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DaffyGrl
I guess the more things change, the more they stay the same. I’ve always considered myself a cynic, but a hopeful cynic. The state of the world today is working hard to remove the “hopeful” part. The hopeful part of me thought that, with Arafat gone, a peace of some sort, however uneasy, could be won in Israel. Well, it doesn’t look as if that will happen:
QUOTE
The newly empowered “moderate” PA leadership Tuesday pledged to remain true to Yasser Arafat’s platform of seeking to flood Israel with millions of Arab “refugees.”

They also insisted there would be no final peace until the PLO flag was raised over a Jerusalem under “Palestinian” sovereignty. Jerusalem News

QUOTE(Mahmoud Abbas)
“We promise that we will continue on the same path that you (Arafat) have paved to achieve the dream that has always lived with you... establishing an independent Palestinian state with Jerusalem as its capital,” Abbas told a special session of Parliament to honor the late leader. Arab News

By that statement alone, the chance for peace would be impossible. Israel will never give up Jerusalem (nor should they, in my opinion).

What will be the effect (locally, worldwide) of the new leader, Abbas’ intent to carry on Arafat’s “platform”?

An opinion question: do you believe there will ever be peace between Israel and the PLO?
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Ptarmigan
Well - compromise will have to be reached.

If you were hoping for the Palestinian's to say 'We give up on the right of return for our exiles and will happily agree to accept all of Israel's demands for peace' - then well, that is a little optimistic!

Palestine has its position, as does Israel. The point about Arafat's death is NOT that the Palestinians will give up their dreams of getting their land back, but that they may be prepared to compromise with Israel on an eventual solution that both can live with.

Of course, Israel will also have to show a willingness to compromise on the issue of settlers etc.

Peace is not something that happens overnight. Arafat was a symptom of a wider problem, rather than the root cause of Palestinian resistance / terrorism.


What will be the effect (locally, worldwide) of the new leader, Abbas’ intent to carry on Arafat’s “platform”?

Arafat has only just died. It is far too early to tell, but hopefully Abbas will be prepared to compromise, if given a fair deal by Israel.

An opinion question: do you believe there will ever be peace between Israel and the PLO?

Yes, but no-one is going to be happy with the compromise. Both sides will have to accept that the other has a right to be there and live without fear of violence.

QUOTE
By that statement alone, the chance for peace would be impossible. Israel will never give up Jerusalem (nor should they, in my opinion).


Neither side will give up a claim Jerusalem, it has equal religious relevance to both. But that doesn't mean that a compromise can't be reached. Israel will HAVE to compromise on some levels, just as Palestinians will. Expecting one side to completely aquiesce is optimistic at best.
TedClayton
E-mailing with my brother recently, he asks what I was doing, and I tell him, "Oh, I was just outside taking silly pictures of the pretty clouds as the sunset". "Ted", he says, "you never have to apologize for taking pictures of pretty clouds."

He's right. We have sunsets, and we have hope, and it is wonderful to have them. Period. smile.gif

QUOTE
What will be the effect (locally, worldwide) of the new leader, Abbas’ intent to carry on Arafat’s “platform”?

I agree with Ptarmigan, that is too soon to know, the situation too fluid and transient.

QUOTE
An opinion question: do you believe there will ever be peace between Israel and the PLO?

Yes, I think the current anguish will be behind us one day, and most of us will live to see it.

Israel, like the societies of Europe and America from which it derives, faces a fundamental demographic conundrum which will literally force it to adopt a much different set of policies in the future. The Israel we know is failing.

Israel has always had a problem hanging onto people who move there and give it a try. Especially the better-resourced, more-qualified people from Europe and the USA. They come, but many do not stay. Now, with the chronic 'troubles', even more are not-staying.

To compensate, Israel qualifies as Jewish immigrants groups of people who are wider and wider from the profile they would prefer to establish, and who are less and less able to assist or support Israel in its present needs. In a generation or two, these folks will be wonderful citizens ... but that will be too late.

The basic truth of Israel's predicament is the same as in other Euro-centric cultures: birth rates of 'whites' are in decline, while the 'browns' are growing strongly. Israel is on track to become a defacto Palestinian state, itself, at its own polls, in less than 20 years - some say much less. mellow.gif

Beating Israel without a battle - Demographic infiltration

Israel's demographic timebomb
... second version:
Israel's demographic timebomb

Anti-Demographics

The Israeli leadership is struggling to stave off this eventuality. But the resources they have to counteract it are relatively ineffective, while those who seek to encourage the trend have many advantages.
Antny
Who can ever tell. It is pretty clear that the Palestinian side of things is willing to die for their cause. Will they have to?

I don't see the Palestinians agreeing to Peace as long as Israel remains intent on maintaining settlements, and occupation of lands outside the Borders drawn by the UN.

Incidentally, anyone see this yet?

http://www.palestinemonitor.org/new_web/de...rchive.htm#must

Not exactly promoting peace. We will see. I suppose a lot of it depends on the US stance. Our unabashed support for Israel makes it difficult to work for peace realistically. In fact, that is a large part of what incites the terrorists anger towards the USA.

I recommend anyone who hasn't read the transcript from Bin Laden's speech (the one that supposedly said he wanted us to vote for Kerry). This is the Al Jazeera version. It's interesting to cross reference Al Jazeera's translation with the one that CNN released.

http://english.aljazeera.net/NR/exeres/79C...BC36E87F61F.htm

http://archives.cnn.com/2001/US/12/13/tape.transcript/

Anyhow, I certainly think that the Israeli side is going to have to come to some sort of acceptable compromise. It's hard to imagine the desperation of a people so willing to strap bombs to themselves and blow themselves up to make a point.
loreng59
What will be the effect (locally, worldwide) of the new leader, Abbas’ intent to carry on Arafat’s “platform”?Since the 'Palestinians' have never, I do repeat the word NEVER offered any compromise on any issue, nothing has changed and nothing will change. Abbas is the same as Arafat in a suit, he was at Arafat's side for 40 years and is much a terrorist as Arafat.

From the first Oslo Accords when the 'Palestinians' stated that there would be no more violence not all issues would be resolve only through negotiations. Since that time they have attacked Israel tens of thousands of times. Also they have demanded the so-called return of those that fled during the war of independence, but also the millions that were born in other countries and have never been to the lands they claim to be from. They have also demand that Israel gives them Jerusalem. That city which has no meaning to the Muslims, except that is something the Israelis want so it must be taken from them.

An opinion question: do you believe there will ever be peace between Israel and the PLO? Nope not now, not ever the PLO was established for one reason and one reason only, the destruction of Israel and the death of all Jews.
Ptarmigan
Well,it looks likely that Mahmoud Abbas will win the Palestinian elections - who is considerably more moderate (in that he believes that Palestinian armed resistance is futile ) than Arafat was.

