The Instigator
mcc1789
Pro (for)
Winning
40 Points
The Contender
twsurber
Con (against)
Losing
28 Points

Palestine Should be Free, the Israeli Foundation and Occupation are Unjust

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 11/2/2009 Category: Politics
Updated: 7 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 3,603 times Debate No: 9909
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (14)
Votes (10)

 

mcc1789

Pro

To begin with, I would like to say the following. I am not anti-Semitic. Nor do I call for destruction of the Israeli people, nor a democratic government they may hold.
I am not a Muslim, nor advocate Islamic fundamentalism or religion generally. I do not agree with many tactics used now or in the past by Palestinian groups and their allies. I have every sympathy with the Jewish victims of the Holocaust and their desire for a homeland to escape persecution. However, I believe that Israel as established was unjust, along with the continued occupation of Palestinian territory. Separate, democratic entities representing both peoples must exist, with the right to defend themselves. Settlement building must cease, along with targeting civilians by Palestinian groups, both of which inflame conflict, along with other actions on both sides. I base this upon several contentions:
Although understanding and sympathizing with the plight of Jewish people, their persecution does not give any right to reclaim land they were expelled from over a thousand years ago. Settling would be one thing, if no residents were expelled. However, this was and is not the case. There were settlers who coexisted in peace, true, but this was not what Zionism advocated. From the beginning, Zionists wished to expel the Palestinians and reclaim all the historic Israeli territory. I fully realize the Zionists were not the only people to blame for this situation. First, the British Empire in the Balfour Declaration had promised the Jews a homeland, while also promising the Palestinians independence. After the League of Nations gave the British Mandatory Palestine (that included the modern country of Jordan) they did not follow either promise. Jewish immigration then rapidly increased with the 1920s and 30s, along with rebellion against the British government. I fully realize the Jews were attacked by Palestinians in this era and before. However, that does not in any way justify the goal of taking over all Palestine. Jewish groups used tactics which in later decades were condemned as terrorism when Palestinians did this. From the beginning, it the goal was to retake all Palestine:
Vladimir (Ze'ev) Dubnow, one of the Biluim wrote to his brother, the historian Simon Dubnow, in October 1882: "The ultimate goal ... is, in time, to take over the Land of Israel and to restore to the Jews the political independence they have been deprived of for these two thousand years .... The Jews will yet arise and, arms in hand (if need be), declare that they are the masters of their ancient homeland." (Dubnow himself shortly afterward returned to Russia.)[11]
Ben-Yehuda, who settled in Jerusalem in September 1881, wrote in July 1882 to Peretz Smolenskin in Vienna: "The thing we must do now is to become as strong as we can, to conquer the country, covertly, bit by bit ... We will not set up committees so that the Arabs will know what we are after, we shall act like silent spies, we shall buy, buy, buy."[12]
In October 1882 Ben-Yehuda and Yehiel Michael Pines, who had arrived in Palestine in 1878, wrote to Rashi Pin, in Vilna: "We have made it a rule not to say too much, except to those ... we trust ... the goal is to revive our nation on its land ... if only we succeed in increasing our numbers here until we are the majority [Emphasis in original] .... There are now only five hundred [thousand] Arabs, who are not very strong, and from whom we shall easily take away the country if only we do it through stratagems [and] without drawing upon us their hostility before we become the strong and populous ones."[13]
Later this was openly stated:
In 1938, David Ben-Gurion made it clear that his support for the establishment of the Jewish state in part of Palestine was only as an intermediary stage. Note how he uses the phrase "Eretz Yisrael" or "Land of Israel" in reference to the Biblical Map, he wrote:
"[I am] satisfied with part of the country, but on the basis of the assumption that after we build up a strong force following the establishment of the state--we will abolish the partition of the country and we will expand to the whole Land of Israel." (Expulsion Of The Palestinians, p. 107, One Palestine Complete, p. 403)
On July 8, 1947, Chaim Weizmann described how the average stateless Jew felt like to UNSCOP (UN Special Committee On Palestine) as follows:
"We ask today: 'What are the Poles? What are the French? What are the Swiss?' When that is asked, everyone points to a country, to certain institution, to parliamentary institution, and the man in the street will know exactly what it is. He has a passport.
If you ask what is a Jew is -- well, he is a man who has to offer a long explanation for his existence, and any person who has to offer an explanation as to what he is, is always suspect--- and from suspicion there is only one step to hatred or contempt." (Israel: A History, p. 147)
This explanation eloquently articulates how the average dispossessed, ethnically cleansed, and occupied Palestinian feels.
Since the Palestinian-Israeli conflict is a conflict in which both sides have some justice on their side (as once put by Ze'ev Jabotinsky and Chaim Weizmann), the Zionists propagandists resorted to extreme measures to demonize the Palestinian people. In their quest to demonize the Palestinian people, the Bible & the Holocaust have been cited to achieve the following:
To obscure facts and to deflect the core issues of the conflict
To gain a world wide sympathy for the Zionist enterprise.
Chief among these propaganda (or demonizing) tactics is the cite al-Hajj Amin al-Husseini's collaboration with the Nazis during WW II, while obscuring the fact that the Stern Terror Gang (once lead by Yitzhak Shamir) collaborated with the Nazis against the British Mandate during the same period (Israel: A History, p. 111-112). It is worth pointing out, also, that the Irgun (once led by Menachem Begin) attacked the British war machine and terrorized Palestinians while the Holocaust was in progress in Europe's concentration camps. Such facts are often hidden and purposely suppressed in most Jewish communities around the world, and for fairness sake, they must be debated.
Briefly, the Zionist enterprise will use all possible means to achieve its goals, including the exploitation of the Holocaust to portray Palestinians as Nazis, citing the Bible to paint the "Jewish state" as a divine prophecy, and above all using Hollywood's resources to demonize Arabs and Muslims. Ironically, the Bible was never cited nor exploited to mobilize the world Jewish community to "redeem Eretz Yisrael" during the Crusades' genocide!
(The above is taken http://www.palestineremembered.com...)
After World War 2, the United Nations decided to partition Palestine, then with an 80% Palestinian majority covering that which is now Israel and present Occupied Territories. With the Declaration of Independence by Israel, an immediate revolt by Palestinians occurred, along with invasion of Arab states. Most Palestinians fled, driven by fears of massacres such as Deir Yassin and or told by their leaders to escape for their safety. Following the wars since, the West Bank was occupied. Since then, all West Bank Palestinians have been refused Israeli citizenship while unification with family living in Israel proper held up (finally criminalized in 2002). Meanwhile, Jewish settlers in the West Bank are full citizens and can move as they please. I realize this had to do with terrorism, but that was caused by the past injustice. The Constitution of Israel formally codifies it as a Jewish state, while Israel has no laws against religious or ethnic discrimination. As for the peace deals, so far all have been the same-a powerless government with no ability to defend itself, restrict access, or control its airspace, water supply. What is needed will obviously be compromise and separate entities for both.
twsurber

