Israel was sacred and holy to Jews and was being desecrated by Arab people and they went into the West Bank to once and for all stop attacks from the PLO and in particular Al Fatah, Al Fedayeen, the PFLP and and an assortment of over 50 other terrorist groups.

Israel does not want to be in the West Bank. It set up communities in the West Bank as a political attemptto create frontier posts or buffer zones to discourage terrorist attacks. This was a disaster. These settlements were mostly populated by fundamentalist Jews who still believe that Judea and Somaria, (please do look that up in the Bible to see where its borders were) is the rightful territory of Israel wrongfully taken away by Muslims, Greeks, Romans, Turks and the British.

Now you can dismiss these fundamentalist Jews, but the fact is they in fact do have a legal claim that could be argued in international law and can not be summarily dismissed although it is by people from your generation who have no clue as to the history and legal rights that flow from these ancient borders.

One could make a successful legal arguement that the Roman, Greek, Turkish, British, French and now Muslim borders are all illegal and were only achieved through war and violence.

Now let us get real. This pre 1967 border is legal fiction. It came about in 1949 only after the entire Arab League denied Jews the right to a homeland.

You say for some reason Jews were given a country....is that insensitivity or ignorance that causes you to make such remarks so casually. Uh hello, 6 million Jews are exterminated across Europe with the active participation of numerous Europeans from many nations and an elaborate train network that required the full awareness of millions of citizens and you want ot know why the UN gave Jews a homeland?

Uh hello, who do you think took the property and money of the millions of Jews that were exterminated

or displaced? It wasn't ahandful of Nazis. It was millions of every day, common folk across Europe who looked the other way and knew what was going on when they were given the money and shops and property of Jews.

So please you want to have a selective memorty be my guest but the fact is the UN felt like it had a serious issue. It had the survivors of the worst extermination and genocide known to man and it could not simply expect these people to return to Europe. There was no where for them to return to and not only that you think the European nations wanted them back? Have you any clue that Canada, anad Europe were refusing to take in or back Jews? These European countries and yes Canada refused them and did not want them.

No one gave Jews anything. The UN was paralyzed and doing nothing. Britain was in Palestine and found itself refereeing disputes between Arabs and Jews. Britain earlier on thought it could divide and conquer and by keeping two feuding factions of Jews and Arabs in tiny enclaves jammed together, would always be needed to administer Palestine.

Only what the British did not count on is after they suggested two enclaves one for Arabs and one for Jews, the Arab world unanimously said not a chance.

It was the Arab League's decision to say all or nothing and in 1949 try drive all Jews out of Palestine. That decision you seem to always skip over. The displaced Palestinians how do you think they became displaced?

Oh again trendy Leftists like to pretend they simply fled in fear of their lives. The fact is they were asked by the Jewish Zionist movement to stay and most fled on orders from their Mullahs and broadcast speeches over loud-speakers telling them to leave and that they would return as soon as the Arab League rid the place of Jews.

Yes some Palestinian Arabs were bought out and you can question those deals. Yes some Palestinians ran and who could blame them...but what did you expect these Jews to do? They had nowhere to go and that is what history is all about...events that transpire, often tragically that place people in each other's way...and no amount of selectivity can change that fact.

How does this end? How do you think? As long as it is the cultural norm in the Arab world to believe Jews should be eradicated and Israel wiped off the map, this will never end. It can only end when typical, average Muslims and Arabs from across the Middle East say once and for all, that trying to wipe out Israel is not the solution, co-existence is. If you put down the terrorism and weapons, then the solution comes about.

What makes the Arab world so short-sighted is that there institutionalized hatred and anti-semitism and belief that Israel is an occupying nation and evil, is pointless. They could have easily defeated Israel had they adopted Ghandi's tactics and simply used passive resistance. They out-populate Israel by 1000 to 1 and a passive peaceful resistance would have made it impossible.

In a way, by choosing violence and intolerance, the Muslim world not only cursed itself to always having Jews in its midst, but as doomed it to failure because terrorism never builds it can only destroy. It doesn't build a vision. It is not a coincidence all the Muslim countries that to this day remain at war with Israel....which again you seem to forget...are all economic basket cases and run by corupt police regimes. That is what terrorism breeds.

So you ask why did the UN do what it did, pick up a history book.

Try understand 1949 did not happen in isolation. It was one of a never ending cascading series of events that have led us to where we are today and it is precisely when we ignore history and the origins of conflict that we fan the flames for future conflicts.

The only way peace will be achieved in the Middle East is if Palestinians and Jews can live side by side. And for those who say Israel is making that impossible, I look squarely in your eyes and say, travel to Israel before you make such statements, understand how small the nation is and why it is at war with Hamas and Hezbollah. It is at war not because it won't live side by side with Palestinians...it is at war because Hamas and Hezbollah have stated there existence is created on the belief that they will not rest until all of Israel is wiped off the map. Before you lecture Israel not to go into the West Bank, Gaza, South Lebanon and detain terrorists-kindly suggest what you would do if you were faced with someone with a gun pointed in your face saying he will kill you.

