Palestinians Tear Down Border Wall

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Today thousands of Palestinians are crossing over to Egypt and back to buy food after Hamas militants destroyed parts of a wall erected by Israel to seperate the two countries.

Gazans Knock Down Border said:
Tens of thousands of Palestinians on foot and on donkey carts poured into Egypt from Gaza Wednesday after masked gunmen used land mines to blast down a seven-mile barrier dividing the border town of Rafah.

The border breach was a dramatic protest against the closure of the impoverished Palestinian territory imposed last week by Israel.

Jubilant men and women crossed unhindered by border controls over the toppled corrugated metal along sections of the barrier, carrying goats, chickens and crates of Coca-Cola. Some brought back televisions, car tires and cigarettes and one man even bought a motorcycle. Vendors sold soft drinks and baked goods to the crowds.

Gazans Knock Down Border, Flee to Egypt
Palestinians rush into Egypt through wall breach - International Herald Tribune
 
Think you'l find the majority of Egyptians want to give a lot more support to them than their corrupt American bought leadership.
 
Tao and everyone,

I haven't been following the situation in Gaza too carefully until yesterday, when I opened the paper and there was this picture of them pouring through the breach in the wall to buy food. I was shocked! I thought to myself, "What is this, the bleeping Warsaw ghetto all over again?"

1.5 million Palestinians, all packed into this small area like sardines...and without food, water, electricity??? I'm on Rabbi Lerner's e-mail list so there were several new e-mails explaining the background and the fact that it's basically "collective punishment" for the shelling of the neighboring town of Sderot by Hamas, which has apparently been going on for some time.

Okay, but what's the idea of taking it out on civilians? Most of the people who are suffering have nothing to do with Hamas. I have to think the Israelis have collectively lost their minds, as well as any sense of decency they were born with, except of course for the ones in the peace movement.

I read in a number of sources that Hamas proposed a cease-fire about a month ago, but the Israeli government turned it down, although two cabinet members were in favor of it. Does anyone have any idea WHY? What rationale did they give for rejecting the cease-fire?

--Linda
 
Most of the people who are suffering have nothing to do with Hamas.
Uh, most of them VOTED for Hamas.
It would be very saintly of Israel to continue providing charity to their enemies, but they are not saintly. Israel would prefer to have nothing more to do with them. If the Gazans want to trade with Israel, they will have to stop shooting rockets, of course; if they want nothing more to do with Israel, they can have their wish. If the Arabs profess to have such sympathy for the Palestinians, then let them trade with them or give them charity or both.
I agree with Tao that probably most of the people in Egypt take a very different view than the Mubarak government does. This will probably force Mubarak to shift position rather than face destabilization. Gaza would be better off within Egypt as some kind of autonomous region than as a mini-state; but that is too sensible, so it won't happen.
 
I wonder what the US would have said if the UK had put a blockade on the whole of Southern Ireland during the troubles there and not allowed food or fuel in?

How would they have responded to women and children dying at checkpoints because they could not get to hospital?

Would they have supported the UK's right to protect it's citizens from bomb attacks by cutting off food and energy supplies?

Would they provide billions in armaments so we could defend ourselves against these terrorists?

Do you think they would have supported the UK if they had punished the Irish people for acts committed by terrorists in their name?

Oh wait a minute, no, the US supported the IRA, invited them to the White House and raised funds to help them bomb British citizens.

Get your head out of your behind Bob and find a little humanity (you can look it up in the dictionary).

Yes Egyptian people support the plight of the Palestinian civilian population but then so does any decent human being.
 
Or maybe the Palestinians were once encouraged to hold a "democratic" election and did so and elected a Hamas government. And then the big guys who had been encouraging them to democratically elect their own governmnent turned their collective backs on the Palestinians when the results came out as they had anticipated all along?

Let's see, just how do you spell "hypocrisy'?

flow....:rolleyes:
 
"What is this, the bleeping Warsaw ghetto all over again?"

as salaam aleykum Linda

My apologies, we have not spoken before and Bob gets me a little riled on this subject.

My name is Sally and I am a British convert to Islam now living in Egypt, so I have a foot in both camps.