Con

I would like to thank my opponent for this opportunity.

Overview: I will look at the resolution in three parts. First, Palestine should be free. Second; the Israeli Foundation. Third; The occupation is unjust.

DEFINITIONS:
Palestine: a former British mandate on the east coast of the Mediterranean; divided between Jordan and Israel in 1948
an ancient country in southwestern Asia on the east coast of the Mediterranean Sea; a place of pilgrimage for Christianity and Islam and Judaism
wordnetweb.princeton.edu/perl/webwn

Unjust: unfair: not fair; marked by injustice or partiality or deception; "used unfair methods"; wordnetweb.princeton.edu/perl/webwn

I will reserve the right to define or redefine as necessary in later rounds.

C-1: Palestine is already free. There is nothing that prohibits "Palestinians" from residing within the boundaries of what is known as Israel. Israelis allow and encourage "Palestinians" to run for public office.

C-2: Due to lack of a definition, I am assuming my opponent is using the terms Israeli Foundation and Israeli Government synonymously. What specifically makes the government of Israel unjust? There are identified parties with identified platforms that compete in elections.

C-3: The argument over the land goes back to Sarah & Abraham's sons: Isaac & Ishmael. Isaac's son Jacob was later named Israel. The land in question was given to the children of Israel (Jacob) by the God of the Talmud. The fact that they wish to occupy this land is completely justified because as they see it, it was given to them to possess by the God they recognize as the supreme being.

SUMMARY: I will attack my opponent's case further as the need arises. In the eyes of the Jews, Palestine is free, and the government and occupation are just. Thanks
Debate Round No. 1
mcc1789

Pro

I will first thank my opponent for accepting this challenge. I contest each of his arguments:

C-1: Let me define "Palestine" more clearly-by this I refer to what is now Israel, the Occupied Territories and Gaza, or the pre-1948 Mandatory Palestine, except for what is now Jordan. There is nothing that prohibits Palestinians born and living within the borders of Israel from runnin for office, voting, etc., true. However, Israel prohibits by law unification of families. Palestinians in the West Bank possess no say in the Israeli government which rules them, while Jewish settlers to a person automatically possess citizenship, can vote and hold public office. The demographic rise of Palestinians citizens of Israel (or "Israeli Arabs"), with the fact that Palestinians could legally gain majority power if those on the West Bank had the vote, etc., prevents this. I do not propose this, realizing it would destroy the Israeli people, but advocate two separate, independent, sovereign entities for both.

