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Israeli actions: a catalyst for jihād?

#1
Okay, what promised to be a reasonably interesting thread about the jihād-catalytic influence of Israeli actions in the occupied territories has been thinned out by PTP, on the basis that a) It was getting a bit nasty, and ii) It was off topic – which was really the utility of berets in a tropical/desert environment. And it was, on both counts, so: fair play.

On the other hand, even though I can see that this might well be a magnet for every 'Herrenbloke' type neo-loon out there in ARRSE-land, it is an issue which needs talking about.


The Islamists cite both the existence of Israel and the actions of the ‘Zionists’ as justification for taking the jihād global rather than restricting themselves to the ‘near enemy’. Is it time to use the West’s soft-power (and Israel's economic dependence) in an effort to bring Israel into line with at least some of the UN resolutions of which they are in breach; is it time to address the fact that in a post-Cold War era, Israel no longer constitutes a bulwark against Soviet influence in the Arab world which can do no wrong; without condoning (in any way whatsoever) the actions of the Mujahideen, ought we to say – this is not the way in which the British Army would respond to the intifada – and think hard about whether the Israeli response is the recursive half of the (or 'at least one of the') cycle(s) of terror?

Before the accusations of anti-Semitism come flooding in, I’d like to remind everyone (including the august PTP) that one of the reasons (probably) that the original ‘head dress’ thread got thinned out was that I got on my high horse about the latent anti-Semitism of the early off topic posts…
 
#2
fas_et_gloria said:
The Islamists cite both the existence of Israel and the actions of the ‘Zionists’ as justification for taking the jihād global rather than restricting themselves to the ‘near enemy’. Is it time to use the West’s soft-power (and Israel's economic dependence) in an effort to bring Israel into line with at least some of the UN resolutions of which they are in breach; is it time to address the fact that in a post-Cold War era, Israel no longer constitutes a bulwark against Soviet influence in the Arab world which can do no wrong; without condoning (in any way whatsoever) the actions of the Mujahideen, ought we to say – this is not the way in which the British Army would respond to the intifada – and think hard about whether the Israeli response is the recursive half of the (or 'at least one of the') cycle(s) of terror?

Before the accusations of anti-Semitism come flooding in, I’d like to remind everyone (including the august PTP) that one of the reasons (probably) that the original ‘head dress’ thread got thinned out was that I got on my high horse about the latent anti-Semitism of the early off topic posts…
The Islamists, like the pan-Arabists use the existence of Israel to attract people to their cause. You look at the writings of prominent Islamists like Qut'ub, Maududi and very little is written about the experience of the Palestinian people. Instead the terms of reference is phrased in the discourse of western imperialism. Secondly, Israel has never been a bulwark against soviet expansionism, the myth was allowed to grow that it was. But in any war in the Middle East that the Brits and the US envisaged it was the Arab states that were to play the major role.

Israel in my point of view has benefited from western benevolence for a couple of reasons:
A) Guilt over the holocaust
b) The beliefs of some Christians concerning the apocalypse.
c) Cultural similarities and the fact that the dominant elite is not the 'other'
d) The lingering hope that one day that Israel could be a useful strategic partner - the actual reality is that with the Arab-Israeli conflict Israel is actually quite limited in what it can offer and do.

Will the west ever act against Israel? Never, because frankly Israel is not seen as the 'other'.
 
#3
I think that the 'Zionist' angle is being pushed in order to drum up popular support for 'jihad' on the West. The creation of the state of Israel has, and probably always will be a bone of contention amongst many in the arab world.

With regard to the local situation in Israel, I have applauded many of Israels actions against terrorism to a certain extent, but the element of overkill does tend to alienate both the local Palestinian population, arabs in general, and public opinion worldwide.

I think parallels can be drawn between the policy of internment in NI in the early seventies and many of Israels internal security measures, in that they seem to work very well, but at the same time create a fantastic opportunity for the terrorists' propaganda machine.
 
