The Way We Fight

It always seemed strange to me how we as a people have lacked the ability to criticize the way in which we resist. We all play for the same team for obvious historical, ethnic, cultural and religious reasons. We all have the same common goal. We all look at the occupations in the same way. We all look at the opposing teams the same way. Essentially what we disagree on is the strategy we employ to win. For purposes of this post, when I say ‘we’ I mean the Arab people.

In such cases there seems to always be a majority and a minority. The majority is a group of people who I feel are blinded by the emotions of the situation. When realities explode, the blast tends to blind everyone near it. Those same realities can be so powerful that it makes it difficult for people to criticize the choices made in the subsequent moments. All crimes are committed in a moment of justifiable passion. It’s only afterwards that the majority begins to revise its thinking. And the worse things get, the worse we become, the more the environment begins to change and we become braver when it comes to speaking up and speaking out.

The US invasion of Iraq was such a giant wave that we didn’t care what came next. Kidnappings and beheadings of civilians became so popular that criticizing the act in the face of the initial invasion seemed insane; even more so after Abu Ghrieb and the counter of ‘well look what they did to us’ became more prevalent.

Bombing Iraqis lining up to join the police force was also perceived as an act of courage. They were joining the enemy and deserved to die.

But then the perception began to change.

Kidnappings and beheadings started to target more and more people who seemed to have absolutely nothing to do with the American occupation. Journalists, drivers etc. The bombings became more and more senseless as well and before we knew it they had gone from Iraqis waiting in line to sign up for the police force, to Iraqis praying in a mosque. At this point in time the justification was that the US was fabricating all these things. That they in fact orchestrated all the beheadings and the bombings of mosques, hospitals and schools; a perception which eventually died down the more and more it became obvious that this was far from the case.

There’s always that moment when even the biggest advocates are thinking to themselves that this has gone too far; beyond the realms of justification. And the environment begins to change to allow for some reflection, for some criticism. Perceptions changed in Amman on November 9th 2005. Acts we felt made sense before began to feel illogical. It was a reality that hit at the core of our beliefs.

Yet still, we cannot criticize methods of resistance employed in Palestine. In the context of time it’s only been recently that people have changed their minds about the kidnapping of journalists as opposed to soldiers, or the bombing of markets as opposed to checkpoints. To do this is to deny Palestinians of their right to resist and illegal occupation.

It’s a strange situation. Especially when historically there was a great deal of self-criticism when it came to how we chose to fight. From the Prophet pbuh to Salah il-Deen; wrongs and rights were always pointed out. War ethics were established. There was never an “anything goes” situation, or at least one that didn’t go criticized. Even Salah il-Deen who everyone seems to look up to as the model of a Muslim commander, stated that crusaders fight according to their ethics and we fight according to our ethics.

We seem to have abandoned that.

Instead we say ‘they started it’ or ‘they’ve done worse’. And so our models for resistance become the laws of physics; our reactions became proportionate and equal to their actions. Or at least we aim for that much. We let the people we fight to lead us down the slippery slope into the darkness. The worse they act the worse we react.

Have we really lost all sense of what’s right and what’s wrong, or at the very least the ability to point to a losing strategy?

In truth, I think a lot of people belonging to the majority have a sense of the rights and wrongs but are too scared to say it. The environment is not conducive to criticism.

Should we wait until our actions become worse and worse until there’s no room for justification? Should we remain silent because to speak out is to suggest an unpatriotic attitude; a betrayal of the cause? Should we follow in ‘their’ footsteps?

What happens next?


  • Have we really lost all sense of what’s right and what’s wrong

    Have you (Arabs) ever had that? Can you point me to a time when you did? I don’t know how old you are but one of my earliest memories is watching the Munich Olympics live on TV in 1972. I suspect most terrorists and supporters of terrorists are much younger than me. So, I am really suspicious that there was ever a time in living memory for the average Arab, when Arabs knew right from wrong.

    Sorry, but that’s my honest assessment. And I think your comments up there that suggest it’s OK to murder some people but not others bear that out. Murder is murder. The Quran says that any Muslim who murders a Muslim is a damned soul, tormented for all eternity. What part of that do you not understand? Do you think God is going to be interested in hearing what the Americans did, that makes Muslims think it is OK to break His law? Did God ever say that it’s OK to break His law, some of the time?

    Is that really what Islam is all about? Pretending that mass-murderers are martyrs? If it is, how can you claim that Muslims understand morality?

    By the way, Saladin was a Kurd. Maybe that explains why the Kurds are not butchering innocents by the thousand. Or, maybe it’s just that their minds haven’t been poisoned by 60 years of idiotic brainwashing, that passes for education in some parts of the world.

    or at the very least the ability to point to a losing strategy?

