Things I Don’t Understand About the War in the Middle East

Be prepared for lists and questions.

This post is strictly my opinion of things that are known, things that I think are known to be true (based on what I’ve read/seen online, information friends have told me, what I’ve learned in school, etc.), and things I don’t know. I’m looking to get answers and see other readers’–Jewish or
Gential–opinions. This post isn’t meant to offend, bash, or belittle (or any other negative verb to a being’s ego) a person or a group of people. Whether you agree or disagree, please express your stance in a mature manner (and I dislike that nowadays you have to put set such a disclaimer). Trolling, bullying, vulgar, and hateful comments will be ignored and/or deleted (you’ve been warned). Thank you.

I guess I should begin with what I “know” (or what I think I know):

1. The war in the Middle East started because of a fair/unfair (depending on which side a person is on) distribution of land to Israel.
2. There’s also religious implications in this war.
3. This war has been going on for far too long.

Attending a university with a huge Jewish community, and being immersed in it for so long, I have many friends that are Jewish and have a strong attachment is Israel and their religion. That’s fine! I accept you for who you as long as you accept me for my Catholic agnosticism. That’s fair, right?

Here’s where it gets tricky . . .

I would say, based on CNN footage and what I’m reading on the Internet,  the war in the Middle East is heating up . . . really heating up. People are starting to get defensive over their “side,” which is fine. You’re allowed to get defensive when you feel like you’re being attacked, but here’s what I don’t understand.

This morning, I read an article posted by a Jewish friend on Facebook,  and he was clearly disgusted by it. Slate posted: Solidarity with Israel, and for the sake of this post i suggest you read it as well (at least skim through it, that’s all I ask). I read it, just to see what all the fuss was about (“this is disgusting”), and I’m not disgusted.

As I’m reading, and reading posts from my Jewish friends currently in Israel, questions start flowing along with logics that make sense to me (again, all my opinion):

1. Judaism is not a nationality, it’s a religion. A religion can culturally enrich a person and define a person, but it isn’t the same as being Italian, Greek, or English. How can an American Jew reject his national army to join another country’s army all in the name of religion? Is that legal? Is that considered unpatriotic? The way I see it, what if America gets involved in the fighting, whose side are you on? The country that housed you or the country that showed your pro-war propaganda on a ten day “enlightening” trip?
2. Was the Israeli army trying to positively influence young Jewish men  and women that was they were doing to Palestinians is okay? Now, I’m not saying Israel is the only country doing this (America, and I’m sure many others, are guilty of this, too), but is this their form of a “draft,” a freewill marketing campaign?
3. Why are you mad at America from pulling all of its international flights to and from Israel? I understand, we all have deadlines, schedules, and loved ones we’d like to see, but shouldn’t the blame be on the ones setting the bombs off?

These are just somethings I don’t understand. You can say I’m misinformed and you can call me an idiot Gential, but I’m just looking for opinions and answers. I’d love, more than anything, for all of my friends to come home safely; I’d love for this war to be over. But, for now, I’d love to hear your opinions and your stance (in a mature manner, please). Jew or Gential, if we all understand each other a little bit better, maybe we can come to a resolution.

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