#4
I think the big problem with a Middle East settlement is the expectations of both sides and a timetable for any action, combined with the mistrust of the Palestinians of Israeli intentions, likewise of the Israelis re the Palestinians and whether they will stop terror actions.

The Americans like a quick fix, ie something that the Pres can go along to the voters and show he can solve the problem in months-much the same as old Tone and the Good Friday agreement.

It is often cited that Israel has the only democratically elected govt in the Middle East. Their elections are democratic, but some of the members of the Knesset are certainly not. There are a few looney tunes in their parliament that could match some of the more extreme on the Palestinian side in terms of their views for a solution.

There are 2 big sticking points to any Israeli agreement, security of their borders which will include retaining the Golan Heights (an Israeli Col told me about 10 years ago that they would stay there) and part of the occupied territories, and the retention of Jerusalem as their capital.

On the Palestinian side, removal of all Israeli settlements from occupied territory since '67, access routes so Israel cannot economically strangle their country, and East Jerusalem for their capital (Just like East/West Berlin)

I don't see a solution without strong leaders on both sides grabbing the mettle and keeping their subjects under control to see it through. As long as Hamas and Co can get the traditional reprisals from Israel for suicide bombers they will continue to use them, and ordinary Israelis will be backed into a defensive corner where they will support a strong line for the safety of their families.

It's like NI, but hasn't being going as long. prior to WW1 both Jews and Arabs lived alongside each other in Palestine but that was under the Turks. Once the creation of a homeland became a reality after 1917 the seeds were set for extremists on both sides to profit from mischief and dissension which gradually led post '48 to the situation today.

I honestly don't see a quick way out.... :roll:
 
#5
Israel is the biggest reviver of foreign aid in the world. The vast bulk being from the US ($3billion per annum?). The very strong pro Israel lobby in Washington means that it's very unlikely things will change.

I think Europe and Britain are more inclined to see more of a balance in the region (look at the building of the security wall) - but we don't hold the purse strings!
 
#6
castlereagh said:
fas_et_gloria said:
The Islamists cite both the existence of Israel and the actions of the ‘Zionists’ as justification for taking the jihād global rather than restricting themselves to the ‘near enemy’. Is it time to use the West’s soft-power (and Israel's economic dependence) in an effort to bring Israel into line with at least some of the UN resolutions of which they are in breach; is it time to address the fact that in a post-Cold War era, Israel no longer constitutes a bulwark against Soviet influence in the Arab world which can do no wrong; without condoning (in any way whatsoever) the actions of the Mujahideen, ought we to say – this is not the way in which the British Army would respond to the intifada – and think hard about whether the Israeli response is the recursive half of the (or 'at least one of the') cycle(s) of terror?

Before the accusations of anti-Semitism come flooding in, I’d like to remind everyone (including the august PTP) that one of the reasons (probably) that the original ‘head dress’ thread got thinned out was that I got on my high horse about the latent anti-Semitism of the early off topic posts…
The Islamists, like the pan-Arabists use the existence of Israel to attract people to their cause. You look at the writings of prominent Islamists like Qut'ub, Maududi and very little is written about the experience of the Palestinian people. Instead the terms of reference is phrased in the discourse of western imperialism. Secondly, Israel has never been a bulwark against soviet expansionism, the myth was allowed to grow that it was. But in any war in the Middle East that the Brits and the US envisaged it was the Arab states that were to play the major role.

Israel in my point of view has benefited from western benevolence for a couple of reasons:
A) Guilt over the holocaust
b) The beliefs of some Christians concerning the apocalypse.
c) Cultural similarities and the fact that the dominant elite is not the 'other'
d) The lingering hope that one day that Israel could be a useful strategic partner - the actual reality is that with the Arab-Israeli conflict Israel is actually quite limited in what it can offer and do.

Will the west ever act against Israel? Never, because frankly Israel is not seen as the 'other'.
Bearing in mind that it was the Frankfurt School who came up with the concept of reification to try to explain the Nazi's anti-Semitism, your reference to the Jews as "the other'" alone would appear to justify the foundation of an Israel. (Can't work out how to put in a 'prime' which doesn't look like a typo...)


