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Vision of Hope
file under: vision of hopeMiddle East Peaceeconomic developmentDemonstrations 24 Mar 2011 5:01 PM
Half Measures with No Clear Vision in Sight Posted by Nissim Dahan
Where is the vision? Where are we heading? And how do we get there?


For some reason, when it comes to the Middle East, people the world over seem to content themselves with half measures and short-sighted thinking. We feel good about doing something, anything for that matter, even if it has little bearing on the problem at hand, or no chance of bringing about a long term solution.


Take, as an example, the current military campaign in Libya, which is being undertaken by France, England and the U.S. We are targeting military installations, pursuant to authorization from the U.N. Security Council and the Arab League, ostensibly to stop Gadhafi from killing his own people. Sounds good, right? But as they say, the devil is in the details. Why aren't we attacking other dictators who are similarly killing their own people? How will a strictly air campaign prevent Gadhafi from killing his people? Isn't regime change our ultimate goal? How will an air campaign bring about regime change? And if Gadhafi steps down, who will take his place, and to what end?


And the Libya affair is not an isolated example of lack of vision and lack of direction. With our blood and treasure heavily invested in Afghanistan and Iraq, we still don't have even a hint of peace and stability in those nations. With a sanction regime imposed on Iran, we still see Iran pursuing its nuclear weapon ambitions with impunity, as well as its ambitions to remake the Middle East as it sees fit. And with the mounting pressure being exerted on the whole of the Middle East by the man on the street, we still don't have a sense that the change that is coming will be in keeping with the aspirations of the people, and with the best interests of the region as a whole.


So what is missing in the puzzle we call the Middle East? What is missing is a vision, and a reasonable way of giving substance to the vision. And without a vision, and a solid plan of action, the best made plans of mice and men will drift aimlessly in the winds of change.


What is needed is a vision, a Vision of Hope, a vision of Peace, Prosperity and Freedom. It doesn't have to be that vision in particular, although such a vision would address most of what people aspire to, but it should be a vision which brings together all the pieces of a possible solution to our most intractable problems, which packages those pieces in the most attractive way possible, and which allows us to sell that vision to the man on the street. A vision of that sort, a vision which captures hearts and minds, would buy us time to make the necessary changes to give substance to the vision. When the man on the street, who fumes with anger even as we speak, comes to believe that he is being offered a place at the table, a stake in his future, then he may settle down, at least for a while, comforted in the belief that his dreams for the future may one day become real.


And who do we need most of all, to give substance to a Vision of Hope, a vision of Peace, Prosperity and Freedom? Well we have plenty of politicians out there, talking up a storm. And we have academics galore, arguing this and that, back and forth, and back again. And of course, we have our diplomats, ever so careful in the words they choose, going about here and there, making their presence known. But if we really want to get something done, if we choose to move from words to deeds, then we will have no choice but to get the business community in on the game, so as to create good paying jobs; jobs which grow our economies, jobs which protect our environment, and jobs which help to weaken the hold of extremist thinking.


Instead of half measures and short-sighted thinking, we owe it to ourselves, and to future generations, to put in place a new model for the Middle East, by inspiring the world's top business leaders, Billionaires for Peace, to push the peace process forward from behind the scenes, and to revitalize the entire region with good paying jobs, moderate candidates, and requisite institutions, for the sake of global peace, prosperity and freedom. 


There is a real opportunity now to make something happen in the Middle East, something that could change the world for the better, and something that will breathe life into the people there and beyond. But nothing good will happen, if all we look for is the quick fix. What is needed is a vision which puts it all together, and the willingness to do what it takes to make real what is now only a dream.


Please join us, with your comments.

Comments (31)Add Comment
written by GABE1, March 24, 2011
written by GABE1, March 23, 2011
Egypt Air removes Israel from map

Jordan stretches to sea in online map by Egypt's largest airline, though it continues to fly to Israel

written by GABE1, March 24, 2011
CAIRO — Israel should not rush into carrying out any military operations in Gaza, Egyptian Foreign Minister Nabil Elaraby said in a statement on Wednesday.

Elaraby "asked Israel to exercise self restraint and warned it against rushing into a military operation in Gaza".

