Israël vs. Palestine
Matthew 5:9 - Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God
Peace to Israël and Arabs everywhere. I pray that Israëlis and Palestinians alike will step up and be these 'peacemakers' towards eachother.
- Five offers
- Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO)
- Power imbalance
- Religious and historical significance
- Human rights
- Palestinians as a nation
- Will the conflict end?
- As a Christian
Israël has offered the Arabs its own state five times already:
- 1936: Israël offered 80% of the land to the Arabs, 20% to Israël, the Arabs declined.
- 1947: The UN offered another 2-state solution, Israël accepted it, the Arabs rejected it and started a war.
- 1967: (The 6 Day War) Israël offered the land they conquered back to the Arabs, the Arabs declined. It was only around this time that the local Arabs started calling themselves Palestinians.
- 2000: PM Barak offered the Palestinians all of Gaza, 94% of the West Bank and East Jerusalem as their capital. PLO leader Arafat declined the offer.
- 2008: PM Olmert offered the Palestinians all of Gaza, 94% of the West Bank and East Jerusalem as its capital and additional land. Abbas declined the offer.
Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO)
In 1967, the leaders of eight Arab states issued the Khartoum Resolution, which stated: No peace with Israël, No recognition of Israël, No negotiations with Israël (known as the three no's). The PLO has goals and statements of this same spirit in their National Charter, among others:
- Complete elimination of Israeli sovereignty
- Total destruction of the state of Israël
- In the Palestinian state, only Jews who lived in Palestine before 1917 are recognized as citizens (art 6)
- Only the Palestinian Arabs have the right to self-determination, and the whole country belongs to them (art 3, 21).
- Any solution that does not involve total liberation of the country will be rejected. This goal cannot be achieved politically; it can only be reached militarily (art 9, 21)
- Warfare against Israël is legal, while Israël's self-defense is illegal (art 18)
The UN regularly asks the PLO if they want to change these statements: they don't. To me that seems like a real attitude problem.
Let's compare them to two kids, Israël older and stronger, Palestine younger and weaker. You would say that the older and stronger one has a certain responsibility to not beat the younger one into a pulp everytime there is a squable. I'd say Israël has taken that responsibility very well. If the younger one is constantly, furiously biting the older one in the ankles, how much patience does the older one need to show before he is allowed to do something?
Israël clearly has superior military power, and on the other side the Palestinians come across as a bunch of Stormtroopers. This imbalance could make you jump to the conclusion that Israël must be the bully, and the Palestinians the victims. But Israël is unironically a role model to the world when it comes to patience, and refraining from use of force. Although Israël has the power to clear Gaza from all terrorist activity, they've refrained from doing so. In 2005 Israël even fully withdrew from Gaza, again showing goodwill. About 10,000 Jews left Gaza hoping it would contribute to peace. Practically the Palestinians now have all control there. Instead of developing that area for their people, with homes, schools, businesses, shops, it has become a terrorist base from which they launch their Iranian supplied missiles. In May 2021 Hamas launched 4,360 missiles out of Gaza, Israël still haven't retaliated that attack, it only defended itself.
Five proposals for two-state solutions, all firmly in favor of the Palastinians, but every time they'd rather rekindle the war. And they do so by bringing a knife to a gun fight, what outcome do they expect? There is a special word for doing something over and over again while expecting a different outcome... after all these attempts they're not the sad victim anymore, it's getting stupid.
The Palestinians show over and over what their real goals and priorities are: it's not their own state, it's the destruction of Israël. So thank God for this power imbalance.
Religious and historical significance
In Jerusalem, the only thing not Jewish is the Al Aqsa mosque. The Al Aqsa mosque is a typical relic of Islamic military conquest. Islamic conquerors had a tradition of building a mosque on top of the former seat of power in the cities they conquered.
The building of the overthrown government was demolished, and a mosque was built on its foundations. It was a way of asserting their dominance. Mosques in prominent non-Muslim spots are everywhere. They are built on foundations that were already there, surrounded by older buildings of governments or religious institutions. You can find them in Turkey, Egypt, Asia, and Israël.
Judean history with Jerusalem started centuries before the Arabs took an interest in it. Not once is Jerusalem mentioned in the Quran. In the Torah Jerusalem is mentioned over 600 times. It is the place where Abraham (1996 BC - 1821 BC) obeyed God by attempting to sacrifice Isaac. It's the city where the first and the second Temple stood. It's the city where Jesus stood before Pilate, walked trough Via Dolorosa, and was crucified just outside its walls.
There is not one right in the UN's "Universal Declaration of Human Rights" that is withheld from the Palestinans living in Israël.
On the other hand: Israelis are not allowed to visit Gaza, West Bank Area A, West Bank Area C, and are discouraged to visit West Bank Area B. Also, Israelis are banned from visiting Algeria, Brunei, Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Yemen, all of these are Islamic/Arab countries. Lebanon and Syria directly share borders with Israël. How is that for freedom of movement?
Israël is Jewish land, Jerusalem is a Jewish city. The 'settlers' settled on plots of land that:
- were mostly empty
- has great historical and religious value for these people
- they had conquered in a 3-on-1 war that they had not started
- was offered to the Palestinians several times, all these offers were rejected
- adhere to the rules of the 1993 Oslo Accords, both signed by PM Rabin and PLO leader Arafat
Palestinians as a nation
The Palestinians never had a government until the PLO formed, and sort of took that role, in 1964. The PLO was only to be recognized by the UN General Assembly as the representative of the Palestinian people in 1974. They were desert people who couldn't care less that the Jewish people returned to the sandbox. When Israël turned that sand into lush green furtile lands, then they started to care...
The word Palestine comes from the Roman word philistine, and is about 1400 years old.
Genesis 21:8-20 tells the story of Abraham's sons Ishmael and Isaac. God promised Abraham that out of him would raise up a great nation. Human drama ensues, and Abraham ends up with two sons, and thus two nations. The present-day descendants of Isaac are the Jews, and Ishmael brought forth the Arabs.
Arab presence since biblical times is undeyable. Israël and Palestine came from the same father... maybe grow up and act like brothers? If only it was that easy.
Will the conflict end?
Judges 2:3 - So now I say, I will not drive them out before you, but they shall become thorns in your sides, and their gods shall be a snare to you … the people lifted up their voices and wept.
Judges 2:21 - I will no longer drive out before them any of the nations that Joshua left when he died, in order to test Israel by them, whether they will take care to walk in the way of the Lord as their fathers did, or not. So the Lord left those nations, not driving them out quickly, and he did not give them into the hand of Joshua.
Israël has been in conflict ever since, and it will be untill the end. The Bible describes the battle of Armageddon as Israël's final battle. Its when allmost all nations of the world will surround Israël to wage war against it. It will get worse and Israël will prevail.
As a Christian
The Church as representatives of Jesus Christ has a lot to make up for. The slaugtering of Jews in the Crusades, betraying Jews in World Wars, pushing antisemitism with twisted scripture... just to name a few. We're supposed to make Israël jealous with our relationship with God, but instead we joined in on the killing. Its time we are for Israël and not against it.