The Cold War experience, as I understand it, was very much that post-Colonial pan-Arabist nations eventually turned to the Soviets for support - look through Jane's and spot the kit which most Arab armies are still using - most of the armour has a T- designation for starters.

As for Qut'b and Mawdudi - they might well not involve themselves in the personal aspect of the conflict - but this reflects the academic nature of their Islamic discourse and the times during which they were writing - for them the issue isn't the suffering of an individual, it's the infidel assault on/ apostate occupation of the Dar-ul-Islam. Fast forward to the current generation of Salafist-Islamist and there's a great deal more going on. Which reflects the live media nature of the second intifada and that with the advent of martyrdom operations, recruitment is carried out on a far more personal level - suicide bombings are a response of overwhelming personal emotion. The use of Muhammed al-Durrah's televised death is a case in point - on both counts. If it had been British soldiers 'controling' the riot, would al-Durrah be dead, and if not would the intifada have developed the momentum which fed back into the global jihād? Probably not.
 
#7
fas_et_gloria said:
Bearing in mind that it was the Frankfurt School who came up with the concept of reification to try to explain the Nazi's anti-Semitism, your reference to the Jews as "the other'" alone would appear to justify the foundation of an Israel. (Can't work out how to put in a 'prime' which doesn't look like a typo...)
When I referred to the Other I meant the Arabs - or did you miss the work of Said, Rodison et al because it happened to look at western prejudices against the Arabs? :roll:


The Cold War experience, as I understand it, was very much that post-Colonial pan-Arabist nations eventually turned to the Soviets for support - look through Jane's and spot the kit which most Arab armies are still using - most of the armour has a T- designation for starters.
In the event of a war in the Middle East, the countries that the west would turn to would have been in the 1950s: Iraq, Iraq, Jordan and Turkey and Saudi Arabia and Pakistan (Turkey, Iran and Pakistan not being Arab) . In the 1960s Iraq now being nationalist was scrubbed from the equation but it was still hoped that they would be begnin as at the end of the day. Muslims don't like athiests. I suggest you look up the work of W. Louis and R. Ovendale.

As for Qut'b and Mawdudi - they might well not involve themselves in the personal aspect of the conflict - but this reflects the academic nature of their Islamic discourse and the times during which they were writing - for them the issue isn't the suffering of an individual, it's the infidel assault on/ apostate occupation of the Dar-ul-Islam.
I don't know what you have read of Mawdudi and Qutb but the self is important to their work as without the submission of the self to the truest form of Islam there can be Islamic renaissance. Also they were not traditional Islamic scholars as they fused Political ideas with Islam so the term Islamist

Fast forward to the current generation of Salafist-Islamist and there's a great deal more going on.hich reflects the live media nature of the second intifada and that with the advent of martyrdom operations, recruitment is carried out on a far more personal level - suicide bombings are a response of overwhelming personal emotion. The use of Muhammed al-Durrah's televised death is a case in point - on both counts. If it had been British soldiers 'controling' the riot, would al-Durrah be dead, and if not would the intifada have developed the momentum which fed back into the global jihād? Probably not.
I think you are missing the fact that suicide bombing is now a tool of the non-state force. It is a weapon that can be easily utilised and used agaisnt those with less nihilistic attutudes.
 
#8
Good to see a proper discussion started. I'd like to remind posters to this thread, that descending into name calling and throwing wild accusations about will get this thread thinned.

No FAS, it wasn't your post, it was the Artillery exchanges that followed it. On that note, I would prefer that people behaved in an adult fashion when debating what is bound to be, a heated debate.

Thanks

PTP
 
#9
Quote:
The Cold War experience, as I understand it, was very much that post-Colonial pan-Arabist nations eventually turned to the Soviets for support - look through Jane's and spot the kit which most Arab armies are still using - most of the armour has a T- designation for starters.

