Wednesday, April 23, 2008

ISRAEL AND JERUSALEM FACTS

[Note: Originally posted Monday, July 24, 2006. Parked here for reference.]


The following talking points were forwarded by a friend. Please feel free to copy and forward to as many of your friends and associates as you wish - in fact, I strongly encourage you to do so.


ISRAEL AND JERUSALEM FACTS

1. ISRAEL BECAME A STATE IN 1312 B.C., TWO MILLENNIA BEFORE THE BIRTH OF ISLAM;

2. ARAB REFUGEES FROM ISRAEL BEGAN CALLING THEMSELVES "PALESTINIANS" IN 1967, TWO DECADES AFTER (MODERN) ISRAELI STATEHOOD (THE TERM PALESTINIAN DURING THE MANDATE REFERRED TO ZIONISTS);

3. AFTER CONQUERING THE LAND IN 1272 B.C.E., JEWS RULED IT FOR A THOUSAND YEARS AND MAINTAINED A CONTINUOUS PRESENCE THERE FOR 3,300 YEARS;

4. THE ONLY ARAB RULE FOLLOWING CONQUEST IN 633 B.C. LASTED JUST 22 YEARS;

5. FOR OVER 3,300 YEARS, JERUSALEM WAS THE JEWISH CAPITAL. IT WAS NEVER THE CAPITAL OF ANY ARAB OR MUSLIM ENTITY. EVEN UNDER JORDANIAN RULE, (EAST) JERUSALEM WAS NOT MADE THE CAPITAL, AND NO ARAB LEADER CAME TO VISIT IT (EXCEPT FOR KING ABDALLAH, WHO WAS ASSASSINATED BY HIS OWN PEOPLE ON JULY 20, 1951, ON THE STEPS OF EL AQSA MOSQUE;

6. JERUSALEM IS MENTIONED OVER 700 TIMES IN THE BIBLE, BUT NOT ONCE IS IT MENTIONED IN THE QUR'AN;

7. KING DAVID FOUNDED JERUSALEM; MOHAMMED NEVER SET FOOT IN IT;

8. JEWS PRAY FACING JERUSALEM; MUSLIMS FACE MECCA. IF THEY ARE BETWEEN THE TWO CITIES, MUSLIMS PRAY FACING MECCA, WITH THEIR BACKS TO JERUSALEM;

9. IN 1948, ARAB LEADERS URGED THEIR PEOPLE TO LEAVE, PROMISING TO CLEANSE THE LAND OF JEWISH PRESENCE. 68% OF THEM FLED WITHOUT EVER SETTING EYES ON AN ISRAELI SOLDIER;

10. VIRTUALLY THE ENTIRE JEWISH POPULATION OF MUSLIM COUNTRIES HAD TO FLEE AS THE RESULT OF VIOLENCE AND POGROMS;

11. SOME 630,000 ARABS LEFT ISRAEL IN 1948, WHILE CLOSE TO A MILLION JEWS WERE FORCED TO LEAVE THE MUSLIM COUNTRIES;

12. IN SPITE OF THE VAST TERRITORIES AT THEIR DISPOSAL, ARAB REFUGEES WERE DELIBERATELY PREVENTED FROM ASSIMILATING INTO THEIR HOST COUNTRIES. OF 100 MILLION REFUGEES FOLLOWING WORLD WAR 2, THEY ARE THE ONLY GROUP TO HAVE NEVER INTEGRATED WITH THEIR CORELIGIONISTS. MOST OF THE JEWISH REFUGEES FROM EUROPE AND ARAB LANDS WERE SETTLED IN ISRAEL, A COUNTRY NO LARGER THAN NEW JERSEY;

13. THERE ARE 22 MUSLIM COUNTRIES, NOT COUNTING PALESTINE. THERE IS ONLY ONE JEWISH STATE. ARABS STARTED ALL FIVE WARS AGAINST ISRAEL, AND LOST EVERY ONE OF THEM;

14. FATAH AND HAMAS CONSTITUTIONS STILL CALL FOR THE DESTRUCTION OF ISRAEL. ISRAEL CEDED MOST OF THE WEST BANK AND ALL OF GAZA TO THE PALESTINIAN AUTHORITY, AND EVEN PROVIDED IT WITH ARMS;