Combined with the addition of Labour (who favour a more moderate approach towards Palestinians) to Likud's coalition, then both sides seem to be moving towards a more moderate stance than before, so I would think that there is a real opportunity to reach a compromise, based on a 2 state solution.

Arafat's death has removed one of the major obstacles to peace and I suspect Sharon will try and push for peace, either working with Palestinians or unilaterally. Palestinian birth rates are far higher than Israeli birthrates, so, unless a seperate Palestinian state is formed, in a couple of generations, Palestinians will be a majority. It will then be very difficult, if not impossible, for the Israeli government to deny them a vote in the running of the country in which they are the majority.
loreng59
QUOTE(Ptarmigan @ Dec 21 2004, 06:32 AM)
Well,it looks likely that Mahmoud Abbas will win the Palestinian elections - who is considerably more moderate (in that he believes that Palestinian armed resistance is futile ) than Arafat was.
In what way is he more moderate? He does not believe that armed resistance is futile, he stated that it wasn't working. There is a huge difference between those two view points. So please tell me how he is more moderate, he says that he will not change anything.

He continues to make zero concessions, will not fulfill any of the obligations and demands the destruction of the State of Israel as a requirement, what is moderate about that?
Ptarmigan
QUOTE
In what way is he more moderate? He does not believe that armed resistance is futile, he stated that it wasn't working. There is a huge difference between those two view points. So please tell me how he is more moderate, he says that he will not change anything.

He continues to make zero concessions, will not fulfill any of the obligations and demands the destruction of the State of Israel as a requirement, what is moderate about that?


Okay, I fail to see the difference between believing that armed resistance is futile and armed resistance isn't working. I don't really care what the guy personally feels about Israel, he probably hates it. But if he is pragmatic (and from what I've read he is) then it's a bit of a no brainer to see that the Palestinians aren't going to drive Israel into the sea ever...but by the same token, Sharon recognises that the current occupation of Palestine cannot carry on indefinitely.

Palestinians view Israelis as invaders. They hate them - when I say 'moderate' Palestinian, I mean 'moderate by Palestinian standards' NOT 'someone who believes Israel has any right to be there'. Moderate by Palestinian standards is someone who accepts that, right or wrong, Palestine is powerless against Israel and that improving the lives of Palestinian people should take precedent over destroying Israel. It aint pretty and I wouldn't invite the guy over for dinner - but it's still an improvement on Arafat.

Sharon is in power and seems to be intent on forging a Palestinian state, regardless of what the Palestinians might want. He has indicated that he will work with a Palestinian leader to achieve this, if one can be found. It is in the Palestinians best interest to co-operate, rather than have all the terms dictated by Israel.


Finally, he has never been in a position to fulfil or demand anything. That was always Arafat's purview - I would wait to see what happens IF and WHEN he gets elected and actually has some power to effect change in Palestine. (And he wants to be elected by the Palestinian people. Standing up and saying 'actually, Israel is not so bad' is not going to win votes from your average Palestinian is it?)
loreng59
QUOTE(Ptarmigan @ Dec 21 2004, 09:37 AM)
Okay, I fail to see the difference between believing that armed resistance is futile and armed resistance isn't working. I don't really care what the guy personally feels about Israel, he probably hates it. But if he is pragmatic (and from what I've read he is) then it's a bit of a no brainer to see that the Palestinians aren't going to drive Israel into the sea ever...but by the same token, Sharon recognises that the current occupation of Palestine cannot carry on indefinitely.
You fail to see the difference between peace and genocide?!? He is opening praising the murder of Israelis and that is a moderate?! He has said that using weapons was a mistake because it isn't working. So he intends to change his method of getting rid of the State of Israel to a more politically acceptable method.

There is nothing to indicate that the goal of genocide has changed. No just the opposite he proudly proclaims that the original ideals of the PLO as to be fulfilled via other methods. Is he truly pragmatic no! Though he is a better liar.

So as long as he advocates the destruction of the State of Israel in a nice, politically acceptable European manner he is a moderate.

He has been Arafat's right hand for the past 4 decades, he is a terrorist as much as Arafat ever was, so there is no change. He openly states that the goals remain the same. But if that is the definition of a 'Moderate Palestinian' then there is nothing to talk about. Nor is there likely to be any change.
Aquilla
Nothing changes.....

It would appear at this time that there is nothing new under the sun in the Middle East. From The World Tribune.......

QUOTE
The new leader of the ruling Fatah movement said the Palestinians want to replace Israel with a state of their own.

Fatah chief Farouk Khaddoumi said the Palestinian strategy toward Israel was two-fold. In the first stage, he said, the Palestinians would accept a Palestinian state alongside Israel. In the second stage, the Palestinians would seek to eliminate the Jewish state.

In November, Khaddoumi replaced the late Yasser Arafat as leader of Fatah, Middle East Newsline reported.

"At this stage there will be two states," Khaddoumi told Iran's Al Aram television. "Many years from now, there will be only one."



Later on, same article we get this chilling comment.......

QUOTE
"[There are] 300 million Arabs, while Israel has only the sea behind it," Khaddoumi said.

Khaddoumi said his platform was endorsed by the PLO in 1974. He said the strategy called for a phased plan that would establish authority over any territory obtained from Israel, concluding with an Arab war to destroy the Jewish state.



So what's changed here in the last 30 years? It never ceases to amaze me how so many people around the world seem to think that Israel can negotiate with this mindset. It's like settling a dispute with your neighbor by him saying "Ok, I'll let you sleep tonight, but one of these nights I'm going to kill your family and burn down your house."
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lordhelmet
QUOTE(Aquilla @ Dec 23 2004, 02:28 PM)
Nothing changes.....

It would appear at this time that there is nothing new under the sun in the Middle East.   From The World Tribune.......

QUOTE
The new leader of the ruling Fatah movement said the Palestinians want to replace Israel with a state of their own.

Fatah chief Farouk Khaddoumi said the Palestinian strategy toward Israel was two-fold. In the first stage, he said, the Palestinians would accept a Palestinian state alongside Israel. In the second stage, the Palestinians would seek to eliminate the Jewish state.

In November, Khaddoumi replaced the late Yasser Arafat as leader of Fatah, Middle East Newsline reported.

"At this stage there will be two states," Khaddoumi told Iran's Al Aram television. "Many years from now, there will be only one."



Later on, same article we get this chilling comment.......

QUOTE
"[There are] 300 million Arabs, while Israel has only the sea behind it," Khaddoumi said.

Khaddoumi said his platform was endorsed by the PLO in 1974. He said the strategy called for a phased plan that would establish authority over any territory obtained from Israel, concluding with an Arab war to destroy the Jewish state.



