A situation is presently occurring in an area generally referred to as the Middle East that could significantly affect nearly everyone in the world.
Right now, according to an article in the UK Guardian newspaper on May 13, over 2,000 Palestinian prisoners are on a hunger strike in Israeli jails. One prisoner has refused food for 77 days. According to the Guardian, there are over 4,635 Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails, including seven women and 218 children. Israel claims their detention is necessary because the male prisoners, in particular, are members of Islamic Jihad groups.
Britain’s Tony Blair has warned Israel that if anyone dies as a result of the hunger strike a serious confrontation could again arise. Israel is already embroiled in a conflict with Iran, which many think would be the prelude to a third world war.
In 2006, an American professor emeritus, James Petras, wrote a book, The power of Israel in the United States, which gives the background of the almost continuous war between these two nations since 1948, when the former Palestine was partitioned to include the State of Israel.
American Jewish Zionists, through their influence in Congress and mass media, have promoted this conflict with considerable donations, with additional aid of nearly $2 billion annually coming from the American government.
Petras includes some interesting comments from Israeli leaders in his book that gives readers an insight as to why this war has been going on for so long. Here are a few:
Avid Ben Gurian, former Labor Party prime minister, 1937: “We must expel Arabs and take their place.”
Golda Meir, former Labor Party prime minister: “There’s no such thing as a Palestinian people. It is not as if we came and threw them out and took their country. They didn’t exist.”
Menachem Begin, former Likud Party prime minister: “The partition of Palestine is illegal. It will never be recognized. Israel will be restored to the people of Israel. All of it. And forever.”
Ehud Olmert, Israeli prime minister, June 2006: “I believed, and to this day still believe, in our people’s eternal and historic right to this entire land.”
Ehud Olmert, 2006: “I want nobody to sleep at night in Gaza.”
Daniel Gillerman, Israeli ambassador to the UN, 2006: “The third world war … has already started. What we’re seeing today in the Middle East is a chapter of it.”
Poll conducted by the European Union in early 2006: “Israel is the biggest threat to peace in the eyes of most Europeans.”
I highly recommend this book.