There really is no good reason for Palestinians and Israeli Jews to be fighting one another, as they are long lost brothers from the same Semitic origin. The current crisis in Israel/Palestine is perpetuated by U.S. economic interests and rejection of any peaceful dialogue by religious extremists, in particular Christian Zionists in the U.S. (CUFI) and the pro-Zionist Israeli political lobby (AIPAC). These are the most extreme examples of pro-Zionist agenda that promotes militarism as the only solution to the Israeli/Palestinian conflict..
In general most Israelis and Palestinians are stressed by the constant conflicts and would nothing better than peace, though we are caught up in the most right-wing anti-peace U.S./Israeli policymakers for quite some time. According to John Hagee, leader of Christian Zionist Cristians United For Israel (CUFI), there is no room for a Palestinian state in Israel's occupied territories of West Bank and Gaza, and a cease fire between Hezbollah and IDF would delay Armageddon..
"CUFI gains by tapping into the established networks and power of the pro-Israel lobby in its quest to hasten the Messiah's Second Coming. Christian Zionists believe this will take place when Jews are gathered in biblical lands stretching from the Nile to the Euphrates. It will happen, as M.J. Rosenberg of the Israel Policy Forum acerbically summarized in "Loving Israel to Death," when the Battle of Armageddon leads to the death of the majority of Jews and the saving of just 144,000 after they convert to Christianity.5 Events in the Middle East can be seen as leading to such a conflagration. For example, Christian Zionists thought judgment day was near during the Israeli attacks on Lebanon in 2006, which is why CUFI lobbied to delay a ceasefire.6
Hagee has also played down his concern that a Middle East peace process might lead to Israel returning land to the Palestinians and slow down the Second Coming. However, US President George Bush's speech on 16 July 2007 calling for an international conference on the Palestinian-Israeli issue coincided with the CUFI conference, and it felt it had to respond by adding a fourth lobbying day issue, which was given top priority, to the three cited above: "America should not pressure Israel to give up land in the current climate."
article found @; http://www.zmag.org/content/showarticle.cfm?ItemID=13535
The stereotype of the Palestinian suicide bomber killing children on public buses has done a great deal to strengthen the cause of AIPAC and CUFI lobbyists to obtain more military aid for Israel and perpetuate violence. This adds to the ever growing military strength of the U.S./Israeli forces, there is little the Palestinians can do but fight back in self-defense by suicide bombings, even if this is not the most effective tactic for long term struggle..
Certain members of the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade (AMB) noticed they were better off not losing their best young fighters to suicide bombings, and instead engage with the IDF forces in longer term armed struggle for self goverance of West Bank. An increase in direct political involvement by leaders of Al-Aqsa is also happening to address the double standard of obligations applied to Palestinian activists but not to the Israeli military..
"Moreover, to fulfil Palestinian "obligations", Abbas must renounce armed resistance categorically. So if he provides a tactical rationale when he calls for a ceasefire (i.e., rocket attacks by Palestinian militants provoke Israeli retaliation and are counterproductive), his motivations are questioned by the Israeli media. He is to renounce armed action on the part of the Palestinians a priori, so to speak. But Abbas cannot do so if he wants to be elected and, down the line, govern. He and most Palestinians believe that the armed militants are "neither criminals nor murderers. Rather, they are fighting for the honourable lives of their Palestinians brothers".
On the other hand, and in keeping with the double standards routinely applied to Israeli actions vs. Palestinian actions, no one sees anything wrong, for example, in the Israeli Cabinet deciding to reexamine its policy of demolishing Palestinian houses (1,500 by June 2004, according to UN figures) to see whether such tactics are effective in achieving Israel's goal of quashing armed resistance.
Nothing even close to Palestinian "obligations" is required from Israel -- not because obligations and reparations on its part as an occupier and usurper are not vitally necessary for peace, but rather because commentators such as Ross see such obligations (example, Israel should withdraw troops from the West Bank and Gaza before the Palestinians are forced to declare a ceasefire) as "highly unlikely to happen" because Israel has and will continue to have the upper hand militarily.
Zakaria Zubeidi, West Bank commander of the Al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades, joins supporters during a visit by Palestinian presidential candidate Mahmoud Abbas to Jenin, on 30 December 2004. (Photo: Reuters/Ammar Awad)
A similar weird logic is applied to why it is inadvisable for militants to be co-opted in the Palestinian political process. These militants do not have a figure like Gerry Adams, the president of Sinn Fein, the political wing of the Irish Republican Army, "who could hold the hardliners in check". But Israel has not allowed such a figure to arise. It has systematically hunted down and murdered militant leaders. So now we have the spectacle of Zakariya Zubeidi, of Fateh's military wing in Jenin, escorting Abbas in the city while he himself is being hunted by Israel, targeted for killing."
article found @; http://electronicintifada.net/v2.article3487.shtml
This change in AMB's tactics and increased political involvement may not matter a great deal to people in the U.S., though in Israel/Palestine it does. Since AMB is involved with their community in a support network, they somewhat resemble the strategy of populist based Hezbollah from Lebanon. We can only hope this change in tactics by Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade leader Zubeidi can become a positive change of direction from the loss of innocent life of previous suicide bombings. Of course now that Zubeidi is working for peace, he is also running for his life from IDF assassins. Better off ethically to kill an enlisted IDF soldier armed and in uniform in an act of self defense than blow up an innocent child just out riding the bus..
That's the AMB side of the story, and we're not really sure what Hamas is doing these days because of a virtual media silence. Declaring Hamas a terrorist group and then isolating them will not improve conditions for either Israeli and Palestinian..
As witnessed by the GW Bush regime and their constant verbal attacks on Hamas, the democratically elected representatives of the Palestinian government. How can people in occupied Palestine be expected to fulfill their democratic voice if their own elected representatives are isolated by the U.S. "leadership" of Bush regime? What is the new and improved "plan" for the Bush regime? Isolate and exclude Hamas from any peace dialogue..
"The "plan," such as it is, is painfully familiar, only narrower and more constrained than ever before. The centerpiece is a call for a new regional peace conference in the fall, to be led not by Bush himself but by his secretary of state. Bush says it will include Israel, the Palestinians, and "their neighbors in the region." But the only Palestinians allowed to participate will be the Abbas-led Fatah-controlled sector of the Palestinian Authority operating in the West Bank; the democratically elected Hamas-led Palestinian parliament and its government in Gaza will be excluded. "
article found @; http://www.zmag.org/content/showarticle.cfm?ItemID=13369
What happens when one group is excluded from the peace process? Even after their election victory, Hamas is made to feel powerless via exclusion and once again resort to violence, thus providing the Christian Zionists of CUFI with another excuse for taxpayer subsidized U.S./Israeli military intervention..
So here's a suggestion for a protest sign and applied idea; exclude CUFI from their attempts to derail Palestine's peace process, and invite Hamas to the table for peaceful dialogue instead..