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WARNING : Don't you judge by reading one article. This site is not for you if you cannot see the otherness of other and sufferings of both sides of the party in the conflict. Security for Israel and Justice for the Palestinians are interdependent, one will not happen without the other. My view focuses on building cohesive societies where no one has to live in apprehension or fear of the other. I hope and pray a sense of justice to prevail. Amen. Website www.IsraelPalestineDialogue.com | Also Check Israel Palestine Confederation a pragmatic solution

Friday, May 18, 2018

Knock off Religion from Israel Palestine conflict

Mike Ghouse

Religions are always used and abused to suit one’s greed.  Part of the problem, not the whole, of the Israel Palestine conflicts is religious scriptures, and the other part is security.  All of us have reduced God’s wisdom to be bigoted, discriminative, and partial. Is this our God?

Take a look at the following interpretations of the verses, and let me know if you find a deeper meaning in it. May I suggest you not to worry about what the Pastors, Imams, Rabbis, Pundits or religious men say, what is that you see?


A few Jews believe that they are the chosen people. A few Christians believe Jesus’ arrival on doomsday will wipe out everyone but Christianity. A few Muslims think Islam is the only religion acceptable to God. A few Hindus, Sikhs and others have similar arrogant attitudes that they are the best, scientific or the oldest and wisest. Indeed, none of them is a wrong religion; the flaw is in our understanding.

As we collectively understand the deeper meaning of these verses, maybe we can knock off the religious aspect from the conflict and focus on the land aspect, which may be easier. No one is more privileged than others and no one is more than equal.

God is not a little guy; God is the creator. Should we reduce his words of wisdom to the narrow, exclusive claims as in above?

As we chose representatives to govern us on our terms, we need to appoint a God that cares for every human being and not bigoted.  The death of 58 Palestinians is despicable, and Netanyahu may get away with this, but the people of Israel will have to endure insecurities for years to come. When the world is on one side, that is 195 countries on one side and 5 on the other, there is bound to be resentment for the five who consistently violate what the community of nations decide.  Let's knock religion out of the equation and focus on the land issue.  

A full blown article and a seminar are in the works. Your precise comments will be selected to go into the report.

Thanks to America, more and more religions are moving towards their central values, which are a common denominator of excellent benefits, and thanks to each group for chiseling out the fluff. America will eventually have its version of Islam, Hinduism, Jainism, Sikhism, Buddhism, Shinto, Paganism, Zoroastrianism, Tao, Dao, Wicca, and others.


The author is a president of the Center for Pluralism in Washington, DC and runs a think tank called World Muslim Congress. He is committed to building cohesive societies and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day.


Wednesday, May 16, 2018

A Grotesque Spectacle in Jerusalem

This article reflects my views as well for the most part

Mike Ghouse


Opinion Columnist
May 14, 2018

On Monday, Ivanka Trump, Jared Kushner and other leading lights of the Trumpist right gathered in Israel to celebrate the relocation of the American Embassy to Jerusalem, a gesture widely seen as a slap in the face to Palestinians who envision East Jerusalem as their future capital.

The event was grotesque. It was a consummation of the cynical alliance between hawkish Jews and Zionist evangelicals who believe that the return of Jews to Israel will usher in the apocalypse and the return of Christ, after which Jews who don’t convert will burn forever.

Religions like “Mormonism, Islam, Judaism, Hinduism” lead people “to an eternity of separation from God in Hell,” Robert Jeffress, a Dallas megachurch pastor, once said. He was chosen to give the opening prayer at the embassy ceremony. John Hagee, one of America’s most prominent end-times preachers, once said that Hitler was sent by God to drive the Jews to their ancestral homeland. He gave the closing benediction.

This spectacle, geared toward Donald Trump’s Christian American base, coincided with a massacre about 40 miles away. Since March 30, there have been mass protests at the fence separating Gaza and Israel. Gazans, facing an escalating humanitarian crisis due in large part to an Israeli blockade, are demanding the right to return to homes in Israel that their families were forced from at Israel’s founding. The demonstrators have been mostly but not entirely peaceful; Gazans have thrown rocks at Israeli soldiers and tried to fly flaming kites into Israel. The Israeli military has responded with live gunfire as well as rubber bullets and tear gas. In clashes on Monday, at least 58 Palestinians were killed and thousands wounded, according to the Gaza Health Ministry.

The juxtaposition of images of dead and wounded Palestinians and Ivanka Trump smiling in Jerusalem like a Zionist Marie Antoinette tell us a lot about America’s relationship to Israel right now. It has never been closer, but within that closeness there are seeds of potential estrangement.


Defenders of Israel’s actions in Gaza will argue no country would allow a mob to charge its border. They will say that even if Hamas didn’t call the protests, it has thrown its support behind them. “The responsibility for these tragic deaths rests squarely with Hamas,” a White House spokesman, Raj Shah, said on Monday.