In the event of a war in the Middle East, the countries that the west would turn to would have been in the 1950s: Iraq, Iraq, Jordan and Turkey and Saudi Arabia and Pakistan (Turkey, Iran and Pakistan) not being Arab . In the 1960s Iraq now being nationalist was scrubbed from the equation but it was still hoped that they would be begnin as at the end of the day. Muslims don't like athiests. I suggest you look up the work of W. Louis and R. Ovendale.

Startegy in the 50's was designed around a buffer zone ie The Baghdad Pact which the UK hoped to get as money countries signed up to incase there was trouble in the area but which the US may nt get involved in. When Nasser was on the up in Egypt he slagged any other state off as being pro-imperialist if they sided with UK/US so most dropped out of the frame leaving Turkey in under their membership of NATO.

As for Russia, she offered arms and instructors in return for raw materials and bases to compete with the Yanks. The US couldn't afford to let Israel go down the pan, thus a mini arms race in the middle east. It was also an ideal time for both sides to see how their weapons workes against the other side (shades of Spanish Civil War) :wink:
 
#10
intli said:
Startegy in the 50's was designed around a buffer zone ie The Baghdad Pact which the UK hoped to get as money countries signed up to incase there was trouble in the area but which the US may nt get involved in. When Nasser was on the up in Egypt he slagged any other state off as being pro-imperialist if they sided with UK/US so most dropped out of the frame leaving Turkey in under their membership of NATO.

As for Russia, she offered arms and instructors in return for raw materials and bases to compete with the Yanks. The US couldn't afford to let Israel go down the pan, thus a mini arms race in the middle east. It was also an ideal time for both sides to see how their weapons workes against the other side (shades of Spanish Civil War) :wink:
Nasser's predominance amongst the elite wasn't really that secured. Countries lie Saudi, Iran and Jordan played lip service to the ideals of Pan Arabism, but maintained their links. I would say that in the case of Jordan it was actually the pressure of the population that drove Hussein to Nasser and so the involvemnt in the A-I war. But in the case Iraq, Nuri suffered because of the growing hatred of the populace towards the Royals. Also it has to be remembered that America did not join the Baghdad Pact only because of Saudi Arabia and rival hashemite tensions. Finally don't forget that Israel too received arms from the USSR in the early days of its formation.
 
#11
Things seem to have broken down in the Palestinian territories - especially Gaza - following the Hamas election victory. Since the West cut of aid to the PA their Civil Service is collapsing and the wider Palestinian population is suffering more. If these tactics fail to cow Hamas into recognising Israel's right to exist the result is likely to be increasing radicalisation of the more moderate Fatah supporting civpop, more attacks on Israel and a continuing downward spiral.

IF Israel took the initiative and offered to withdraw all illegal settlers unilaterally to the '67 border - build a big wall there if they want - AND provided Hamas wind their neck in and declare recognition of Israeli soveriegnty and right to exist in peace - and said border could then be guarnateed by NATO. Put the ME on notice that NATO will act by all means necessary to protect Israel if she is attacked. EU, UN, NGO's pour into new state of Palestine and help nation-building. I also don't think it would turn into an AQ stronghold if the Israelis left, because the Palestinians own interests lie in peace and stability and they wouldn't let it.

The majority of Israelis believe all of the Holy Lands were given to them by God, therefore negotiating when both parties hold a Fundamentalist position is tricky.

This won't be solved in the corridors on Europe or the US, without some radical rethinking by the locals it will run and run..

Edited for not answering the question.
Removing Israel/Palestine from the Jihadi wish-list probably would have a very positive impact on the locals in the ME, but with Iraq, Kashmir, Chechnya and potentially Iran to choose from the hardcore will just change their press releases and crack on.
 