My comments above are general discussion comments and not meant directly at B-Dog. I am just debating in general the other side of the coin.

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What do you all think of this ??

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/5275340.stm

An Israeli court has charged the speaker of the Palestinian parliament, Abdel Aziz Dweik, with being a member of the militant group Hamas.

It is clear what Israel is doing in the Occupied Territories. Full dismanletling of Hamas, a freely elected party to represent the new Palestine. But Israel deems them illegal. But it is only illegal in Israel not where the prty actually exists and who it represents. Can I make the Lukid party illegal and abduct Olmert? NOOOO the backlash would be worse than what Lebanon got.

"This is a political abduction, this is an attempt at exercising pressure and political blackmail, and we feel that this is in violation of all international laws and conventions, and Israel has to be held accountable."
In recent weeks, Israel has arrested dozens of Hamas officials, including the Deputy Prime Minister, Nasser Shaer.

http://www.cnn.com/2006/WORLD/meast/08/19/...s.ap/index.html

With Shaer, Israel has now arrested four members of the Hamas-dominated Palestinian Cabinet and 28 Hamas lawmakers. Four other ministers have been detained and released.

After Israel is done, Hamas will not exist and the Palestinians will have no one to represent them. The elected goivernment is being dismantaled from the top down. But no one cries when these guys get thrown into an Israeli jail, most without charge or trial.

Despite the arrests and a military offensive in Gaza, Shalit remains in captivity.

Good chance Shalit is dead. It just has not been reported.

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Of course there was a state of Israel prior to 1948! See your problem is you continue to selectively ignore history and want to look at it from a very narrow selective perspective as if Jews suddenly went to the Middle East in 1949.

The fact is Jews lived in a nation in what is now Israel for centuries and then were displaced and forced out by Muslim warriors, Romans, Christians, Greeks, etc., but never stopped living in what is now Israel continuously since the Bliblical days and long before today's Arab nations and the Muslim religion existed.

etc etc.

No need to lecture me on Zionism. I'm well aware of the history of the region and the fact that the land Zionists believe belongs to them has changed hands many times.

Yes you can pretend Jews are Europeans and a European problem simply created in 1949 and dumped on Arabs but this is pure b.s. and just not a fair depiction of history.

Fact: the majority of the first wave of Jewish immigrants to Israel were European.

The fact is Jews have as much of a right to live and claim historic rights to Israel as do the Muslim people and Christian people of the Middle East.

I'm not disputing that. I'm mainly quibbling with the means by which that claim was excersised. Not by fair exchange, not by purchase, but mainly by force.

Israel does not want to be in the West Bank. It set up communities in the West Bank as a political attemptto create frontier posts or buffer zones to discourage terrorist attacks. This was a disaster. These settlements were mostly populated by fundamentalist Jews who still believe that Judea and Somaria, (please do look that up in the Bible to see where its borders were) is the rightful territory of Israel wrongfully taken away by Muslims, Greeks, Romans, Turks and the British.

Now you can dismiss these fundamentalist Jews, but the fact is they in fact do have a legal claim that could be argued in international law and can not be summarily dismissed although it is by people from your generation who have no clue as to the history and legal rights that flow from these ancient borders.

Yet Israel continue sto build settlements in the West Bank. That's not the action of a nation that really doesn't want to be there.

So please you want to have a selective memorty be my guest but the fact is the UN felt like it had a serious issue. It had the survivors of the worst extermination and genocide known to man and it could not simply expect these people to return to Europe. There was no where for them to return to and not only that you think the European nations wanted them back? Have you any clue that Canada, anad Europe were refusing to take in or back Jews? These European countries and yes Canada refused them and did not want them.

That's pretty much what I've said.

Oh again trendy Leftists like to pretend they simply fled in fear of their lives. The fact is they were asked by the Jewish Zionist movement to stay and most fled on orders from their Mullahs and broadcast speeches over loud-speakers telling them to leave and that they would return as soon as the Arab League rid the place of Jews.
In the opening pages of "The Birth of the Palestinian Refugee Problem", Benny Morris offers the outlines of an overall answer: using a map that shows the 369 Arab towns and villages in Israel (within its 1949 borders), he lists, area by area, the reasons for the departure of the local population (9). In 45 cases he admits that he does not know. The inhabitants of the other 228 localities left under attack by Jewish troops, and in 41 cases they were expelled by military force. In 90 other localities, the Palestinians were in a state of panic following the fall of a neighbouring town or village, or for fear of an enemy attack, or because of rumours circulated by the Jewish army - particularly after the 9 April 1948 massacre of 250 inhabitants of Deir Yassin, where the news of the killings swept the country like wildfire.

