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The Middle East from three perspectives

After the horrors of World War II, millions of displaced Jews longing for their unified homeland returned to the ancient land of Israel. After a mass influx of Jews into the area which had come to be called Palestine by the majority Islamic-Arab population, the United Nations decided in 1947 to divide the land equally between the Jews and the Arabs that each believed they had a historical right to the land. The Jewish communities immediately accepted the compromise, and the Arabs summarily rejected it. The Arab states quickly invaded the newly allocated Jewish state, and waged war against the Jews on behalf of their Palestinian neighbors. Miraculously, the fledgling state of Israel won the war, thus commencing a mass (unforced) migration of Palestinians into the surrounding nations, where they were instructed to exist as refugees by Arab authorities who desired to return and eradicate the Jews. Conflict ensued, and decades of war and struggle between the Jews and Arabs continue into the present day, all while Israel has quickly developed into one of the most technologically advanced countries in the world.

The heart of the issue is religious, as both people groups believe they have the same claim on the land, and that God—Jehovah or Allah, respectively—gave them the land. The difference is that only the Israelis are willing to live at peace. This phenomenon has been proven time and again, from the Jewish-controlled areas of Jerusalem allowing freedom of religion, while the Palestinian Muslim areas forbid anything but Islamic worship, to the severe lack of unity in Palestine. Several factions of pro-Palestine terrorism have sprung into action as a result of the Palestinian estrangement. The most menacing of these include Hamas and the PLO (Palestinian Liberation Organization), who have fired more than 17,000 rockets into Israel since 2001, and have killed thousands of Israeli civilians and provoked three wars with the Jewish State.

The fairest solution proposed to the Israeli-Palestinian unrest thus far is the ‘two-state solution’, which would provide for the Jewish state of Israel living in peace with a demilitarized Palestinian state. There is no indication that this will be implemented any time soon, though, considering the lack of legitimate peace-talks.

The U.S. has historically supported the Israeli state, and during the Trump administration, the American-Israeli bond has grown. Yet, many Americans question why the U.S. provides such strong support to Israel. Here are a few reasons:

The Jewish state is the most advanced in the region when it comes to democratic ideals (freedom of religion, women’s rights, freedom of speech, etc.), and aligns the closest to American principles of freedom. Also, the cooperation between the two countries in intelligence, homeland security, missile defense and counterterrorism has helped the United States meet its growing security challenges. As a result of the strong friendship between Israel and the United States, the Israel Defense Forces and the U.S. military share technologies and techniques that greatly benefit both nations. 

A two-state solution would be ideal for two democratic and peace-seeking societies. With the Palestinian history of ignoring cease-fires, it is unlikely that such a program would have any lasting repercussions. Furthermore, the recent U.S. official proclamation and recognition of Jerusalem as the Israeli capital decreases the potential of a peaceful existence with the Palestinian state, as Muslims in Palestine consider the Islamic holy city of Jerusalem their capitol as well.