"I'm on Rabbi Lerner's e-mail list so there were several new e-mails explaining the background and the fact that it's basically "collective punishment" for the shelling of the neighboring town of Sderot by Hamas, which has apparently been going on for some time.

May I ask was Rabbi Lerner defending 'collective punishment' against civilians? Not that I would defend rockets firing into Israel either but just curious.

"Most of the people who are suffering have nothing to do with Hamas.

The elections in Palestine were as follows:

Gaza turnout of voting population 75%
Wet Bank turnout of voting population 73%

Hamas won 44.45% of the vote
Fatah won 41.43% of the vote

Since the elections polls have suggested that as many as 2/3 of Palestinians support a 2 state solution, with acceptance of Israels right to exist. However, most still support a peace agreement wherein Israel return to the 1967 borders (which would mean removing some Jewish settlements on that land). But you are right, a majority of Palestinians do not get up in the morning and strap rockets to their backs.

I have to think the Israelis have collectively lost their minds, as well as any sense of decency they were born with, except of course for the ones in the peace movement.

I think the same can be said for both sides, however they are at least close enough to have the excuse of being blinded by the day to day events. The US imo have no such excuse and their continued unconditional support of Israels actions just drives Israel on. If the US relaxed it's support and supply of arms to Israel you can bet your bottom dollar they would reach a peace agreement in a heartbeat.

I read in a number of sources that Hamas proposed a cease-fire about a month ago, but the Israeli government turned it down, although two cabinet members were in favor of it.

They have proposed a number of ceasefires and each one has been rejected. One of the major difficulties is that Hamas do not control the Islamic Jihad and when Hamas said it would negotiate a truce with Israel, IJ rejected it.

However on the other side of the fence (literally) Israel is not attempting to find a solution. In 2006 there was a 3 month ceasefire, where no rockets were fired and yet Israel continued its attacks on the Palestinians, saying it needed to ensure militants were unable to begin attacks again. That was the time to grab some peace deal with both hands but they failed miserably.


From an entirely humanitarian point of view - Israel have now imprisoned a nation of people, cutting off basic supplies. They go into the area and execute people, without trial or evidence. So to me it is the international community that has gone insane, because we are standing idly by and letting it happen.
 
From an entirely humanitarian point of view - Israel have now imprisoned a nation of people, cutting off basic supplies. They go into the area and execute people, without trial or evidence. So to me it is the international community that has gone insane, because we are standing idly by and letting it happen.

Bravo!!
 
I must be totally ignorant. I need a thorough explanation on this gaza strip, the fighting and all the ****. Ill tell you why.... we get bits on the news about "there has once again been violence in the Gaza strip"..... and to be honest, most of us tune out. Ill have to research this more because I need to know where and why it all started. and why my country isnt helping out. who is in the wrong. who is in the right. (is it that there is nothing in it for us?)
 
Hi Grey, it is very difficult to find the truth as each side has their own version (as always). As Harry S Truman said "No two historians ever agree on what happened, and the damn thing is they both think they're telling the truth."

Here are a couple of links, from different sides, to get you started. I try to read everything from any group to get a better picture, I find the truth is usually in the middle somewhere.

This is a Jewish peace organisation and they supply some very useful 'on the ground' information.

B'Tselem - The Israeli Information Center for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories

One of the biggest misconceptions about the troubles is that the 'west' suddenly decided after WWII to give the land to the Jews in order to make a homeland (the implication being it was recompence for the holocaust). Scroll down to the Balfour Agreement section and you can see that the Brits agred to this in 1917, at the request of a group of Zionists in the UK.

Brief History of of Palestine, Israel and the Israeli Palestinian Conflict (Arab-Israeli conflict, Middle East Conflict)

This is a brief history by the UN

HISTORY OF THE PALESTINE PROBLEM

There are some great maps here

http://domino.un.org/unispal.nsf/vMaps

The reason you keep seeing the date 1967 on the maps is that is why they are still fighting. In 1949 the land was divided, both sides weren't happy but borders had to be placed somewhere. Then in 1967 Israel captures a lot of land, they expelled the people that lived there and against international law they put Israeli settlements on the land (this is a no-no, you can take land in war but you are not allowed to expand your settlements (towns) so your people can live on that land).