So what's changed here in the last 30 years? It never ceases to amaze me how so many people around the world seem to think that Israel can negotiate with this mindset. It's like settling a dispute with your neighbor by him saying "Ok, I'll let you sleep tonight, but one of these nights I'm going to kill your family and burn down your house."
*



I agree. And which side is the UN and the "left" of the world on?? Until Arabs stop teaching their young children that Israelis are evil and should be destroyed, there will be no peace.

However, we can outsmart them all. My strategy involves sending a free satellite TV system, 6 months of free service, a PS2 or X-box, a DVD player, and a 6 month unlimited subscription to Netflix.

In 6 months, the people in that region will be so brain dead that they'll lose their passion for a fight.

Then, the second wave will open McDonalds, Burger King, and Wendy's franchises on every corner. That will suppliment their new found laziness with obesity in short order.

They will then argue about who should win "Middle East Idol" rather than strap explosives to themselves in order to go out of this world in a blaze of carnage.
Ptarmigan
QUOTE(Aquilla @ Dec 23 2004, 07:28 PM)
Nothing changes.....

It would appear at this time that there is nothing new under the sun in the Middle East.   From The World Tribune.......

QUOTE
The new leader of the ruling Fatah movement said the Palestinians want to replace Israel with a state of their own.

Fatah chief Farouk Khaddoumi said the Palestinian strategy toward Israel was two-fold. In the first stage, he said, the Palestinians would accept a Palestinian state alongside Israel. In the second stage, the Palestinians would seek to eliminate the Jewish state.

In November, Khaddoumi replaced the late Yasser Arafat as leader of Fatah, Middle East Newsline reported.

"At this stage there will be two states," Khaddoumi told Iran's Al Aram television. "Many years from now, there will be only one."



Later on, same article we get this chilling comment.......

QUOTE
"[There are] 300 million Arabs, while Israel has only the sea behind it," Khaddoumi said.

Khaddoumi said his platform was endorsed by the PLO in 1974. He said the strategy called for a phased plan that would establish authority over any territory obtained from Israel, concluding with an Arab war to destroy the Jewish state.



So what's changed here in the last 30 years? It never ceases to amaze me how so many people around the world seem to think that Israel can negotiate with this mindset. It's like settling a dispute with your neighbor by him saying "Ok, I'll let you sleep tonight, but one of these nights I'm going to kill your family and burn down your house."
*



Although Fatah does not speak for all Palestinians - Israel is negotiating with the moderate factions as opposed to the hardliners. Nothing will ever be resolved by portraying all Palestinians as mindless terrorists, any more than portraying Israel as land grabbing oppressors would. Sadly the real world is often more complex and far less black and white.
loreng59
QUOTE(Ptarmigan @ Jan 6 2005, 03:20 AM)
Although Fatah does not speak for all Palestinians - Israel is negotiating with the moderate factions as opposed to the hardliners. Nothing will ever be resolved by portraying all Palestinians as mindless terrorists, any more than portraying Israel as land grabbing oppressors would. Sadly the real world is often more complex and far less black and white.
*

The first sentence should be the give away. The Fatah faction are the so-called moderates. They are the ones stating that they will settle for nothing else than the destruction of the State of Israel. Sometimes the world is really black and white, the Arabs do not want peace with Israel, never have, never will.
English Horn
QUOTE(loreng59 @ Jan 6 2005, 08:25 AM)
The first sentence should be the give away. The Fatah faction are the so-called moderates. They are the ones stating that they will settle for nothing else than the destruction of the State of Israel. Sometimes the world is really black and white, the Arabs do not want peace with Israel, never have, never will.
*



So what's your solution? That position is not exactly consiliatory either. And as of right now it's the state of Israel who is negotiating from the position of force. After all, Israelis have a state to protect from destruction; Palestinians do not. Desperation calls for desperate acts. All of the world's uprisings/revolutions come from desperation.
loreng59
QUOTE(English Horn @ Jan 6 2005, 06:45 AM)
QUOTE(loreng59 @ Jan 6 2005, 08:25 AM)
The first sentence should be the give away. The Fatah faction are the so-called moderates. They are the ones stating that they will settle for nothing else than the destruction of the State of Israel. Sometimes the world is really black and white, the Arabs do not want peace with Israel, never have, never will.
*



So what's your solution? That position is not exactly consiliatory either. And as of right now it's the state of Israel who is negotiating from the position of force. After all, Israelis have a state to protect from destruction; Palestinians do not. Desperation calls for desperate acts. All of the world's uprisings/revolutions come from desperation.
*

Very simple, there are 22 Arab countries, there is even one that was setup for the Arabs living in the mandate territories, it is 4 times the size of Israel, has less than half the population, has a majority of the population that are 'Palestinians' and is currently called Jordan. They can name it anything they want, I really could care less, they should just go home.

Everybody is calling for land for peace, okay the Arabs own 99.6% of the land in the MiddleEast, why is it that Israel is the only one being called on to give up land? Why is it that it unacceptable to expel people from their homes on a basis of religion, unless those people are Jewish?

If the 'Palestinians' are living in desperation, why do Syrians with half the income that those 'Palestinians' have not rise up, or the starving millions in Africa. The statement is bogus. Poverty does not and has never begot terrorism. Only intolerance begets terrorism.
English Horn
QUOTE(loreng59 @ Jan 6 2005, 08:54 AM)
Everybody is calling for land for peace, okay the Arabs own 99.6% of the land in the MiddleEast, why is it that Israel is the only one being called on to give up land? Why is it that it unacceptable to expel people from their homes on a basis of religion, unless those people are Jewish?


Because this land was seized illegally in either an armed conflict or through settlements. By the same logic Soviet Union should have never "given up" Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, etc. By the way, more than 50 percent of Latvian population are ethnic Russians - so what?

QUOTE(loreng59 @ Jan 6 2005, 08:54 AM)
If the 'Palestinians' are living in desperation, why do Syrians with half the income that those 'Palestinians' have not rise up, or the starving millions in Africa. The statement is bogus. Poverty does not and has never begot terrorism. Only intolerance begets terrorism.


By the way, why do you put the word "palestinians" in quotes? I assume that's because you don't believe thay're people who have their own national identity. Let me ask you another question, then - what makes hundreds of thousands of Jews arriving from Soviet Union Jewish? They don't speak a word in Hebrew, 99 percent of them never been to sinagogue (and don't plan to go, either), their men are not circumcised... what makes them Jewish?

QUOTE
Poverty does not and has never begot terrorism. Only intolerance begets terrorism.


French Revolution of 1791 (First Republic) - who those people were intolerant of? How about Russian Revolution of 1905? Poverty is a driving force behind any insurgency... and unwillingness by the ruling class to yield one inch.
loreng59
QUOTE(English Horn @ Jan 6 2005, 07:11 AM)
Because this land was seized illegally in either an armed conflict or through settlements. By the same logic Soviet Union should have never "given up" Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, etc. By the way, more than 50 percent of Latvian population are ethnic Russians - so what?