By contrast, he found only six cases of departures at the instigation of local Arab authorities. "There is no evidence to show that the Arab states and the AHC wanted a mass exodus or issued blanket orders or appeals to the Palestinians to flee their homes (though in certain areas the inhabitants of specific villages were ordered by Arab commanders or the AHC to leave, mainly for strategic reasons)." ("The Birth of the Palestinian Refugee Problem", p. 129). On the contrary, anyone who fled was actually threatened with "severe punishment". As for the broadcasts by Arab radio stations allegedly calling on people to flee, a detailed listening to recordings of their programmes of that period shows that the claims were invented for pure propaganda.

link

The only way peace will be achieved in the Middle East is if Palestinians and Jews can live side by side. And for those who say Israel is making that impossible, I look squarely in your eyes and say, travel to Israel before you make such statements, understand how small the nation is and why it is at war with Hamas and Hezbollah. It is at war not because it won't live side by side with Palestinians...it is at war because Hamas and Hezbollah have stated there existence is created on the belief that they will not rest until all of Israel is wiped off the map. Before you lecture Israel not to go into the West Bank, Gaza, South Lebanon and detain terrorists-kindly suggest what you would do if you were faced with someone with a gun pointed in your face saying he will kill you.

I certainly can't accept the way in which all Arabs in the region are lumped together by many posters here as some sort of unthinking, Jew-hating mass. The problem is the opposite. Arabs are not united against Israel, but comletely fractured. That's what makes creating some kind of lasting peace difficult. Israel can reach an agreement with one faction, but that doesn't prevent another from rejecting it. I've said all along that there needs to be a strong central authority (particularily in Lebanon and in the Palestinian territories) that can excercise control and with whom Israel can work. I also believe Israel bears a measure of responsibility for the lack of such authorities and should work to rectify that problem, instead of constantly reacting to security threats in ways that only serve short-term ends and make a lasting peace more difficult. Unlike many posters here I don't think peace is impossible, nor do I think most people in the region would be against it.

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Dear Argus,
The only sensible thing to do is join the rest of the West bank with Jordan, and give the Gaza to Egypt.
I agree it would make some sense, but Israel would not allow it. They would likely prefer the status quo, 'occupied territories' or negotiate the Olso Accords ad infinitum rather than simply hand them over to existing countries.

How do you know this? Has the proposal ever been floated? It seems logical to me. They can't ever have the West Bank and Gaza unless they're willing to evict all of the Muslims living there, and I don't see that happening.

Also, don't you find it curious that you freely call a certain group of people 'Palestinians', yet deny that there was ever a country with that name?

Not particularly. I could refer to the Manitobans or Ontarions and not be referring to a country.

Which begs the question...to whom must a country apply for recognition?

It isn't simply a matter of "recognition" or that they were always controlled by someone else. It's that the whole vast area was more or less considered "Arabia" until the Europeans started parcelling it off a century or so ago. Saudi Arabia was not a country either. It was given to the Saud family. Jordan is simply a part of the area previously called "Palestine" which a previous ruler managed to negotiate into existence with the British. I think a country needs to have something distinctive about its people which seperates them from all the similar people around them, a language, a culture, ethnicity, something.

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There has never been a country/state of Palestine, and there is no reason for that to ever change.

There wqas never a state of Israel prior to 1948 either. It had always been just a part of something else. yet for some reason, the UN felt compelled to create such a state for the purpose of housing a large group of displaced Europeans that none of the member states wanted to take. Why not extend the same courtesy to Palestine.

First, you're wrong. There was an ancient kingdom of Israel. Second, after splitting off Jordan into its own seperate nation, and letting Jordan grab off part of the land which had been set aside during the seperation between Jews and Arabs, there just isn't much land left, and it's got no resources to speak of. An independant Palestine would be an economic basket case for its entire existence. So it makes no economic sense. The people of that region are ethnically, linguistically, historically, racially, and culturally identical to the people of Jordan and eastern Egypt, so why do they need their own nation? There is less difference between a Palestinian and a Jordanian than there is between an Albertan and an Ontarion.

Again: you mentioned Jordan and Egypt as two countries that Israel has made peace with. Yet both these countries were, at one point, intent on Israel's destruction. Yet Israel was able to make peace and return land to those nations. Why?

Speaking for myself, I would say that the commonality is that both nations had very powerful, very far-seeing leaders at the time (and, let's face it, Egypt was bribed by the Americans, possibly Jordan too). Syria has Assad, who is a screwball, Iran has a nutcase fronting for religious wackos, and Lebanon isn't a real country.

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What do you all think of this ??

If you belong to a political party or group which is involved in violance against Israel then you take your chances. To pretend they have some kind of legitimacy because they were voted in is ludicrous. They're terrorists. They've attacked Israel. Israel is supposed to adopt a hands-off approach to terrorist leaders simply because the death loving, cultural savages of Palestine elect them? I don't think so.

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I certainly can't accept the way in which all Arabs in the region are lumped together by many posters here as some sort of unthinking, Jew-hating mass.

Can you give me a list of Arab countries whose people do not despise Jews?

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Dear Argus,
Can you give me a list of Arab countries whose people do not despise Jews?
A loaded question, to be sure. 'Whose people' indeed. If you mean some of the people, I don't believe there are any countries in the world that fit that answer. If you mean 100% of the people, I doubt there are any either.

Very dangerous Argus. I wouldn't want to be grouped with many majority opinions of Canadians.

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