    Maintain the current strategy, please. Lets play it out to the bitter end. The bitter end.

  • By the way, I made that comment because the post sounded more like “this is out of control” than “this is morally wrong” – and I’d rather there isn’t an intermission, this time. Lets finish it. Because as sure as the sun comes up in the morning, people who don’t have a moral objection to murder will commit murders. There doesn’t seem to be much point to wait a year, or two years, until the next time something happens that “justifies” murder. I’d rather see the murderers sent to meet their maker now, so that they can learn the truth. And begin their eternal torments.

  • Craig: thanks for the comment although i disagree with much of it. and the whole ‘bitter end’ comment sounds like you want me to meet you behind the monkey bars after recess.

    first of all, i think you’re going back and forth between arabs and muslims, and i dont know who you’re accusing of being immoral the most.

    as for God.

    there is a difference between killing as in murder and killing as in self defense. i think you’re labeling it all as senseless killing i.e. murder, when this is not the case. when a people are occupied and when they are under attack they have the right to defend themselves, their land and their religion. God gives them that right. What I was getting at in my post, from a religious pov, is that even those ‘rights’ have massive limitations. i.e. there are lines drawn concerning the way and manner in which a people choose to fight.

    you have to be able to see that line, that difference, at least enough not to go ahead and call it all murder and all palestinians who fight as murderers.

    there is a difference between palestinians shooting at or throwing rocks at israeli tanks that roll down their streets, and those that choose to blow themselves up in a market full of civilians. there is a vast difference. the western media will tend to focus on the realities of the latter event which is quite a rarity, whilst the the former which is a very common experience goes unnoticed.

    my problem is not with the fact that we fight/resist, it’s with the manner in which we do so.

    palestine is merely an example

  • Nas,
    Perfect, you know the story of “who moved my cheese”, we arabs are 99% “hems” and 1% “haws”, the haws are labeled as neoliberals, brainwashed zionists, and the “hems” are misguided by relegion traders who want to look as the last man standing, bombings and rage didn’t work since 1948, so I think it is time to change strategy, if more than 60 years of failures is not enough then I don’t know what is!I know some will jump and lecture me about hizballa and his win, I say that hizballa didn’t win, israel lost, they could have eliminated southern lebanon in one day, I don’t deny that they are heros, but at the same time we achieved nothing..Anyway I don’t think that anything will change unless we all drop the hatred which I doubt will ever happen..
    Good post!

  • Again, blanket statement. Yes, the majority of Arabs do share a common enemy and source of all evils, but not all Arabs look at countering that enemy the same way, also, a small portion of liberals who prefer to see the whole conflict as a big game of politics, serving Global entities’ agendas, do not necessarily see Israel as the enemy, but in fact, see it as a prospect, and some, haven’t really established their emotions and status regarding Israel (yours truly is an example). Honestly, I don’t see the point in waging wars against Israel. The country has been a stage for battle and warfare, yet maintained its pole position in the Middle East as a strong and diverse economy; you have to give it to them, they have done for themselves much more that what we’ve done for our countries. Not to mention that we owe our mere existence as Jordanians, to the establishment of Israel (Amman probably wouldn’t have ever existed if Palestine weren’t occupied).

    I agree with your questions regarding the ethics of war, but I think you’re not asking the right question. The question is how long will we still bring ourselves to our knees? I for one, am tired of the news and the papers, with Arab blood splattered on both outlets. Khalas, it’s about time that we just move on, and get on with the time, and start focusing on what really matters, rather than dwelling on trivial issues, like religion and race. Just sign the damn peace treaty with Israel, put a tight grip on Iraq, increase security measures and bring the whole country together under one flag.

    For a region that has been swamped in wars for over 50 years, we are so retarded that we haven’t yet learned that wars do NOTHING. We’ve been lagging behind for decades, and khalas, it’s just time to let go, and move on, and start changing the way we think.

    Yes, I’m originally Palestinian, and I love Palestine to death (clearly a figure of speech). But it’s obvious that the ongoing conflict with Israel has got us no where. Instead, go head-to-head against Israel by bettering the lives of your fellow countrymen, give your sons and daughters proper education; just do anything but fornicate, eat and then blow yourself up. I feel that we Arabs are only living to eventually die (if not fastforward straight to our death), rather than living to actually make an impact on the lives of people around us.

  • there is a difference between killing as in murder and killing as in self defense.

    Yes. There is. There is also a difference between deliberate and accidental cause of death.

    I didn’t see any evidence that you understand that. Deliberately killing somebody who is innocent is MURDER – regardless of circumstances. That’s why I pointed out that God would probably not be very interested in hearing what “provocations” anybody had to commit their murders. And taht God never gave people permission to break his law, some of the time.

    And blowing yourself up with a bomb packed with nails in the middle of a crowded street can NEVER be called self-defense. That’s an insane thing to say.