But even if you completely dismiss the Palestinian right of return — which I find harder to do now that Israel’s leadership has all but abandoned the possibility of a Palestinian state — it hardly excuses the Israeli military’s disproportionate violence. “What we’re seeing is that Israel has used, yet again, excessive and lethal force against protesters who do not pose an imminent threat,” Magdalena Mughrabi, Amnesty International’s deputy director for the Middle East and North Africa, told me by phone from Jerusalem.
Much of the world condemned the killings in Gaza. Yet the United States, Israel’s most important patron, has given it a free hand to do with the Palestinians what it will. Indeed, by moving the embassy to Jerusalem in the first place, Trump sent the implicit message that the American government has given up any pretense of neutrality.

Reports of Israel’s gratitude to Trump abound. A square near the embassy is being renamed in his honor. Beitar Jerusalem, a soccer team whose fans are notorious for their racism, is now calling itself Beitar “Trump” Jerusalem. But if Israelis love Trump, many Americans — and certainly most American Jews — do not. The more Trumpism and Israel are intertwined, the more left-leaning Americans will grow alienated from Zionism.

Even before Trump, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu helped open a partisan divide on Israel in American politics, where previously there had been stultifying unanimity. “Until these past few years, you’d never heard the word ‘occupation’ or ‘settlements’ or talk about Gaza,” Jeremy Ben-Ami, president of the liberal pro-Israel group J Street, said of American politicians. But Ben-Ami told me that since 2015, when Netanyahu tried to undercut President Barack Obama with a controversial address to Congress opposing the Iran deal, Democrats have felt more emboldened. “That changed the calculus forever,” he told me.

The events of Monday may have changed it further, and things could get worse still. Tuesday is Nakba Day, when Palestinians commemorate their dispossession, and the protests at the fence are expected to be even larger. “People don’t feel like they can stay at home after loved ones and neighbors have been killed for peacefully protesting for their rights,” Abdulrahman Abunahel, a Gaza-based activist with the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement, told me via email.

Trump has empowered what’s worst in Israel, and as long as he is president, it may be that Israel can kill Palestinians, demolish their homesand appropriate their land with impunity. But some day, Trump will be gone. With hope for a two-state solution nearly dead, current trends suggest that a Jewish minority will come to rule over a largely disenfranchised Muslim majority in all the land under Israel’s control. A rising generation of Americans may see an apartheid state with a Trump Square in its capital and wonder why it’s supposed to be our friend.


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Massacre in Gaza highlights Zionism's double standards

If Israeli children and their children live in insecurities, and the Palestinians live without hope in an apartheid state, they should blame all of us; the Israelis and Americans for not doing anything and blaming one or the other, usually the Palestinians. Blaming anyone does not solve the problems your grandchildren face Mr. Netanyahu, you may be sadistic and draw pleasure out of oppressing, bombing and showing Palestinians their place. Down in the history, you will be considered a villain not only by the Palestinians, but the future generation of Israelis, and indeed the people of the world.

Mike Ghouse



As Trump celebrates his embassy in Jerusalem, a massacre in Gaza highlights Zionism's  double standards

A moral and principled position would require us to apply to Israel at least the same standards that we apply to the Palestinians.

Courtesy NBC NEWS
May 14, 2018

While Palestinians are being massacred — over 50 killed and 2,700 wounded as demonstrators are being met with live fire — Israel and America celebrate the move of the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem. That juxtaposition is revolting, but it is also revealing. The double standards of occupation and dispossession have never been clearer.

Since March 30th, which marked Land Day — a day mourning the deaths of Israeli-Palestinians killed while protesting in 1976 — Gazans have repeatedly massed at their border with Israel, demanding the right to return to lands they were expelled from during the formation of Israel. They have been met with tear gas and live fire.

While some of these Palestinians intended harm, they have been remarkably few and far between, a minuscule percentage of the tens of thousands of unarmed protesters. That is part of a historic pattern: Israel claims it only uses force when absolutely necessary. The evidence suggests otherwise. A hugely disproportionate number of Palestinians die, while few if any Israelis ever do (in this case: zero). Still Israel claims it is defending itself.

It is a curious line of defense, one which reveals the very (troubled, and troubling) logic of Zionism itself.

Zionism, broadly speaking, is the belief that the Jewish people deserve the right to self-determination, to define themselves collectively as so many other peoples do.

Zionism, broadly speaking, is the belief that the Jewish people deserve the right to self-determination, to define themselves collectively as so many other peoples do. This, and the undeniable historic tie of Jews, and Judaism, to what is now Israel and the West Bank, is used to buttress the legitimacy of Israel.

Now, these are important points. Why shouldn’t the Jews have the right to self-determination? And there are plenty of anti-Israel voices who do deny the historical connection of Jews, and Judaism, to what is now Israel and Palestine. Such voices are frequently anti-Semitic and, flatly, wrong. But the problem isn’t self-determination.

It's not historical connection, either.

It’s that the Palestinians are indigenous. They were already there. Foreign settlers, whether they arrived before 1948 or after 1967, sought to enter that land — in order to transform that land into their own.

