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LIBERALS, MORAL ABSOLUTES, AND THE MIDDLE EAST

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An Israeli soldier splashes water on his face as he stands atop  a tank outside the northern Gaza Strip
An Israeli soldier splashes water on his face as he stands atop a tank outside the northern Gaza Strip July 22, 2014. REUTERS/Baz Ratner

A big majority of Americans say Israel is justified in its response to Hamas, but a CNN/ORC poll shows revealing ideological differences in attitudes toward the Middle East.

Among Republicans, 73% stand with Israel, and with Independents that support hits 56%. But among  Democrats only a minority—45%—feels the Jewish state is justified in its military response to stop rocket attacks and terror tunnels.

Across the spectrum, Americans who back Israel outnumber those who don’t by nearly two-to-one, but the reaction of Democrats reflects the left’s embrace of moral equivalence—and a rejection of clear distinctions between right and wrong.

Conservatives feel more comfortable with absolutes: sometimes, conflicts do involve a struggle between good and evil. In this war, Israel is fighting to put an end to violence; Hamas is fighting to continue and intensify terror.

One war aim is admirable. The other is evil.

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  1. Bob Redding  •  Jul 24, 2014 at 12:06 pm

    In the liberal world “Muslim” is the “new black”. What do Israel, Iraq, and Syria all have in common? Muslim backed terrorist groups. Liberals seem to be defending these groups at every turn, but why? Could it be a simple as “the enemy of my enemy is my friend”? Or is it because our President is a Muslim sympathizer and liberals and the media are just falling in line with him.

    • David Sasson  •  Aug 18, 2014 at 6:53 am

      The new Middle East is a brutal one. Many Sunnis hate Shi’ites and many Shi’ites hate Sunnis. Many Sunnis and Shi’ites hate Christians, Jews, women and homosexuals. In numerous countries in the region, a considerable part of the majority hates the minorities – Kurds, Druze, Copts, Turkmen, Yazidis. All that, and we have’nt even got to the Israeli-Arab conflict…

      Fact: out of hundreds of thousands Arabs killed in the Middle East during the past 65 years, since Israel go their independence, only about 0.1% has been killed by Israel… the rest, as you probably guessed by now, were killed by other Arabs..

      Here are 10 more facts About The Arab-Israeli Conflict (http://arabisraeliconflict.info/arab-israel-facts/10-facts):
      Fact #1: Jews have been living in Israel continuously for over 3,000 years
      Fact #2: One quarter of Israeli citizens are not Jewish
      Fact #3: Israel has repeatedly accepted the two state solution
      Fact #4: The Arab-Israeli conflict is not about the occupation – it’s about the existence of Israel
      Fact #5: Arab violence against civilians began long before the occupation
      Fact #6: Palestinian leadership actively supported the Nazis during WWII
      Fact #7: Arab leaders have been abusing the Palestinians for political gain since the beginning of the conflict
      Fact #8: Palestinian children are being brainwashed into hate, martyrdom and genocide
      Fact #9: Palestinians are treated differently than all other refugees
      Fact #10: Israel is treated differently than all other countries, expected to fight “cleaner” than any other nation ever did… and even if they do that, they are being blamed in “genocide”…

  2. marty kaltenbach  •  Jul 25, 2014 at 8:30 am

    Not many comments on this, Michael. I think because says so much already. As a conservative I grew up with a reinforced sense of right and wrong. I do feel more comfortable with absolutes. From that base I feel I can decide the merits and morality from a understandable perspective.

  3. Joe  •  Jul 25, 2014 at 10:09 pm

    Let’s just hope and pray Israel ignores Obama and Kerry and finishes the job this time. I would like to see nothing short of total annihilation of all the people who want to destroy Israel.

    • JGUY  •  Jul 29, 2014 at 4:53 am

      “Total annihilation” Don’t you think that might be carrying things a bit far?
      I would go with the majority thinking and go for the tunnels destroyed and
      rocket firing halted. Talk of “total annihilation” while your free privilege
      is in the same insane vein as “final solution” ….unwarranted ranting in
      my humble opinion. Please reconsider your position.

      • Patrick Buell  •  Aug 3, 2014 at 9:30 am

        Would you rather just eliminate half or maybe a third of terrorists. Wait for them to regroup and rearm then begin attacks again and continue this cycle forever. Comparing his comment to Hitler is just irresponsible

  4. Sali  •  Jul 28, 2014 at 1:44 pm

    Joe
    It is very amazing to see one side have all the military equipment’s and latest and greatest warfare equipment’s and other side civilian with no Military background or warfare. They are fighting with stone for their freedom and living- Blaming everything on HAMAS who are fully infiltrated and backed with Mossad Agents – firing rockets even during ceasefire and accusing HAMMAS breaking ceasefire to continue terrorizing the residents (Muslims & Christians) so that they leave their motherland and other side take over their territory which is going on for the last 60 years. This story is not new to world community.

    I know there are people in Palestine (Muslims and Christians ), who want peace and at the same time there are Palestinians who do not want to see any Jewish Land. Same is true that 80% Israeli Government Cabinet members do not want to see any PALISTANIAN Land AT ALL in that region. Therefore, they created this terrorist organization called HAMAS and infiltrated black sheep’s and agents who are firing these missiles even during cease-fire so that they can continue killing and terrorizing innocent Palestinian Civilians.

