The occupation is the cause of terrorismm ... NOT

I am just sick and tired of hearing that the “cause” of Palestinian terrorism is the occupation. Arab terrorism against Jews predates 1967. It predates even 1948. It has been a constant. Sure, it is ramped up in recent months but it is not because of the occupation. Unilateral withdrawl without some means to guarentee Israeli security would not prevent more terror.

  1. Who says it would prevent more terror if Isreal stopped attacking Palestinian targets?

  2. What is your definition of terrorism? American-Indians fought back when the Americas were colonized, do you deem them terrorists?

  3. If Palestine was not occupied by Isreali settlements, how could there be terrorism since there’s no one to commit terrorism on?


Many on these boards and in the media state that the “reason” for terror attacks is the occupation and that an Israeli withdrawl to pre-1967 borders would remove the cause of terror attacks. Do you really need cites for that?

My definition of terror is the intentional targetting of civilian targets for the sole purpose of instigating fear in a population at large.

Your last point is the scariest. Jews were terrorized in Palestine before there was a Israel. Israel suffered terror attacks before there were settlements. Your comment can only be read as: how could there be terrorism against Israel if there was no Israel. And I guess Hitler was attempting to rid the world of antisemitism, in his round about way.

The attacks against Jews in that area go back to the Balfour Declaration. After Lord Plumer retired from the High Commissionership and left Palestine in 1928, the Arabs committed mass violence against the Jews. That was not the first time, but it ended nearly eight years of peace.

The PLO Charter, drafted after the 1967 War, called for driving Israelis to the Sea (in almost two dozen different sections), not just driving them out of the occupied area. Those provisions were supposed to be abrogated in 1993 by the Oslo accord, but were not even approached by the Pa until 1996, the time limit for enforcing the Oslo agreements. And the way it was amended leaves doubt whether they really were removed. They still appear on the PA website.

You seem confused here. The “occupation” being referred to here is the Israeli occupation, since 1967, of the West Bank, and the subsequent placement on this land of Israeli settlements. It is this occupation that many suggest (erroneously, according to the OP) is the cause for Palestinian terrorism. Since Palestinian terorists target Israelis in places such as Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, which are within the pre-1967 borders of Israel, withdrawal from the occupied areas would not eliminate Israeli targets from being accessible to Palestinian terrorists.

Withdrawal from the occupied areas, dismantling settlements and the establishiment of a Palestinian state would go a long way to reducing the violence in that area. It’s the only thing that hasn’t been done. The Palestinians are make a last stand which is why you have 18 year old girls strapping bombs to themselves and blowing themselves and others up along with them. The people there are desperate and are fighting back with whatever they can whenever they can. We call their actions terrorism because we don’t like their methods nor do we understand what makes a person want to blow themselves up. To me bulldozing a persons home with them in it or outside of it, is terrorism as well, but we know those with the power and access to the media can spin the story in their own way.

Given that there was violence before the areas were occupied, when IIRC Israel was not attempting to thwart the creation of a Palestinian state and had no settlements in the West Bank, I think that it seems unlikely that the steps you propose would end terrorism in Israel. Also, there is the problem of relocating all the Israeli settlers.

And most likely, extremists who want to rub Israel off the face of the earth are capitalizing on the desperation among the Palestinians to gain support for their agenda. For every 18 year old girl who becomes a suicide bomber, there’s probably someone from a terrorist organization recruiting her.

Note that I said “reducing” the violence. My opinion is that it could create an atmosphere where the acts of violence would be looked at in a different way. With the current state of affairs, a suicide bomber will be viewed as a martyr and not as a crackpot.

Well one can argue that Israeli actions are also promoting support for the extremists agenda on both sides. I think it’s pretty clear that the Israeli actions are not going to foster reconciliation and peaceful coexistance.

Since the Palestinians have not allowed peaceful coexistence in 85 years, it’s pretty clear that whatever Israel does is not going to foster it.

If Israel withdraws to the pre-1967 lines, what security will they have? When they only occupied that land they were attacked four times in 15 years.

Israel gave the Palestinians their own government, but that didn’t seem to stop it. Why not? Why would pulling back to the pre-1967 borders help anything? It always seems to me that this is an excuse that Palestinians tend to lean on to avoid the world seeing it the wrong way. Saying that you are trying to get back your homeland sounds a lot better than saying that your goal is to destroy all of Israel. Also remember that Arafat turned down a very generous offer concerning this. He was offered I believe 90% of the West Bank (correct me if I’m wrong.)

Withdraw to the pre-1967 borders is a step to achieving real peace in the region. As for their security, the Israeli’s have their army which is quite effective along with the support military and otherwise of the united states. The last couple of weeks have shown how formidable the army is especially against a much weaker non-mechanized opponent, that has no air power, armored personell carriers, tanks, or other heavy weaponry.

EasyPhil -

Hamas and Hezbollah and the other terrorist factions of the Palestinians have stated, repeatedly and publicly, that they will not cease their actions against Jewish civilians if Israel withdraws to their pre-1967 borders, or does any of the other things you suggest.

Any action by Israel other than military will be interpreted as a sign of weakness by the Palestinian terrorists, and an encouragement to continue. From their point of view, it’s working. They are getting what they want. Israel is being pressured to make concessions, so that they will regain a geographical position from which to launch attacks, and a government base from which to launch them.

You cannot have peace if one side does not want peace. The terrorists are acting to sabotage the peace process, because it will not bring about what it their goal - to destroy Israel.

If you want to live, and I want you to die, what kind of a compromise can you and I reach together?



We need a Schroedingers summit!

Any thoughts on Barak’s OpEd poece in the NYTimes - short war followed by high walls?

Anyone who thinks that Israeli occupation isn’t fueling the suicide bombings, is just being foolish. Why do you think they do this? Why is the hatred of Israelis so strong? Is it because Jewish people are doomed to be hated by at least someone? (Or what December posted) Is it because the Palestinians are just bred to hate the Israelis by Arafat? Of course not!

If people fail to recognize the simple fact that the occupation/settlements/targeted killings (bombing, shooting, abduction)/torture/bulldozing of houses/destruction of public property/humiliation of populace/ill treatment of leader/exile of populace in refugee camps/directly killing of bystanders, police with guns, or children with stones/indirectly killing of bystanders, police with guns, or children with stones/and the all around crummy lives some live due to the daily economical, political, and medical destruction the Israeli government had done in the past few months just might in someway be fueling the hatred, you are clearly blinded.

Don’t get me wrong a lot of this and maybe more have been done to the other side too, but if you can’t AT ALL just think to yourself and figure out why do most Palestinians hate the Israelis…

You are blind to their suffering. Blind, and it is this blindness to the suffering of the other side is exactly what will fuel even more suffering for the future. Keeping it intact for the next generation.

** EFREM **, the Arabs have been attacking Israel for 85 years. After the Barak and Arafat peace talks ended at Camp David, Israel was terrorized repeatedly. When the new peace initiative was to be started, the attacks increased. So your position that the Israeli actions in the last few months is the cause of terrorist attacks is faulty. Israel is doing to Palestine what we did in Afghanistan, and no matter how you may try to rationalize that away, that remains a fact. The difference is that we are trying to eliminate al Qaida and Israel is trying to stop terrorist attacks with a peacful coexistence, which may be impossible, given that Palestine does not want a Jewish state.

Some of you need to look at the beginnings of Islam in order to get a better overview of the issues involved. For the first 30 years or so that Muhammad preached, he had about 10 converts to Islam. Of the people Muhammad most wanted to give him respect were the Jews–who laughed at him and said that of course he’s not the messiah or a prophet of God (an understandable reaction).
Muhammad hated them so much for that, that he vowed afterward his followers would forever hate the Jews. Who would’ve thought that within a few years, he would have millions of converts and that, today, Islam’s adherents far outnumber the Jews?
So, the hatred of Jews IS part and parcel of Islam. It doesn’t mean it has to stay that way–the Christians hated the Jews for much the same reason (and that hatred still rears its head as well in many countries, most notably a certain central European country in the thirties and fourties), because the Jews made fun of and rejected Jesus.

Christianity and Islam both came from Judaism, isn’t it Freudian that both want to destroy their mother/father religion?

Come now. Surely you do not sincerely believe that the suicide bombers have good reason to blow up innocent people? I would like to address each of your accusations concerning Israeli actions:

  1. occupation: I assume by this you mean the recent military occupation. Israel wouldn’t be taking such action if it weren’t for the suicide bombers. I think that statement explains itself.
  2. settlements: While one could argue this, it seems unlikely. If the Palestinians hated the settlements themselves, wouldn’t they focus their attacks mainly on the settlements? Surely that would be a more effective way, if you choose a violent method, of disposing of them.
  3. targeted killing: When you say targetted, do you mean civilians, or military targets. If you mean the latter, I don’t see what you’re complaining about. If you mean the former, back it up not with statistics, those can be warped, but a list of situations in which Israel has attacked civilians it truly believed were innocent, had not disobeyed some order (example: curfew), and were not somehow attacking the tanks. I’m waiting.
  4. torture: examples?
  5. bulldozing of houses: sure, this isn’t the nicest thing to do, but, even so, it does not warrant blowing oneself and civilians to pieces. Also, if there is good reasoning behind the bulldozing, considering Israel’s situation, I don’t really see too much of a problem in this.
  6. destruction of public property: If you mean government buildings, I fail to see why you would oppose it. The destruction of government buildings makes sense in a military effort. In this case, the Palestinian Authority seems to be led by a leader who wants the destruction of Israel (Arafat), and so, I fail to see why Israel shouldn’t see the PA as an enemy of sorts until Arafat’s removal from a position of power (this also extends to ANY member of the Palestinian Authority fitting this description of Araft, and any potential leader)
  7. humiliation of populace: Quite a vague statement. I’m not sure what you are referring to, precisely.
  8. Ill treatment of leader: now you’re defending Arafat? You realize that Israel now has hard evidence connecting him with terrorism, do you not?
  9. Exile of populace in refugee camps: Sadly, I do not know enough about this to respond. Is there anyone who can?
  10. killing of bystanders: Okay, see my previous comments on a similar accusation.
    *And, finally, I bring up the point: do you really think the suicide bombers were motivated by this? For one, Israel actions are a reaction to the suicide bombings. Along with that, it seems more likely to me that the suicide bombers are being raised to do so, and, it seems likely to me, that Arafat, secretly if not openly, supports it.

Oh, no!

I am very sorry for placing that post above here in Great Debates. It is problematic, rude, and overly emotional. I apologize to you in particular, efrem, for saying such a thing in this forum where polite argument is honored far above vicious flaming.

I have reported myself to the moderators and hope that they will delete the offending post soon. In the meantime, I hope you will all curb your instincts and try not to respond to it.

[Deleted the post – MEB]

Hamas and Hezbollah do not speak for all Palestinians, though right now it might seem that way. If the occupation were ended, settlements dismantled and a Palestinian state established it would do a lot to give the Palestinian population hope and consequently organizations like Hamas and Hezbollah would not be popular, unless of course, they change their way of doing things.

The military solution won’t do anything to thwart suicide bomings, we’ve seen that already in the last couple of weeks, and if things don’t change drastically we’ll see more of them.

Please barbitu8 and Mandos read my post again without being defensive, I fear you have missed my point. First, I would like to say “No, I am not defending suicide bombings. I (personally) believe any violence against anyone is wrong”. There, now…

If you say Israel was terrorized and is doing the right thing, okay. I may not agree with what Israeli government is doing, but I can understand why they are doing it (out of fear).

However, why can’t some people realize that is the same reason the Palestinians are attacking too. Everything I said (in my last post), weren’t accusations this HAPPENS. This is their life. The Israeli government imposes that and more (food shortages, curfew, etc) during the occupation. So, even if you think that blowing up yourself is wrong (like I do), you can understand why they do it.

It is not because they are “a bunch of anti-Semites”, “people who are filled with hate”, or “taught to hate (by Arafat)”. They lash out at Israelis because of fear. And all of this lashing out (by both sides) will just lead to more fear (on both sides).

Also Sofa King I have no idea what you said, but that is alright. It is okay to get emotional it is an emotional topic, but what I do fear is that kind of reaction from people. My post wasn’t trying to create anger, but understanding for the other side. I guess I suck at that.