Break the Chain They Have A Point...
Or Do They?

Exclusive (4/17/2002) With tensions in the Middle East at an all-time high, many are confused about what's behind the decades-old Arab-Israeli conflict. Chain letters like this one are intended to clear it up, but often only spawn new questions and stoke an already very hot fire.

SAMPLE CHAIN LETTER TEXT

I'm sending this cause i found it to be intersting. I still don't agree with what PM Sharon is doing.I just hope that peace with come to Israel and the world soon. Mideast conflict - 20 points list

This is important information to know since we don't get fair and accurate reporting from the media and facts tend to get lost in the jumble of daily events. Here are some conveniently overlooked facts in the current Middle East situation.

This 20-point list was compiled by a Christian University Professor.

1. Nationhood and Jerusalem. Israel became a nation in 1312 B.C.E., two thousand years before the rise of Islam.

2. Arab refugees in Israel began identifying themselves as part of aPalestinian people in 1967, two decades after the establishment of themodern State of Israel.

3. Since the Jewish conquest in 1272 B.C.E. the Jews have had dominion over the land for one thousand years with a continuous presence in the land for the past 3,300 years.

4. The only Arab dominion since the conquest in 635 C.E. lasted nomore than 22 years.

5. For over 3,300 years, Jerusalem has been the Jewish capital. Jerusalem has never been the capital of any Arab or Muslim entity. Even when the Jordanians occupied Jerusalem, they never sought to make it their capital, and Arab leaders did not come to visit.

6. Jerusalem is mentioned over 700 times in Tanach, the Jewish Holy Scriptures. Jerusalem is not mentioned once in the Koran.

7. King David founded the city of Jerusalem. Mohammed never came to Jerusalem.

8. Jews pray facing Jerusalem. Muslims pray with their backs toward Jerusalem.

9. Arab and Jewish Refugees: In 1948 the Arab refugees were encouraged to leave Israel by Arab leaders promising to purge the land of Jews. Sixty-eight percent left without ever seeing an Israeli soldier.

10. The Jewish refugees were forced to flee from Arab lands due to Arab brutality, persecution and pogroms.

11. The number of Arab refugees who left Israel in 1948 is estimated to be around 630,000. The number of Jewish refugees from Arab lands is estimated to be the same.

12. Arab refugees were INTENTIONALLY not absorbed or integrated into the Arab lands to which they fled, despite the vast Arab territory. Out of the 100,000,000 refugees since World War II, theirs is the only refugee group in the world that has never been absorbed or integrated into their own peoples' lands. Jewish refugees were completely absorbed into Israel, a country no larger than the state of New Jersey.

13. The Arab - Israeli Conflict: The Arabs are represented by eight separate nations, not including the Palestinians. There is only one Jewish nation. The Arab nations initiated all five wars and lost. Israel defended itself each time and won.

14. The PLO's Charter still calls for the destruction of the State of Israel. Israel has given the Palestinians most of the West Bank land, autonomy under the Palestinian Authority, and has supplied them with weapons.

15. Under Jordanian rule, Jewish holy sites were desecrated and the Jews were denied access to places of worship. Under Israeli rule, all Muslim and Christian sites have been preserved and made accessible to people of all faiths.

16. The UN Record on Israel and the Arabs: of the 175 Security Council resolutions passed before 1990; there were 97 directed against Israel.

17. Of the 690 General Assembly resolutions voted on before 1990, 429 were directed against Israel.

18. The UN was silent while 58 Jerusalem Synagogues were destroyed by the Jordanians.

19. The UN was silent while the Jordanians systematically desecrated the ancient Jewish cemetery on the Mount of Olives.

20. The UN was silent while the Jordanians enforced an apartheid-like policy of preventing Jews from visiting the Temple Mount and the Western Wall.

These are incredible times. We have to ask what our role should be. What will we tell our grandchildren we did when there was a turning point in free world and democracies destiny, an opportunity to make a difference?

START NOW!! Send this to 20 other people you know and ask them to send it to twenty others, Jew and non-Jew--it doesn't really matter.

END CHAIN LETTER TEXT

Disavow yourself of the notion that this is a new argument in response to the post-Passover 2002 escalation of hostilities in Israel and Palestine. Versions of this letter were posted on web sites and newsgroups as far back as October 2000. Originally titled A Crash Course in Middle East History, early versions were attributed to "www.facts4peace.com," but there is no longer a site there (the domain is for sale). Some sites bundle this list with an article by WorldNetDaily reporter Joseph Farah, leading some to mistakenly attribute to him (Farah told Break the Chain that he knows nothing about it). Many sites post it with no attribution at all.

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It's possible that a "Christian University Professor" did write this, but that attribution did not appear until at least January, 2001. It's just as likely that someone added the vague attribution to make the arguments seem more learned (and thus compelling) or that the list was posted somewhere by a professor, leading some to believe he or she wrote it.

Without a verifiable source, the facts in this chain are questionable at best. I have not taken the time to validate each point individually, but several newsgroups and web sites have poked some convincing holes in them. Interestingly, people on both sides of this issue have questioned many of the "facts" in this chain.

Despite its claims that it is not slanted to one side or the other, this letter has spurred many heated debates. In it's earlier versions, it was posted almost exclusively on pro-Israeli web sites and message boards. Later versions (with the "no-slant" disclaimer) appear on pro-Israeli and pro-Palestinian sites alike. Reactions to the list in newsgroups range from total agreement, to annoyance to uncontrolled hatred and anger. It appears that this is far from the unbiased accounting of "facts" it claims to be. Break this Chain!

What Do You Think?

Category: Political Ponderings
References: None

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