Thus, if Israel is justified in using live fire against Palestinian civilians trying to re-enter territory they were literally expelled from by that state, then shouldn't Palestinians have an equal right to indiscriminately use violence against Israeli settlers? Settlers, after all, aren’t just trying to encroach on the meager rump state that is now purportedly on offer to the Palestinians, but are creating facts on the ground — cities, roads and checkpoints — that make a contiguous Palestinian state impossible.
Of course, that idea strikes us as outrageous, and rightly so. So why the double standard?

This conflict does not have a military solution, and a moral and principled position would require us to apply to Israel at least the same standards that we apply to the Palestinians. Such an approach itself is an injustice (if even unavoidable): This is not a conflict between two equal and competing narratives. The Palestinians were already there.

Sadly at this point, even to be evenhanded approach would be progress. We see the incredibly insensitive spectacle of America's elected leaders feting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the president of the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) tweeting a selfie while dozens of miles away, a slaughter of the defenseless unfolds.
Quite a victory it is.
Relations between American and Israeli Jews are already in decline; the spectacle of anti-Semitic religious fundamentalists sharing the stage with a right-wing Israeli prime minister deeply hostile to the lived religious experience of most American Jews is certainly not going to help. Organizations like the ADL, with its already checkered record among Arab and Muslim Americans, might not want to ask after today why movements such as Black Lives Matter have successfully turned away.

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h in as Palestinians clash with Israeli soldiers at the border fence with Israel as mass demonstrations at the fence continue in Gaza City, Gaza on May 14, 2018.Spencer Platt / Getty Images
Americans have every right to reject this alliance, and propose in its stead a foreign policy that serves our interests, as well as our values. That means ceasing to hypocritically advocate in the Middle East what we would never tolerate at home for ourselves.

The only future for Israelis and Palestinians that offers both security and dignity is a single state which shares some higher functions, and delegates others to its constituent peoples. Some might say this is a fantasy. Others might argue it undermines Zionism itself. My response is simple: Actions have consequences, and rectifying the wrongs inherent in building a nation on someone else’s land requires, at the very least, sharing that land in pursuit of a reasonable peace.

And that is not delusional: While the lived experience of Native Americans and African Americans in the United States remains very troubling, we have made substantial progress in transforming the narrative of our nation to recognize the wrongs of history and policy. Israel’s leaders and supporters never tire of telling us how the country represents values shared by Americans. Well, our foundation values are equality and democracy.

Israel is welcome to try them.

Haroon Moghul is a commentator and author of three books. His most recent is a memoir, "How to be a Muslim: An American Story."

Nakba - How did the Nakba happen?

Sunday, May 13, 2018

Israeli Flag

DESECRATION OF ISRAELI FLAG NOT ACCEPTABLE 

I am entirely against the apartheid oppressive policies of Israeli leadership, and so is the world, but I’ve nothing against Israel and Jews; they are my fellow beings, and I will stand up for their rights just as much as I would stand up for the Palestinians. 

Video: 

As people who believe in democracy, the disagreement has to be aired continuously, however desecration of the Israeli flag is not acceptable, especially Muslims. We should not even cheer and circulate this, that is not what Islam is all about. The role of Muslims is to mitigate conflicts and nurture goodwill to restore justice, peace, and harmony in the world. 

Mike Ghouse
www.IsraelPalestineDialouge.com

www.WorldMuslimCongress.org 

Friday, May 11, 2018

Trump made a bad mistake on Iran

Dr. Mike Ghouse

Netanyahu has cooked up falsities once again, and the Israelis, Americans, Iranians and the world will be paying for it. What a shame it is, the Jewish people have lived through insecurities for ages, and Netanyahu has no desire to bring an end to it but aggravates it. He wants to be Prime Minister for life at any cost, and one guaranteed way is to keep Israeli Citizens in constant fear and on the edge.  I am willing to say, he really does not give a flip about Jews, Judaism or Israel or human rights, it is all about him.


Six Nations, the most powerful ones, made a treaty with Iran to hold off on to the nuclear development. Netanyahu sees an opportunity to mess it up and keep his grip on the nation of Israel.  He cooks up facts while his own generals don’t believe him. I hope he has not influenced Trump through Cohen.

The breaking of this deal is like slapping the whole world, and guess what happens – it wrongfully breeds resentment towards Israel instead of Netanyahu. That ill-will shamefully sounds like Anti-Semitism. The Israeli Citizens have a choice, like we the Americans do, to make sure it is the government of the people by the people for the people. I don’t believe the majority of Israelis support Netanyahu’s policy, he gets by with coalitions.

Anti-Semitism is Augmented by Netanyahu and Trump
https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/anti-semitism-is-augmented-by-netanyahu-and-trump-jerusalem_us_5a2a6ea9e4b0d7c3f26221b6

Can the world blame Americans for America’s president breaking contracts? Are we responsible? Is this the government of People? 

If you resent this note, I urge you to read it again; my intention is to bring sense to the chaos created by disgustingly selfish leaders. Leaders should be elected based on peace and prosperity they plan to bring. The end result should for each one of the Israeli citizens to drop their guards and live without fear.  My slogan is Security to Israelis and Justice to the Palestinians, one will not happen without the other.

The author is the president of the Center for Pluralism in Washington, DC. He is committed to building cohesive societies and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day.