Both sides are still operating under the principle that random killings of civilians will cause the other side to have to back down. That has never worked in history. All such attacks do, on both sides, is strengthen resolve to never give in or compromise. This can only end badly, with thousands more dead, a country in ruins, and mass migrations to other countries. Northern Ireland had the same problem, and except for a rare flare up, whatever solution they came up with, seems to be working.
If the West would stay out of the Israel - Palestine conflict it would end. The problem is the West halts the conflict just before Israel defeats those causing the problem. I would guess the general population of Gaza would live in peace with Israel if Hamas and the other small trouble making were removed from power. All the West Bank and Gaza has to do is quit attacking Israel. If they had stopped attacking years ago the West Bank government would be in control instead of Israel troops and settlements. The reason those in power do it is so they can stay in power. Hamas is a bully and when you let a bully go unchecked they get worse. Hamas is being supplied and support by Iran. If it was not for Iran this flareup may have never started.
A good example of what I am saying is when Hezbollah started the war with Israel they were almost defeated but the West stepped in and saved Hezbollah. Israel lived up to it's promises but Hezbollah use the peace to rebuild and become more dangerous. The West makes the mistake of trying to make war clean, nice and played with a set of rules. The bullies in the world can do anything but the other side has to play by a set of rules.
I hope the general Palestinian population can find a leadership that will let them live in peace with Israel and reach their greatest potential.
As an atheist I don't really have a stake in this fight; however, in any analysis of conflict it is useful to inspect the power differential. A quick comparison of wealth will show Israel at 16th out of 187 countries in the world, and they export 10% of the world's total weaponry. In most trade measures, they do pretty well.
Palestine, conversely, has an unemployment rate around 25%, average income is $1,292.37 per year/per person, and a full 30% of their GDP comes from foreign aid. Their economy limps along, never gaining much because they are preoccupied with statehood, rather than markets.
Even without these statistics, I think it is fairly obvious that there is a vast income disparity between the two groups. This issue confuses and misdirects world perception of the conflict.
Palestine appears to be victimized, while Israel appears ruthless. Palestinians are a conquered people, and theirs is a bitterness and rage that comes from having very little left to lose. To an outsider, we see one people who have lost their land and now live in poverty, and another people who have taken that land and now live in comparative wealth. It's hard not to have sympathy for the displaced Palestinians.
From the perspective of a developed, first world nation, Israel is a more progressive state, despite being controlled by Zionists. There are some wonderful aspects of the cultural experiment called Israel, and I sympathize with the people who have made their homes there. Also, constant, unprovoked attacks would no doubt create a raw nerve in any citizenry, and the radical statements of Hamas certainly don't provide a sense of security for Israel - one that would allow them to be more lenient. I see why they get reactionary. They are between a rock and a hard place.
More than anything I am tired of the killing on both sides, and hearing about it decade after decade. After so much senseless, continual violence I begin to get emotional burn-out. Ultimately, I feel that they should have honored the Oslo Accord in 1993. If both sides had kept their word, it would have been a decent draw.
Since they both insist on hardline, radical, 'all or none' agendas, the situation appears entrenched, and beyond repair. It seems they'd both rather fight than make peace, and because of that I am in favor of withdrawing all support for both parties. If they are intent on fighting to the death, let them, but there is no reason for us to finance it.
Palestine, though I think the idea of which side is more sympathetic is unduly binary.
After World War II, there was a clear moral and practical impetus to create a Jewish state or homeland. While that form should never have been an ethno-state as it became, there still was a need to grant something like an Israel.
But there was no reason why the crimes of Germans (and other Europeans) should have been paid for by Palestinians.
Palestinians found themselves pushed off of their land to service people they had not met who they had not injured in any way. That is a colossal injustice.
I tend to find myself identifying with the underdog, but in the story of Israel-Palestine, the issue is that there's a way of viewing both as an underdog. Israel is a majority-Jewish country, a people who have endured a tremendous amount historically across the continents, in a region of Arabs, Berbers, Persians, Sudanese and many others, most of whom are Muslim. Palestinians, meanwhile, were under the heel of British colonialism before they found themselves being smashed by nationalists of a new ilk.
It may be this fact, that both sides are sympathetic for markedly different reasons, that makes it such an ugly and divisive conflict internationally. We're story-telling creatures, and while it's not true that all of us identify with the underdog (there is a large trend in our behavior to identify with the victor not the vanquished), in the case of Israel and Palestine one sees two peoples trying to survive in a small strip of land with limited water. Both sides have had ugly nationalism informing their politics.
Still, at the end of the day Palestinians did not start the conflict and did not move into the lands held by Jews. Like many refugees to what is now the United States before them, Israelis moved from being victims of repression to themselves being violently repressive and brutal (even as the repressive and brutal states around them seemed to target them, an additional rub). At that point, when many of these individuals moved from victims to conquerors, my sympathies left them.
The bloodthirsty rabble in the middle east have been at each other's throats for the better part of 5,000 years.
They've obviously not bothered to attempt the raiment of civilization, and have in fact, apparently set back civilized process for the better part of 2,000 years.
I thing the best thing for them to accomplish, from Iran to the Ivory Coast, would be to wipe themselves off the face of the planet... to the very last person.
Maybe then the rest of the world could sleep a bit easier knowing we'd not have to hear of their nonsense every day in the news.
First thing is that the British made this situation. The US was lobbied for support with one of the strongest groups in America today. The Arab Nations also hold blame because they have supported conflict and have not made way for compromise. The area is holy to religion today and religion makes little or no compromise. In history there has been no area like this where so many have died for their beliefs.
For the US and other free nations to take a side is part of Crusade to influence freedom of religion everywhere while the citizens are dying in Israel today.
It is time for finding resolve to protect human life and to stop blaming others to justify war.
Stones are less effective than modern warfare. It seems to me that a society that has thousands of years of civilization would have it figured out by now. There must be a payoff for what they are doing....Do you think.