#12
castlereagh

Nasser's predominance amongst the elite wasn't really that secured. Countries lie Saudi, Iran and Jordan played lip service to the ideals of Pan Arabism, but maintained their links. I would say that in the case of Jordan it was actually the pressure of the population that drove Hussein to Nasser and so the involvemnt in the A-I war. But in the case Iraq, Nuri suffered because of the growing hatred of the populace towards the Royals. Also it has to be remembered that America did not join the Baghdad Pact only because of Saudi Arabia and rival hashemite tensions. Finally don't forget that Israel too received arms from the USSR in the early days of its formation.
Stalin supposedly had a defacto pro Zionist foreign policy in 1948,as he apparently believed the new country would be socialist, and would subsequently speed up the demise of British influence in the Middle East.

Paraphrased from: 'A History of the Jews by Paul Johnson, London, 1987, p.527'
 
#13
castlereagh said:
fas_et_gloria said:
Bearing in mind that it was the Frankfurt School who came up with the concept of reification to try to explain the Nazi's anti-Semitism, your reference to the Jews as "the other'" alone would appear to justify the foundation of an Israel. (Can't work out how to put in a 'prime' which doesn't look like a typo...)
When I referred to the Other I meant the Arabs - or did you miss the work of Said, Rodison et al because it happened to look at western prejudices against the Arabs? :roll:
Actually, I thought that I was agreeing with you here. The Arabic states of the region were, if you go back to the right point in time, looked to as potential allies - your very point below - what I was saying was that 70 years ago, the actions which led into the Shoa and eventually the formation of Israel, was the very reification (though of the Jews) which now you attribute to the contemporary Arabs. If the Jews are no longer the other, and thus have protected status, then this justifies the creation of Iarael in the first place.

castlereagh said:
The Cold War experience, as I understand it, was very much that post-Colonial pan-Arabist nations eventually turned to the Soviets for support - look through Jane's and spot the kit which most Arab armies are still using - most of the armour has a T- designation for starters.
In the event of a war in the Middle East, the countries that the west would turn to would have been in the 1950s: Iraq, Iraq, Jordan and Turkey and Saudi Arabia and Pakistan (Turkey, Iran and Pakistan not being Arab) . In the 1960s Iraq now being nationalist was scrubbed from the equation but it was still hoped that they would be begnin as at the end of the day. Muslims don't like athiests. I suggest you look up the work of W. Louis and R. Ovendale.
Will do.

As for Qut'b and Mawdudi - they might well not involve themselves in the personal aspect of the conflict - but this reflects the academic nature of their Islamic discourse and the times during which they were writing - for them the issue isn't the suffering of an individual, it's the infidel assault on/ apostate occupation of the Dar-ul-Islam.
I don't know what you have read of Mawdudi and Qutb but the self is important to their work as without the submission of the self to the truest form of Islam there can be Islamic renaissance. Also they were not traditional Islamic scholars as they fused Political ideas with Islam so the term Islamist
My misrepresentation. I was thinking rather that the nature of the individual as an external actor (in the way that al-Durrah became vicariously) was less important than the role of the Ummah. Albeit that the Ummah is composed of composite individuals.

Fast forward to the current generation of Salafist-Islamist and there's a great deal more going on.hich reflects the live media nature of the second intifada and that with the advent of martyrdom operations, recruitment is carried out on a far more personal level - suicide bombings are a response of overwhelming personal emotion. The use of Muhammed al-Durrah's televised death is a case in point - on both counts. If it had been British soldiers 'controling' the riot, would al-Durrah be dead, and if not would the intifada have developed the momentum which fed back into the global jihād? Probably not.
I think you are missing the fact that suicide bombing is now a tool of the non-state force. It is a weapon that can be easily utilised and used agaisnt those with less nihilistic attutudes.
[/quote]

On the contrary - that's very much my point. It is in the final analysis an individual (as a sub-set of 'non-state') action, but the point is that the target is either a state or theh percieved (mis-)rulers/ occupiers of that state.

Thank you.
 
