In an ideal world a "One Land Two States" solution would be my suggestion for peace in the Holy Land. Turning the presence and reality of Israel from a 'bad thing' into a 'good thing' in the eyes of Muslims might help them see that the Jewish people are NOT the enemy. Look at what Israel has achieved since 1948, look at how they have managed to make the desert bloom, look at the democratic and just society they are. In an ideal world, Israel would be the perfect teacher and guide for the Palestinians on their own way to becoming a free and democratic state. Yet in an ideal world, one side would not be actively trying to exterminate the other. Which means we are not living in an ideal world, we are living in reality.
I hear some of you say "Yes, but... Look at what Israel has done, look at how they treat the Palestinians." Words that seem to magically make terrorist attacks and repeated (and ongoing) calls for genocide 'okay' somehow because the 'poor Palestinians' are only reacting to the 'evil Israelis'.
To those people I say: Wake up, open your eyes and look past the story the media is spoon-feeding you. I am not saying that all Palestinians are terrorists, of course not. I am not saying that all Muslims support groups like Hamas and ISIS, of course not. However many Muslims do heed the words of their prophet Muhammad, words that are repeated in the Hamas Covenant 1988:
The Prophet, Allah bless him and grant him salvation, has said:
"The Day of Judgement will not come about until Moslems fight the Jews (killing the Jews), when the Jew will hide behind stones and trees.
The stones and trees will say O Moslems, O Abdulla, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him.
Only the Gharkad tree, (evidently a certain kind of tree) would not do that because it is one of the trees of the Jews."
(related by al-Bukhari and Moslem).
This hadith, related by two of the most respected and well-known hadith-collectors, is just as much part of the Islamic mindset as for instance praying five times a day and fasting during Ramadan. It is as much a part of Islam as the fact that the words Islam and Muslim come from the same root word that also forms the word Salaam - Peace. It is not the view of all Muslims that Jews must (or should or deserve to) die, certainly, however it is the view held by many.
It sounds like a somewhat strange line from a war movie. "There is a Jew behind me, come and kill him." People who believe that these words are true, that they were spoken by a Prophet of God, that they are important words, I do not believe that these people will work towards peace. The extermination of an entire people is NOT okay. That is what the Nazis tried last century, that is what ISIS tried in 2015 when they hunted down, starved and killed so many of the Yazidi people. The Nazis targeted the Jewish people, gays, gypsies and other minorities. The so-called Islamic State targets anyone who doesn't agree with their particular brand of Extreme Islam - be they fellow Muslims, Christians, Yezidis or people of other faiths. For Hamas who rule the Gaza Strip and Fatah who rule the Palestinian-controlled parts of Judea and Samaria (a.k.a. the West Bank), Israel is an enemy that must be targeted, Jews are a people who must be exterminated. That is the sad reality on the ground. The following is an excerpt from an article about Khaled Mashaal:
"Palestine is ours, from the river to the sea and from the south to the north. There will be no concession on an inch of the land," he told the crowd on his first visit to Gaza. "We will never recognise the legitimacy of the Israeli occupation and therefore there is no legitimacy for Israel, no matter how long it will take."
~ Khaled Mashaal, Hamas leader | Source: Tens of thousands celebrate Hamas 'victory' rally as exiled leader returns | The Guardian | Article Date: 08 December 2012
It may be relatively quiet right now on the rocket-front, however within a few years, rocket after Palestinian rocket will no doubt once again hit Israeli cities, towns, villages and fields. Until that time, Palestinians will send people to die in suicide attacks, will attempt to use knives, stones and cars to kill as many Israelis as possible. It does not seem to matter whether it is a pregnant woman who is stabbed or a mother who is brutally murdered in front of her children or a couple who die slowly as their children watch or a car driving into people simply waiting for the light to change or a teenager with a knife attacking people whose only 'crime' is waiting for the bus in the wrong place at the wrong time. Because the "poor, poor Palestinians" are simply acting out and oh, don't they just remind you of rebellious teenagers. Somehow, the fairytale of the "poor, poor Palestinians" seems to be THE excuse needed for the world to find it acceptable that rockets are being sent at Israel, that teenagers are kidnapped, that innocents are being slaughtered. Not because of happenings in the last hundred years. Not because of the existence of the State of Israel since 1948. Not even specifically because the Palestinians want to finish what Hitler started, as I so often hear from shouting, masked men waving around IS and Hamas flags on the television news. When will the world stop believing in the innocence of the Palestinians? When will the media stop siding with the aggressors instead of the victims? When will we face the fact that Palestinians radicals are using Islam to slaughter as many Israelis as possible, as many Jews as possible? When will YOU learn the truth about what is rally going on and act to change what is happening? Peace is possible. Peace in Israel, in Gaza, in Judea and Samaria. Peace from the river to the sea, from north to south. Peace for all people, not just the ones with the best spin doctors. The only thing is... It might take a while:
“Peace will come when the Arabs will love their children more than they hate us.”
~ Golda Meir (Statement to the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., 1957)
I originally wrote this post a year ago, in February 2015.
Now, a year later, I am posting it. Sadly, it is even more relevant today than it was a year ago.