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I think you're wrong about that. If Israel insists that the conflict will only be resolved when one of the sides is no more, then that side will be Israel. They can't round Palestinians up and murder them by the millions, for obvious historical reasons if nothing else. And as long as the Palestinians are kept in a third-world economy they'll have third-world demographics, which in turn means that Israel can't outbreed them either. They can't turn to their neighbours for support, because their neighbours only support them because of the Big Neighbour in the West, and the Big Neighbour is not going to last forever. When their only present ally is gone, where are they going to turn?

They may or may not be able to fend for themselves in purely military terms, but they are not able to maintain the current level of militarisation of the economy without outside help, and all the shiny military hardware in the world matters not a jot if your economy collapses. As the Americans are learning. Painfully.

In short, their long-term strategic situation is as tenuous as the DDR's: They exist only because they are protected by powerful outside interests. Those interests will eventually cease to protect them, and when that happens, they had better already have found an accommodation with their neighbours.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Mon Feb 4th, 2008 at 12:21:45 PM EST
[ Parent ]
JakeS:
I think you're wrong about that. If Israel insists that the conflict will only be resolved when one of the sides is no more, then that side will be Israel.

I don't agree that Israel's very existence is in play because it has independent nuclear capabilities, but the Zionist answer to the Palestinians is to persuade Lebanon, Jordan, Syria, Egypt etc. to absorb them perhaps in exchange for Sheeba farms, Golan Heights, the Gaza Strip and other "incentives" which an increasingly prosperous Israel can provide together with its remaining friends.

The sad fact is that the Saudis etc. care no more for the Palestinians than the Israelis do and might be persuaded by the US to help fund such a deal.  As part of a final settlement Israel may agree to absorb the west bank population but with no right of return for Gaza and all the other Palestinians in neighbouring countries and refugee camps.  

That should keep Israelis in the majority overall especially with continuing immigration of Jews.  They have already successfully absorbed a c. 20% Palestinian population and they have been quite docile despite being a disadvantaged minority.

"It's a mystery to me - the game commences, For the usual fee - plus expenses, Confidential information - it's in my diary..."

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Mon Feb 4th, 2008 at 12:56:08 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I think you're thinking in the short-run rather than the long-run. What happens in 50 years?
by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Mon Feb 4th, 2008 at 12:58:41 PM EST
[ Parent ]
We're all dead as our leader tirelessly reminds us.

5 years is very long term in politics.!

"It's a mystery to me - the game commences, For the usual fee - plus expenses, Confidential information - it's in my diary..."

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Mon Feb 4th, 2008 at 01:03:38 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Sorry - I was being snarky!

I am articulating what I understand the "moderate" Zionist position to be.  The extremists don't want any Palestinians in Israel whatsoever but don't articulate what they will do with them - buy them out as many previous settlers have been?  I really don't know.  Extreme Zionists never seem to refer to Palestinians as a people at all - they are simply Arabs who wandered into Palestine, or Terrorists, and either way don't seem to warrant much consideration.  When you have God on your side its not really your problem. He shall smite them as he smote the philistines before them....

"It's a mystery to me - the game commences, For the usual fee - plus expenses, Confidential information - it's in my diary..."

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Mon Feb 4th, 2008 at 01:15:10 PM EST
[ Parent ]
You know, if it weren't for our friend Mordecai I'd have thought that the last sentence was hyperbole. I wonder if he realises how counterproductive it is to try to beat people over the head with a religion they don't recognise as authoritative... From my experience with creationists, I'd say he doesn't.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Mon Feb 4th, 2008 at 02:14:56 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Israel can't nuke Gaza. Even leaving aside the obvious historical and political reasons for this, the simple fact that the fallout would contaminate pretty much everything south of Jerusalem if the wind was in an unlucky direction puts the kibosh on that idea. So in terms of the Palestinian problem, Israel's nuclear deterrent might as well not exist.

And if the Zionists believe that they can just expel what? five million people? into the surrounding countries, then they're smoking something unhealthy.

