Since 1947, there have been fifteen major wars and dozens of smaller operations over the control of the Holy Land. The deep-rooted conflict over this goes back over three thousand years, yet is still prevalent in American and international politics to this day. This week at Open Narratives, we took a look what we know about this conflict and how it affects us personally and politically.
We began by discussing our knowledge of the background of the conflict, and the consensus was that despite some of us having studied or traveled to the region, there is a lot we don’t know. Because the conflict is so polarizing, it’s almost impossible to find verifiable, objective facts and news stories on it.
We moved on to discussing why individuals care, even those who aren’t directly involved. The three largest religious groups- Jews, Christians and Muslims- all have a deep spiritual connection with the region, as well as the large Jewish and Arab diaspora. On top of that, Zionism, antisemitism, and more recent pro- and anti-Arab developments keep the concept of the Jewish state and its right to exist constantly in the collective mindset.
Finally, we discussed our views on what should be done. Should the US invade on behalf of their ally or step back? Should we even be supporting Israel at all, and should the land be divided into one or two states?