By the way, why do you put the word "palestinians" in quotes? I assume that's because you don't believe thay're people who have their own national identity. Let me ask you another question, then - what makes hundreds of thousands of Jews arriving from Soviet Union Jewish? They don't speak a word in Hebrew, 99 percent of them never been to sinagogue (and don't plan to go, either), their men are not circumcised... what makes them Jewish?
*

As for the land being illegally seized, since when? Please offer one shred of proof. The only international treaties ever created award the land to whom - the Jews. The war that liberated the territories, was one of defense, so there only illegal acts were committed by the Arabs that started the war. Land gained during a defensive war have been kept by the victor in nearly every circumstance.

As for the quotes, there has never been a country of Palestine. The only people that have ever been referred to as 'Palestinians' were Jewish not Muslims during the mandate period, hence the quotes.

As for the Soviet Union, simple they were born Jewish. According to Jewish law, membership is not restricted to language, worship practises, or place of birth. If the mother is Jewish, the child is Jewish.
moif
loreng59

QUOTE
Very simple, there are 22 Arab countries, there is even one that was setup for the Arabs living in the mandate territories, it is 4 times the size of Israel, has less than half the population, has a majority of the population that are 'Palestinians' and is currently called Jordan. They can name it anything they want, I really could care less, they should just go home.
They are already home. THATS the problem.


QUOTE
Everybody is calling for land for peace, okay the Arabs own 99.6% of the land in the MiddleEast, why is it that Israel is the only one being called on to give up land? Why is it that it unacceptable to expel people from their homes on a basis of religion, unless those people are Jewish?
Because the Arabs have been living in the middle east for the last 2,000 years where as the Israeli's have only been living there in recent living memory.

Being Jewish and Palestinian does not give any one the right to steal the land from the Arab Palestinians. Regardless of what you, the west or the UN may say about it. Israel was founded on stolen land, from people who were forced out due to their ethnicity.

It doesn't matter how many times you deny it or how many times you point the finger at the Palestinians. The bottom line is, Israel did not exist until outsiders created it.


QUOTE
If the 'Palestinians' are living in desperation, why do Syrians with half the income that those 'Palestinians' have not rise up, or the starving millions in Africa. The statement is bogus. Poverty does not and has never begot terrorism. Only intolerance begets terrorism.
There is no one single cause for terrorism just as there is no one single form of terrorism. It is not a political ideology.

Terrorism is merely the act of using violence to get what you want through fear and as such any one can be a 'terrorist', whether they are rich, poor, right or wrong. By the OED definition, even the US 'shock and awe' tactics are 'terrorism'.

Fundamentally, the word has no value what so ever in the debate of the middle east and is usually used as nothing more than a smoke screen to deflect criticism of Israel's own violence.


editted for spelling
loreng59
QUOTE(moif @ Jan 6 2005, 07:38 AM)
They are already home. THATS the problem.

Because the Arabs have been living in the middle east for the last 2,000 years where as the Israeli's have only been living there in recent living memory.

Being Jewish and Palestinian does not give any one the right to steal the land from the Arab Palestinians. Regardless of what you, the west or the UN may say about it. Israel was founded on stolen land, from people who were forced out due to their ethnicity.

It doesn't matter how many times you deny it or how many times you point the finger at the Palestinians. The bottom line is, Israel did not exist until outsiders created it.
editted for spelling
*


Okay I have a question, where did you learn history? Israel was a country when Denmark was a forest. Arabs haven't existed for 2,000 years. Jews have been there continuously for more than 5,000 years.

The land was purchased by Jews, and stolen by Arabs. The facts are the thieves are the Arabs and you can not change those facts.

Israel existed long before there where Muslims, or for that matter Christians. It will exist longer after both are a mere memory too.
English Horn
QUOTE(loreng59 @ Jan 6 2005, 09:34 AM)
As for the land being illegally seized, since when? Please offer one shred of proof. The only international treaties ever created award the land to whom - the Jews. The war that liberated the territories, was one of defense, so there only illegal acts were committed by the Arabs that started the war. Land gained during a defensive war have been kept by the victor in nearly every circumstance.


And almost in every circumstance it was eventually given back (otherwise Russians would still be camping on Champs-Elysees since the war of 1812, Japan would own Port-Arthur, and Japan would still be under US occupation.)

QUOTE(loreng59 @ Jan 6 2005, 09:34 AM)
As for the quotes, there has never been a country of Palestine. The only people that have ever been referred to as 'Palestinians' were Jewish not Muslims during the mandate period, hence the quotes.

As for the Soviet Union, simple they were born Jewish. According to Jewish law, membership is not restricted to language, worship practises, or place of birth. If the mother is Jewish, the child is Jewish.


So by the same logic there're no Gypsies because there's no Gypsy state; there're no Basques, no Corsicans, no Bashkirs, no Maya, etc. because they never had their own state? Jewishness, however, is not determined by the culture or the presence of the state; all of a sudden it's determined by Jewish Law. I hope you see the double standard here...
As for Palestinian state, as you know, UNSCOP proposed division of Palestine into two states. Everybody knows that Arabs rejected the proposal; however, few mention that Menahem Begin rejected the proposal as well, saying
QUOTE
The partition of the homeland is illegal. It will never be recognized. The signature by institutions and individuals of the partition agreement is invalid. It will not bind the Jewish people. Jerusalem was and will for ever be our capital. The Land of Israel will be restored to the people of Israel. All of it, and forever.
moif
Loreng59.

QUOTE(loreng59)
Okay I have a question, where did you learn history? Israel was a country when Denmark was a forest. Arabs haven't existed for 2,000 years. Jews have been there continuously for more than 5,000 years.
Jews, yes. But we are talking about the state of Israel, not the Jewish people. There is actually a difference you know. The state of Israel was founded in 1948 and thus is a mere 57 years old*. Before the foundation of Israel in 1948, the region of Palestinia (the name borne by the region ever since it was given it by the Romans in 63BC) was ruled and owned by many different states, but at no time did it ever bear the name Israel.

Nor did the pre Roman Jewish state ever bear the name Israel, but rather is usually referred to as Judea, though indeed the name Palestine seems to predate even the Romans...

QUOTE(Jewish Virtual Library)
The Twelve Tribes of Israel formed the first constitutional monarchy in Palestine about 1000 B.C. The second king, David, first made Jerusalem the nation's capital. Although eventually Palestine was split into two separate kingdoms, Jewish independence there lasted for 212 years. This is almost as long as Americans have enjoyed independence in what has become known as the United States.
Link.

So, the Jewish states (under what ever name you choose to give them) in the region known for the past 3,000 years as Palestine, have existed for a grand total of 269 years.