C-2: Allow me to clarify. By the Israeli Foundation I mean just that-how Israel was founded, on what principles, what methods were using in so doing, the stated goals, etc. I do not use the Israeli Government synonymously, although criticize them also. While Israel has a parliamentary democracy, as I stated above, it rules a huge population to which no voice is given, while allowing Jewish settlers on the West Bank this.

C-3: I completely reject this argument, while acknowledging that it touches upon the problem. This Biblical and Koranic story has no basis in known history. Christianity, Islam and Judaism have no basis in fact. I should mention that in the Koran it was Ishmael not Isaac Abraham offered in sacrifice, and they believe his descendants (Arabs) were promised the land. Neither of these impresses me. They are not justifications for either side, though used for them. Both sides believe they were given the land by God, much of the reason for such intractable, bitter conflict. I believe that living on and using land gives possession of this. Jews therefore had no claim to land they were expelled from in centuries past, nor right to disposses any resident. Conversely, though unjust in the beginning, the current Israeli residents may not be dispossessed, except where land has been taken by force they benefited personally from (within their own lifetime) referring spefically to house destructions and settlements in the West Bank.

I note that my opponent so far has not addressed much of my argument, particularly stated goals of Zionism that involved removing all Palestinians, nor the lack of Palestinian representation, the reality of peace deals, etc. I look forward to hearing more from him.
twsurber

Con

Opponent's case:

1. My opponent has defined the boundaries of "Palestine" as the Gaza Strip, the West Bank, the Golan Heights, and all of the remaining land of Israel commonly recognized as the nation of Israel and "occupied territories". He omits the Sinai Peninsula which was returned to Egypt, as well as current day Jordan (formerly Trans-Jordan moreover Land across the Jordan River) as they are already predominately occupied by Arabs.

He states that he does not advocate taking from the Jews. He does advocate for two separate entities; Israel & Palestine. Many people have shared this view and have given it the moniker "TSS" short for two state solution. There have been many such proposals since Israel's declared statehood in 1948. It seems quite simple to the outsider to say something to the effect of: "Okay, Palestine, you may form your own government and you may have the following properties. Israel, you may also have a government and the rest of the property. Please live peaceably together forever and ever". Unfortunately it is not that simple. David ben Gurion said that he would settle for Israel the size of a bed sheet if the Arabs would recognize their right to exist. The Arabs have never recognized the Jews right to exist. It seems a small price to pay to get what they say they really want. "Okay Israel, we the Arab "Palestinians" do hereby recognize you as an official Jewish state". No dice!

Well then, Israel, you must surrender the Gaza strip, the Golan Heights, all of the West Bank including the Temple Mount and your capitol, as well as everything else you claim was given to you by God or the League of Nations. Pack up all your stuff and move to Brooklyn".

If both sides would agree to a two state solution, how does my opponent propose that the land be divided? Would he say that the "Palestinians" should have all of the West Bank? We don't need a crystal ball to tell us that out of spite, the "Palestinians" would disallow the Jews to visit places such as Bethlehem and Jerusalem. They would not allow Jews to visit the Temple Mount which is their holiest site. The intent of the League of Nations was to make Israel a home for the Jews and Jordan a home for the "Palestinians". That gives us a two state solution. Jews would be welcomed in Israel, Arab "Palestinians" would be welcomed in Jordan. Ideally there would be no friction, don't start none, there won't be none.

C-2: My opponent feels like Israel stole some land, kicked the Arabs out, and set up an unfair government.
Why did the League of Nations choose this particular spot to send the Jews to set up and restore their own nation? Since history tells us that Abraham was originally from Ur, which is in present day Iraq, why didn't they say, Israel, go set up in Iraq? That's where Abraham was from, go set up over there. Or, since the United States is your buddy, maybe they will give you all of Brooklyn, or maybe even New Jersey. That didn't happen either. Theodore Herzl suggested that the Jews go to what they considered home, the Promised Land, the land of Caanan. It's really hazy to even refer to the land as "Palestine". The Romans called it "Palestine" as an insult to the Jews. I will address Biblical matters further in C-3. Suffice it to say that religious faith does in fact play a role in this. As my opponent has conceded, Israel has endured a number of oppressions throughout their history. If they were given the opportunity to establish a government for themselves, how much sense would it make to allow for more oppression? Get real!

