Tag Archives: peace

Jewish Nobel Prize Winners 2013

So I haven’t really been keeping this blog up to date. The little I have posted has just been random rants. But I thought for the Nobel Prizes, I’d go back on topic again.

This year’s Nobel prizes were awarded this past week. The laureattes were as follows:

Physiology or Medicine: James E. Rothman, Randy W. Schekman and Thomas C. Südhof
Physics: François Englert and Peter Higgs
Chemistry: Martin Karplus, Michael Levitt and Arieh Warshel
Literature: Alice Munro
Peace:  Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons
Economic Sciences: Eugene F. Fama, Lars Peter Hansen, Robert J. Shiller

The Jewish laureates are in bold. Of the 12 individuals to win awards, 6 were Jewish. This should be a surprising figure if you consider that only 0.2% of the world’s population is Jewish, or that less than 2% of the American population is Jewish. But it’s something we’ve come to expect. This happens year in year out. What’s the explanation for it? I don’t know. If you look around this blog, you’ll see various attempts at explaining the phenomena. None of them really do it for me. The explanation would have to be a multitude of reasons combined together I think, but I don’t really know.

Two of the winners, Levitt and Warshel are Israeli, but they now live in the US. A pity they’re not teaching or doing research at Israeli universities.

Source for which winners are Jewish: jinfo.org.

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Pesach and Freedom

So yesterday I was reading an article about how Obama has a seder night every year. Despite not being Jewish, he connects to it, because Pesach is the story of slaves being freed from hundreds of years of slavery. The Exodus from Egypt is more than just a single people being freed. It represents many different people’s stories. The plight of every slave that ever lived. And the hope that one day he will be free and free of his tormenters.

What annoyed me in the article, is that the article then went on to speak about the Palestinians one day going free and that the idea of the Palestinians being free is in fact a very Jewish idea and we should do all that we can in order to give them full autonomy.

Now, I have no problem with Palestinian autonomy. I do have a problem when Palestinian autonomy causes harm to innocent Israelis. To imply that Israelis do not want peace and that Israel is enslaving Palestinians is ridiculous in my opinion and you only have to visit Israel to know that isn’t true.

For 65 years we’ve been trying to make this two-state solution work. The Palestinians had ample opportunity to accept. Israel accepted the UN partition plan in 1947. It was the Arabs that went to war with Israel. When Israel conquered Jerusalem in 1967, it was not Israel that was the aggressor, it was our Arab neighbours.

People still talk about the “two-state solution” as if it’s a solution. IMO it isn’t and we’ve been wasting too much energy trying to solve this problem. We should try and live side by side as best as possible, but there are just to many issues that cannot be solved (such as major security concerns, hundreds of thousands of people being kicked out of their homes and many others).

But whatever you think about the road to peace, the Palestinians are not in slavery. Yes, there are security checks for bringing things into the West Bank and Gaza. There are check points all over the West Bank to stop weapons smuggling. And there is a wall surrounding the Palestinian areas stopping them from entering Israel. Would it be nicer for them if these obstacles weren’t there? Yes. But they’re for a reason. The number of suicide bombings within Israel has basically dropped to zero over the last few years. A dramatic decrease, but all thanks to the security fence. I’m sure it’s a bit of a hassle being checked every time you drive through a check point, but frankly, the same thing happens to me at the airport and we even have security check points on the roads in Israel. There’s a reason for that. To stop terrorism.

We’ll have peace when the Palestinians and the Arab world in general come to the conclusion that there is a Jewish state and it is here to stay.

So happy Pesach to you. Freedom is both a Jewish and universal value and I hope in the future we’ll see a peaceful Middle East, but it would be naive to say that day will come soon.

Pesach sameach

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Israel

You can also download the full hour-long documentary for $5 at: http://www.israelinsidethemovie.com/

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January 25, 2013 · 11:36 am

Naftali Bennett on the Israel-Palestine conflict

This Tuesday are the Israeli elections. Bennett is the leader of the Bayit Yehudi party and will probably be the third or fourth biggest party in this year’s elections.

This is an important video for people to see. The international community and a lot of Israelis just don’t understand the security threats of a Palestinian state. This isn’t about making the lives of Palestinians miserable as so many people around the world seem to think.

The Palestinians are a major security threat and Gaza is the proof of it. Israel withdrew from Gaza 8 years ago and kicked 8,000 Israelis out of their homes in the process. All in an attempt to come closer to peace. The result was 20,000 rockets fired at Israeli homes in the last 8 years.

Bennett has my vote and this video is one of the reasons why.