Since then the palestinians have fought to regain that land and insist no peace agreent can be made until Israel returns to the 1949 borders and removes the settlements. Israel refuse to do so (largely because the land has water, which is quite a rare commodity over here - hence the map showing the water courses and why Israel cling desperately to the Gollan Heights (see the Israeli/Lebanon wars for that one).

You can see from the maps how small the Gaza strip is (360 sq km), so it is very easily controlled. The sea, up to the Egypt border is ctrolled by Israeli gunships and the small border with Egypt is the only non-Israeli way in or out.

Egypt have received huge political pressure from the US & Israel to keep the border closed, with the threat of eonomic sanctions if they don't - so puts Egypt in a rotten position.
 
Salaam MW...I have always had the greatest respect for
"give-em-hell-Harry", but I would suggest that the definition of history in the past has always been "Whichever white guy wins the argument". My impression is that this started to fray around the edges with the overthrow of Apartheid in S. Africa and is now changing fairly rapidly.

flow....;)
 
Salaam MW...I have always had the greatest respect for
"give-em-hell-Harry", but I would suggest that the definition of history in the past has always been "Whichever white guy wins the argument". My impression is that this started to fray around the edges with the overthrow of Apartheid in S. Africa and is now changing fairly rapidly.

flow....;)

Salaam Flow big buddy, I wasn't quoting Truman as a means for supporting him :eek:

I just think it is too easy with such issues to get sucked into believing the propaganda of one side or the other, when the truth is often in the Middle. I agree with Truman that the saddest aspect is that both sides believe they are fundamentally right and telling the truth, when in fact they are both wrong on certain issues and both big fat fibbers!! :p
 
I wonder what the US would have said if the UK had put a blockade on the whole of Southern Ireland during the troubles there and not allowed food or fuel in?
Britain has no OBLIGATION to send food or fuel to the Irish. Britain has no OBLIGATION to trade with the Irish. Britain trades with Ireland because it has chosen to do so. During the early 1940's, Britain did not trade with Germany, for obvious reasons.
If Egypt wants to trade with Gaza, or to send them charity, Egypt should do so.
One of the major difficulties is that Hamas do not control the Islamic Jihad
Then Hamas cannot be considered a "government". There cannot be any "independence" for Palestine until they show a capacity for self-government. Annexation to Egypt would make a great deal of sense (which is why it will not happen :p), or some kind of protectorate/trusteeship over Gaza, but Egypt does not seem to want that kind of responsibility (Israel expected to hand Gaza back to Egypt along with the Sinai, after the Camp David Accords; but Egypt refused to take it).
Egypt have received huge political pressure from the US & Israel to keep the border closed
This is true in the case of the US: and I consider this stupid (what else is new from the Bush administration?). Israel is conflicted on the subject: some officials, as well as unofficial people, have expressed the same opinion that I have, that Egypt should go right ahead and supply Gaza, and assume the responsibility that this implies. The Palestinians can screw it all up by smuggling some bombers through the Sinai (Egypt most decidedly does not want to be held responsible for that!), but so far, they have not done so; maybe some conception of what is actually in their interests is sinking in.
I applaud Hamas, for once: this is the first time I have ever heard of Palestinians blowing something up where it actually benefits other Palestinians, instead of just doing harm for the sake of harm.
 
Britain has no OBLIGATION to send food or fuel to the Irish. Britain has no OBLIGATION to trade with the Irish. Britain trades with Ireland because it has chosen to do so. During the early 1940's, Britain did not trade with Germany, for obvious reasons.

What are you talking about? I asked you whether the US government would have supported the UK if the UK had chosen to shut Southern Ireland off ie imprison the people and refuse to allow in any basic necessities because the IRA were bombing the UK.

The UK government did not do any of these things, even though we were regularly hit by terrorist attacks.

So why are you talking about Britain and obligation to Ireland? I was talking about the US governments hypocricy. When my country was being hit by terrorists the White House invited them to dinner but when Israel is hit by terrorist they support 'collective punishment'. I find that offensive on both fronts.

Then Hamas cannot be considered a "government".