C-3: While it is convenient for my opponent to reject both the Bible and the Qur'an, they do in fact play a huge role. The Bible, particularly the books of the Jewish Talmud, explain why the Jews felt they were entitled to all of this land. The Qur'an plays an equally important role for the Arabs. To say they have no basis in history is absurd.

At my opponent's request, I will address his argument of Zionist takeover. I visited the source he provided for us to read. It is clearly a propaganda site dedicated to pulling at the heartstrings of those sympathetic to the "Palestinian" cause. I too could easily conduct a "copy-paste exercise" from web sites of equally opposing views. What my opponent presented for our reading pleasure was simply the opinion of an extreme Zionist. Many other Zionists advocated the intent of aliyah in a peaceful manner. Much of the land in question was actually bought with money as a real estate transaction. The Golan Heights, Gaza Strip, and West Bank were won in a war. Israel gave up the Gaza Strip and now it is full of Hamas terrorists who like to attack Israel. The Golan Heights was taken from Syria. Another terrorist group, Hezbollah, would love to be there. That would enable them to launch rockets at Israel from a closer range. While it isn't prudent to label all "Palestinians" as terrorists, it is equally prudent to keep them at a distance based upon their past unreliability in regard to living peacefully next door. Thanks
Debate Round No. 2
mcc1789

Pro

1. I omitted the Sinai Peninsula and Jordan because they are not in dispute for one, while culturally, nationally being separate. Defining what constitutes Palestine is a hard thing as I recognize. They were not omitted solely due to being predominatly occupied by Arabs.

Because of the Jews presently living in the state of Israel, however unjust acquisition of the land was, it would be wrong to kill or disposses them. On the other hand, in the West Bank settlement is expanding aggressively, which must be stopped, as for one it causes more conflict, and is wrong anyway. The Palestinians will likely have to recognize Israel in the future if there will be peace. However this sticks in their throats, with the past conquest, all of which makes it that much harder.

I do not claim to know exactly how separate entities should be composed, achieved and exist. To claim that I did is foolish. I am an outsider, yes, as we all are. I fully understand it's not that simple. My argument has been that Israel is not the victim, but took land from a resident majority unjustly, with the help of the United Nations and United States. That's it's foundation and hence occupations are unjust. That as the majority and original residents, the Palestinians have the right to self-determination, resistance and to stop further expansion of Israel. Obviously it is not a simple issue, no one least of all me denies that.

I do not say all the Jews should go. I have never said that. Exact division is vexing and will remain so. I am merely claiming that from the beginning Jewish people had no right to reclaim Israel, with or without outside help, and hence occupy Palestinian land. The details of the solution are beyond me. Even claiming the first is controversial as we know, however. My efforts are focused there. Neither God nor the United Nations can be said to dictate who gets what. I might note it was the United Nations, not League of Nations, which formed Israel. The League of Nations gave the UK the Mandate of Palestine after WW1. The idea of the Palestinians just going to Jordan is an offensive one, implying they can leave ancestral homes. This is comparable to saying "Jews have no nation" and so could be expelled to anywhere, a sentiment which led to all this at least in part. Arab Palestinians have persecuted by Arab states, Jordan included, such as the infamous Black September of 1970, in which thousands were killed by the Jordanian Army. I have no love of the Arab states or any particular group. I speak about the broader issues of right. "Ideally there would be no friction, don't start none, there won't be none." Well, reclaiming land you lost over a millennium ago from the people who live there started friction. All the rest has come after it.

C-2 Israel did in fact steal some land, kick the Arabs out, and set up an unfair government. The League of Nations did not choose anything but to give Britain the Mandate. The United Nations, on the other hand, chose to establish a nation for Jews in Palestine, because of their historical claims and suffering during WW2. I have never denied it, and since this was their home for thousands of years in the past, that made sense. That does not make it any more right though. I understandy why the Zionists desired a homeland, and to reclaim Israel. The problem is there were people living there already. It would be one thing to settle peacefully beside them, assuming that were possible, but not to claim you were owed all that back, no matter what your suffering, which I fully sympathize with. Two wrongs do not make a right. That land had been referred to as "Palestine" for nearly a thousand years. The Romans may have begun it as an insult against Jews, but the Palestinians did not even exist then. I have never denied religious faith plays a role in this. In fact religious faith is key and makes the crisis all the more intractable. I do not wish for the Jews to be oppressed. However the chain of events had brought us to this place, and what happened was wrong. They oppressed themselves in order to escape oppression in the countries they fled. There is much tragedy in all of this. I do not know the way out now, but again wish merely to prove what happened cannot be justified, even with the suffering the Jews over many centuries, up to and including the Holocaust, which established Israel for good.

