Until Wednesday, you probably would’ve been hard pressed to hear someone say that in general, Palestinians and Israelis are cordial and have a relationship of mutual respect. To keep things in context, historians, especially those with Christian theological education, will teach that the conflict between Israel and Palestine is nothing new.
For many of them the discord dates back to Biblical times and is deep rooted in how the Jews view God’s promises to Abraham in the book of Genesis, as well as what was predicted about Israel’s eventual fate. Many of those scholars will also assert that God’s word to the Jews in Genesis isn’t the end of the story. They’ll assert that Joshua 13:1-5 says God tells Joshua which lands are to be taken from the “region of the Philistines [Palestine]” in the south to “Lebo Hammath [Hamas, Syria].”
These clerics will argue that Joshua sets the stage for Judges, which opens with telling about how Israel failed to drive the people out because God tells them it’s not His will. Instead, the Lord wanted the Palestinians to stay and be thorns in the sides of the Jews; Palestinians were willed to be thorns in the sides of Jews in Biblical times, and the Palestinians are still testing Israelites — because it’s God’s will.
Israel’s refusal to accept Palestinians is what complicates things for Israelis. That’s what many Christians and others who pride themselves in providing exegesis of the text will say.
While the context is a little different and the story isn’t as colorful as that of the Biblical one, the Israelis simply believe the land is theirs and they should have it.
Yes, there are modern political forces that have impacted the escalation of the conflict over the years, but one thing has remained: Israelis and Palestinians, in general, don’t get along. Their conflict has led to bloody wars, the need for people on both sides to seek asylum in other countries and the birth of extremist and terrorist cells, whose members are willing to put their lives on the line for what they believe in.
Therefore, when Donald Trump stood in front of the media on Wednesday and said members of Palestinian and Israeli governments “get along unbelievably well,” people were baffled. Trump didn’t stop making a fool of himself, there. He added:
‘I also applaud the Palestinian Authority’s continued cooperation with Israel. They get along unbelievably well… They work together beautifully.’
If they work together so “beautifully,” then why isn’t there peace between the two countries? Further showing his ignorance to just how deep-seeded the conflict is, Trump pretty much openly took a side and declared there can be “no lasting peace” until Palestinians speak out against hate.
In true inarticulate Trump style, he remarked:
‘There’s such hatred, but hopefully there won’t be such hatred for very long.’
Since Trump prides himself in hiring family, he may want to find a loved one well-versed in history. His lack of background knowledge made him look uninformed and ill-prepared to truly play the role of diplomat.
You can watch Trump’s ludicrous comments below, via YouTube:
Featured Image screenshot via YouTube.