For Israel to annex the West Bank and all countries agreeing to assimilate the people currently residing within their borders could be A Good Thing or A Very, Very Bad Thing, depending on whether there is actually any political will to genuinely assimilate the Palestinians into those societies. If not, then the conflict will only metastatise, not resolve.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Mon Feb 4th, 2008 at 02:10:43 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Egypt can have Gaza if they promise to take the people and Hamas as well and stop the Katyusha rockets at the same time.  Why do you think the settlements there were withdrawn and destroyed?   So technically you're not expelling anyone, you are offering them a new home in a new (friendly) state which has shown it is on the right side of the war on Terror.

"It's a mystery to me - the game commences, For the usual fee - plus expenses, Confidential information - it's in my diary..."
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Mon Feb 4th, 2008 at 03:09:00 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Egypt. Doesn't. Want. Gaza.

Honestly, I don't know why I need to keep saying this.  Sadat turned it down 30 years ago, there is no Earthly reason why Mubarak would want it now.

by the stormy present (stormypresent aaaaaaat gmail etc) on Mon Feb 4th, 2008 at 03:42:51 PM EST
[ Parent ]
with the Zionist argument.  They want to offload most of the Palestinians on someone else and are very bitter that their "Arab" cousins won't take them for love nor money or even land.  They argue that Jews have been ethically cleansed from Islamic countries so they are only doing the same. They've integrated their Jewish "refugees" but Arab countries won't accept/integrate the Palestinian refugess.  Off course there is no equivalence in reality, but that is the mindset which is driving Zionist policy.

"It's a mystery to me - the game commences, For the usual fee - plus expenses, Confidential information - it's in my diary..."
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Mon Feb 4th, 2008 at 03:55:43 PM EST
[ Parent ]
But... But... But... If Israel is prepared to give up Gaza to Egypt, then why aren't they prepared to give up Gaza to, well, Gaza? I mean, if they gave up Gaza to Egypt (assuming that Egypt would be insane enough to accept it), they'd have to lift the blockade anyway? And there's no way in Hell that the Egyptians can stop the Qassam attacks - if they think so, then they're smoking something unhealthy. But I guess we already established that they are...

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Tue Feb 5th, 2008 at 02:08:12 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Well I really don't know, but I'm guessing the thinking is that Egypt is a major power, firmly on the right side of the war on terror, utterly ruthless in dealing with internal dissent, and that it would then become their problem to deal with the border security etc.  Perhaps many Gazains would migrate to jobs in Cairo etc. and the  beach area could be cleared to become a tourist resort - who knows?  Terry was arguing that Jordan should take it over - something which makes no sense to me whatsoever even from a Zionist perspective.  The one thing they don't want is for Hamas to stay in control and gain more access to weaponry.

"It's a mystery to me - the game commences, For the usual fee - plus expenses, Confidential information - it's in my diary..."
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Tue Feb 5th, 2008 at 05:07:00 AM EST
[ Parent ]
jobs in Cairo

Ha ha.  You're a real comedian.

by the stormy present (stormypresent aaaaaaat gmail etc) on Tue Feb 5th, 2008 at 05:16:45 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Hey - I'm trying to articulate a Zionist mindset here.  No need to give me personal grief!  Part of the Zionist mindset is that many Palestinians only came to Palestine because Jews provided work for them!

"It's a mystery to me - the game commences, For the usual fee - plus expenses, Confidential information - it's in my diary..."
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Tue Feb 5th, 2008 at 06:06:35 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Perhaps you should concentrate on articulating your own beliefs instead of what you think others believe.
by the stormy present (stormypresent aaaaaaat gmail etc) on Tue Feb 5th, 2008 at 06:10:30 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Because we cannot understand the conflict if we do not understand the mindsets of the main protagonists

"It's a mystery to me - the game commences, For the usual fee - plus expenses, Confidential information - it's in my diary..."
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Tue Feb 5th, 2008 at 06:36:25 AM EST
[ Parent ]

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