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In the discussion thread: When Michael Oren irked Bob Simon [View all]

Response to shaayecanaan (Reply #39)

Wed Apr 25, 2012, 11:25 AM

44. Another factor driving the situation

Last edited Wed Apr 25, 2012, 12:22 PM - Edit history (3)

One more factor that just occurred to me, related to those I just mentioned, is that the Palestinians, unlike all other Arab Muslim communities, are almost totally dependent on the goodwill of the West, not only for billions of dollars in aid but especially to have any chance to damage Israel politically without the US and/or Britain resisting or vetoing the attempt in the SC.

This means that, especially regarding the opinion of the US where there are millions of Christians, WB Arab Muslims treating their own Christians like all other ME Arab states treat their Christians would be suicidal, politically. It seems to me that the present arrangement, whereby the few remaining WB Christians are tolerated, at least temporarily, in exchange for enthusiastically supporting the anti-Israel narrative at every opportunity, is a very profitable exchange for both the Christians and the Muslim leadership of the Territories.

Again, I believe the reality probably includes a weighting of all the factors mentioned so far and probably some neither of us have thought of yet.

On edit: I do believe that the WB and Gaza Arab Christians are a special case in some respects. They do have a very long history there, longer than their Muslim neighbors and they suffered equally as being on the losing side in all the wars the Arabs initiated against the Jews (except for those who remained in Israel after 1948). So I fully expect their Arab heritage to be a significant part of their identity and a significant part of Arab identity is extremely anti-Israel and anti-Jew. This is to say that I also accept a very natural tendency by WB Arab Christians to identify with their Muslim neighbors and against Israel. The fact that that could also be beneficial for them in other ways could be a minor factor.

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