Meriem, Algeria

July 20, 2011

I’m really sorry for my questions but you must understand that because I’m a muslim person i cant understand what you did and i hope that you will answer to my questions. I know that being a soldier to serve his country is a cause well and every human in this world will do the same thing that you did for your country but do you think that when someone is defending himself against the innemies is a terrorist act? if not so why you was killing the innocent people?

What do you think about what happend now in the arabs coutries? and even if there is a lot of muslum country who want the independence of palestine, no one can do any thing to stop this war?

Even if i think that this country is Palestine and it’s not Israel , i’m asking my self why they cant found i solution to live together and stop killing them selfs?

Hi Meriem,

Thank you for the sincere questions. You have no reason to apologize, the main point of this site is to be able to engage in open dialogue so we can develop a better understanding of the Israeli-Arab conflict between peoples of all backgrounds.

I believe your question is “if Palestinians are defending themselves against Israeli soldiers, do I believe that constitutes a terrorist attack?” From a realistic point of view, the answer is simply no, I don’t believe that every single instance of violence against Israelis should be considered a “terror attack.” However, we have to be careful in analyzing the causes and conditions of such attacks to discover the true nature of such aggression. For example, there is a very clear difference in any violent conflict between targeting legitimate military installations and civilians. When Hamas fires a laser-guided rocket at a school bus, do I believe that is a terrorist attack? Absolutely. When Hamas engaged Israeli soldiers in the 2009-2010 Gaza Operation, does that signify a terror attack? Not at all. That is an instance of two military organizations engaging one another in legitimate combat.

The clear difference between the two entities is extremely important. Hamas deliberately plans suicide attacks on civilian institutions and fires rockets and mortars on civilian population centers throughout Israel. On the other hand, Israel never intentionally targets civilians and instead focuses all its efforts on ensuring civilian casualties are kept to a minimum, although it is without question that civilians are unfortunately caught in the crossfire. This is one of the perils of violent conflict, one that illustrates the dire importance of establishing a true, lasting peace between Israel and the Palestinians.

Again, it is important to emphasize that Israel gains absolutely nothing, and in fact incurs heavy criticism and losses from a political perspective, when Palestinian civilians are killed during combat. The simple fact is Hamas utilizes civilian areas such as schools, hospitals, mosques and other structures as operation bases and cover while launching attacks against Israel. Do you believe that such tactics are morally agreeable? This makes operating against enemy targets extremely difficult for the IDF.

I believe that our Arab neighbors should be given the same political rights and freedoms that we in Israel have been enjoying for 63 years. I support their quest for freedom from tyranny and oppression and hope that a new, democratic spring in the region will lead to a warming of ties between Israel and countries that have traditionally held hostile views toward my country. As for the on-going war, I’m not sure which war you are talking about? Perhaps you could clarify for me so I can answer this question more clearly.

Putting aside our different political views, the simple fact is that Israel is a nation that has been in existence for over six decades now, and our presence is certain for the foreseeable future. Contrarily, the Palestinian people are inhabitants of this land and have a deep ancestral link to this area. I fully agree with your longing for a peaceful solution to this conflict, and it encourages me that you and I both wish for a non-violent end to the perpetual violence that has plagued both Israelis and Palestinians. I truly believe in the idea of the two-state solution, two peoples with a rich religious, historical and cultural connection to this land living side by side in peace, a Jewish State for the Jews (Israel) and a Palestinian State for the Palestinians. Although we will be forced to make painful sacrifices, this scenario is a very real possibility and I hope that day comes sooner than later.

Avi

Hi Avi,

First of all i want to thank you for your answers and times you give to me, i agree with you in a lot of stuff and there is a lot of people from diffrents nationality and religion who want peace in this world.

My point of view in all of this is, even if i’m muslum and you have a diffrent religion what i know that mine it forces us to do peace in this world to treat well every one even if they are from diffrents religion, we belive that you was in this world many decade before us and that you was the chosen people of god, and i’m sure that you know that we believe in what you do because there is not a lot of change in our religions. to answer of your question “about which war i was talking about” it’s the israeli-palestinian. and to be honnest i’m not believing that this war will finish one day. Please accept from me other questions.

We heard that there is a lot of soldires who doesnt want to do the war but they was obliged, how was the parents reaction? and what was your feeling when you loose one of your team?

George W Bush, start a new war in irak in 2001 with a stupid reason ( as i know if you have another explication i would be gratfull if you give it to me) so what do you think about this war?

In my country we suffered from terrorism. “Algeria”. and we still in some places, but a lot of people think it’s from the gouvernement, can they do that for a political reasons? 

Osama bin Laden is the number one enemy of the United States and many other countries, do you really think that he was  killed by them after so many years of flight? and do you really think that he was the perpetrator of the attack of september 11?

Hi Meriem,

Great to hear from you, and thanks for the great questions

Military service is mandatory for the majority of youths here in Israel, which is an unfortunate necessity given the security situation Israel has faced her entire existence. It’s important to realize that most of the positions these teenagers serve in are non-combat roles. Most parents, while understandably worried about the safety of their children, themselves served in the army and realize the Army’s role in protecting our nation from the various threats from surrounding nations. Having your child serve in the military is a difficult sacrifice to make, but the reality is it is a necessary one to ensure our survival. I sincerely hope that one day that reality changes.

I was fortunate enough during my service that no member of my unit was killed in action.

I think the Iraq War was an enormous mistake on behalf of the Bush Administration; it was an unjust war that was executed under false pretenses. I can only hope that even though executing the war was absolutely the wrong decision, Iraq will be able to move forward and develop into a flourishing democracy and overcome the security and political challenges the country has faced since 2003.

Government-sponsored terrorism has definitely occurred in many countries, especially in Eastern Europe, so it is a very real possibility that the government may perpetrate these attacks even though they deny any role. Of course, I don’t know if the attacks you’ve experienced in Algeria are not committed by the government, but anything is possible.

I really do believe that US soldiers killed Osama Bin Laden back in May. Al Qaeda has admitted that he was indeed killed and his deputy, Ayman al Zawahari has taken command of the organization. I do believe that his organization played the main role in the 9/11 attacks and that Al Qaeda is a serious threat to every liberal country that doesn’t conform to the organization’s values and religious ideology.

Please keep in touch, I look forward to speaking with you again soon.

Avi

Thank you!

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