15. DURING THE JORDANIAN OCCUPATION, JEWISH HOLY SITES WERE VANDALIZED AND WERE OFF LIMITS TO JEWS (THE JORDANIANS USED THE WALL AS A URINAL AND SYNAGOGUES AS STABLES). UNDER ISRAELI RULE, ALL MUSLIM AND CHRISTIAN HOLY SITES ARE ACCESSIBLE TO ALL FAITHS;

16. OUT OF 175 UNITED NATIONS SECURITY COUNCIL RESOLUTIONS UP TO 1990, 97 WERE AGAINST ISRAEL; OUT OF 690 GENERAL ASSEMBLY RESOLUTIONS, 429 WERE AGAINST ISRAEL;

17. THE U.N. WAS SILENT WHEN THE JORDANIANS DESTROYED 58 SYNAGOGUES IN THE OLD CITY OF JERUSALEM. IT REMAINED SILENT WHILE JORDAN SYSTEMATICALLY DESECRATED THE ANCIENT JEWISH CEMETERY ON THE MOUNT OF OLIVES, AND IT REMAINED SILENT WHEN JORDAN ENFORCED APARTHEID LAWS PREVENTING JEWS FROM ACCESSING THE TEMPLE MOUNT AND WESTERN WALL.

18. ARAB CITIZENS OF ISRAEL HAVE THE VOTE, AND ARE REPRESENTED IN THE KNESSET. ONE OUT OF FIVE ISRAELI CITIZENS IS AN ARAB.

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Among the comments underneath the orignial post, Jason wrote:

Here are some more on the current situation (courtesy of the Dallas CRC):


Background

Israel evacuated Lebanon in May 2000 – a move recognized by the United Nations. The Israeli withdrawal was conducted in coordination with the UN, and, according to the UN, constituted Israeli fulfillment of its obligations under Security Council Resolution 425 (1978).

The Lebanese government is obligated under UN Security Council Resolution 1559 to deploy its army along the southern border, disarm Hezbollah and maintain order; however, despite repeated complaints from the United States, the UN and Israel, this has not taken place.

On July 12, Hezbollah terrorists fired rockets from southern Lebanon into Israel killing three Israeli soldiers and they also crossed the border to kidnap two soldiers, Udi Goldwasser, 31 and Eldad Regev, 26. Four more Israeli soldiers were killed when their tank apparently drove over a land mine. Hezbollah, which is a party in the Lebanese government, also fired rockets into Northern Israeli towns, including Shlomi, resulting in injury to civilians.

Israeli defense measures in Lebanon are not against the people of Lebanon and Israel has no intention of maintaining a long term presence inside of Lebanon. The Israeli operations are intended to expel Hezbollah from the country, thereby empowering a free and democratic Lebanon, a safe Israel and a more peaceful region.


Hezbollah

Syria and Iran give Hezbollah “State Capabilities.” Iran supplies weapons to Hezbollah and no other terror organization has these types of missiles.

Before September 11, 2001, Hezbollah was responsible for more American deaths than any other terrorist group.

Hezbollah was responsible for the 1983 bombings of the US Marine Corps Barracks in Beirut, Lebanon, brutally murdering 241 United States service men and women. The survivors and victims of this attack sued the government of Iran for their leading role in the attack and won.


Israel’s Military Response

Israel’s goals are to prevent Hezbollah missiles from reaching Israel, gain the return of the Israeli soldiers (no conditions will be made for their release) and the enforcement of Security Council Resolution 1559, calling on Lebanon to fulfill its sovereign duties to dismantle all terror organizations. Israel wants Lebanon to have complete control of their territory and will try to encourage this as much as possible.

Israel is targeting southern Lebanon to destroy the Hezbollah infrastructure. These are limited raids, not full-scale invasions.

Israel attacked the airport in Beirut, causing light damage by hitting runways-not the control tower or the terminals-in order to hinder the possibility of them using air transportation. On land, Israel has targeted strategic bridges to Syria in order to prevent supplies sent from Syria and Iran from getting to Hezbollah. In fact, last week (7/18) Israel hit one convoy coming from Syria to Lebanon.