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January 19, 2013 · 11:48 pm

Building in E1

I personally don’t understand what the big fuss is about. Firstly, we’re nowhere near this supposed two-state solution that will solve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Hamas still wants all of Israel to become Palestine. A large percentage of the Palestinians refuse to recognize Israel’s right to exist. Secondly, even if we were ever to have this two-state “solution”, Israel would not give up sovereignty over Jerusalem. Jerusalem is Israel’s capital and will remain Israel’s capital. In any potential two-state solution, Jerusalem would remain Israel’s undivided capital.

So I really don’t understand why it’s so bad that Israel is building in E1 and in areas where no Palestinians are currently living. E1 will not be part of a Palestinian state and neither will Gush Etzion, Ramat Shlomo or anywhere else Israel is building.

Lastly, I don’t think this two state solution has any chance of working within the next twenty years, whether Israel builds or not. The Palestinians have to change their attitude towards Israel if they want a state. Yes… I am pinning this on the Palestinians. I think 99% of Israelis would happily live in peace with our neighbours. We have nothing to gain by starting wars with our neighbours. Any wars we ever get into are about self-defence. No Western country wants to be in a war with any other country. They have nothing to gain from it apart from defending themselves. It’s up to the Arab world to change it’s attitude. I don’t know how long this will take. It may never happen. But that is the root of the problem. You can’t be at peace with people that don’t want it.

(And lastly, I’m sure there are many people in these Arab countries that would prefer to have no wars and would rather develop their countries instead of being in constant turmoil and focusing their efforts on acquiring weapons, but sadly, these people are either the minority or are the ones without power.)

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Why Recognition Matters

Why is it so important that the Palestinians recognize Israel as a Jewish state?

The answer is simple. The reason is because so long as it doesn’t, we can never achieve peace. Recognizing that the majority of the land of Israel belongs to Israel and the Jewish people means the Palestinians agree that it isn’t theirs and they will not try and capture after any peace agreements. The problem is that the Palestinians refuse to recognize this fact. Any land Israel gives away will not lead to peace. The Palestinians will always demand the rest of Israel to be included in their state and they will continue fighting for it, till they have it or until they are no longer alive to fight.

This is why recognition matters and this is one of the reasons we are so, so far from ever reaching a peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinians.

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Israel – Palestine conflict. When will it end?

Many people think there will be peace in the Middle East when there is a Palestinian state. These people are wrong. The Palestinians want all of Israel and they will not stop till the have it all.

Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal, making his first ever visit to the Gaza Strip, vowed on Saturday never to recognize Israel and said his Islamist group would never abandon its claim to all Israeli territory.

“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 a sea of supporters at an open-air rally marking the 25th anniversary of the founding of Hamas and a celebration of the organization’s “victory” over Israel.

Israel left Gaza in 2005, but that did not help the peace process at all. Despite thousands of Israelis being evicted from their homes, the only thing Israel got back in response was thousands upon thousands of rockets fired at civilians.

It’s a problem that doesn’t look it’s going away. What bothers me tremendously is that Israel is always seen in a negative light by the world and the media. People argue this isn’t true, since the Palestinians also seem to think that the media is against them, but sadly, the media is heavily against Israel in many countries and many people are too. Israel really does want peace and perhaps even a minority (yes, I think it’s only a minority) of the Palestinian people would like this conflict to end. But how can we have peace when the Palestinians are demanding all of Israel?

This war started many years ago. Jews have always been living in Israel and Israel has always been the Jewish homeland. In the 19th and 20th centuries when Jews started moving to Israel, this angered the Arabs and they started attacking Jews, murdering many. This is where the Israeli-Palestinian conflict began. Jews from all over the world started moving to Israel. First the Turkish were in charge and then the British. Jews moved here peacefully and bought the land they lived on. Land was not stolen from the Palestinians, but the Arabs living just didn’t like the influx of Jews and started attacking them. Thank God the Jews here managed to defend themselves. Ironically, these wars against Israel only caused Israel to expand it’s territory. The wars in ’48, ’67 and ’73 were all due to Arab aggression. Had these wars never have happened, the Palestinians would have their land and the Jews theirs. We would be living in Israel happily and peacefully together. This wasn’t to be though and now we’re in the situation we’re in today.

I think the only way this conflict can ever end, is after a big war where Hamas and Israel’s haters are wiped out or if the Palestinians completely change their attitude towards Israel. Recognition of Israel as the Jewish homeland would go a long, long way. I don’t want to see another war, but it will surely happen, since Hamas has made it clear, it will not give up till it has conquered all of Israel.

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