So the US government could not be considered a "government" during the years it could not control the KKK when they were murdering people in the street? The Sri Lankan government are not a government because they do not control the Tamil Tigers? The Egyptian government are not a government because they do not control the Muslim Brotherhood?

I wonder if there are any "govenments" in the whole world if the inability to control terrorists is a deciding factor?

Egypt does not seem to want that kind of responsibility

I wonder why Mobarak is meeting with Hamas and Fatah tomorrow? Maybe they are going to play chess?

Also, why would Egypt want that responsibility? The last time they tried to work out a peace deal they were thrown out of the Arab league, their President was eventually assassinated over it and Egypt became seen as a US/Israeli puppet. Hey great idea, lets go down that road again!!

(Israel expected to hand Gaza back to Egypt along with the Sinai, after the Camp David Accords; but Egypt refused to take it).

The Camp David Accords included Israel fully implementing UN resolution 242 and forward negotiations on establishing self government in the West Bank and Gaza? So having agreed to this why did Israel expect to hand Gaza to Egypt, why didn't they fully implement resolution 242 and why have they never allowed the Palestinians self governance?

After this Begin flatly refused to even discuss self government of Gaza or the West Bank. Palestinians are people, they have a right to decide who governs them and Egypt is in no position to say 'oh okay we'll have them', they want to govern themselves and they have every right to do so.

that Egypt should go right ahead and supply Gaza, and assume the responsibility that this implies.

And where does that leave the Palestinians? What about their land? If this were to happen Egypt would have to take Gaza 'as is' and not back to the 1967 borders. How long would it take before bombs starting going off in Cairo? What would happen between Israel and Egypt when Islamic Jihad kept attacking Israel?

It would certainly be a workable solution if Israel would agree to return to the agreed borders and remove its settlements from that land. Without that the rest of the Arab world and I imagine the Palestinians themselves are never going to agree. Mobarak may be an idiot at times but he is not going to get into war with his Arab neighbours to ke the US and Israel happy - unless the Palestinians request that Egypt take responsibility for them and agree to give up their rights to that land.
 
I asked you whether the US government would have supported the UK if the UK had chosen to shut Southern Ireland off ie imprison the people and refuse to allow in any basic necessities because the IRA were bombing the UK.
For the UK to decide to go to war with Ireland, it would take more, like say an overt commitment by the Irish government to the UK's destruction, or rockets launched from Irish soil, with no co-operation by the Irish government in stopping it. If in whatever hypothetical situation the UK did go to war with Ireland, indeed it would be difficult for the US to remain neutral, and while it would depend on the details of your hypothetical, yes, I would think it probable the US would take the UK's side.
So why are you talking about Britain and obligation to Ireland?
You were speaking as if Israel had an obligation to give charity to Gaza, or to be a conduit for other people's charity, or to trade with them. No nation is under any obligation to do anything for another nation: that depends on mutual trust and friendly relations.
So the US government could not be considered a "government" during the years it could not control the KKK when they were murdering people in the street? The Sri Lankan government are not a government because they do not control the Tamil Tigers?
The US government hunted down and executed members of the KKK. The Sri Lankan government hunts down and kills members of the Tamil Tigers. How many of the rocket launchers have Hamas hunted down?
I wonder why Mobarak is meeting with Hamas and Fatah tomorrow?
I would like to be a fly on the wall there too.
Also, why would Egypt want that responsibility?
If Egypt doesn't want to trade with or be charitable to the Gazans, why should the Israelis?
Palestinians are people, they have a right to decide who governs them and Egypt is in no position to say 'oh okay we'll have them', they want to govern themselves and they have every right to do so.
It was Egypt, not Israel, who suppressed the independent Palestinian state in Gaza, in 1951, for very excellent reasons. It was Egyptian occupied territory until 1967, when Egypt launched the war that turned it into Israeli occupied territory. Egypt cannot pretend to have nothing to do with this.
If this were to happen Egypt would have to take Gaza 'as is' and not back to the 1967 borders.
That IS their 1967 border.
How long would it take before bombs starting going off in Cairo? What would happen between Israel and Egypt when Islamic Jihad kept attacking Israel?
This is why I say: Egyptians don't want the Palestinians either. Of course not, not until the Palestinians learn not to act murderously.
 