    Sorry. But that’s the way it is.

    So, which do you think are Moral? Muslims or Arabs?

    What are your proofs?

    I make no distinction, no. I’m not aware of any Muslim community that behaves in a moral manner. I’m not aware of any Arab community that behaves in a moral manner. Tell me, why I should hold one over the other as a better example?

  • Craig, since we’re speaking in generalities here (aren’t we?), you would have to admit that there aren’t too many human beings that are moral. Singling out Arabs is hardly fair.

  • I disagree with some of what you wrote, but I like your point of view.

    There’s a lot to be criticized, and there’s a lot that’s already criticized regarding the issues your touched on.

    I don’t think that “we” Arabs have lost sense of what’s right and what’s wrong. There’s always “the bad people”, don’t be taken by the new stream of criticizing..stuff.

    Nice blog, keep it up.

  • I would liek to comment from the Palestinain prospective, what is going on in Iraq is just too complex and completely different than what is happening in palestine.
    This post is another example of why we dont get it. Look, if you have the ability to say “khalas, I want to move on” then more power to you move on, do your thang, no one is gonna stop you, but some people, many people in this struggle do not have this choice, if you live in Gaza your situation has been miserable since 1948 before there were cafe bombing and before there was “terrorism” and armed struggle. nothing has changed for the refugees NOTHING. Same goes to the people in the camps in Lebanon, Syria and even Jordan but to a lesser extent, they have nothing to look forward to but humiliation frustration and injustice. While the ones who live a cozy life and have a nice job and a pretty car can say khalas ana zhi2it ma biddi shu savage ya allah, thats fine they worked hard for what they got they are the lucky ones, but dont consider yourself part of the struggle cuz u are not u chose to distance urself and that is your right, its great that some of us can have a decent life but its is not ur right to act like u speak for all of the palestinians.
    What I dont get is when did this rehtorict become so evident in our society. I mean we know that blowing urself up is not a smart thing to do, it is not meant to be a military strategy and whover advocates such a thing is crazy. This is a result of desperation, these people need help not condemnation, they have been driven to the edges of insanity and right into suicide because they have nothing to live for, no hope no compassion, they have suffered silently for decades with no one coming to their help, now that they are being heard people are disguested with them, where were all these people when they suffered in silnce for at least 3 decades? Why is the murder of Israelis taking precedent over the murder of Palestinians. Both are despicable yes, but the Israeli victim has many more advocates today, and the irony is, the israeli victim dies because of the policies of the Israeli military complex. If terrorism is the plague of our times and Nazism was the plague of the early 1900’S then Zionism is the plague of the middle east, why do i see multiple posts denouncing terrorism today while I rarley see articles denouncing zionism in the same breadth? What takes precedent, who do we consider the clear and present danger to our societies? It is not clear anymore, lots of gray out there.

  • Craig, so is the US moral then? how many innocent Iraqis have died in indiscriminate bomings, afghans, japanese cambodians, does this make the US an immoral community? How about Israel, how many civilians were murdered, by snipres the past couple of weeks, unborn children and 11 year odl girls….so does that make Israel, and consequently all jews, immoral as a community? If not then how can you flip the argument against arabs and muslims and consider them collectivly immoral? We know there are good Americans and good Israelis, you dont seem to understand that Arabs are human beings not animlas driven by a savage thirst for blood.

  • Pheras

    Khalas, it’s about time that we just move on, and get on with the time, and start focusing on what really matters, rather than dwelling on trivial issues, like religion and race. Just sign the damn peace treaty with Israel, put a tight grip on Iraq, increase security measures and bring the whole country together under one flag.

    I appreciate the sentiment pheras, and I’m pretty sure it’s something the overwhelming majority want to see happen but I have to agree with Markus on this one: the people involved in this struggle do not have that choice entirely.

    Moreover, peace as you just described it not as simple in real life. In real life the complexities of a fair and just peace are so overwhelming that they would in fact, bring you to your knees.


    I didn’t see any evidence that you understand that. Deliberately killing somebody who is innocent is MURDER – regardless of circumstances.

    of course I see a difference, and if you don’t think so then you probably didn’t read my post in the first place! i see a difference between a market full of civilians and a checkpoint of soldiers on occupied territory. but something tells me that you dont see that difference.

    as for never meeting a moral arab or muslim, well i guess you need to get out more. it’s like me saying i’ve never met someone named craig who was moral.


    but dont consider yourself part of the struggle cuz u are not u chose to distance urself and that is your right, its great that some of us can have a decent life but its is not ur right to act like u speak for all of the palestinians.

