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Dutchess_III's avatar

Will someone explain, as briefly as possible, what the deal is in the Middle East?

Asked by Dutchess_III (43576points) July 24th, 2014

What religions are involved? Why are they fighting? What is the Gaza strip? Who is in the Gaza strip? Who are the Hamas?

On the Tide Pool someone (I think it was Hear Kat) posted a video, an animation, to explain it, but I can’t play it. :(

I know I could Google it all, but I’d rather hear it from you guys.

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24 Answers

KNOWITALL's avatar

I’M RIGHT. No, I’m right. Because I’m right, I’m bombing you. Then I’m bombing you, too.

Pazza's avatar

@KNOWITALL pmsl….
Ye, but, she was asking why they’re fighting with each other, not why are we bombing them.

Dutchess_III's avatar

How are we involved @Pazza? (I’m assuming America here.)

KNOWITALL's avatar

@PAZZZA She said briefly. It’s a long involved story about religion, history, land, etc… I’ll let you guys do that.

Dutchess_III's avatar

“As possible,” I also qualified.

Lightlyseared's avatar

Israel was the homeland of the Jews. Then they were conquered by the Roman empire then the Byzantium empire and so the Jewish people got scattered all over the place and were replaced by other people, primarily muslims who were calling the place home (Palestine) and for a long time the place was part of various arab empires.

By 1800 and something it was part of the British empire and there were calls for the creation (or recreation depending on you view point) of an Jewish homeland state in the area. Jureselam was after all an important part of their history/religion etc. and by 1917 Britain was strongly in favour of the idea. This caused some upset in the region leading to armed insurrection. By the beginning of WW2 though Britain had changed their mind on the plan probably to keep the arab nations on side (or at least off the other side).

Then after WW2 there was a renewed calls to create a national home for the Jewish people so as to provide some security for the Jewish people and avoid another Holocaust and so Palestine was divided into areas for a Jewish state and for an Arab state. Basically there were people on both sides that were not happy. Firstly you had the people who had to move to make room for the new Jewish state, obviously been moved out of an area your family have lived in for generations isn’t going to make you happy (before the partion jews owned 7% of the land afterwards they owned 53%). Then there were the hard line Jews who felt that the by allowing the arab part to exist at all brought up questions about the legitimacy of the Jewish state. The other arab nations weren’t happy either and pretty much within days of the partition happening there was armed conflicts popping up to try and take back land with other arab states providing help and its pretty much been the same ever since.

There’s a constant level of background unrest and violence and every so often it flares. In 1967 it flared up with Egypt moving forces close to the border of Israel and Israel launched a pre-emptive strike and gained control of areas that had formally been part of Egypt (the Gaza Strip and the Sinai Peninsula to the south) and the West Bank and East Jerusalem, from Jordan and Golan heights from Syria making the area which we know on maps as Israel today.

KNOWITALL's avatar

‘Ightlseared Bravo!

Lightlyseared's avatar

Or, briefly, you have two groups of people who feel they have a God given right to be in the same place.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Excellent @Lightlyseared! Spot on. So the battle is between Muslims and Jews?

Lightlyseared's avatar

At the most basic level, yes.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Do the Jews have missile deflecting capabilities?

Lightlyseared's avatar

They are a nuclear power and have anti-ballistic missile systems (supplied by the US). The common technique for bringing down missiles is to use anti-aircraft guns, nowadays often fully automated anti-aircraft weapons that use their own radar to detect threats and target and fire the weapons. They can be very effective and I’d be surprised if Israel didn’t have the capability but they are probably not the sort of thing you can deploy in heavily populated civilian areas.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@DUtchess Many Christians believe Isreal is biblically tied to the second coming & Jews are God’s chosen people.

janbb's avatar

@Dutchess_III I believe they have developed their own anti-missile defense systems and that is one reason that the casualties are so unbalanced.

Dutchess_III's avatar

I read that this morning. I’ve looked for more specifi info on it, but haven’t found anything.

stanleybmanly's avatar

Kudos to Lightlyseared on a splendid summary of the facts. @Dutchess_III The conflict is about a great deal more than Arab vs. Jew. @janbb Iron Dome has little to do with the disparity in casualties. The real reason is that Palestinian rockets are useless when it comes to targeting accuracy.

http://www.ibtimes.com/iron-dome-criticized-mit-missile-expert-1635636

dappled_leaves's avatar

There is, of course, no way to briefly explain what is happening. But these are two of the more (darkly) humorous summations:

This Land Is Mine (shamelessly copied from a jelly on that other Gaza thread)

Outrage turns to satire after ABC News misidentifies Palestinian victims

rojo's avatar

Like @dappled_leaves leave said, This Land is Mine pretty well points out what you are wanting to know. Basically that humanity is willing to commit pretty stupid atrocious acts if they think that god is on their sides and everyone thinks that god is on their side.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Thank you for the YouTube link to This Land is Mine. I couldn’t play the one HearKat posted in the Tidepool.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Wow @FlyingWolf. Very educational.

stanleybmanly's avatar

@FlyingWolf That is indeed very educational and a very damaging rebuttal to the standard narrative of the conflict as preferred by the state of Israel. It’s the sort of thing that might seriously effect the political viability of massive U S aid were it to be viewed by the majority of the American public.

Pazza's avatar

@Dutchess_III
Im thinking, Irac Afghanistan for the ones america and uk are openly bombing, and places like Syria that we arm insurgents when we want to overthrow a regime we don’t like.

I have no idea about the intricacies mind, ie, how thw whole thing starts or how the IMF, world bank, or politics cause these wars, but Im pretty sure that most of what goes on isn’t about freeing opressed people.

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