#14
Random_Task said:
castlereagh

Nasser's predominance amongst the elite wasn't really that secured. Countries lie Saudi, Iran and Jordan played lip service to the ideals of Pan Arabism, but maintained their links. I would say that in the case of Jordan it was actually the pressure of the population that drove Hussein to Nasser and so the involvemnt in the A-I war. But in the case Iraq, Nuri suffered because of the growing hatred of the populace towards the Royals. Also it has to be remembered that America did not join the Baghdad Pact only because of Saudi Arabia and rival hashemite tensions. Finally don't forget that Israel too received arms from the USSR in the early days of its formation.
Stalin supposedly had a defacto pro Zionist foreign policy in 1948,as he apparently believed the new country would be socialist, and would subsequently speed up the demise of British influence in the Middle East.

Paraphrased from: 'A History of the Jews by Paul Johnson, London, 1987, p.527'
It's my belief that the USSR did strongly support Israel at the time, a lot of jews were (and still are) very much on the left and socialists and I believe it was the Russian belief that a Socialist Israel would be the driving force for Soviet style socialism in the Middle East. Weapon transfers through Czechslovakia by the recently 'elected' communist Govt do point towards strong socialist support from other nations, whether or not those transfers were ordered by the USSR or independant I dont know for certain but I personally suspect that they were part of a USSR policy.

I also question the US support of Israel, Israel certainly didn't use much of their equipment until the mid to late 60's, using mostly Brtiish, French, German (immediately during the '48, and from Czechslovakia, ironically) and home grown [edit - ground? to much coffee... *shakes head*]. The Americans believed that the Arabs should be ruling themselves and as shown during the Suez Crisis were happy to put pressure on the UK and the French in support of Arab nationalists. During the late 40's and onto the early 60's the Americans seemed to have an anti-colonialist / pro nationalist stance with nations across the planet and were not overly helpful to the UK or France in regards in their attempts to keep colonial possesions. That only seemed to change when many of the nationalist groups they were giving the nod to turned towards the USSR.

In regards to the fundies in the Knesset, IIRC Israel has a PR system, with a low watermark, this seems to end up with coalition cabinets being formed and some extremist little foxtrot holding the last vote in the knesset, so getting a seat on the cabinet and having far more influence in Israeli politics than their representation should give them. I do think that a reform of the Israeli democratic system should be part of a peace process, to prevent small extremist parties from having undue influence within the Govt. Isreal is one of the reasons I do not support PR.

As a catalyst for a jihad? it's certainly one of the major problems that Muslims talk about, but then again you also have their perception of persecution in the West (Balkans for example), low status of muslim immigrants in Western nations, Chechenya, China (Xinjuang province and south western provinces and Kashmir. Also the corrupt nature of many of their 'secular' Govt's which the west supports (because the alternative would most likely not be any improvement). So, even if you remove Israel from the equation there is still a lot for the angry young jihadist to get all worked up about.
 
#15
fas_et_gloria said:
castlereagh said:
fas_et_gloria said:
Bearing in mind that it was the Frankfurt School who came up with the concept of reification to try to explain the Nazi's anti-Semitism, your reference to the Jews as "the other'" alone would appear to justify the foundation of an Israel. (Can't work out how to put in a 'prime' which doesn't look like a typo...)
When I referred to the Other I meant the Arabs - or did you miss the work of Said, Rodison et al because it happened to look at western prejudices against the Arabs? :roll:
Actually, I thought that I was agreeing with you here. The Arabic states of the region were, if you go back to the right point in time, looked to as potential allies - your very point below - what I was saying was that 70 years ago, the actions which led into the Shoa and eventually the formation of Israel, was the very reification (though of the Jews) which now you attribute to the contemporary Arabs. If the Jews are no longer the other, and thus have protected status, then this justifies the creation of Iarael in the first place.:
I understand what you mean but you did say 'your reference to the Jews as the 'others'.
 
#16
NotyouAgain said:
Stalin supposedly had a defacto pro Zionist foreign policy in 1948,as he apparently believed the new country would be socialist, and would subsequently speed up the demise of British influence in the Middle East.