C-3 I do not deny or reject the fact that the Bible and Qu'ran play a key role, as I've said. I do reject the idea they are factual historical documents, at least in large part, and give valid claims to land. I understand this is why they both feel entitled to it. That has never been denied or rejected. They are part of history, but do not record it well.

I took Zionist quotes off a pro-Palestinian website my opponent takes issue with. Apparently to copy and paste them for quotation is somehow wrong. My opponent has not refuted the quotes, or addressed the fact that they show the intent of Zionist leaders, from the Labor Left to Religious Right, for the forcible removal of all Palestians, hardly a peaceful aliyah, though I do not that many did want that. Of course the website is biased, I do not deny that either. Is there any website not considered biased about this subject? Quotes cannot be biased simply by being cited. Those who said them were biased, indeed. My intent with the quote of early settlers was to show that it was part of Zionism from the beginning, not a later development. Even then oppressed Jews were contemplating oppression themselves. It may be understandable, but unacceptable nonetheless. I note my opponent is not addressing the quote of Ben-Gurion, or the other Israeli leaders. His quote on settling for Israel the size of a bed sheet if the Arabs would recognize their right to exist in this concept is suspect, possible a salami tactic for taking it all later, as his other quote shows he desired.
I no more recognize that the Ottoman Empire had a legitimate right to Palestine and thus could sell or allow land to be sold. However, it was long in the past and those living there now were not to blame. I realize the rest were won in wars. To take someone's land and then accuse them of being violent in attempting to retrive it (particularly when you yourself were violent in "reclaiming" it before) is purely hyporcisy. If the landlord divides sells land you have lived on for generations that he claimed by force, you struggle against this, and then a higher authority steps in to award half to the settler as compensation of sufferings, this is a blow that makes you seethe in agony, hoping for it back. Living peacefully beside the neighbor who took it becomes very hard then. Nonetheless, I desire peace but merely wish to show you this was unjust, and the opposite view. Imagine what every peace deal is to Palestinians-a thief deigning to give half of their land back, if that.
Rabbis for Human Rights (http://www.rhr.org.il...), Gush Shalom (http://gush-shalom.org...), Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions (http://www.icahd.org...), Yesh Gvul (http://www.yeshgvul.org...), etc., are Israeli groups which oppose their country's policies. I would cite Amnesty Internation and Human Rights Watch, but those are probably also without credit in your eyes. Perhaps none is credible to you if they oppose an Israeli policy or any part of it. These are only a few of the Israeli or Jewish groups-more by far exist.
twsurber

Con

Thank you to my opponent for a speedy response. I will return the favor. This has been interesting as well as challenging.

I concede that the land was neither originally claimed, nor occupied by the children of Israel. Construction in the West Bank wasn't part of the original argument. A majority of the world to include elements of the Israeli government have objected to construction in the West Bank. In the eyes of some, they are merely building on what they think is their land.

While some may see it as unjust, they see it as land that was either bought, gifted, or won in war. They would see it as just because it became their property. Therefore they could extend that thought to say they were occupying and building on land they felt was truly theirs. Conversely, they could wonder why people are condemning them for living on land they truly think is theirs. They would question why this condemnation is just.

My opponent made a statement that Jews would find offensive. In essence he stated that God cannot dictate who gets what. To a Jew, God is the supreme being. They would see it as God being omnipotent, and therefore having the capacity to make all decisions. While that does not fly in modern academia much less a debate, to a Jew it is paramount.

My opponent has mentioned the Holocaust several times. While it may have some indirect bering, it really isn't necessary in the topic at hand.

In summary, it the duty of the Pro to validate the resolution. It is the duty of the Con to show it to be invalid in some way. I have and will continue to unabashedly pick at both the resolution and my opponent's case. While I have picked at my opponent's case, I have not intentionally picked on my opponent. Unfortunately, coming across as terse is occasionally part of the beast of debate.

Allow me to summarize some other points.
Debate Round No. 3
mcc1789

Pro

Settlement in the West Bank is part of the Occupation aspect. I understand they feel this is their land. That appears to be the problem with your latest response. It seems to assume I do not understand the settlers believe this. I will address it regardless.

"While some may see it as unjust, they see it as land that was either bought, gifted, or won in war. They would see it as just because it became their property. Therefore they could extend that thought to say they were occupying and building on land they felt was truly theirs. Conversely, they could wonder why people are condemning them for living on land they truly think is theirs. They would question why this condemnation is just." This condemnation is just since they do not have a right to it. The land was bought from conquerors, gifted by conquerors, or won by conquerors. None of that is just. I know some may not understand, although most probably do, but just disagree. I know they believe the land is truly theirs. Many people believe that, and it does not make their belief valid.