Israeli operations have destroyed an estimated 50 percent of Hezbollah’s arsenal.

Israeli military operations are coordinated with the utmost precision, in an attempt to protect innocent lives. Israel targets Hezbollah by hitting specified targets. Israel is working to protect Lebanese infrastructure, such as water, electricity and fuel refinement factories.

The IDF has expanded its pinpoint operations in southern Lebanon with tanks and infantry, looking for Hezbollah terrorists, bases and weapons with the sole goal of clearing the area, and pushing back Hezbollah forces so they cannot get within rocket range of Israel.


Israel’s Humanitarian Response

The loss of innocent civilian life on both sides of this conflict is a tragedy. Israel is taking extreme care to reduce the risk to the Lebanese civilian population. The IDF drops leaflets urging residents in specific locations in southern Lebanon to avoid certain Hezbollah installations, and to evacuate their houses and relocate in northern Lebanon or Syria for the time being in order to avoid civilian causalities.

Israel has enabled foreign governments to evacuate their own citizens from Lebanon.

Israel has blockaded Lebanon via the sea, land and air to prevent Syrian weapons from entering Lebanon, but Israel is allowing humanitarian aid organizations to enter and assess the situation of the Lebanese civilian population. The Lebanese people are not Israel’s enemies and it has no intention of seeing a humanitarian disaster in Lebanon.

Israel has been in contact with foreign governments, with the United Nations agencies and with relevant NGOs to try to facilitate the flow of humanitarian aid to Lebanon.

On July 20 Israeli Prime Minister Olmert, Defense Minister Peretz and Foreign Minister Livni approved the establishment of a "humanitarian corridor" between Lebanon and Cyprus.


Israel’s Principles of a Diplomatic Solution

The unconditional release of abducted Israeli soldiers Udi Goldwasser and Eldad Regev and their return to Israel.

A halt to the firing of rockets at residents of the State of Israel and at Israeli targets.

The full and complete implementation of U.N. Security Council Resolution 1559 including the disarming of all armed militias, the extension of the sovereignty of the Lebanese Government over all its territory and the deployment of the Lebanese Army along the border with Israel.


The Diplomatic Alternative:

Israel welcomed the arrival of U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice to the region and welcomed a comprehensive diplomatic effort in addressing the current crisis. Israel knows that ultimately there needs to be a diplomatic solution to the current crisis, not a military one.

Israeli officials have stated that they look forward to working with the international community to explore the possibility of an International Force deployed in southern Lebanon. Israel wants to participate in defining the characteristics of such a force in the hopes that it will be fair and efficient. For the past 26 years, International Forces in southern Lebanon have proven to be ineffective.

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Good places to start researching facts about Israel and Jerusalem:

http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/index.html

For Israeli matters, this is their list of contents page: http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/israel.html

The ADL is also a good source:
http://www.adl.org/israel/advocacy/default.asp

For matters of religion, here are two links:
http://www.torah.org/
http://www.aish.com/

And of course Wikipedia has entries:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_Israel
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Judaism
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zionism

Other than that, there are many webpages pro and con, historical, religious, cultural, etc. Read different sources, compare points of view, take obvious biases of the authors of the material into account.Unfortunately, only the anti-Israel position is simple and easy to grasp. The truth is a more complex and nuanced beast.

3 comments:

daniel-saunders said...

For your links section I would add:

The PLO Charter:
http://www.yale.edu/lawweb/avalon/mideast/plocov.htm

and the Hamas Covenant: http://www.yale.edu/lawweb/avalon/mideast/hamas.htm

which show the true colours of both organizations clearer than any hasbara ever could.

Both documents are available from Yale University's useful Avalon Project, which also has other documents relevant to the Arab-Israeli conflict.

daniel-saunders said...

Trying those links again:

The PLO Charter:

http://www.yale.edu/lawweb/avalon/mideast/plocov.htm

and the Hamas Covenant:

http://www.yale.edu/lawweb/avalon/mideast/hamas.htm

daniel-saunders said...

OK, third time lucky:

PLO Charter

Hamas Covenant.