Paraphrased from: 'A History of the Jews by Paul Johnson, London, 1987, p.527'

It's my belief that the USSR did strongly support Israel at the time, a lot of jews were (and still are) very much on the left and socialists and I believe it was the Russian belief that a Socialist Israel would be the driving force for Soviet style socialism in the Middle East. Weapon transfers through Czechslovakia by the recently 'elected' communist Govt do point towards strong socialist support from other nations, whether or not those transfers were ordered by the USSR or independant I dont know for certain but I personally suspect that they were part of a USSR policy.

I also question the US support of Israel, Israel certainly didn't use much of their equipment until the mid to late 60's, using mostly Brtiish, French, German (immediately during the '48, and from Czechslovakia, ironically) and home ground. The Americans believed that the Arabs should be ruling themselves and as shown during the Suez Crisis were happy to put pressure on the UK and the French in support of Arab nationalists. During the late 40's and onto the early 60's the Americans seemed to have an anti-colonialist / pro nationalist stance with nations across the planet and were not overly helpful to the UK or France in regards in their attempts to keep colonial possesions. That only seemed to change when many of the nationalist groups they were giving the nod to turned towards the USSR.
NotyouAgain is right. Gromyko was the black horse that surprised anyone.Without the Russians involvement the modern state of Israel would not have come into existence!

Of course, today Israel is seen as a protege of the United States, but for the infant United Nations could clear the way for Israel’s creation was a possibility that existed only briefly, as it did in 1948, for Soviet Russia’s goodwill - and it must be remembered it permitted Czechoslovakia to send arms to Israel when it was invaded by Arab armies - would not survive the onset of the Cold War.

In fact, the US was far from enthusiastic about the creation of Israel as an independent nation in what was then the British mandate of Palestine. The State Department made its opposition clear even before the end of the Second World War, when Zionist groups were already active. Important US newspapers and periodicals at the time, especially in 1947 and 1948, reveal clear hostility to the idea of a Jewish home in Palestine. The US believed that such a state would act as a vehicle for left-wing ideas in a region dominated by feudal regimes which would be easier to control, and with it its considerable natural resources, particularly oil.

The Americans deeply distrusted the socialist aspirations of the founding fathers of Israel, and voted in favour of the partition plan proposed by the United Nations only after President Harry Truman, for personal and political reasons, instructed the US delegation to the UN to do so.

In the war that followed, Israel defeated the armies of Lebanon, Iraq, Egypt, Jordan and Syria thanks to the military aid provided by the countries of Eastern Europe, not the US. Indeed, the Soviet Union was one of the first countries to recognise the new Jewish state.

Remarks of Soviet Ambassador in the UN Partition Debate on Palestine
May 14, 1947

http://www.zionism-israel.com/zionism_ungromyko.htm
 
#17
Despite what the West might want, Hamas is not going to go away and will certainly not fold anytime soon. The movement is using some of its meagre resources to subsidise medical treatment with the going rate currently 5 Shekels (less than a pound). This is not only helping the ordinary Palestinian but fulfilling an election pledge. Hamas are big on social programmes and anti-corruption so the rubbish is being collected and ministers cycle to work. To a population fed up of corrupt, inactive Fatah ministers this is a welcome change. There is also a general feeling of 'The West wanted us to hold democratis elections yet they withdraw their support because they didn't like who we voted for'.

Despite what our Governments might want, the average Palestinian is actually more behind his underdog government than he was before the election. Perhaps it's time we woke up to this and re-think - because starving Hamas out of office is not working.
 
#18
Sartorius said:
Despite what the West might want, Hamas is not going to go away and will certainly not fold anytime soon. ......

......... Perhaps it's time we woke up to this and re-think - because starving Hamas out of office is not working.
Hamas may not fold any time soon due to external pressure but it does face internal problems with Fatah, each battling the other in the street although recent calls have been made to unite (against Israel).

However, I would say that the pressure from the 'outside' is more about making Hamas change it's tune with regard to Israel then starving it out of government altogether. If Hamas did that, they would be more acceptable the aid and assistance would come through.
 