Jewish people may have lived in Palestine for that entire period, who really knows, but that is no different from Palestinian Arabs who have also lived there for hundreds if not thousands of years.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


And now to return to the topic at hand...


What will be the effect (locally, worldwide) of the new leader, Abbas’ intent to carry on Arafat’s “platform”?

Its hard to say. Abbas probably does not enjoy the hold on his people that Arafat did so his intent to follow in Arafat's foot steps are probably more an indication of his weakness rather than his strength.

On the other hand, it may be that Arafat really did represent the majority view of his people and there is no other choice. After all, what do the Palestinians gain by cooperating with the Israeli's? Whats the point? History shows the Israeli's do not want peace. The only Israeli leader to ever seriously consider peace was promptly assassinated.


An opinion question: do you believe there will ever be peace between Israel and the PLO?

You tell me...

QUOTE(Jewish Virtual Library)
The Jewish people base their claim to the land of Israel on at least four premises: 1) God promised the land to the patriarch Abraham; 2) the Jewish people settled and developed the land; 3) the international community granted political sovereignty in Palestine to the Jewish people and 4) the territory was captured in defensive wars.

Reasons 1 is besides the point. 2 & 3 are half truths, and 4 is the same basic doctrine by which the Palestines justify their terrorism.

As far as I can see, as things stand now, neither side wishes peace and never have. Both sides are attempting to utterly destroy the other.


* The state of Denmark, by comparison was founded around 980AD by King Gorm the Old, and has remained a political entity ever since, making it the worlds oldest surviving state.
Vladimir
What will be the effect (locally, worldwide) of the new leader, Abbas’ intent to carry on Arafat’s “platform”?

There will be very little actual effect since the struggle is between the Palestinian people and their Zionist oppressors, not between political parties or leaders. The only immediate consequence will be that the Israelis will be embarassed, until they somehow manage to demonize Abbas in his turn, by the absence of a scapegoat.

An opinion question: do you believe there will ever be peace between Israel and the PLO?

The question is improperly framed, since the struggle is not between governments but peoples. But no, their will never be peace so long as the Zionist state is so thoroughly supported by the United States. Ultimately, of course, Israel must transform itself into something much more benign, or perish. There are too few Jews, too many Arabs. If confrontation continues much longer, I very much doubt that in 500 years the Middle Eastern descendants of modern Israelis will know how to speak Hebrew.
loreng59
QUOTE(Vladimir @ Jan 7 2005, 04:30 PM)
What will be the effect (locally, worldwide) of the new leader, Abbas’ intent to carry on Arafat’s “platform”?

There will be very little actual effect since the struggle is between the Palestinian people and their Zionist oppressors, not between political parties or leaders.  The only immediate consequence will be that the Israelis will be embarassed, until they somehow manage to demonize Abbas in his turn, by the absence of a scapegoat.

An opinion question: do you believe there will ever be peace between Israel and the PLO?

The question is improperly framed, since the struggle is not between governments but peoples.  But no, their will never be peace so long as the Zionist state is so thoroughly supported by the United States.  Ultimately, of course, Israel must transform itself into something much more benign, or perish.  There are too few Jews, too many Arabs.  If confrontation continues much longer, I very much doubt that in 500 years the Middle Eastern descendants of modern Israelis will know how to speak Hebrew.
*

Shall we try this one again, 98% of the 'Palestinians' live and have lived under 'Palestinian' rule for the past decade. The Arabs are attempting to ethnically cleanse the region of the Jewish population and the Jews are the 'Oppressors', and elephants fly too.

If Israel becomes benign they will perish, the Arab proclaim it daily. Experts have been predicting the demise of the Jews for thousands of years. But somehow they continue to survive and continue and their oppressors die off. Who knows what will happen in the future? I do not have crystal ball, but if the Arabs do not stop their genocidal campaign, Israel may someday just return the favor.
j10pilot
QUOTE(DaffyGrl @ Nov 24 2004, 11:47 PM)
I guess the more things change, the more they stay the same. I’ve always considered myself a cynic, but a hopeful cynic. The state of the world today is working hard to remove the “hopeful” part. The hopeful part of me thought that, with Arafat gone, a peace of some sort, however uneasy, could be won in Israel. Well, it doesn’t look as if that will happen:
QUOTE
The newly empowered “moderate” PA leadership Tuesday pledged to remain true to Yasser Arafat’s platform of seeking to flood Israel with millions of Arab “refugees.”

They also insisted there would be no final peace until the PLO flag was raised over a Jerusalem under “Palestinian” sovereignty. Jerusalem News

QUOTE(Mahmoud Abbas)
“We promise that we will continue on the same path that you (Arafat) have paved to achieve the dream that has always lived with you... establishing an independent Palestinian state with Jerusalem as its capital,” Abbas told a special session of Parliament to honor the late leader. Arab News

By that statement alone, the chance for peace would be impossible. Israel will never give up Jerusalem (nor should they, in my opinion).

What will be the effect (locally, worldwide) of the new leader, Abbas’ intent to carry on Arafat’s “platform”?

An opinion question: do you believe there will ever be peace between Israel and the PLO?

*



The Palestinean problem is so clear-cut, I don't see why some Americans don't get it. There is a U.N. resolution back in 1947 or so that says there should be a Israel and a Palestinean state existing side-by-side on that piece of land. And if I remembered correctly, the Palestineans were supposed to get Jerusalem accrording to the UN resolution.

As for the Palestinean refugees, if they were displaced due to war, why should they not be allowed to return?

Now, to answer your questions:

1. He's going to try to make a peace deal, because that is in the best interest of the Palestineans. And I can probably give you a prediction of what will and will not happen if he fails.

If he fails and the suicide bombings continue, he will probably be given titles like "Terrorist" or "Biggest obstable to Middle-East peace" by America like his predessessor Mr. Arafat, who also happens to be DEMOCRATICALLY-ELECTED by the Palestinean people. And America will NOT send an army to enforce the U.N. resolution that says Palestineans should have their own country.

2. Of course there will be peace. They just need a better and more impartial mediator. wink.gif
Aquilla
QUOTE(j10pilot)
The Palestinean problem is so clear-cut, I don't see why some Americans don't get it. There is a U.N. resolution back in 1947 or so that says there should be a Israel and a Palestinean state existing side-by-side on that piece of land. And if I remembered correctly, the Palestineans were supposed to get Jerusalem accrording to the UN resolution.



Actually, no, your memory is flawed. The City of Jerusalem was proposed to be a "city-state" open to all, controlled by the UN. From UN General Assembly Resolution 181, 29Nov1947, we have the following......

QUOTE
Part III. - City of Jerusalem(5)
A. SPECIAL REGIME
The City of Jerusalem shall be established as a corpus separatum under a special international regime and shall be administered by the United Nations. The Trusteeship Council shall be designated to discharge the responsibilities of the Administering Authority on behalf of the United Nations.

loreng59
QUOTE(j10pilot @ Jan 15 2005, 12:49 AM)
The Palestinean problem is so clear-cut, I don't see why some Americans don't get it. There is a U.N. resolution back in 1947 or so that says there should be a Israel and a Palestinean state existing side-by-side on that piece of land. And if I remembered correctly, the Palestineans were supposed to get Jerusalem accrording to the UN resolution.

As for the Palestinean refugees, if they were displaced due to war, why should they not be allowed to return?

Now, to answer your questions:

1. He's going to try to make a peace deal, because that is in the best interest of the Palestineans. And I can probably give you a prediction of what will and will not happen if he fails.

If he fails and the suicide bombings continue, he will probably be given titles like "Terrorist" or "Biggest obstable to Middle-East peace" by America like his predessessor Mr. Arafat, who also happens to be DEMOCRATICALLY-ELECTED by the Palestinean people. And America will NOT send an army to enforce the U.N. resolution that says Palestineans should have their own country.

2. Of course there will be peace. They just need a better and more impartial mediator.  wink.gif
*

The Arabs rejected the 1947 Resolution, and Aquilla is correct Jerusalem was not to belong to either state. As for the so-called refugees, well it is not exactly what they are demanding. If the 10,000 or so people that left during the war that are still alive were all that the PLO is demanding return, that would be one thing. The PLO is demanding the 'return' of 4.5 million people to Israel. These people were not displaced by war, heck most of them weren't born by 1948. Nearly all of them have never been to Israel, were born and raised in other countries and now demand the right to live in another country to destroy it.

As for Abbas and/or Arafat being democratically elected, who the heck cares? There are signed agreements between Israel and the PLO. Each side has obligations to perform. To date, the PLO has never and I repeat never fulfilled a single obligation for even one day. In fact Abbas loudly proclaim the fact that they will not fulfill their obligations, under any circumstances.

Then do not need a better and more impartial mediator nor any more treaties, accords, or mediation, what they need is for the PLO to fulfill their obligations, especially ending all violence.
j10pilot
To Aquilla:

QUOTE(Aquilla @ Jan 15 2005, 06:15 PM)
Actually, no, your memory is flawed.   The City of Jerusalem was proposed to be a "city-state" open to all, controlled by the UN.  From

QUOTE
Part III. - City of Jerusalem(5)
A. SPECIAL REGIME
The City of Jerusalem shall be established as a corpus separatum under a special international regime and shall be administered by the United Nations. The Trusteeship Council shall be designated to discharge the responsibilities of the Administering Authority on behalf of the United Nations.




Ok, so I was wrong, sorry about that.

Excuse my Latin, but "corpus separatum" means "separate body", i.e. neither a part of Israel nor a part of Palestine, correct? But usually, aren't most of these type of territory placed under either UN or third country Trusteeship returned to the original owner, case and point, Okinawa in 1972(?).

To Loreng59:
QUOTE
As for the so-called refugees, well it is not exactly what they are demanding. If the 10,000 or so people that left during the war that are still alive were all that the PLO is demanding return, that would be one thing. The PLO is demanding the 'return' of 4.5 million people to Israel. These people were not displaced by war, heck most of them weren't born by 1948. Nearly all of them have never been to Israel, were born and raised in other countries and now demand the right to live in another country to destroy it.

If your parents are American and you were born outside of America, should you have a right to live in America? I believe current American law says "Yes."

QUOTE
As for Abbas and/or Arafat being democratically elected, who the heck cares?

Your president, George W. Bush "the heck", says he cares in one of his grandiose speeches.

QUOTE
There are signed agreements between Israel and the PLO. Each side has obligations to perform. To date, the PLO has never and I repeat never fulfilled a single obligation for even one day. In fact Abbas loudly proclaim the fact that they will not fulfill their obligations, under any circumstances.

I believe this is false and I shall find some proof when I have more free time.
Aquilla
QUOTE(j10pilot)
To Aquilla:


QUOTE(Aquilla @ Jan 15 2005, 06:15 PM)

Actually, no, your memory is flawed.  The City of Jerusalem was proposed to be a "city-state" open to all, controlled by the UN.  From


QUOTE
Part III. - City of Jerusalem(5)
A. SPECIAL REGIME
The City of Jerusalem shall be established as a corpus separatum under a special international regime and shall be administered by the United Nations. The Trusteeship Council shall be designated to discharge the responsibilities of the Administering Authority on behalf of the United Nations.






Ok, so I was wrong, sorry about that.

Excuse my Latin, but "corpus separatum" means "separate body", i.e. neither a part of Israel nor a part of Palestine, correct? But usually, aren't most of these type of territory placed under either UN or third country Trusteeship returned to the original owner, case and point, Okinawa in 1972(?).



I don't know that there is a "usual" procedure for something like this, it's pretty rare I think. In the case of Jerusalem which is a holy city for Christians, Jews and Muslims I would imagine that the intent would be to maintain it's status as a separate entity "owned" by none, shared by all. That would be the most appropriate thing in my mind. The UN could most certainly administer Jerusalem until such a time as all concerned parties in the region could reach an agreement on their own administration of this special city.
loreng59
j10pilot
QUOTE
If your parents are American and you were born outside of America, should you have a right to live in America? I believe current American law says "Yes."
Not exactly. Those people born in America prior to the Revolution and left because they did not support the Revolution lost their citizenship and all holdings. So did all of their children. Nor does American law extend to grandchildren, cousins, uncles, aunts, etc. like the 'Palestinians' currently claim.

Also Israel is not the US, their laws are different just as Denmark , England, Kuwait and every other country have different laws. These people left Israel because they did not want to be citizens so why should Israel have them now?

QUOTE
I believe this is false and I shall find some proof when I have more free time.
Please do, please show me one obligation, any one that the 'Palestinians' have ever fulfilled. It would be most illuminating to say the least.

Aquilla
QUOTE
I don't know that there is a "usual" procedure for something like this, it's pretty rare I think. In the case of Jerusalem which is a holy city for Christians, Jews and Muslims I would imagine that the intent would be to maintain it's status as a separate entity "owned" by none, shared by all. That would be the most appropriate thing in my mind. The UN could most certainly administer Jerusalem until such a time as all concerned parties in the region could reach an agreement on their own administration of this special city.
I would dispute the claim that Jerusalem is 'Holy' to the Muslims. That was an invention made by Grand Mufti of Jerusalem in the 1920s. You remember him, he's the one that went to Berlin in World War II to support Hitler and raised a couple of SS Divisions of Muslim troops.

Jerusalem has never been considered 'Holy' to Islam, in fact is never mentioned in the Koran.

As for the UN administration of Jerusalem well I truly doubt that Israel will ever trust the UN with their capital.
Ptarmigan
QUOTE
I would dispute the claim that Jerusalem is 'Holy' to the Muslims. That was an invention made by Grand Mufti of Jerusalem in the 1920s. You remember him, he's the one that went to Berlin in World War II to support Hitler and raised a couple of SS Divisions of Muslim troops.

Jerusalem has never been considered 'Holy' to Islam, in fact is never mentioned in the Koran.


However Jerusalem is mentioned in the Hadith, the body of laws, legends and stories about Muhammed. The majority of Muslims consider it to be the authoritative exposition of the Qur'an. (Similar to the relation between the Talmud and the Torah).

The Hadith dates back to before 900 AD, so somewhat predates the 1920s.

Anyway, Jersulam is holy to Muslims because it is where Muhammed ascended to Heaven. (It is also where Abraham went to sacrifice Isaac (or Ishmael), which is also a part of the Muslim religion, along with Judaism and Christianity).
loreng59
QUOTE(Ptarmigan @ Feb 18 2005, 05:47 AM)
However Jerusalem is mentioned in the Hadith, the body of laws, legends and stories about Muhammed. The majority of Muslims consider it to be the authoritative exposition of the Qur'an. (Similar to the relation between the Talmud and the Torah).

The Hadith dates back to before 900 AD, so somewhat predates the 1920s.

Anyway, Jersulam is holy to Muslims because it is where Muhammed ascended to Heaven. (It is also where Abraham went to sacrifice Isaac (or Ishmael), which is also a part of the Muslim religion, along with Judaism and Christianity).
*

Again wrong answer. No and I do repeat no Islamic scholar supports the claim that Muhammed ascended to Heaven from Jerusalem. All of them state just the opposite that he could not have done so because there was no Mosque in Jerusalem when he died. The first mosque on the Temple Mount was built 66 years after Muhammed's death.

QUOTE
The designation of Jerusalem as an Islamic holy place depends on al-Mi'raj, the Ascension of the Prophet Muhammad to heaven, which began from the Foundation Stone on the Temple Mount. But while remembering this, we must admit that there is no real link between al-Mi'raj and sovereign rights over Jerusalem, since when al-Mi'raj took place the city was not under Islamic but under alternate Byzantine or Sassanid administration.

Moreover, the Qur'an expressly recognizes that Jerusalem plays the same role for Jews that Mecca has for Muslims. We read: "They would not follow thy direction of prayer (qibla), nor art thou to follow their direction of prayer; nor indeed will they follow each other's direction of prayer...." (Qur'an, Sura 2:145, "The Cow") All Qur'anic commentators explain that "thy qibla" is obviously the Kaba of Mecca, while "their qibla" refers to the Temple Mount Area in Jerusalem. Some Muslim exegetes also quote the Book of Daniel as proof of this (Daniel 6:10).

Thus, as no one wishes to deny Muslims complete sovereignty over Mecca, from an Islamic point of view there is no sound theological reason to deny the Jews the same right over Jerusalem.
by Shaykh Professor Abdul Hadi Palazzi is Secretary General of the Italian Muslim Association and Muslim Chair of the Islam-Israel Fellowship of the Root & Branch Association (www.rb.org.il). He was educated in Rome and in Cairo, where he received his "ijaza" (authorization to teach Islam) from Shaykh Ismail al-Khalwati and Sheikh Husayn al-Khalwati, and holds a Ph.D. in Islamic Sciences by decree of former Saudi Grand Mufti Abdul Aziz Ibn Baz.

Islam has always claimed two 'Holy' cities, Mecca and Medina. It was not until the 1920s that a third was claimed. So yes the claim dates from the 1920s.
Ptarmigan
QUOTE
Again wrong answer. No and I do repeat no Islamic scholar supports the claim that Muhammed ascended to Heaven from Jerusalem. All of them state just the opposite that he could not have done so because there was no Mosque in Jerusalem when he died. The first mosque on the Temple Mount was built 66 years after Muhammed's death.


Um, no, Jersulam is written in the Hadith as the place where Muhammed ascended to Heaven. That is why it is holy to Muslims. Whether this was an actual event or a historical misperception is irrelevant. Religions are not based on proof, they are based on faith. Also to speak for ALL Islamic scholars strikes me as being - well, quite impressive really. I'm sure there's only been a few hundred thousand Islamic scholars over the years.

QUOTE
The designation of Jerusalem as an Islamic holy place depends on al-Mi'raj, the Ascension of the Prophet Muhammad to heaven, which began from the Foundation Stone on the Temple Mount. But while remembering this, we must admit that there is no real link between al-Mi'raj and sovereign rights over Jerusalem, since when al-Mi'raj took place the city was not under Islamic but under alternate Byzantine or Sassanid administration


However you did manage to quote ONE scholar, who says that although Jerusalem IS a holy place, that should not be mistaken for sovereignity. Good. I fully agree. This in no way refutes my point that Jerusalem is a holy place to Muslims, which is where I disagree with you.
loreng59
QUOTE(Ptarmigan @ Feb 18 2005, 10:36 AM)
QUOTE
Again wrong answer. No and I do repeat no Islamic scholar supports the claim that Muhammed ascended to Heaven from Jerusalem. All of them state just the opposite that he could not have done so because there was no Mosque in Jerusalem when he died. The first mosque on the Temple Mount was built 66 years after Muhammed's death.


Um, no, Jersulam is written in the Hadith as the place where Muhammed ascended to Heaven. That is why it is holy to Muslims. Whether this was an actual event or a historical misperception is irrelevant. Religions are not based on proof, they are based on faith. Also to speak for ALL Islamic scholars strikes me as being - well, quite impressive really. I'm sure there's only been a few hundred thousand Islamic scholars over the years.

QUOTE
The designation of Jerusalem as an Islamic holy place depends on al-Mi'raj, the Ascension of the Prophet Muhammad to heaven, which began from the Foundation Stone on the Temple Mount. But while remembering this, we must admit that there is no real link between al-Mi'raj and sovereign rights over Jerusalem, since when al-Mi'raj took place the city was not under Islamic but under alternate Byzantine or Sassanid administration


However you did manage to quote ONE scholar, who says that although Jerusalem IS a holy place, that should not be mistaken for sovereignity. Good. I fully agree. This in no way refutes my point that Jerusalem is a holy place to Muslims, which is where I disagree with you.
*

Actually the Hadith does not say Jerusalem, but keeps coming back to the furthest mosque. (Subhana allathina asra bi-‘abdihi laylatan min al-masjidi al-harami ila al-masjidi al-aqsa.)

And yes I have ONE scholar, I again ask for at least ONE to support that claim. But just for further reference Muhammad ibn al-Hanafiya (638-700), a close relative of the Prophet Muhammad, is quoted denigrating the notion that the prophet ever set foot on the Rock in Jerusalem; "these damned Syrians," by which he means the Umayyads, "pretend that God put His foot on the Rock in Jerusalem, though [only] one person ever put his foot on the rock, namely Abraham."

The Koranic inscriptions that make up a 240-meter mosaic frieze inside the Dome of the Rock do not include Koran 17:1 and the story of the Night Journey, suggesting that as late as 692 the idea of Jerusalem as the lift-off for the Night Journey had not yet been established.

Despite all logic (how can a mosque built nearly a century after the Koran was received establish what the Koran meant?), building an actual Al-Aqsa Mosque, the Palestinian historian A. L. Tibawi writes, "gave reality to the figurative name used in the Koran." It also had the important effect of inserting Jerusalem after the fact into the Koran and making it more central to Islam. Also, other changes came about. Several Koranic passages were re-interpreted to refer to this city. Jerusalem came to be seen as the site of the Last Judgment. The Umayyads cast aside the non-religious Roman name for the city, Aelia Capitolina (in Arabic, Iliya) and replaced it with Jewish-style names, either Al-Quds (The Holy) or Bayt al-Maqdis (The Temple). Accounts of the prophet's sayings or doings (Arabic: hadiths, often translated into English as "Traditions") favorable to Jerusalem emerged at this time, some of them equating the city with Mecca. There was even an effort to move the pilgrimage (hajj) from Mecca to Jerusalem.

QUOTE
The construction of the Dome of the Rock and al-Aqsa mosque, the rituals instituted by the Umayyads on the Temple Mount and the dissemination of Islamic-oriented Traditions regarding the sanctity of the site, all point to the political motives which underlay the glorification of Jerusalem among the Muslims.
by the Iraqi historian Abdul Aziz Duri

The British government recognized the minimal Muslim interest in Jerusalem during World War I. In negotiations with Sharif Husayn of Mecca in 1915-16 over the terms of the Arab revolt against the Ottomans, London decided not to include Jerusalem in territories to be assigned to the Arabs because, as the chief British negotiator, Henry McMahon, put it, "there was no place … of sufficient importance … further south" of Damascus "to which the Arabs attached vital importance."

True to this spirit, the Turkish overlords of Jerusalem abandoned Jerusalem rather than fight for it in 1917, evacuating it just in advance of the British troops. One account indicates they were even prepared to destroy the holy city. Jamal Pasha, the Ottoman commander-in-chief, instructed his Austrian allies to "blow Jerusalem to hell" should the British enter the city. The Austrians therefore had their guns trained on the Dome of the Rock, with enough ammunition to keep up two full days of intensive bombardment. According to Pierre van Paasen, a journalist, that the dome still exists today is due to a Jewish artillery captain in the Austrian army, Marek Schwartz, "quietly spiked his own guns and walked into the British lines."

Muhammad Abu Zayd wrote a book in Egypt in 1930 that was so radical that it was withdrawn from circulation and is no longer even extant. In it, among many other points, he dismissed the notion of the Prophet's heavenly journey via Jerusalem, claiming that the Koranic rendition actually refers to his Hijra from Mecca to Medina; "the more remote mosque" (al-masjid al-aqsa) thus had nothing to do with Jerusalem, but was in fact the mosque in Medina.

So I again ask for an Islamic scholar that claims that Jerusalem is 'Holy' to the Muslims. And yes there have been millions of Islamic scholars, but to date none have ever appeared to counter these scholars.
phobosmoon3
I do not think the issue is what Abbas says, it is what he does. And I believe what is sought after is how Abbas treats the idea of democracy. What Abbas needs to do, that is different than Arafat, is help the Palestinian people. Arafat was not interested in creating jobs for his people or improving their living situation. Time and time again he refused those ideas in peace deals, and the US accepted it as ok because they saw it as a power issue and did not want to weaken Arafat. (Wye River Accords in Virginia) The US was wrong. It gave Arafat wiggle room to break free of his words and he did. Arafat kept the Palestinian people in poverty, kept painting Israel as an enemy- even when peace deals had been reached, and suppressed any chance of democracy from taking root. When money was given to Arafat to help "his" people, the money was put into slush funds and never benefited "his" people. Why not give the Palestinians a say in their future? He wanted to stay in power, and he did that by keeping them poor and united behind an enemy in the form of being victims. He kept fear in the Palestinians as a way to make him look right by breaking peace deals. The issues with Abbas and Arafat, are not their religious views, it is how they treat their people. To see what kind of leader Abbas is going to be, look at how he improves their every day lives physically, and not ideologically.

The reason I say all this is because of the hardline elements that Abbas has to deal with. He has to work with them so that they do not turn against his government and undermine any peace deals by using un-elected power. Just like Yeltsons situation with a newly democratic Russia. Yeltson did not want to look like a puppet of the west to the old hardliners that still clung to power. Abbas is walking a tight rope and Isrealies need to be patient and know what changes to look for in these days of new. The Israeli people are used to dealing with a Palestinian man, not the Palestinian people to reach peace. How a goverment treats its own people, reflects how a government will treat other people. There is the key to lasting peace. Isreal should take this advantage to reach out to the Palestinians to improve their health, improve their economy, to make them feel that each of their opinions matter. It would undermine a corrupt leader. who is ignoring its own people's needs and wants. Hold Abbas accountable on how he treats his people, and not what he says... everything else will fall into place.

Interesting fact, no democracy has declared war or fought against another democracy.
VDemosthenes
The effect of Abbas' platform carries a lot of weight with children of Palestine. However, I think it will sweep them into a new age of unity because Abbas will most likely not practice Arafat's practices by funding and harboring terrorists. I believe Israel's refusal to sit down to peace talks with Arafat was because of his knowing willingness to harbor terrorists. Abbas seems like the person who can unite and peacefully rally for their own nation. Generally his platform is a good one- without the acts of violence. Arafat most likely would have won a Nobel Peace Prize had he not be cloaked in a shroud of death and violence. Abbas seems like a fresh face to carry out his agenda. I belive worldwide acceptance of Abbas' agenda is just a hop skip and a jump away.
Sure, peace is inevitable. Many people say war is but I do not think war will prevail. Good people are on both sides of this conflict. When they pull together they will triumph. Abbas and Israeli leaders will talk through the conflicts and established peace. What neither party may not agree with is that they are both similar. Each side has a love for peace, each side loves its people and each side loves it heritage. The PLO needs Israel and Israel needs the PLO. It is a beneficial relationship. Israel needs allies and should Abbas' people ever get a nation they will need friends in this world too. The world is ready for Abbas' and his agenda, he will be remembered as a chief instrument of peace and unity in the Middle-east for years to come. Should peace not arise from the leadership on both sides I would be fairly shocked.
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