Palestinian paradigm shift

The Palestinians need a paradigm shift.  They need to abandon the futile and quixotic strategy of trying to destroy Israel for a strategy of compromise and mutual recognition. This will be hard if not impossible for them, since their current approach to their situation is to try to continue their war against the Jews by all means, including the primary use of incitement, violence and terrorism. This strategy derives from their Arab culture, based on Islam, which denigrates Jews and which in the distant past destroyed Jewish communities, and based on their ethnocentricity, that denies rights to all other minorities, whether it be Jews, Christians, Kurds or Yazidis.

Historically the Arab Muslims expanded out of Arabia in the 7th century and over a period of a few hundred years established an empire stretching from Spain to Indonesia. However, that Empire broke up very quickly into separate entities.  What is relevant is that the Arab Muslims defeated the then weakened Byzantine (Greek Christian) Empire, and conquered Jerusalem in 638 ce (only 6 years after the death of Mohammed). The Muslim Empire was then conquered by the Ottoman Turks starting in 1299 ce.  The Ottoman Empire then also broke up and was vanquished by the allies in WWI and was dissolved in 1923 ce.  .

It is understandably difficult for the Arab Muslims based on their history of lost glory to come to terms with the fact that their world is both economically and culturally deficient. One has only to look at the recent history of the Arab world, from the prevalence of ruthless dictators (Nasser, Qaddafi, Saddam Hussein, Assad) to the so-called Arab Spring, and the current break-down of the Arab world with only a few viable states in the Gulf region.  One can argue that the adoption of Islamism (a political form of Islam) and the use of war to attempt to restore the ancient Caliphate in the Islamic State is another reversion to the original Arab Muslim paradigm.  In the long run this cannot work, since there are far more successful state models to contend with, in other words, the IS cannot defeat the modern democratic states.

Every day when living here one sees that it is possible for Jews and Muslims to coexist peacefully in the Jewish State of Israel.  Arabs are integrated into the fabric of Israeli society, as mechanics, pharmacists and doctors (of course, this excludes Palestinians who are not Israeli citizens).  Indeed there is a growing understanding that living in a liberal democratic society, where even former Prime Minsters can be judged and sentenced to jail and where soldiers who use illegal means are censured, is preferable to living in a current Muslim Arab State. No sensible Israeli Arab wants to actually live in a putative Palestinian State.

There is a growing realization among Christian Arabs that Israel is indeed a safer haven for them than anywhere in the Muslim Arab world.  There are also moves by some Israeli Muslim Arabs to come to terms with Israel and even to serve in the IDF.  But, unfortunately most Muslim Arabs are still trapped in the old paradigm of trying to fight modernization and its proponents, Israel and the West.  What is needed is a full Arab Muslim paradigm shift that would include the realization by the Palestinians that to reach their ultimate goals of peace and prosperity they must learn to coexist.

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3 thoughts on “Palestinian paradigm shift

  1. Would that every living Arab Islamist could read & understand your words and decide to live in peace, coexistently (good word). How bright & right U R!!.

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  2. Dear Jack, Re: Palestinian Paradigm Shift An excellent article.Thank you.May I post it on FB, correctly acknowledging source & author? Anthony Altman

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