    i understand the difference, below the surface there are various people living various realities, but nevertheless, on the surface there is a common struggle and a common objective. your concern seems to be how ‘we’ just dont get it and if we did we would support armed resistance in all its forms. what about the amount of arabs, or specifically palestinians on the outside, who advocate war when the majority of palestinians living that actual reality of the situation prefer peace and stability?

    as for everything else you said. i agree with it wholeheartedly. i understand the level of desperation it takes to do what’s being done. i dont think there are many arabs who dont get that.

    but even in desperation. even when the forces are overwhelmingly against…there are choices made. there are targets to be chosen; even in desperation one target is more legitimate than the other. to brush them all as one is to do exactly what zionists do when it comes to palestinians.

    as for denouncing zionists “in the same breath”, for me that’s merely a given and it doesn’t help anything. it’s like being in the locker room during halftime and instead of using the time talking to your team about where mistakes in our strategy are, you spend the time denouncing the other team. its a moot point.

  • Historical review for US and Western intervention in the Middle East.

    1920-28: U.S. pressures Britain, then the dominant Middle East power, into signing a “Red Line Agreement” providing that Middle Eastern oil will not be developed by any single power without the participation of the others. Standard Oil and Mobil obtain shares of the Iraq Petroleum Company.
    1932-34: Oil is discovered in Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, and U.S. oil companies obtain concessions.
    1944: U.S. State Department memo refers to Middle Eastern oil as “a stupendous source of strategic power, and one of the greatest material prizes in world history.” During U.S.-British negotiations over the control of Middle Eastern oil, President Roosevelt sketches out a map of the Middle East and tells the British Ambassador, “Persian oil is yours. We share the oil of Iraq and Kuwait. As for Saudi Arabian oil, it’s ours.” On August 8, 1944, the Anglo-American Petroleum Agreement is signed, splitting Middle Eastern oil between the U.S. and Britain.

    Between 1948 and 1960, Western capital earns $12.8 billion in profits from the production, refining and sale of Middle Eastern oil, on fixed investments totaling $1.3 billion.


    1946: President Harry Truman threatens to drop a “super-bomb” on the Soviet Union if it does not withdraw from Kurdestan and Azerbaijan in northern Iran.

    November 1947: The U.S. helps push through a UN resolution partitioning Palestine into a Zionist state and an Arab state, giving the Zionist authorities control of 54% of the land. At that time Jewish settlers were about 1/3 of the population.

    May 14, 1948: War breaks out between newly proclaimed state of Israel, and Egypt, Iraq, Jordan and Syria, who had moved troops into Palestine to oppose the partition of Palestine. Israeli attacks force some 800,000 Palestinians–two-thirds of the population–to flee into exile in Lebanon, Jordan, Syria, Gaza, and the West Bank. Israel seizes 77 percent of historic Palestine. The U.S. quickly recognizes Israel.

    March 29, 1949: CIA backs a military coup overthrowing the elected government of Syria and establishes a military dictatorship under Colonel Za’im.
    1952: U.S.-led military alliance expands into the Middle East with Turkey’s admission to NATO.

    1953: The CIA organizes a coup overthrowing the Mossadeq government of Iran after Mossadeq nationalizes British holdings in Iran’s huge oilfields. The Shah, Mohammed Reza Pahlevi, is put on the throne, ruling as an absolute monarch for the next 25 years–torturing, killing and imprisoning his political opponents.

    1955: U.S. installs powerful radar system in Turkey to spy on the Soviet Union.


    July 1956: After Egypt’s nationalist leader, Gamal Abdul Nasser, receives arms from the Soviet Union, the U.S. withdraws promised funding for Aswan Dam, Egypt’s main development project. A week later Nasser nationalizes the Suez Canal to fund the project. In October Britain, France and Israel invade Egypt to retake the Suez Canal. President Eisenhower threatens to use nuclear weapons if the Soviet Union intervenes on Egypt’s side; and at the same time, the U.S. asserts its regional dominance by forcing Britain, France and Israel to withdraw from Egypt.

    October 1956: A planned CIA coup to overthrow a left-leaning government in Syria is aborted because it was scheduled for the same day Israel, Britain and France invade Egypt.

    March 9, 1957: Congress approves Eisenhower Doctrine, stating “the United States regards as vital to the national interest and world peace the preservation of the independence and integrity of the nations of the Middle East.”

    And the list of US intervention and mayhem in the Middle East goes on and on and on
    This for people who think they know and thinks history started in 1972.