    THIS IS NEVER ENDING GAME. Even if Israel genocide that Land, it will never end. UNITED NATIONS ALSO CAN’T DO ANY THING. THERE WILL NEVER BE A PEACE THERE.
    ONLY SOLUTION TO THIS CONFLICT I IS TO LET UNITED STATES ARMED THESE PALISTANIAN CIVILIAN AS WELL AND LET BOTH PARTIES DUAL FIGHT ON A FAIR GROUND, WHO EVER WILL WIN TAKE THE LAND. THERE IS NO OTHER SOLUTION TO THIS CONFLICT.

    • JGUY  •  Jul 29, 2014 at 4:35 am

      Joe, So Israeli agents fire rockets at their own country and build tunnels
      to kidnap their own citizens……and the solution is to arm untrained civilians
      and let them fight with a trained military to see who takes the land?
      Your solution appears to be suicidal for involved Palestinians as well
      as massively paranoid. It seems to be more rational to just stop firing
      rockets at Israel….and for the population of Gaza to expel the rocketeers.

    • Matt  •  Aug 1, 2014 at 10:54 am

      As a professional psychologist, allow me to offer help to this mentally disturbed individual. First let me gt this straight. Israel is infiltrating Hamas to fire rockets at Israeli civilian targets so they can keep the conflict going and obliterate the people in the land they gave to them a few years ago? Wait. Let me start again. It is Israeli agents who are sending rockets into Israel? No, wait, let me say this in another way. If Israel would disarm there would be peace? Wait, …..oh forget it. Let’s go straight to the commitment hearing!

  5. Sali  •  Jul 30, 2014 at 1:26 am

    Mr. Joe or JGuy
    I don’t expect you to believe it, sorry it is fact just like a fine line on a stone and I’m saying this with 200% confident. This is not only my opinion or any Muslim’s opinion, it is out there. At the same time, I agree with your point as well.

    Let me say one thing. I am from India, I have Hindu relatives, I have Muslims relative and Christian relatives mixed in my family. My religious study says that believers of Moses are my brothers and sisters, believers of Jesus are my brothers and sisters just like my Muslim brothers and sisters. To be honest with you, no I don’ want to see my Jewish or Christian brothers and sisters hurts and suffer like those my innocent Muslims brothers and sisters, just because of few who want power and land.

    Let me tell you, Militant Islam has been used for centuries to get power, land and money. This is not new. There is a saying that “MULLAHS ARE MADE IN BRITAIN” – I can give you many examples that Militant Islam has been used for political reasoning and in many international conflicts like this one.

    The biggest and famous example is “Ayat-ullah Komeini” of Iran – he was staged and used by Britain to topple Shah of Iran. Mullahs made by Britain was infiltrated and injected by Britain from North Africa all the way to Indian Sub-Continent to topple many Islamic regimes and to create chaos all over Muslim World so that they never stand up and move upward. This is not a new story Mr. Joe.
    Fabricated Mullah has been made and used by many nations including Elite Arabs. Our last Prophet (PBUH) informed us about it 1400 years ago. This is not new to us. Please tell me something new. There is no difference between people like Michael Medved and Mullah – one has beard and one with no beard – both use militant Islam as an excuses in killing innocent people on both sides. Same thing JOE AND JGUY are doing – what is difference between you and Mullahs? all of you are using militant Islam to kill innocent people.

    I wish Mr. Michael Medvid talk to me here. He is only 20% right and he manipulated his 20% truth with 80% fabricated stuff on any topic not only this and thinks that he is absolutely right on anything. I wish he can talk to me here and in writing.
    Sali

  6. Lawrence  •  Jul 30, 2014 at 6:50 pm

    This issue should really have nothing to do with politics. The litmus test in determining justification versus culpability should be based off the facts and anyone who is studying this issue in a fair minded, unbiased way, will quickly understand that Israel is on the right side of history, no pun intended, and the Arabs are in the wrong. The media also perpetuates a lot of the distorted facts with Israel. The average person who does not have a particular interest in this topic, flips on the evening news and is bombarded with reporting and imagery that is inaccurate, bias, and portrays Israel in a negative light. That person who has no other knowledge about Israel and her Arab neighbors, will look at that report and immediately assume Israel is in the wrong, even though their not. I also believe that the other factor that feeds into Israel’s detractors is antisemitism. Israel is a Jewish state, it’s an extension of Judaism as a religion and Jews as a people. To add yet another dimension to this discussion, the liberals of today are not the same as those in the progressive era as in the days of Harry Truman, my favorite president. But, you don’t have to go back that far. Alan Dershowitz is certainly a liberal but he is also someone who is a staunch supporter of Israel and goes head to head against other liberals to counteract their anti Israel beliefs. Of course, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention another faction of the anti Israel contingent and this group disturbs me the most, self hating Jews like Chomsky, Finkelstein, and Friedman just to name a few.There is even a certain sect of Orthodox Jews that would fall into this category. As someone who is Jewish, I find these people to be truly repulsive. This group is ashamed of being Jewish and will do anything to distance themselves from their religion, culture, and background. I am not ashamed of being Jewish, I am proud to be Jewish. I am also proud to be a strong supporter of Israel, that’s why I have in the past and will continue to defend Israel and fight the anti Israel crowd every step of the way.

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