This map is pretty telling. There is a war going on…but the Israeli’s do not seem to be losing it. In America – few things seem to actually be bi-partisan. Our dedication is shown to Israel’s “security” via billions in money directly to the Israeli government paid by American taxpayers as well as billions more in military guarantees with the newest and best weaponry in the world; not to mention agreement in Congress in large margins on both the Republican and Democratic sides of the political aisles. This uncompromising loyalty to Israel is quite perplexing since an unbiased observer may in fact ask the question: “What are we getting in return for all of this support, and if it’s such a great idea – why aren’t we doing it for all of our allies?”
There is no question that the situation in Israel is complicated. On one hand – they have a very hostile and aggressive Iranian president often framing Israel as major problem within the region. You’ve got militant groups like Hezbollah and Hamas which are both very much dedicated to fighting Israel…and the people of Israel really do have to be concerned about security as rockets are fired from time to time putting Israelis in harms way. On the other hand – you have an oppressive and brutal crackdown by the Israelis of the Palestinian people. The Israeli occupation has had a significant impact on the Palestinian economy. The CIA World Fact Book estimates 2011 unemployment was 23.5%. Also:
Despite the Palestinian Authority’s (PA) largely successful implementation of economic and security reforms and the easing of some movement and access restrictions by the Israeli Government in 2010, Israeli closure policies continue to disrupt labor and trade flows, industrial capacity, and basic commerce, eroding the productive capacity of the West Bank economy. Since mid-2007 the PA under President Mahmoud ABBAS and Prime Minister Salam FAYYAD has depended on more than $3 billion in direct foreign donor assistance to the PA’s budget.
The biggest impediments to economic improvements in the West Bank remain Palestinians’ lack of access to land and resources in Israeli-controlled areas, import and export restrictions, and a high-cost capital structure. Absent robust private sector growth, the PA will continue to rely heavily on donor aid for its budgetary needs.
Source: CIA World Fact Book
But it’s even worse in the Gaza Strip where Israel has completely demolished all infrastructure and made it nearly impossible for Palestinians to even put food on their tables to feed their kids. As of May 6th, 2010 – Israel made it illegal for Palestinians in the Gaza Strip to have access to fresh meat, seeds and nuts, fishing rods, chickens, horses, cattle, goats, musical instruments, newspapers or even wood for construction. That type of oppressive brutality will push even the most peaceful people to extremes and hostile actions:
Source: The Economist
PBS Frontline even did a documentary in 2005 on the growing extremism within Israel that has made it difficult for both sides to achieve peace:
In “Israel’s Next War?” FRONTLINE goes deep inside the world of militant Jewish radicals who pose a grave new threat to Israeli security and, potentially, to the region. “The dream of these extremists”—to blow up the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, one of the most important holy sites in the Muslim world—”should give us sleepless nights,” says former Israeli Security Chief Avi Dichter. “Jewish terror is liable to create a serious strategic threat that will turn the Israeli-Palestinian conflict into a conflict between thirteen million Jews and a billion Muslims all over the world.”
Source: PBS Frontline
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