  • Nas You come up with arguments that one can actually discuss, valid arguments at the surface here is my take on your arguments:

    1- I am a very A-political person, meaning I do not and never will align myself with any particular hizb or party. Keeping that in mind my view regarding armed resistance is not one where we should all strap ourselves and go on a suicide vendetta, and its not a view where I expect armed resistance to be the one and only strategy on the road to liberation, it has to be a combination of all means necessary and I mean all, because all means have been used against us, and I mean all, even illegal weapons. I cant argue against being humane and just, after all this is what we aspire to be, I cant justify the murder of innocent people, but The current atmosphere in the Arab media is that of forced compliance, there is a program that is being shoved down our throats, the so called peace initiative, I wonder how many of you actually sat down and red the full text of all these agreements from Oslo to the road-map to the Arab intiative, these are not feasable, they go against the basic principles of a livable life. The Palestinains are waking up everyday to find more land being confiscated more settlements being built ,I read about an announcement only 3 days ago regarding settlement blocks in Jerusalem, it makes my blood boil. Peace can only be achieved when there is a party to make peace with, Israel is too powerful too advanced and too determined to abandon their program, it has nothing to do with peace, the Palestinian people are being exterminated as a people on their land, they will end up being displaced forcefully for now but eventually they will have no choice but to leave their jail cells once the network of Jews only roads and settlements is complete. The people there see this and that is why they voted for armed resistance, not for peace. You mention somewhere that most Palestinians in Palestine want peace, well if so they should not have voted for Hamas. If you don’t think that is an accurate indicator then please direct me to a better one regarding how the Palestinians in Palestine want the struggle to be managed.
    2- I would like to repeat what I said, killing indiscriminantly is not justified, but when you want to cure a disease you target the cause not the effect. It is a waste of time to target the palestinains, if they don’t kill themselves they will die eventually, literally and figuratively as a people, they need to be saved not criticized. They are the victims, still today and everyday, and even if you want to condemn the resistance. Alot is being done to protect the Israeli innocent, by the US, Israel, Europe and the rest of the world,and now the Arabs as well, and some Palestinians, great… compare that with what is being done to protect the Palestinians, much, much less.

    3- Denouncing Zionism, if you intend to, is very important for the following reasons, me and you can agree on it, but you have a global audience, there are 2 people here who gave you Kudos for your post, who would not be thrilled if you went out and clearly said “Zionism sux, its racist and its despicable” They would not give you the same accolades without this clear statement.

  • Markus: everything you said in part one is something i already know and i dont know what gave you the impression that i didnt. you are mixing however between condemnation and criticism, each term is very very different from the other. I am attempting to do the latter and not the former. Armed resistance in all its forms has been around for decades now and its less and less effective.

    And I’m not suggesting that the whole idea of armed resistance be thrown out the window. I agree with you on ‘all means necessary’. My post is about our inability to be critical of the particulars. Why can’t we point out the contrast? Can you agree with the kidnapping of a single Israeli soldier and still be critical of the kidnapping of Alan Johnston?

    as for “They would not give you the same accolades without this clear statement.”

    I think you know this blog well enough to know I couldn’t care less about what accolades I receive. My stance on Israel and Israeli policies is clear and well known and if people are searching for context then they can do a search of this blog.

  • Nas, I definatly know your views on Israeli policies, I wont doubt you on that, but I brought up the issue of condeming Zionism to invoke reactions from the 3rd parties mentioned, im curious as to how they feel now about your post. Craig? Dave? 😉

  • Nas, peace cannot bring us to our knees, take the Jordanian-Israeli peace treaty for example, and name one direct negative effect that resulted from inking the peace treaty? Yes, I know for a fact that Israelis have bought land in Jordan, but doesn’t that help flourish the economy? And even if Israelis did buy out land in Jordan, we cannot come up with proper data describing the amount of land purchased exactly. So the QIZs impose that 8 percent of the raw materials are to be imported from Israel; but then again, the QIZs contribute over JD2 billion to the Jordanian economy, and you cannot say that the QIZs have damaged our local cottage industry, because we hardly had a textiles industry before developing the QIZs. Did you know that a large number of Aqaba residents find jobs in Eilat, and due to security measures, cannot stay there overnight. But these are workers that get their paychecks from Israel, without having to contribute to the Israeli economy. So far, that sounds good to me.

    The peace process and the Palestinian refugee crisis is blown out of proportion. Had all countries in the Levant cooperated, it needn’t to be called a crisis. Perhaps a simple proposal as the below suggests could at least lessen the problem:

    Jordan is currently developing two new economic zones, one in Mafrak and the other in Irbid. Since obviously, the Lebanese and the Syrians are not welcoming Palestinian refugees, these refugees can be given an option to either reside in their camps, or in these new economic zones. In order to lessen the pressure on Jordan’s natural resources, these refugees will be provided with water and electricity, from the countries that originally hosted them (Syria and Lebanon in this case). Why not repeat what happened with Amman, in Irbid and Mafrak? Get mercy-funds from oil rich countries, to provide health and education services to the Palestinians, and contribute in establishing these economic zones. Also, the current Palestinian refugees in Jordan, could be relocated in new housing projects, similar to the ones constructed in Aqaba (in relocating the Shallal residents), and provide those refugees with decent services.

