Israel-Palestine Peace Group


Israel-Palestine Peace Group

A place for serious and respectful discussion of the Israel-Palestine conflict, with a focus on concrete ways to make a positive difference

Members: 126
Latest Activity: Jul 16, 2015

Light Guidance on Civil and Progressive Discourse for the IPPG

From the discussion, "Reminder about Site Guidelines, Please Engage in Civil Discussion", Craig Zelizer, under whose aegis this site runs, suggested lifting what at the the moment are conclusions on it to this front-page kind of space.

I (James) said:

We have pretty good body of talk from this group, from its start to today, so I will tack on here some practical guidance to help keep the daggers sheathed.

1. Address the issue, not the person.

a. In this category, I think we're going to be able to short list recurring themes, from "Holocaust denial" to denial of the potential or presence of accommodating personalities--we have a lot of lurkers here (about 80 members)--to have done with them, just as one retires trite and tired tropes.

2. Agendas. Reconsider one's own. In the ME Conflict, peace is not about "winning" or "prevailing"--in the modern way, it may turn out more about reflecting and redesigning, albeit with regional and global resonance.

3. From Landmark's mantras, remember: "Get off it" and "You don't know what you don't know"; also "Try not to put the past in front of you." Universally, we have our dark spaces (repair) and unconsidered dark spaces (find them), obsessions (modify), and grievances (let go a little): go through the baggage, lighten the load, and count on occassional moments of great insight.

4. Power is not necessarily Good and Good is not necessarily Power. Speak well and do good first and foremost.

Oliver said:

Thanks, Jim.

I think we both agree that moderation must be a bit more active from now on and that your first point ("address the issue, not the person") is the most important guideline of all.

Other points:
Be friendly. Be respectful. Be tolerant. Be open-minded. Don't judge people by what they say or how they say it. Try to engage, not to preach.

And always remember: 'Our' topic is one of the 'hottest' topics in international conflict studies. Everyone here can make a change by distancing oneself from the hardliners in the respective political and religious camps.

And Craig said:

Thanks. Maybe you can post this on the main page of the group.

I say: done.

Discussion Forum

Global Youth Solutions

Started by Dan Moody May 2, 2012. 0 Replies

The Arc

Started by David Crier Jan 8, 2012. 0 Replies

Jewish Letter of Support to Egypt

Started by Narda Azaria Dalgleish. Last reply by Narda Azaria Dalgleish Feb 14, 2011. 2 Replies

Comment Wall


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Comment by James S. Oppenheim on January 15, 2010 at 12:04am
Oh no . . . I didn't scroll. So now we have the same guidance in comments as well as on top.


I really do hope that the axis of the conflict will evolve and inescapable, physical geographical pressure -- pressure from the land itself -- will forge a more humanly responsive and responsible geopolitical model. When those who say "Go (forth)" to all realize they cannot go as far as they may wish while those who have said "Sit (forever)" learn that even sitting cannot go another generation, then there will be a new forward line in history.

That's it for me--I am done with platitudes for a day.
Comment by Oliver Haack on January 14, 2010 at 11:18pm
In light of recent events - see discussion:
In order to safeguard the existence of this group and to keep up some basic principles of how we should approach each other, please keep in mind the following points:

Address the issue, not the person.
Be friendly.
Be respectful.
Be tolerant.
Be open-minded.
Don't judge people by what they say or how they say it.
Try to engage, not to preach.

And always remember: 'Our' topic is one of the 'hottest' topics in international conflict studies. Everyone here can make a change by distancing oneself from the hardliners in the respective political and religious camps.
Comment by Maor on January 13, 2010 at 6:27pm
Your knowledge in history and analytical skills were reviewd and criticized by me before in response to an essay you posted on your blog. My comments are valid for your comment here as well. You have not responded yet.
To answer your question - Muslims live in Israel and in the Palestinian territories - I believe the number is around 5 million today (versus around 6 million Jews). They should of course continue living there. You see, no need to bother the USA, the UK, or the UN with it.
Comment by Md. Ashraf Hossain on January 13, 2010 at 6:01pm
Palestine is a land for Muslims since 632 AD. The Palestinians have been living there since 1800 BC through the regime of Ibrahim, Musa, Daud, Solaiman Alaihissallam and Hazrat Muhammad (SM) uptil today. But this land has been being captured chronologically by the Jews communities since the frist zeonist movement in 1878. In 1917 the British soldiers entered the land and helped unscrupulously to enter the jews from elsewhere. If the Jews who declared Israeli Independence in 1948 have the right to live there why not the Muslims who have been living there for centuries. Who will give the answer? The USA, the UK, or the UN.
Comment by Narda Azaria Dalgleish on January 13, 2010 at 5:05am
voted :)
Comment by David Crier on January 13, 2010 at 4:55am
Please check out Mahmoud Jabari Blog He needs your vote so he can be choose to go to Davos Youth Forum. He needs your vote before the end of January. look for “Vote” If you are pro peace in the Palestinian-Israeli crisis vote yes

Hello Mahmoud Jabari

Thank-you for your words of inspiration, wisdom and hope. If more Palestinian voice like your could be heard outside Palestine. There would not be the Palestinian crisis we have today. Keep up the good faith and great work. Glad I met you on it is a great platform to meet people working for Peace in Palestine. David Global Crier
Comment by Md. Ashraf Hossain on September 25, 2009 at 3:35pm
Hi Ehtesham Ul Haq Tariq Thanks.
Ashraf Hossain
Comment by James S. Oppenheim on September 25, 2009 at 6:19am
Web location of the Organization of the Islamic Conference:

A defensive posture may make it difficult to acknowledge and wrestle with internal rivalries and live-fire conflicts that come down especially hard on innocents within and outside Islam. There seems also a great emphasis on force and approaching difficult issues as martial rather than cultural or intellectual challenges.