For the UK to decide to go to war with Ireland, it would take more, like say an overt commitment by the Irish government to the UK's destruction, or rockets launched from Irish soil, with no co-operation by the Irish government in stopping it. If in whatever hypothetical situation the UK did go to war with Ireland, indeed it would be difficult for the US to remain neutral, and while it would depend on the details of your hypothetical, yes, I would think it probable the US would take the UK's side.

For a man so well read in history I am very surprised at you.

What hypothetical? It happened for over 30 years. Rockets were launched from Irish soil onto UK soil, snipers did shoot across the border, terrorists did explode bombs on UK soil both in Northern Ireland and UK mainland, many people were killed - including some friends of mine.

What did the US government do during this time? They invited the IRA (a terrorist organisation) to the White House and supplied finances for them.

You were speaking as if Israel had an obligation to give charity to Gaza, or to be a conduit for other people's charity, or to trade with them. No nation is under any obligation to do anything for another nation: that depends on mutual trust and friendly relations.

I think you need to re-read my original post, as you clearly have the wrong end of the stick.

However, Israel has every obligation to provide for it's 'prisoners' in Gaza. The Israeli's keep them there, will not allow them to govern themselves and are blockading basic supplies from entering. It is one big prison and those that own prisons have an obligation to provide for anyone it holds there.

You speak as though Gaza can sustain itself, can trade with the outside world, etc and is asking Israel to give it charity? Israel is withholding Palestinian funds and now even basic food supplies. You are aware that Israel has control of Gaza aren't you??

The US government hunted down and executed members of the KKK. The Sri Lankan government hunts down and kills members of the Tamil Tigers. How many of the rocket launchers have Hamas hunted down?

How many IRA members did the Irish government hunt down? Yet the White House supported them for decades.

If Egypt doesn't want to trade with or be charitable to the Gazans, why should the Israelis?

You make is sound so easy. And what would happen to the Egyptian people if Egypt started sending food and supplies, resulting in Egypts loss of financial aid from the US? This is what the US have stated they will do. It is called a stranglehold I believe and is designed to shut off any help to Gaza, no wonder then that the people feel as if they are fighting for their lives.

It was Egypt, not Israel, who suppressed the independent Palestinian state in Gaza, in 1951, for very excellent reasons.

You were not talking about 1951 you were talking about the peace accords in 1978. That is 30 years ago and Israel still has not fully implemented resolution 242 or allowed Gaza or the West Bank self governance - maybe the papers got lost in the post?

when Egypt launched the war that turned it into Israeli occupied territory. Egypt cannot pretend to have nothing to do with this.

Sorry is that the war that Egypt launched by using Israeli bombers, flown by Israeli pilots, on the instructions of Israels government, to take out all of their airports in Egypt on the morning of 6 Oct 1967? Or was that a different war?

That IS their 1967 border.

Sorry, I meant the 1949 borders.

This is why I say: Egyptians don't want the Palestinians either. Of course not, not until the Palestinians learn not to act murderously.

Again I say, the Palestinians are NOT chess pieces. They do not want to be part of Egypt or Israel or Syria, they want to govern themselves and live on the land agreed in 1949. Remember what happened when Syria annexed the West Bank - it was not pretty. You cannot just go around giving peoples land, homes and governance away and expect them to like it or accept it.
 