    Cancel the whole UNRWA organization, and set up a new organization under the wing of the Islamic Development Bank, where contributions from all over the region, would be delivered to the Palestinian refugees. This process will ensure transparency and also provide the Palestinians with proper attention.

    Re-establish the borders in Israel, and be in content with Gaza and the West Bank (it really is the best thing that Arabs can currently get). Develop those areas under the leadership of a new political entity, devised by the Arab League, and not by Hamas (although I trust Hamas in the sense that it won’t transform the West Bank into another Taliban-led country, but you have to admit that the suicidal bombings did hinder the peace process), nor Fateh (because basically they did nothing to the Palestinians in providing support). Get this newly appointed party in touch with the Israelis, in order to stop violence from both sides, and fortify intelligence cooperation between this party and Israel, to guarantee that no further bloodshed will result from this. Send out international troops in both Israel and the West Bank, get foreign aid to rebuild the West Bank (we really can’t afford to be picky at this stage).

    I don’t know Nas, but we’ve been fighting for over 50 years, and that NEVER worked. Why not give peace just this one shot, and maybe it would work out? Call me dreamy and over-optimistic, but I believe that the Israelis aren’t as bad we imagine them to be, and I believe that they feel the same way. I’ve met Israelis that were actually shocked when I told them that a majority of Jordanians aren’t all too crazy about them, and they were like: “But we have a peace agreement, why don’t the Jordanians like us?”. And believe you me, the way I was treated in Israel, is WAY better than the treatment I get as a Jordanian in Jordan. Did you know that Arab citizens in Israel, get free healthcare provided by the Israeli government? That they can easily enrol in schools and universities, and even enjoy the benefits of Israeli security? Did you know that the citizens of Beit Hanina (which is under the Israeli flag) were actually against relinquishing the town to Palestinians?! And honestly, nobody can blame them.

    Let’s just try to get out of this “Traitor” bottle that we’ve shoved ourselves into, leave emotions and history aside, and just stick to the facts: Israelis are better governors than we are. And on paper, we could benefit from them.

  • I have suggestion for Pheras Hilal,why don’t we send you to Mafraq instead? or Rutba near the Iraqi border,you know there is plenty of sunshine to get your tan

  • I have one more question for Graig,the computer programmer, When did you become Muslim scholar and how you came up with those Fatwas,its just mind bugling for me,oversudden,after 9/11 everybody became Muslim scholars overnight,isn’t that amazing?

  • I have one more question to Pheras Hilal ,Did you ever ask those “”poor”” refugees what they want?
    Since you are talking about the right of return which is guaranteed by UN charter and Geneva Convention,did you ever ask yourself what those “”poor”” refugees in Jordan,Syrea and lebanon want,lets have referendum for those refugees that you want to send to Al Mafraq.

  • Pheras how many Dinars is Jordan worth? How much do you want to sell it for, or do you just want to sell part of it so that ” the economy can flourish” how moronic can people be, do you really think this cash rush that we see in jordan today actually means economic upheaval? WhaT Sustainable development projects have been implemented in Jordan so far, please dont tell me anything about real estate and land, this is the most unstable of all markets. So the question is how much dignity and how much Jordan is the peace with Israel worth for you?

  • Pheras: I didn’t say peace would bring us to our knees, I said the way you described it is impossible. I was being metaphorical, you were being literal. And I don’t think we have a local cottage industry. As for the benefits of the QIZ’s, if you know anything about them you’d know that those benefits are not only limited but highly disputable given the major cons they’ve produced, the least of which is the employment of foreign labor.

    second of all, I am pro-peace, but i am looking for a fair and just peace which i believe can still be achieved. but in the absence of that peace and in the presence of continued Israeli occupation i do see the purpose if not the need for resistance; they are defending their homes. for israel, resistance is an excuse that palestinians don’t want peace. but it becomes difficult to negotiate anything when a wall is currently being built and annexing land. imagine staying up all night at camp david to discuss a few kilmoters of land only to discover that by morning its already been taken.

    our side has been pushing for a peace talk since the silly arab summit and just last week israel announced its building i dont know how many illegal settlements in east jerusalem.

    third of all,

    the solution your proposing is nothing new. it’s as viable as qadaffi suggesting palestinians move to the libyan desert, or build a new jerusalem in the sahara, or join both nations into Israteen.

    i have my own difficulties grappling with the issue of the right of return, but i recognize that its at the heart of a just peace. it’s not about them being unable to find a place that will accept them, it’s about them holding on to the hope that they can still go home. do you see the difference?

    not everyone is so willing to give up on that prospect.

