Dr. Hill explains on the Glazov Gang that the Islamic movement in Israel has so little in the way of achievements to be proud of. He contrasts this with the amazing achievements of the State of Israel. Dr. Mordechai Keidar explains that this is one of the keys to understanding the deep emotional situation that lies at the heart of the Arab-Israeli conflict. Yes, it is a religious based battle. No, it is not a simple debate over real estate. But, more than it is generally assumed, there are major forces that are at play that are underestimated. The idea of jealousy is a major issue that is often overlooked. The Arabs in the entire Middle East – not only Israel – look at what the modern State of Israel has accomplished and they are very jealous.
Start-Up Nation vs. a Backward Non-Nation
The State of Israel did not become the Start-Up Nation overnight. It took nearly 60-70 years till the name became synonymous with the Jewish State. For the first few decades, Israel focused on it’s survival and on building up as much as possible of the emptiness that existed in the Land of Israel. But, at all times, the Jewish people in the Land of Israel – of whom 80-90% were refugees from Europe and other Middle Eastern countries that all kicked out their Jews in one way or another – did not spend their time complaining about their lot. Instead, they took their energies and devoted them to building and building more. This led to the powerhouse of the Israeli Army and the beginnings of the industrial movement in Israel. Ultimately, this would morph into the hi-tech boom that exists throughout the Land of Israel, and the enormous innovation that so much of the country is known for. Contrary to popular belief, most of this innovation was not funded by Jews in the diaspora. Jews in the diaspora contributed heavily towards the buildup of the medical and educational institutions in Israel. But Israeli innovation in the military sector was not largely due to contributions from abroad. It was created due to necessity. Israel had no choice, and had it’s back against the wall, so it was forced to innovate if it wanted to survive. The Jewish people in Israel have much to be proud of.
Contrast this with the sorry plight of thousands – not tens of thousands – of Arab refugees who left their homes in 1947-48 in order to clear the way for the mass killing of Jews in the Land of Israel. They thought they would come back to their homes and pillage the Jewish homes that were taken over. This indeed happened in the few places where the Arabs won battles in 1948 – such as Gush Etzion and the Old City of Jerusalem. The Jews who lived there became refugees and were kicked out of their homes and/or killed. Then the Arabs pillages and stole their holy items and personal belongings. But, most of the battles were won by the young Jewish State. What did the Arabs do who ended up under the domination of King Hussein in Jordan. They lived in squalor as the Arab neighbors of Israel – especially Jordan, decided to keep them in a lowly state as a potential powder keg to be used against the State of Israel. Over time, the Arab terrorist leadership, the PLO, learned that if they claimed that they were a distinct Arab nation, then they could easily dupe anti-Israel people into thinking that there was a legitimate national claim of Arabs to the Land that the State of Israel was located on. There was no historical basis for this, but anti-Israel writers and leaders were quick to hold on to this fictitious claim in order to sound like cultured ethicists when they worked towards the weakening of the Jewish State. The net sum of this was that the Arabs in the area, both the refugees who were treated horribly – by their Arab brethren, and the Arab leadership took on a permanent state of victimhood and complaining. Instead of building up a new life for themselves based on the harsh realities that they found themselves in, they devoted their efforts to doing anything that could fight the Jewish State. That is perhaps the story in a nutshell as to how so little has been accomplished by the Arab people in the State of Israel while the State of Israel has flourished and grown into an economic powerhouse that the entire world wants to deal with in order to prosper together.