I do not care if my statement was offensive. I am an atheist, and do not believe in God, hence there can be no divine dictates of who gets what. I would view it, now as ever, to be merely an excuse, albeit of the most powerful kind, for if God has supposedly said it, who are we mere mortals to argue? I know the Jews believe this. So do the Muslims. They are both equally false justifications. Other justifications such as who possessed this land, dispossessed the other etc. are my criteria to determine who should have it.

To say that the Holocaust isn't necessary in the topic at hand seems naive, particularly since it is the main reason Israel was even founded by the United Nations, and is the chief excuse for it too.

You have aptly stated the duty of Pro and Con. I do not think that u have so far disproved my argument in any way. That said I do appreciate your good attitude. I hope mine has been equal. In no way have you come off as terse. I hope that my attitudes is not either.

I look forward to your latest response.
twsurber

Con

We're almost at a stalemate, not dissimilar to Israel & Palestine.

The Palestinians think that the Jews have no right to the land making their presence unjust. The Jews think they do have a right to the making their presence just. In both their eyes, they both believe that they are valid and just.

While my opponent feels I haven't disproved the resolution, he hasn't proven it. Our personal opinions and preferences are irrelevant.
Debate Round No. 4
mcc1789

Pro

Yes, that does seem to be the case, much like the real situation as you say.

Both sides do indeed view themselves as being in the right.

We both think that the other has not proved their case, much like the Israelis and Palestinians. I do not know how else to prove the resolution. Let me note again the facts. The Jews, having been expelled by Emperor Hadrian for the last of many failed revolts, were forced to settle in the Roman Empire, where many already lived. They would go on to endure centuries of persecution, from discrimination to outright pogroms. Understandably, they desired a homeland. Following a wave of attacks in Germany and Russia in 1881, many moved to Palestine, as had others before over the centuries. Even then, some desired to reclaim the whole territory and expel its residents as they were in centuries past, though at this point they were not able to. 1897 saw the formation of Zionism, which became an international movement. Decades passed and more Jews moved into the region, incurring resentment and occasional violence in response. WW2 erupted and the British promised the Palestinians independence for their help defeating the Ottomans. Conversely at the same time a secret promise was made to the Jews for establishment of a Jewish homeland after in Palestine. This was clearly at odds, and in the end the British gave neither side what they promised. With the Mandate they received from the League of Nations, the UK took over in place of the Ottomans. More Jews came in the 1920s, fleeing further persecutions. The Palestinians reacted violently, and the Jews began to revolt against the UK while fighting back. This continued into the 1940s, when the Holocaust occurred, far more Jews moving in. The United Nations decided in 1947 to establish a Jewish homeland at last, the state of Israel. The outrage was predictable, with the Palestinians and nearby Arab states immediately attacking when it was formed in 1948. They were defeated, and 80% of the Palestinians were driven or fled into the West Bank, then part of Jordan. This was conquered in the Six-Day War of 1967, with the Golan Heights and Sinai Peninsula also taken (the last given back). The strife and terrorism is still going on, with no end in sight. Various peace plans have been proposed, none giving actual Palestinian power. The facts do not tell us everything. Our opinions do matter and they are the prism all people see things by. I believe that, while understandable, the Jewish desire to retake their ancient homeland was wrong, as there were people living there. It was one matter to settle in Palestine, although causing strife. To come and say "this is ours" to people living there for nearly a thousand years was simply wrong, just as it was for them to be expelled. The Palestinians did not do that, though, and were not responsible. To demand back the land people were born in would be rejected by anyone in the world, no matter whether their ancestors had lived there long ago. What can be done now, I do not know. The Palestinians have the right to self-determination, though, or no people does. The Israeli foundation and occupation were unjust. If they were not, then nothing is. I rest my case on this premise: being oppressed gives no license to oppress those who did not oppress you. Being stolen from gives no license to reclaim it nearly a millennium later from people who did not steal it from you, no matter how much you have suffered between then and now. There are many people in the world that have suffered, and it would still be wrong to do this. If this is not wrong, then nothing is. A vote for Pro is not a vote against Israel-the people there have the right to exist. It is a vote say this must not happen again, that it was unjust, done in the name of undoing an injustice and giving scattered people a home. The worst kind of injustice is that done in the name of justice. Our opinions are not irrelevant-they are what matters most.
twsurber

Con

We have established a number of points and counterpoints. What the matter boils down is this:
1) Are Palestinians free or in bondage? Answer: They are free.
2) Is/was the Israeli Foundation unjust? Answer: No, Israelis were given a green light by the United Nations, and endorsed by the international community.
3) Is the Israeli Occupation unjust? Answer: No. While some of the people may have been overly zealous and callous, the vast majority either paid for their land, or merely relocated by the authority and permission of the international community.