  • Pheras since you admire the virtues and generosity of the Zionists towards the Arabs within their state, why not go the full mile, why not advocate more of their well known policies towards their arab citizens,like genocide for example? how about discussing the discrimination and the fear that the arabs inside israel live through every day of their lives, or is that not convinent for the whole premis of your argument about our peace loving, human right respecting brothers..the zionists? Lets all sing Hatikva …please stand up in respect of the Israeli national anthem……

  • Pheras,

    I understand what you’re saying: take the positives from the culture (any culture, for that matter), discard the negatives, and we can benefit from it.

    I’m afraid others may be reading much more into it than that. To condemn your statements or put words in your mouth is to condemn ourselves. If we go so far to claim that there aren’t good, usable things in every culture, than we can’t complain when others vilify us by discarding or ignoring the good aspects of our own cultures.

  • Assume this:
    The State Israel miraculously annihilates, and the people of Israel decide to flee Israel, and move to Europe, North and South America. And Palestine is finally back to the Palestinians. Did anyone ever stop to think, ok, so now what? What happens next? Khalas, the Arab Dream is finally a reality, and now we have to deal with this reality. What happens next?

    Palestine would first need a leader, and a political party; leaving room for bloodshed between Hamas and Fateh (my biggest proof is Iraq after Saddam). The Palestinians will be divided into two main groups, supporters of Fateh and supporters of Hamas. While the Palestinians coming back from Lebanon, Syria and Jordan, might also form their own political parties, in order to find a party that represents them. Leading to even more bloodshed and disunity. How can you be sure that this won’t happen? The Palestinian refugees residing in Lebanon, Syria and Jordan have suffered from neglect, poverty and frustration ever since the day they were born, wouldn’t a free and independent Palestine give them room to vent out these frustrations?

    The idea here, is not about freedom anymore, it’s more about sustainable growth and prosperity, and if you cannot achieve that in countries with better opportunities (Lebanon, Syria and Jordan), then how can you achieve that in a desert? (Palestine)? A country where no infrastructure exists, no opportunities exist, and certainly doesn’t hold any prospects?

    Assuming that we do retrieve Palestine, it would be a starting point for a whole new war; a civil war between each other.

    All I’m trying to say, is that at least let’s be prepared to deal with living in Palestine, and the only way to do so, is to provide refugees with better education, better job opportunities and better healthcare. I really can’t see how does that not make any sense?! In comparison to living as a nobody, or as a number, in a refugee camp, that does make a lot more sense to me.

    Very funny Markus, but here’s the thing: What do you think Israelis feel about our suicide bombs? There’s a million way to look at it, but what I’m certain of, is that violence doesn’t solve anything, it just breeds more violence, and it’s a vicious and empty cycle. Blood only leads to more blood. Reason your mind, and not your fist, and you’ll know that’s true.

    Naseem, again, look at it from a different point of view: Don’t you think that we’ve been demanding too much from this peace process? The process has been halted, thanks to our refusal to settle for ’67 land, we’ve even rejected a proposal to have sovereignty over ’67 land, along with Israeli towns with Arab majority population, and we even rejected that. And then we responded to that by waging a second intifada, which really begs the question of whether we are serious enough about peace or not? Again, I’m not saying that the Israelis are angels, especially regarding the great wall being built, and the endless assault on Gaza, but what I’m trying to say, is that the Israelis have a higher capacity for accepting peace with Palestine, than we are. At our weakness, and at our current state, we really can;t be asking for too much.

  • Dave, there is nothing wrong in taking the positives out a culture, what postives can we take from Nazi culture? hmmm let me see…..

    Pheras, I wasnt being funny, Im serious If you believe , from what i can gather from your last post, that you think israel is better for us than the end of occupation then where do i begin? What kind of logic is this? The Palestinian people are living in bloodshed everyday so what if they lose an oppressor on their way, its one less to go…..”more sustainable growth” what starting point are you talking about here? what growth is there to do more of? As for what Israel feels about suicide bomings? i dont give a ratz azz what they think or feel , its not my concern, im more worried about what the palestinian mothers who lost their children in the past few weeks feel. once i am done worrying about that ill worry about the suicide bombings.
    Can you answe this : what comes first the chicken or the egg?

  • Phiras,
    maybe I am “liberal” but you have to keep in mind that the struggle is relegious, it is not political..If you keep that in mind always you can see why there is no peace!

  • The struggle is not religious It is between the oppressed (The Palestinians) and the oppressors (the Israelis)plain and simple.

    يا شعوب يا عربيه مسلمه و مسيحيه اصحو من هده الغيبوبه واتمني ان لا تكون مزمنه,لن دوركم اتن ,اصحومن هدا الضياع استيقيضو لن يكونو لكم هناك مكن آمن,آنطرو ما يدر حولكم,آنها بظعته كيلوا من آلمترات,آنضرو مادا يحصل في فلصطين ,العراق ولبنان

  • Markus, I didn’t say that living under the Israeli flag is better than resisting Israel, and fighting Israel. You totally misunderstood me.

