Why can't Jews and Moslems get along?

In Israel, at least?

Before we get into this, a few givens about me:

  1. Assume I’m an idiot, which, if you know me, should be no great stretch.
  2. I’m a real, live, liberal sap who thinks that, if they try, anybody can get along with just about anybody else.
  3. My own background is Northern & Central European, primarily Roman Catholic but with some Lutheran and Jewish thrown in. But my ancestors have been living in the US of A for several generations.

That said, I can get back to the original question. Why not? Similar cultures, related languages and religions, been stealing land from each other for several millenia so they should be used to it by now. They SHOULD get along fine.

The treatment of the Palastinians seems self-defeating. Have there been so many Easter European immigrants that Israel no longer needs Palastinian labor?

I just don’t get it. Can somebody give me some GOOD reasons for the current mess? Yeah, Sharon’s publicity stunt pissed me off, too, because I saw it as purposely inflamatory. But the deeper issues haven’t made a lot of sense, especially Israel’s actions. Please explain.


The problem here is item # 2 in your self-description:

dropzone, meet Shimon Peres. He’s a fellow peacenik who, though the Israelis see him as an elder statesman, realize hhow totally naive he is in relations with the Palestinians. He’s never been elected prime minister in his entire political career, and that’s the reason why.

Boiled down to a nutshell: you can’t get along with someone who doesn’t have a mutual interest in getting along with you. If he doesn’t really want to get along with you, the other guy has no reason at all to enter into good-faith negotiations. If you’re not negotiating with a good-faith partner, then your attempts at “getting along” won’t get anywhere.

I can’t see what you don’t understand about Israel’s actions. Those actions are quite simple: the Palestinians throw stones (and have their children throw stones) and shoot bullets at Israelis, the Israelis retaliate.

Israel’s position has been totally reactive, not proactive. What, therefore, is hard to understand?

For starters, why the Israelis have been building settlements on the West Bank and Gaza.

more than 10 years ago i saw a piece on 60 Minutes where they were comparing a jewish owned hotel in tel aviv i think to an arab owned hotel. the jewish hotel was doing big business and the arab hotel, even tho it looked great on the TV was practically empty. heard them mentioning arabs working construction at minimum wage not too long ago.

i think there are years of economic and other forms of discrimination built up here, besides the jews being european invaders who probably wouldn’t be there if it weren’t for the holocaust. the arabs would feel that wasn’t their fault.

so i don’t expect any easy solution to this, if any.

Dal Timgar

It seems to me that the whole Middle East bruhaha boils down to bickering over who should “have” the Holy Land.

Me, I say wall the whole thing off, give it to the Disney company, and let 'em charge admission. Anyone causing a ruckus inside Disney’s Holy Kingdom will get subdued by Mickey and Dumbo security guards and escorted off the premises…

LOL. Oh yeah – ever since they invaded Palestine, kicked the Arabs off their land, promised to pay them for it and never have, they’ve been the best of neighbors!

sqweels, dal_tigmar and jmullaney:

My apologies if my post was unclear. I had understood the OP to be referring to Israel’s recent actions…i.e., since October of last year. I’m not saying that within the entire century-long history of the Zionist movement there haven’t been some actions by the Zionists/Israel that have been proactive against those who had been living on the land prior to them.

Chaim Mattis Keller

::sitting back, eating some popcorn and hoping to watch a really lively thread::
[sub]if only Mr. Bunnyhurt would come by[/sub]

[Rodney King Hat On]
Can’t we all just get along?
[Rodney King Hat Off]

Really, why can’t any two groups get along? Catholics and Protestants in Northern Ireland…Tutsi and Hutu in Rwanda…Moslems and Christans…Basque and Spaniard…French speaking vs. English speaking Canadians…

Never saw the movie, read part of the book, but King Rat is a cool name. I’m jealous.

I don’t know if you are being ironic, since irony is something I give, not something I get, <complete mooncalf voice> but that’s what I’m talking about. I mean, gee whillikers! </complete mooncalf voice>

cmkeller, would you say that either side has been negotiating in good faith? That politicians on either side are interested in compromise? Would these politicians rather die than give an inch? Are children throwing pebbles a reasonable match for soldiers with live ammo (those so-called rubber bullets being far more effective than we were first led to believe)?

Since the roots of this go back FAR before last September, and since the parties involved can’t seem to let the past be passed, I think it’s fair to bring in the totality of Mid East history. And, as an American of European extraction, I’m also uncomfortable about how my own country was conquered.

Freedom2, so far it’s been pretty “dull.” I hope it doesn’t liven up too much because very little can be accomplished in such an atmosphere. As if we can have any effect on world events. :rolleyes:

OOOPS! I meant “Would these politicians rather die, kill, or send others to die or kill than give an inch?”

Well, I’m not Chaim, but I can answer this one. The Israelis have compromised… big time.

Firstly, they agreed to recognize the PLO, something that unthinkable ten years ago.

They agreed to pull out of significant portions of the West Bank and Gaza, something that was unthinkable eight years ago.

They even put the division of Jerusalem on the table, something that was unthinkable two years ago.

Ehud Barak was even ready to give up part of the Temple Mount, something that was unthinkable even one year ago.

What have the Palestinians conceded to?

Well, they said that they agreed to remove clauses from their charter calling for the destruction of Israel (however, try to find the revised charter on their website www.pna.net, you won’t.)

They agreed to stop the violence against Israel. However, more people have died since Oslo than before.

They agreed to stop using anti-Israeli (and anti-Jewish) propaganda, something they have not done. The official Palestinian TV station still spews that trash regularly.

They agreed to lock up terrorists. They sometimes do arrest them, but they are often back on the street within hours or days.

Now tell me, which side is interested in compromising and which side isn’t? Which side has given well more than an inch.


The kids throwing rocks are in front of “police” using live ammo shooting from the back.

Zev Steinhardt

I think the Israeli’s are on pretty shakey ground when it comes to their treatment of the Palestinians. The way they have twisted the accepted rules of engagement to justify their shooting of rioters is a good example. In peacetime, soldiers are only to fire their weapons in self-defense. Riots are to be put down using minimal force and non-deadly weapons. During a war the rules change, and soldiers are allowed to fire in more circumstances. There is no war currently between the Israelis and the Palestinians, yet the Israeli troops behave as if there is one. Israeli soldiers are trained to treat a thrown rock the same as if they are fired upon. Most other countries do not - yes, it is possible to be killed by a thrown rock, and it does happen, but in peacetime soldiers who are supposed to be keeping the peace are to take into consideration that they are better protected and better armed than rioters.

Whoo boy, this is one topic I avoid like death at work…

But since this is SDMB

(a) Land issues – Cmkeller’s reply aside, the Palestinians remain unenthusiastic about losing their land. In making this observation I make no statement about Jewish rights to the land from their perspective, only that the Palestinians understandably remain unhappy. Israeli settlements in the Occupied Territories also make them unhappy to say the least.
(b) Water Issues – the region has limited water. Given the above tensions and legitimacy issues, solutions are not being reached on a mutually beneficial basis, but by who has the most oomph.


Ya think? Israel is surrounded by other countries that would love to see it destroyed. No wonder they behave as though they’re in a war.

I have seen some news footage of rock throwers using slings. Aren’t slings considered deadly weapons? At any rate I wouldn’t let being better armed then my enemies get in the way of attacking them. Sick of Israelies shooting into your riots? Stop throwing rocks, bottles, and other assorted items.


I agree that generally Israel’s been reactive and have retaliated. And I think it’s obvious that if they didn’t they’d be screwed. The problem I have is the size of the retaliation is destabilising. In my simple-minded way I think of this as an iterated prisoners’ dilemma: both parties would gain from some (any) settlement but they face temptations at every step. A retaliation which is perceived as more severe than the original act tends to “invite” a greater response, leading to explosive dynamics. This makes any period of reduced hostilities vulnerable to any crazy (on either side) who wishes to derail the necessarily gradualist attempts at peace. So whilst I think that Israel’s known tendancy to retaliate is a necessary condition for working towards peace (as is the Palestinians’ stance of not taking any deal for the sake of it) the degree of reaction to any new outrage is counterproductive.

Its easy…

Why not just split Israel up into 2 countries !

That way if the plo attack its not an internal matter and Israel can treat it as an act of war.

I don’t think they can live in peace together so they should just draw a big line down the centre and get people to move to ‘their’ side.

In the long run its cheaper than maintaining the current ruined economies.

no ?

After all, it’s been such a success in Northern Ireland.

Well, I’m off to look for a cite.

In the meantime, I read something a month or so ago that covered this. It seems that Isreal is in a legal state of war as of recently:).

Only it is not technically called “war,” since that requires two countries, and Palestine is not a recognized country. But there is another level of legally recognized conflict that covers a situation like this, and changes all the ROE to those of “war.”

Back in the 1940s, when the area was British Palestine, a lot of people had the idea you did. So, they split the country up into Jewish Palestine (Israel) and Arab Palestine (Jordan). So, they’ve tried it before…