#19
I agree with Arik that the West wants Hamas to change its tune but I suspect Hamas won't find it that easy. The West wants three things, recognition of the state of Israel, renounce violence and adhere to the roadmap. However the Hamas Charter does not accept the first and sees the second as a means to an end. As to the third, many in Hamas believe that the Israeli policy of settlements and the separation barrier are in breach of the roadmap so why should they comply? There is also the degree of influence held by the Hamas leadership in exile to take into account. If Hamas was serious about change they would have condemned the recent suicide bombing in Tel Aviv, unless you subscribe to the view that the Palestinians 'never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity'. Although it seems a simple step to us, and President Abbas is putting pressure on Hamas to moderate I see little signs of this happening soon.

Incidentally, the Hamas charter sees, amongst other things, the Rotary Club as the root of all evil. Be warned!
 
#20
Of course its not all due to the Great Powers support. I've just found this insert from a site of John W Donaldson - The 6th Airborne Division

The final days of the British mandate in Palestine

We made it to Rafah a camp on the border with a few vehicles to spare and spent the night there. The next day we watched the Egyptian army mount a classic infantry tank attack on a small settlement with everything, including rocket firing Hurricanes. Incredible as it seemed to us the attack was unsuccessful. At that point I had no doubt that Israel would survive as a nation.
He apparently refers to Kibbutz Yad Mordechai ( or Kibbutz Negba)

Yad Mordechai is named in honor of Mordechai Anielewicz, a leader of the socialist-Zionist movement Hashomer Hatzair (The Young Guard) in prewar Poland. After the Nazi conquest of Poland, he became a leader of the Jewish resistance, organizing underground activities and ultimately becoming the commander of the Jewish Fighting Organization in the Warsaw Ghetto. He died during the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising of 1943, at the age of 24.

Four days after Israel's declaration of independence on May 15, 1948, Yad Mordechai was attacked by an Egyptian armored column. The book entitled "Six days at Yad Mordechai" tells the story of how in May 1948 only a few days after Israel had declared independence around 100 kibbutzniks - held off the Egyptian advance by up to 10,000 regular troops with armour and air-support for six key days until they were forced to abandon the kibbutz. They brought Israel valuable time for her regular army to organise defensive positions and in time a counter attack that would change the tide of war in due course. An epic tale or Israel's Alamo if you like.

As P.J. O'Rourke wrote in The Atlantic:

The Atlantic Monthly | November 2001

On May 19, 1948, Yad-Mordechai was attacked by an Egyptian armored column with air and artillery support. The kibbutz was guarded by 130 men and women, some of them teenagers, most without military training. They had fifty-five light weapons, one machine gun, and a two-inch mortar. Yad-Mordechai held out for six days—long enough for the Israeli army to secure the coast road to Tel Aviv. Twenty-six of the defenders were killed, and about 300 Egyptians.

A slit trench has been left along the Yad-Mordechai hilltop, with the original fifty-five weapons fastened to boards and preserved with tar. Under the viscous coatings a nineteenth-century British rifle is discernible, and the sink-trap plumbing of two primitive Bren guns. The rest of the firearms look like the birds and cats that were once mummified—by Egyptians, appropriately enough. Below the trench is a lace negligee of barbed wire, all the barbed wire the kibbutz had in 1948, and beyond that are Egyptian tanks, just where they stopped when they could go no farther. Between the tanks dozens of charging Egyptian soldiers are represented by life-size, black-painted two-dimensional cutouts—Gumby commandos, lawn ornaments on attack.



Yad Mordechai has recreated the 1948 battle scene with figures representing Egyptian soldiers. In the foreground are some of the weapons used by the defenders.



Here's one the the Egyptian British-made Stuart tanks they managed to stop

In the early days it was the Czechs who supplied the Israeli's with arms, and the British who armed the Arabs, including General Glubb Pasha and about 200 British Officers who led the Jordanian Arab Legion who organised the siege of Jerusalem and forced the Jewish evacuation of the Jewish Quarter of the Old City in East Jerusalem. In the first air dogfights of that War the Israeli's piloted captured Messersmidt against British supplied Egyptian spitfires.
 

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