    What I’m trying to say, is that there are many other solutions than fighting Israel, once we stop, they will stop as well. I’ve lived for two months in Beit Hanina (an Arabic-majority town under Israeli administration), prior to the first intifada. So I was in touch with both sides, Palestinian and Israeli. And honestly, both sides were prospering and both sides witnessed a boom in economy. Small Palestinian businesses were bringing in steady income, big projects were set in Ramallah, Al Ram (near Jerusalem) and Nablus. However, thanks to Sharon, all this went flailing with the wind. Yes, Sharon was a prick, and it is his fault that until today, bloodshed continues in Palestine, but that’s not what the Israelis want. That was one prick’s mistake, and now we are paying the price for it.

    What I’m trying to say, that if we do get a deal to have full authority over ’67 land, then khalas, settle for that. Rebuild the West Bank and Gaza, maintain strong growth, and that’s how you can international respect, and therefore credibility. How can you expect the West to support our case, if we are still dwelling in poverty, weakness and lack of education? However, if you restructure Palestine, bring in loyal leaders, and rebuild Palestine, and eventually have a strong economy; that’s how you demand the respect, and that’s how you show the world, that you are worthy of your land.

    What’s the use of blown-up bodies anyway? That’s a short-term solution. You want to fight occupation? Fight fire with fire; they fight us, and prove their case by building their economy, by building their country, while we fight them by blowing ourselves up. Does that make any sense?

    What I’m saying, is that there a million ways to resist, but the most logical, and sane way to resist, is by using your brain, and not your fist.

    Believe you me, I love Palestine, but blowing yourself up, is just an excuse to put yourself out of your misery. Throwing stones at soldiers is just asking to get shot. I don’t know, but I’ve always believed that logic and structured planning could get you places, however fighting like a schoolboy, doesn’t.

  • Phiras with all due respect to u, your “ifs” are a drop in an ocean “if we stop they will stop” u really believe that? come on man, open your eyes look around u, what are we doing to them that is hurting them so badly? the amazing fireworks of hamas? they are using these as an excuse to forward their pre-set agenda, and they dont even need an excuse they have done this from day one, relentlessly, you need to have a wider vision than this simplistic equation. im trying really hard here to take this discussion for what it is, im trying not to discount your opnion.

    Tell me why should Israel give anything back to us, they never stopped and they will never stop the ethnic cleansing in all of palestine, this is clearly their goal man, its not my opnion, its what they are saying and doing. if u lived there then u should know better than to take one small example and try to make it like its the norm, have u seen the wall? have u see n the settlements THAT NEVER STOPPED growing even during the best times of the peace process?
    The way you are throwing all the blame on the backs of the palestinains is unbelievable you are asking them to stop fighting, stop remembering, they are living in poverty, they are corrupt, they are they are uneducated, this is all propaganda, its not fully true, you are propagating the israeli line, and u are really ignoring the cause. YES they are dwelling in poverty, yes they are suffering but the palestinains are very well educated people in the middle eastern context,against all the odds, corruption is everywhere, even in your role model “israel”. the problem is one and only..its the occupation, building a state happens after the occupation stops, its really simple stop blaming the victim, because this is the exact agenda of the zionists: blame and de-humanize the victim to a point where even the victim is now blaming himslef….its just really sad .

    You said Sharon was a prick. and the people who voted him into power are all pricks. in other word the majority of the israelis…do u want to make peace with pricks? good for u, they will be pricks to u as well. good Luck.

  • Markus, you crack me up man. I’m telling you that Palestinians are tearing each other up, and this is what you give me?

    Blame it on the Israelis! Yep, that’s what we do best it seems! (Besides singing “Faisalawiyyeh”, shooting each other, and finally, blowing ourselves up; or worse, blowing up towers and hotels, and then hiding in caves, for cameo rock-star appearances on Al Jazeera!).

    Again, people, be logical, not emotional. Just once for a change.

  • the newyork times the jerusalem post i can use as toilet paper, even americans and israelis consider them right wing newspapers. what are u quoting them here for? at least i quoted ynews, listen pheras, u are the one with an agenda, im not being emotional ur losing money because of lack of peace between us and israel and thats ur bottom line, u think economic development is what matters good for go ahead and pursue it and let the people struggle on their own, mr. logical, stand up for your people if u care about them, they are not the agressor,yes i will blame israel, israel is the problem educate urself and stop blaming the victim dont be a zionist servant, and stup being unjust, stop acting like u wana educate us, just worry about ur education and ur buisness.

Your Two Piasters: