Sunday, July 23, 2006

posted by ran

The Arabs want to throw us to the sea

Every Israeli kid is brought up learning that the Arabs want to "throw us to the sea". He/She is given a lot of examples from history and from ongoing events. As much as you can argue as to the root causes, these events are mostly indisputable:

  • The Arabs didn't accept the 1947 UN suggestion to split Palestine into 2 states (Jewish and Arab) and hence the 1948 war broke out.
  • The Palestinians use terrorism against civilians.
  • The Palestinians are willing to work in steps: first getting sovereignty over some part of Palestine only to later on keep fighting until all the Israeli land is made Arab (1974 PLO decision).
  • The Palestinians insist on the refugees literal right of return to Israel. This demand means, in the current political structure of Israel, the ceasing of the existence of state of Israel, because an Arab majority would be formed.
  • All the wars between Israel and it's Arabs neighbors broke out because Israel was under threat to its very existence (especially the 1974 war).
  • The Arab people really hate our guts. For example when 2 poor Israeli reservists took a wrong turn inside the occupied territories on their way to vacation from service they were lynched brutally by a Palestinian mob (
  • When Saddam Hussein shot Scad missiles on Tel Aviv and Haifa during the first gulf war (without any Israeli threat on Iraq) the Palestinians danced on the roofs.
  • Days after Israel withdrew fully from the Gaza strip last year the Palestinian organizations resumed rocket launching (from Gaza) with even greater intensity and range.

On the other hand the Israeli kids are taught that Israel is peace loving. Again, very hard to dispute the arguments that are given. For example:

  • We gave up all the land occupied from Egypt in 1967 (including the evacuation of the settlements in Sinai) in order to sign a peace agreement. This is a proof we like peace more than we like land.
  • We withdrew from the so-called "security strip" around the Israeli-Lebanese border 6 years ago.
  • We gave up Gaza and the settlements there. This time not in exchange to peace, because there was no eager partner. We did that although there was large protest by the Israeli political right wing.
  • We gave up 2 settlements deep in the West Bank last year (evacuated the settlers) and Olmert declared we are going to evacuate many more.
  • Actually most of the West Bank is now controlled by the Palestinians which shows that the remaining occupation is for security reasons and in order to protect the existing settlements (most of which are not deep inside the territories)

I am not saying that all this justifies the ongoing remains of occupation, or the attacks on Lebanon's infrastructure these last days. But I believe this sheds some light on the thinking of the people and leadership of Israel, and colors it with at least some rational thinking of people that feel threatened on the one hand but looking for peace on the other.


Anonymous Sarah said...

Has it ever occurred to you that you may have all been deliberately brainwashed into the belief that the Arabs all want to push you into the sea? My mother, a holocaust refugeee, used to believe this with all her heart but now she no longer does.

We have it on good authority that it is only the extremists who would wish anything of the kind; the vast majority of Palestinians just want to live in peace and to be able to get on with their lives. They would be more than happy to have their own homeland and shared access to their religious sites.

However, the extreme right-wing elements who have now taken control of Israel would prefer to push the Palestinians out of the area they have lived for thousands of years, even to the extent of making Jerusalem completely free of Palestinians.

I'm sorry but for me this carries horrible resonances and so it should for you.

For your own sake, try to cast off your brainwashing and see things as they really are.

12:40 PM  

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