It would be wrong to tag the Jews in their entirety. Granted there are a few bad apples in every society, but to label all of them as such would be unjust.

While we all empathize with the plights and inconveniences that the Palestinians must have endured, the relocating Jews in majority complied with existing international policy. Had a majority of the relocating Jews acted outside of the law, that would have indeed been unjust. However, the vast majority followed the policies, this action of obedience clearly fits as being "just".

I wish to thank my opponent and the audience of readers. I respectfully request and encourage you all to vote CON.
Debate Round No. 5
14 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by mcc1789 6 years ago
mcc1789
@renewableenergy2: "Imagine that the various people who settled in the United States for the past 300 years decided one day that they one to parcel the United States into an independent State just for them, would the American public go for it. The Answer is absolutely NO."

This example is essentially what the Zionists have done. There is such a nation as Palestine, it simply has no state anymore.

"Europeans countries today are consisting of numerous people from other countries. Would the Europeans people cede part of their country to set up another State in their midst. The answer is absolutely NO."

Again, exactly what happened with the land now called "Israel." Jewish settlers came in, demanding they be ceded part of the land. Now, I am sympathetic to their plight. However, suffering does not give the right to make others suffer as well, especially by land theft.

No one disputes the fact of Israel and Judea existing, however this was almost two thousand years before the Zionists returned. The Arabs that had moved in during the interim were not to blame for this, and should not lose their land. Are we to argue that "once mine, always mine" is valid?

"All the Arabs in Israel and surrounding areas are from the various Arab nations, such as Jordan, Syria, Egypt, Lebanon and other Arab nations."

Categorically false-many of the Arab Israelis and West Bank Arabs have lived there, as did their ancestors, for over a thousand years. Many others live in the neighboring countries, due to fleeing as refugees during the wars, or being expelled forcibly.

You seem to oppose the idea of a Palestinian nation, historically or in the present. However, the name used does not change the fact, whatever an individual PLO leader may say, that people we may call "Holy Land Arabs" (if you will not accept the term "Palestinian") lost their land, and continue to lose what is left with aggressive settling of the West Bank.

The Qur'an is unimportant-human rights are
Posted by renewableenergy2 6 years ago
renewableenergy2
End the Unjust Arab Occupation of Jewish Land

NO PALESTINIAN STATE – No land concessions R7.

Imagine that the various people who settled in the United States for the past 300 years decided one day that they one to parcel the United States into an independent State just for them, would the American public go for it. The Answer is absolutely NO.

The situation in Israel today is no different. The Arabs there are not Palestinians, there is no such Arab nation as Palestine or Palestinian people.

Europeans countries today are consisting of numerous people from other countries. Would the Europeans people cede part of their country to set up another State in their midst. The answer is absolutely NO.

Archeological excavations and historical data is the best proof Israel belongs to the Jewish Nation and non-other.

All the Arabs in Israel and surrounding areas are from the various Arab nations, such as Jordan, Syria, Egypt, Lebanon and other Arab nations.

Transfer all Arabs from Israel to Jewish Land and Homes confiscated by Arab Countries.

Prominent PLO Arab says there are no 'Palestinians' and no "Palestine"

PLO executive committee member Zahir Muhsein admitted in a March 31, 1977 interview with a Dutch newspaper Trouw.

"The Palestinian people do not exist. The creation of a Palestinian state is only a means for continuing our struggle against the state of Israel for our Arab unity. In reality today there is no difference between Jordanians, Palestinians, Syrians and Lebanese. Only for political and tactical reasons do we speak today about the existence of a Palestinian people, since Arab national interests demand that we posit the existence of a distinct 'Palestinian people' to oppose Zionism. "

The Qur'an 17:104 - states the land belongs to the Jewish people

If the historic documents, comments written by eyewitnesses and declarations by the most authoritative Arab scholars are still not enough, let us quote the most important source
Posted by mcc1789 7 years ago
mcc1789
Yes, I knew vaguely about that. Just goes to show it was hypocrisy as you say. For one, it should not have to be "given" to people who live there. Giving the land to someone else is completely wrong. I completely agree with your statement, m93samman.