Perhaps states that have found their way to comparatively peaceful cooperation in development and union across a number of positive dimensions have worked at least since WWII methodically and systematically to obtain and preserve that state of affairs.

My father, God rest his soul, broke a lot of tools in his lifetime, and there are only two ways to break a tool: misapplication or too much force. Languages and governments are tools too and all pay a price when they're abused (as they may be with assorted kleptocracies) or, focused or obsessed with power, positioned as autocratic, unyielding, and belligerent.
Comment by Ehtsham-Ul-Haq Tariq on September 22, 2009 at 6:23am
Thanks for your reply, We the Pakistanis mourn over the ineffectiveness of OIC Organization of Islamic Conference. If all Muslim countries are united and United Nations take serious action over the miseries and plight of Palestinians ,then we would have been successful to help Palestinians in the achievement of their just cause .
The peaceful resolution will contribute to improve the peace situation in whole world . Because wherever the rights are violated, it has impact on the world peace. The UNO will have to take drastic measures to make an end the Afghan, Iraq and Palestine War so that we may live in this world with Peace .What do you think about the Role of Organization of Islamic Conference and United Nations in the maintenance of peace of world?
Comment by James S. Oppenheim on July 15, 2009 at 6:36pm
Several wars and more than 60 years of majority-Jewish Israeli administration and defense across the contested landscape have made the "two-state solution" provided by 1948's UN Resolution 181 a latterday prize for the Arab refugees within its borders, for that is the prize that perpetuates conflict with hazy Arab and proto-Arab (I refer to Iran's regime) hopes for the diminishment and erasure of the Jews from the land.

Moreover, I think the "two-state solution" has become a lazy answer for Jews and Muslims alike who passionately engage this conflict arena while putting off wrapping their heads around the idea of a more helpful and permanent integration.

Pakistan has been called an Islamic Israel ("In several respects--ethnic and cultural pluralism, not to mention religion's role in both the state and citizenship--Pakistan resembles Israel", from Stephen Phillip Cohen's _The Idea of Pakistan_, p. 162), and its experience with the internal marketing of permanent enmity, its loss of its eastern partition (Bangladesh), but its continuing struggle as both host and enemy of Islamic militantism, may prove instructive, especially in light of India's comparative success as a religiously plural and tolerant state (India's Muslim population approaches or equals Pakistan's own).

Pakistan may be going through a long overdue cultural, military, and political sea change, so one may hope, and Israel and the still unsettled people in its midst face similar challenges.

For the time being, Israel, centrally defined by its Jewish aspect and in its Muslim territorial aspect, enjoys peace, its chief goad being Iran, and the regime in Iran faces the distractions of severe internal security issues today as well as archaic ambitions having more to do with Iraq than with Israel.

Similarly, politicians and powers within the West Bank and Gaza would seem to have their hands full with one another.

In fact, Hamas vs. Fatah may have been more in the press this month than any conflict having to do with Israel or its internal refugees in the context of the living state (Israel this month interdicted several runs on its naval blockade while promising to send aid shipments through after inspection, presumably for arms; internally, the haredi have been angry about keeping a public parking lot open on the Sabbath--compared to what Hamas has been up to with round-ups of suspected Fatah, Israel's worst summer news would seem, so far, a long yawn).

Among the consequences of peace and the acquisition of the luxury of time that peace affords is the ability to expand intellectual exchange across a troubled campus, and I suspect as much goes forward--or walks across the borders--every day. Online? This would seem a small part of another sort of traffic.

As regards Jerusalem, there are international responsibilities associated with administration throughout Israel. I would liken those responsibilities to both the public and private ownership of designated historic properties in the United States. When such have been deeded to private hands, owners become owner-caretakers: reinforced by public code and by public opinion, they know the significance of their homes excedes their individual importance; they know their property will have a longer life in national culture and history than they will as individuals under the best of circumstances; and they are obliged to manage such properties accordingly.

One might suspect the Christians, Muslims, and Jews of Jerusalem have recognized and adopted or internalized a similar set of behaviors--and if not, well shame on them because for the rest of the world, such would seem their most beautiful and wonderful obligation.

As a world irrevocably altered by the World Wide Web, I think humanity is being asked to be a little larger and less parochial than it has ever been. Dealing with that may be what Israel and other culturally-driven conflict arenas come down to--i.e., exceding themselves as humans, collectively, by outgrowing a very few old ideas.

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