Tag Archives: Arab nations

Jimmy Carter Makes Sense On Israel-Palestinian Conflict

I know many Jews who regard former president Jimmy Carter as an enemy of Israel and insist that George Bush has done more for Jews than any prior president. Carter has been appearing on several talk shows such as Jon Stewart and Larry King in order to hype his new book: ‘Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid.” His message is simple, but right on target. If Israel continues its present policies at some point it will be faced with the demographic nightmare that a one Israel solution eventually will result in a majority of the population being Muslim. Is it possible to have a “Jewish state” in which a majority are of the Muslim faith? Anyone familiar with Israeli politics knows it is virtually impossible to get Jews to agree on a single candidate, let alone a single program. The result would be Arab bloc voting, Arabs taking over the government, and then civil war and conflict.

Jimmy Carter’s solution is rather simple. Israel returns to the 1967 border although he believes it would be possible to arrange some modifications of borders by a swap of land. Arab nations would have to recognize Israel and trade and commerce could flourish between the nations. Carter argues there could be a financial arrangement to deal with the refugee problem. Carter also suggests a corridor– under supervision of the IDF– that would link Gaza with other Palestinians.

Jimmy Carter, unlike George Bush who brought violence and terrorism to the Middle East, is the ONLY AMERICAN PRESIDENT WHO EVER NEGOTIATED PEACE BETWEEN ISRAEL AND AN ARAB NATION. He helped negotiate a cease fire between Hamas and Israel last June, but Israel refused to end its blockade of goods going into Gaza and the rest is history.

For some reason, many Jews intensely dislike Jimmy Carter despite his accomplishments in aiding peace for Israel. I have heard cries that he wants to destroy Israel. Nothing in his actions nor in his words are directed towards any other end than peace for Israel. One may disagree with his suggestions, but to term Carter an enemy of Israel is a view without any foundation in reality.

Hopefully, some day, future Israelis will remember this brave and decent man with the respect he is due.

Protests Sweep Arab World

The Israeli air force has caused massive destruction to facilities in Gaza as well as killing hundreds, but it has also sparked large scale demonstrations throughout the Arab world. After Friday prayers in Cairo, Tehran, Damascus, and Amman, thousands of people marched through the streets shouting hate toward Israel and demanding action on the part of their leaders. In Tehran, as over six thousand marched shouting, “Death to Israel” and “Death To America” Ayatollah Akbar Hshemi Rafsanjani said an Israeli defeat in Gaza would be a ‘scandal” for the Israel government and lead to its downfall. Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki said an invasion of Gaza would result in a massive defeat of Israeli forces. He warned Hamas had been given new anti-tank weapons which would wipe out Israel tanks.

The Egyptian and Jordan governments made certain to curtail demonstrations in order to avoid things getting out of hand and turning into massive anti-government protests. Ironically, Iran in raising the topic of new anti-tank weapons gave credence to Israel arguments they had to bomb Gaza in order to destroy new weapons being smuggled into the territory.

Israel is not going to confront Hamas fighters in the streets of Gaza cities. The air force will use its power to prepare the way for tanks so they will not be attacked by the new weapons. The solution is rather clear — there is need for an independent force in Gaza to ensure supplies for its citizens and to ensure that rocket attacks cease.

Japanese Apology In 1972 Angered Arab Nations

Recently released documents reveal that in 1972, the Japanese government offered an apology to Israel after members of the Japanese Red Army attacked Lod airport in Tel Aviv and killed 24 people. The act of apologizing because people from one’s nation killed innocent humans might be viewed as a generous act of humanity, but to Arab nations in 1972, the apology was viewed as support for Israel and threatened to endanger Japanese relations with Middle Eastern nations. A Japanese diplomat met with Prime Minister Golda Meir, apologized and offered $1.5 million as compensation to families of the dead. This simple act of decency aroused fury in Arab capitals. Syria sent a blistering telegram saying: “the weak point for Israel arising from its inhumane actions(invading Arab nations) will be erased by he Japanese apology.”

The Egyptian government inquired “is there a need for the Japanese government to make such an apology for the actions of three Japanese?” The reality is Arab nations invariably stand by the actions of terrorists when it comes to killing Israelis and are infuriated when Israel kills Arabs. In a sense, this attitude is one piece of the puzzle as to why there is no peace in the Middle East. Perhaps, if Arab nations accepted responsibility for the actions of terrorists, and were as concerned for the deaths of any innocent civilians, the Middle East might be a safer region today.

Arab Nations Worried About Iran’s Power

Officials of an unidentified Arab nation told Israel representatives his nation was greatly concerned about the growing power of Iran in the region. In effect, the Arab nation indicated there was a growing sense of worry among Arab nations that a powerful Iran posed a threat to the entire Middle East. It appears nations which have significant Shiite minorities fear Iran will reach out to those groups in order to destabilize other nations. The official pointed out “if this is how Iran threatens when it doesn’t have nuclear weapons, what will it do when its nuclear program ripens.”

Perhaps, Israel is being offered a unique opportunity to forge positive relations with other Arab nations and help to organize an anti-Iran coalition of those fearing a powerful Iran. In a sense, Iran could replace Israel as the nation which is the center of Arab conflict in the Middle East.

Goodbye Africa-Hello Europe!

Libyan leader, Moamer Kadhafi, made it clear to members of the African Union he would turn his back on the black portion of Africa and redirect his money elsewhere– to Europe or to the Mediterranean area. The upcoming Addis Abba African Union summit “must mark a decisive step in the eastablishment of African unity” and “anyone who blocks the unity project is part of a conspiracy to sell Africa to the highest bidder.” Kadhafi wants a federal African government among the continent’s 53 member nations. He believes the African Union commission is a dead letter “without any power and ought to be replaced by an executive cabinet.”

A key aspiration of Kadhafi is enabling the Arab portion of Africa to assume greater control over the African Union. Kadhfi noted the Arabn states have been deprived of assuming leadership of the AU “even though they represent two-thirds of the continent and contribue 60% of the African Union’s budget.” The Libyan leader charged “if this situation persists, it will be tantamount fo racism against Arabs.”

There is scant hope any form of federal government will be initiated for the African continent. At the southern tip of Africa lies a powerful and ever wealthier South Africa, towards the north lies Nigeria which will probably become the most populous nation on the continent and is divided between Muslims and Christians while to its east lies the military power of Ethiopia, another basically Christian nation with strong ties to the United States. None of these powerful nations will allow the Arab portion of the continent to assume leadership.

Arab World Concerned About Iran’s Influence

Salah Nasrawi, writing in the Turkish Daily News, emphasized the growing concern among Arab nations regarding the increased power of Iran in the Middle East. many share America’s anxieties, but regard a military option an an invitaton to disaster. Among there greatest fears is an American-Iran military confrontation could set the Middle East ablaze and give rise to violence and insurgency. Iraq and Lebanon are major concerns among Arab leaders since both nations are suseptible to Iranian influence, particularly, since Iran is funding insurgent groups. Even befoe America got into the picture, Arab leaders have been attempting to curtail Iran’s influence over what happens in Lebanon and trying to hedge in Hizbullah which is closely linked to Iran.

Many Middle East experts like Steven Cook at the Council on Foreign Relations, are warning that Arab leaders are probably hedging their bets rather than lining up behind the United States. Bush has confused most Middle Eastern nations, and they still wonder if he is serious about an Israeli-Palestinian peace or whether he simply lacks a copherent approach to dealing with the problem. That underlines the importance to Bush of being decisive and working to ensure both sides in the conflict are ready to accept compromise and move on rather than remained paralyzed in rhetoric.