As for you tBoonePickens, the conquest here was in the past. The people living now aren't to blame for it. We can do justice to the Native Americans be making sure they have land, opportunities, better lives, etc. The past cannot be reversed. Thus Israel, though established unjustly, cannot be destroyed. However, West Bank settlements have to be stopped, along with house destructions. This only aggravates conflict, taking more land. I addressed this in the debate.
Posted by m93samman 7 years ago
m93samman
have either of you (specifically con) heard of the sykes picot treaty? pardon my spelling of picot, its probably wrong. Going to the claim of land and the League of Nations, etc. the fact is that the League of Nations put the land in the name of the Palestinians far before world war II when they gave it again to the Jews. Ultimately it is the League of Nations/UN's fault. They gave the land to the Jews when it was already the Palestinians and the Jews are using their suffering from WWII to justify their actions as of now.
Posted by tBoonePickens 7 years ago
tBoonePickens
"Colonists taking away Native Americans' land because...vague similarity..." Lol!
That's because then you'd have to explain why we aren't giving the US back to the Native Americans!
Posted by mcc1789 7 years ago
mcc1789
No problem Thomas, and thanks for being such a good sport. My problem with religious arguments is that everybody has them. Hence like I said Muslims also believe Palestine is theirs from God, etc. I don't know about right-wing Zionists being that uncommon, but diversity does indeed make it more interesting. I didn't bring up the point of the Colonists taking away Native Americans' land because frankly although there is a vague similarity (as with all such colonizations or conquests) it's really not that much alike, in my view anyway, though similar in principle as you say. To me the argument can stand or fall on it's own, as seems true from the debate. So thank you Thomas. Nice to meet a guy I can disagree with but still get along well :) Michael
Posted by twsurber 7 years ago
twsurber
Thanks Mike, FWIW I expected you to get a very lopsided win in this one. I realize that modern academia rejects any religious argument, Biblical or otherwise. Right wing Zionists such as myself are few and far between as compared to the combined variety that disagree. Diversity makes it more interesting.

Another point I thought you would have brought up, (and glad you didn't), is the Colonists taking land away from the Native Americans "Indians". Both are similar in principle. If you do a similar case it's worth consideration as supporting evidence.

Good job and congrats! Thomas
Posted by mcc1789 7 years ago
mcc1789
Do you guys actually read the debate before posting? So who cares if long in the past it was Israel? The Palestinians were there for nearly a thousand years. They did not take it either, the Romans did that. As for the Jews "making it something" by that justification anyone who says they can make your land something could take it. The Oslo and other peace accords were specifically addressed. Each promise nothing but the status quo dressed up as being a Palestinian state. This "98%" of the West Bank you refer to would be divided into eight parts, with access roads controlled by the Israelis, no military forces, its water controlled by the Israelis, no right to stop arbitrary border incursions, etc. Does that sound like a sovereign entity to you? More like eight bantustans, a puppet government. As to the rest, I should note until the 1980s, Palestinians were far more secular, including their armed groups, which largely espoused leftist views or general nationalist ideology. With Iran becoming a power and these groups failing, Hamas emerged. The Palestinians were increasingly radicalized with Islam. However, from the beginning there has been a substantial minority of Christians among them. I was not arguing over this current state of affairs regardless, but only to say the foundation and occupation are unjust, since there was never legitimate claim to Palestine in my view. Thanks, Thomas, it's been interesting. It's nice to debate someone so polite and heartfelt :)
Posted by twsurber 7 years ago
twsurber
Thanks tBoone, I appreciate the support, but please give me some love in voting columns too! :o)
Posted by tBoonePickens 7 years ago
tBoonePickens
Go to Israel and dig...what do you find: Palestinian artifacts or Jewish? I'll give you a hint: it starts with "J" and ends with "ewish." No one gave flying you know what about this land until the Jews took it over and made something of it; now, everyone wants it.

Yasser Arafat had 98% of all that the Palestinians wanted, all he needed to do was sign on the doted line; yet he turned it down. When asked why he turned down 98% of all that the Palestinians wanted he responded that had he I signed it "I'd be drinking tea with Rabin!" In other words, his own people would bang him out for giving in even 2% to the Jews. The Palestinians (i.e. those in charge) have said it time and time again: they will not stop until Israel is driven into the sea.

They will not stop their attacks until they accomplish total world domination: Israel driven into the sea, Europe bowing down to Mecca, Churches replaced by mosques, and democracy replaced by Sharia law. To expect to be able to reason with the unreasonable is an exercise in futility.
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Reasons for voting decision: When Twsurber Said asked if the Palestinians are free or in bondage he answered his own question erroneously. He is self deceived.
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