24 February 2005

A Bit about Politics

It appears that Israel will finally be removing the settlements from the Gaza Strip. This is only in Israel's best interest. The cost to Israel to keep those settlements there is much higher than any benefits it gets. The historical ties to the Gaza Strip are nowhere near as strong as many other parts of the Holy Land.

However, I do not believe that Ariel Sharon is abandoning settlements in any way. This is clearly evidenced by Israel's move to annex more areas around Jerusalem- areas of Jewish settlement. It's a crafty move. While Israel is being praised for partially pulling out of Gaza, it takes land of significantly more value.

I have been in the Gaza Strip. The difference between the standard of living of the settlers and the refugees is stunning.

Ariel Sharon has said that Israel wants to be a democratic and Jewish state. This is difficult to do. The only way I can see for Israel to be democratic and Jewish is to establish a separate Palestinian state. Israel cannot be considered democratic when over half the population has severely limited rights; however, it cannot give the Palestinians rights without jeopardizing its status as a Jewish state.

Let me also say that I am not anti-Semitic. (The term always amuses me anyway, since Arabs are just as Semitic as Jews.) I am not happy with Israel's policies. I also am not impressed with the policies of many Muslim and Christian countries, but that doesn't make me anti-Muslim or anti-Christian. I believe that most people feel this way. Even though we hear so much about how many people hate America, I don't think regular Americans are generally hated.


  1. I remember the first time, and I won't tell you how old I was... but I do, with clarity, realizing that NOT everyone wished they were American. *chuckle* Odd, that, now that I think on it...such an arrogant way to grow up.

    I remember distinctly the while visiting Europe for the first time, realizing that not everyone even LIKED Americans... (and that was years and years ago)

    I appreciate reading your views on the Gaza Strip, and love that you are so well versed in the issues that transpire there.

    I love your reading suggestions and lists. I love your eloquence. Thank you for taking the time to share them with us.

    I for one, appreciate your blog, immensely

  2. Thanks Lisa. I was glad to see you posting again on your blog.

  3. Oh, Amira, my heart aches for the Palestinians, as well. I totally Israel's right to exist, but there has to be equality for those people who also lived there for thousands of years.

    Very sad. The area is so small, I don't see how they can segregate, but I haven't understood the Hebrew settlers' clinging to the land. It would seem in the interest of peace, and of justice, to give the Palestinians a good life. Maybe it's not that simple.

  4. We had a Jewish settler speak to us while I was in Jerusalem. It was then that I finally understood how deeply-held their convictions are.

    Reading Ariel Sharon's autobiography was also very enlightening.