A very significant part of the Middle Eastern issue is the non-recognition of the State of Israel by the mass of Muslims in the Middle East. However, there is now an even more important facet to the way so many Muslims in the Middle East view the State of Israel. They view it with an enormous amount of jealousy. Yes – pure jealousy. And – that is a good thing. There is indeed a lot to be jealous of. What the State of Israel has accomplished in just 6 decades is nothing less than astonishing. And that it was all done while fending off bloodthirsty enemies who have terrorized them from before the State’s existence until today makes the miracle even more impressive.
Why are They Jealous?
The State of Israel is a beacon of democracy in the Middle East. But that does not make most of the Arabs in the Middle East jealous. What bothers them more than anything are the skyscrapers and the burgeoning middle class of the State of Israel that fills the buildings of Tel-Aviv, Jerusalem, and Israel’s other blossoming cities. One example of this is is the city of Modiin. In a span of 30 years, Israel literally built up a city of around 100,000 people with all of the beauty and splendor of modernity. Jobs abound nearby, and a technological hub in the middle of the city is bursting at the seams. This is a city that is in very close proximity to hundreds of thousands of Arabs. They have watched this city go up day after day. Actually, most of the city was built by Arabs who dominate the labor market of the building industry in Israel. They see how the Jewish people live, and know that their living standards have also been enhanced by these Jewish people who live a few notches up from the way they do. They observe the Jewish people who they have been indoctrinated to hate, and they see that these people are actually decent law-abiding people. So, on the one hand, they may have strong feelings of resentment – justified or not – about Jewish people taking their Land. On the other hand, they truly admire the Jewish people who they see with their own eyes really know how to build a country. They know how corrupt their own leaders are, and they truthfully are jealous of the orderliness and honesty that they observe on the Jewish side.
This is a good jealousy that should be capitalized on. Israel and the US should continue to work to prop up alternative young leaders on the Arab side who will take their jealousies and translate them into constructive plans to build an alternative Arab lifestyle that mirrors the Jewish side. This is doable, but will take at least one and a half to two generations.