Rockets were launched from Irish soil onto UK soil, snipers did shoot across the border
Did the Irish government support the rocket-launchers and snipers, or try to arrest them? You act as if that made no difference to the UK's willingness to declare war on Ireland.
What did the US government do during this time? They invited the IRA (a terrorist organisation) to the White House and supplied finances for them.
Hosting Gerry Adams was a dubious decision (officially though, he was not "IRA" but "Sinn Fein"; I know that was a very thin cover). AT NO TIME did the US government supply finances to the IRA.
What we told Gerry Adams was that: Southern Ireland is only independent because it is not run by the IRA; the chance that the IRA would be allowed to control any territory anywhere was ZERO; Catholic parties could run in elections in Northern Ireland like any other, provided the violence stopped, completely; the chance that the IRA would be allowed to keep its arms and still participate in politics was ZERO; the chance that the UK would be asked to evacuate Northern Ireland was ZERO.
However, Israel has every obligation to provide for it's 'prisoners' in Gaza.
Israel is not the occupying power anymore. It has no obligation whatsoever to allow anyone or anything to pass from Israel to Gaza unless there is mutual trust and friendly relations. Gaza can make its own arrangements with other nations, if it can.
You speak as though Gaza can sustain itself, can trade with the outside world, etc and is asking Israel to give it charity?
They want to keep shooting at Israel and live off Israeli charity. That is insane. They can stop it; or they can fend for themselves; or they can trade with someone else.
How many IRA members did the Irish government hunt down?
A large number.
You make is sound so easy. And what would happen to the Egyptian people if Egypt started sending food and supplies, resulting in Egypts loss of financial aid from the US? This is what the US have stated they will do.
I have called the Bush administration's position "stupid". I don't know where you get the impression that I support anything whatsoever that Bush does.
You were not talking about 1951 you were talking about the peace accords in 1978.
I totally opposed Begin's bad-faith policy of planting settlers. It was one of the sins I cited him for when I demanded, and received, his resignation, remember?
That is 30 years ago and Israel still has not fully implemented resolution 242 or allowed Gaza or the West Bank self governance - maybe the papers got lost in the post?
Resolution 242 says that Israel should withdraw from "territories" (it does not demand a restoration of the previous borders; and Israel did withdraw from some territories-- the ambiguity is deliberate) in exchange for recognition by the Arab countries of its right to live in peace (it takes two to tango).
Gaza and the West Bank ARE self-governing now. They do not have full "independence" to be sure: that would mean having the right, like any other state, to import whatever they wanted, including arms. The Palestinians need to be show that they could be trusted with such a right.
Sorry is that the war that Egypt launched by using Israeli bombers, flown by Israeli pilots, on the instructions of Israels government, to take out all of their airports in Egypt on the morning of 6 Oct 1967? Or was that a different war?
The 1967 war was begun by Egyptian ships blockading international waters. That was an act of war, and Egypt is in no position to complain that the war quickly turned badly for them.
Sorry, I meant the 1949 borders.
Egypt's border stayed the same from 1949 to 1967. If Egypt took Gaza again, it would be exactly as it was from 1949-67.
Again I say, the Palestinians are NOT chess pieces. They do not want to be part of Egypt or Israel or Syria, they want to govern themselves and live on the land agreed in 1949.
The Palestinians refused to agree in 1949. They continued violating the cease-fire, until Israel threatened to call the whole armistice null and void. That and the assassination of the Jordanian king led EGYPT, not Israel, to shut down the independent Palestinian state, on grounds that they could not be trusted with self-government.
Remember what happened when Syria annexed the West Bank - it was not pretty.
You mean Jordan, I assume? It was better than letting the Mufti have it.
 
Bob,

On the subject of Ireland, the IRA and America you can technically be called correct. But its like saying technically Reagen did not arm and fund the Contras. America did not, despite repeated requests from the UK, shut down NORAID, the American fund raising outfit that held many high profile events attended by very many of the movers and shakers in American politics. Without American funding the IRA would have never been able to mount any significant threat. As for Eire, the hunting down of wanted IRA members and their prosecution or extradition was entirely dependent on which party was in power. It is false and misleading to think there has been anything like full cooperation between the London and Dublin throughout the troubles.

On Palestine. Your education on the detail and history of events is impressive. But again and again I see you have a tunnel vision and this impressive knowledge of yours becomes moot because of it. You harp on about the fireworks Hamas or Jihad fires over the wall into their own occupied land yet the most noticeable thing in all your posts on this subject is your fundamental disregard for the innocent Palestinians that die daily from Israeli assaults. Your posts give me the impression that to you these people are subhuman, irrelevant, a pest to be eradicated. That they should be interred in this concentration camp, denied basic provisions and starved to death. Your tunnel vision on this, your inhumanity toward such a large group of people, is something you have to live with. I could not sleep a restful sleep with your thoughts.

Tao
 
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