Israel bullying Arabs
Israel is not a country of equality, contrary to Ms. Sturm’s column (“On Israel, Americans aren’t Mad Hatters,” July 21, 2011, The Aspen Times). It has policies and laws that discriminate against its Palestinian Israeli citizens which is why Israel has gone from around 1,356,000 Arab Palestinians and 599,000 Jews in 1947 to the current – 20 percent Arabs and 80 percent Jews.
The U.S. and Israel have a common origin in that they both killed the indigenous people on the land they wanted – U.S., Native Americans and Jews, Palestinian Arabs. The idea of a Jewish state for European Jews was conceived in the late 1800s in Europe in reaction to European anti-Semitism. They chose Palestine based on historic and divine rights of Jews.
Arabs felt that the 1947 UN Partition Agreement giving a larger portion of historic Palestine to the Jews (56 percent to the Jews and 42 percent to the Palestinians) was unfair. A war broke out with the Jews prevailing via terrorizing, pillaging, raping and massacring the indigenous Palestinians. Approximately 700,000 Palestinians fled the violence to neighboring Arab countries and have never been allowed to return to their homes. Israel was created on about 78 percent of historic Palestine in 1948.
When it comes to taxes Arab Israeli citizens are taxed at the same rate as Jewish Israelis but only get about 4 percent of their taxes spent on them. Walk through an Arab neighborhood and you will see the roads in disrepair, no traffic lights, no post offices, little garbage collection, etc. This is not true in Jewish neighborhoods. It is almost impossible for an Arab to get a building/renovation permit and if they build anyway, they have their homes demolished. Jews and non-Jews go to separate schools.
While in Israel, I met with UN officials, the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions, and the director of the brave Israeli group Rabbis for Human Rights, who stand in front of Arab homes to try and prevent home demolitions, rebuild demolished homes, accompany Arab farmers while they harvest their olives to prevent Jews from attacking them, etc.
Ariel Sharon made the following statement with respect to the West Bank in 1973: “We’ll make a pastrami sandwich of them. We’ll insert strips of Jewish settlement, in between the Palestinians, and then another strip of Jewish settlement, right across the West Bank, so that in 25 years time neither the United Nations, nor the United States, nobody will be able to tear it apart.”
Israel is not satisfied with 78 percent of historic Palestine, it wants all of Jerusalem and the West Bank which it has held under an oppressive military occupation since 1967 (my experience staying there) and wants to continue controlling Gaza and the Golan Heights. The Jewish State of Israel is a theocracy with unfair policies that brutalizes its Arab citizens to get them to leave and keep a Jewish majority.
The Colorado Court of Appeals ruled Thursday that a limited-liability company has proper standing to sue the city of Aspen over its affordable-housing fees.