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October 10, 2010
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That's right.  I'm visiting Israel next week (Oct 17th through Oct 27th).  It's with Kesher Birthright Israel trips.  It's going to have a historical, religious, and political context.  I am a reform jew and this trip is being given by a reform organization.  Reform, while it has some implications of leniency in religious practices, I believe also imparts a certain abhorrence to war not found in some other, more conservative jewish sects.  I'm hoping that when I go over there, all Israelis and Palestinians will have some transformative thought change and stop fighting.  I don't expect that though.  I was thinking about the situation over there.  Here is what I've concluded: The Jewish people, as part of our historical monologue, need to be constantly under attack and overcoming oppression.  From our youth, we learn about jewish history in a context of subjugation followed by empowerment.  We wouldn't know what to do if no single group of people despised us.

Consider this hypothetical world: The government of the state of Israel, or what ever it would be called, were totally secular.  All religious groups are free to live among one another in mutual respect and harmony.  The laws of this state would not favor or disparage one group or another.  The problem here is that the people living in that part of the world don't want secular government.  The jews want ALL JEWISH ALL THE TIME.  The muslims want ALL ISLAM ALL THE TIME.  I believe that the amount of religious zeal held by the inhabitants of Israel and surrounding countries is too great to allow secularization of government.  Everyone is uncompromising and there will never be a time when the people can live harmoniously.

You may be saying to yourself, "this bloke is making unfounded claims about the desires of israeli and palestinian peoples and their governments' capacities for change and compromise!"  You're right.  I'd like someone to tell me what are some thoughts of israeli and palestinian peoples?  What are the political stances held by their governments?

Anyhow, Ashley and I went to New Haven today and Campbell Falls yesterday.  Photos will be up shortly.
  • Mood: Excited
  • Listening to: Amadou & Miriam
  • Eating: Pluots
  • Drinking: Water
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:iconsnert:
Snert Featured By Owner Oct 11, 2010
Well, have fun, donīt expect too much peace :P, iīve been there and visited all of Israel, parts of Syria and Jordania. Try to find some Chocolatemilk from the Kibbuz Yotvata, take a swim in the death see, be safe travelling Jerusalem, enjoy the red sea, the old city of Akko and the nightlife of Tel Aviv. And most of it the food! Maybe you know the book "Exodus" by Leon Uris, if not, i would recommend you to read it before or while travelling through Israel. On a more serious note i want you to visit Yad Vashem, an important place...


All i can say is that I have experienced a friendly country with a high security level :). Well, they are not very camerafriendly :) but there are still some photos i took in my gallery. And donīt try to understand politics... different world, different situations, historical failure, religious maniacs all together. But overall, nice people on both sides, also very stupid people on both sides... -> my attempt in 2005 [link]

Shalom :D
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:iconfroggynaan:
froggynaan Featured By Owner Oct 12, 2010  Hobbyist Photographer
Great shot. Great message.

I also hear the coffee is good over there. Is it true?
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:iconsnert:
Snert Featured By Owner Oct 13, 2010
Well thatīs typical for Israel, they are drinking "Arabian Coffee" :D, both sides use the good stuff of the other side and deny that they do or hate the other side besides the fact they could work things out together... Back to the coffee, most of the time, i drank it made like the workers drink it with some cardamon and alot sugar. I loved it, sometimes i try to make it myself at home, but it never tastes like it did on the jeep trip through the Golanheights, made on a bonfire :).
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:iconfroggynaan:
froggynaan Featured By Owner Oct 15, 2010  Hobbyist Photographer
That sounds lifechanging. Might I come back wanting to move there? I wonder if they have engineering companies there so I can work.
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:iconsnert:
Snert Featured By Owner Oct 15, 2010
I did... i really thought about it :), but i had a girlfriend back then... and other things which kept me from moving there, there are alot companies over there, most of them security and weaponsortastuff. You can try to work over there but it isnt that easy to get there... thats what iīve heard. On another note, it was lifechanging, but it was also holiday and i was glad to get back home because living there is quite different then just visiting the country. But have fun and try to be as neutral as possible so you dont miss anything ;).
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