Winds of change, you call it. I prefer the peace we have now than your rose colored solutions
written by GABE1, March 24, 2011
Let us make a wager and I say that in the next 10 years there will not be any change in the Middle East from the past 50 years. History and change do not turn on a dime dream as we may in technicolour. As an accountant ,I come in contact with a lot of wealthy people as well as mom and pop enterprises. Some of my employers have been in the Fortune 500 categories such as American Standard, Hawker Siddely and Garrard as well as well known builders in the Canadian market whose owners had a net worth of close to a billion dollars.

I know intimately the business mind and business psyche probably as well as anyone around.

Both you and Velvel are dreamers with rose coloured glasses without a shred of realism.

I asked you how long you have been at this dream and whether you have been able to sell this snake oil to anyone yet, Yes I heard about the meetings but show me any concrete accomplishment.

Until and unless the economy can outpace the population growth, not enough jobs (of any quality) can be generated to accomodate that growth. NO ONE in his/her right mind will invest in an unstable region where the main export is terror and where there is only a primitive economy operating. We already have a SHNORER economy operating in Gaza with so called jobs created by UNWRA.

You keep bombarding me with sound bites that I do not see yet on the horizon. THERE IS NOTHING NEW ON THE TABLE. We don't even know who the new players will be and what their agenda is.

People are actually starving in Africa and being murdered in Arab countries and you believe that the Arabs deserve good paying jobs so that they can be peace loving people.

WHAT pure unadulterated nonsense that you and Velvel are spouting. When in Poland I heard these speeches in various shades for 13 years and look where the communist world is now. Everyone had a job and no one starved and some even became wealthy until they were executed. The government called it Democracy and even held elections.
Time to take the blinders off. We are not horses.
written by Nissim Dahan, March 25, 2011
Gabe, I guess I have to be nice to you, if you know all these wealthy people. Maybe one day you will be kind enough to introduce me to some of them, so that I could continue to build my team, Billionaires for Peace. If someone has just under a billion, we may agree to look the other way and let him in.

Let's look at you points one by one.

You say that there will be no chance in the Middle East over the next 10 years. I say you're wrong. There is already change in the Middle East, even as we speak. The issue is not whether there will be change, but whether the change will be for the better. And when it comes to that, I say that its partly up to us. If we put the right vision on the table, and if we take steps to begin delivering on that promise, then chances are good that the change will go in the right direction, not because of my good looks, but because there is an alignment now between the self-interest of some of the key players, and the best interests of the region. That has not been the case before, and that is why I say that there is something new on the table.

You say that you know the business mind. Well, you probably do, but did you forsee that Gates and Buffett will join forces to improve health care in Africa and education in the U.S.? When business people set out to accomplish something, even something that does not involve making money, they often times succeed in their efforts, because they're used to making things happen in their business, and they transfer those skills to philanthropy. And that's whay I'm calling for with regard to the Middle East. Create jobs not just to make money, but to make a difference as well. And for some of these busienss leaders there will be a third motivation as well: they will join the team because doing so will be one of the few options they have to protect their businesses by stablizing the unrest on the street.

You ask about how long I've been doing this. About 5 years. Before that I was a custom home builder for the previous 30 years. What have I accomplished thus far: I came up with the vision, with divine inspiration as far as I know, I wrote and published a book about it, I designed and launched a website with the help of my son-in-law, I've talked a hell of a lot about it, and I recruited my first billionaire to join the team, the wealthiest Palestinian on earth, who employs some 60,000 people. I am in the process of continuing to put the team together.

Take the blinders off. (Continued)
written by Nissim Dahan, March 25, 2011
Gabe, let me ask you this, and be honest. If I were to tell you that I convinced the Saudis to put one billion dollars in support of this vision, would that make a difference to you? In other words, if I could convince wealthy people to put money toward this dream of mine, would that convince you to give this a second look? And if you answer yes, then it follows that its not really the idea that you question, but my ability to sell it. And therefore, what we need to do is not to discount ideas that may work, but to suspend our doubts, at least for a while, and ask ourselves to at least try to garner some support. Because such support will be a testament to the possibility that this may well be a good idea, and that we will know that if people of wealthy are ready to rally behind it.

You say that no one will invest. I say you're wrong. They have no choice but to invest. Time will tell, but don't we have to at least try? How can we know that you're right, or I'm right, unless we give it an honest try?

You say you don't know who the new leaders will be, and therefore we have to wait it out. I say, we don't know who the new leaders will be, and therefore we have to put the vision out there, and give moderate candidates something to work with, so that they will get elected, and help us to make some of this happen.

And yes, I do believe that Arabs deserve a shot at a better life, just as Africans do as well. Most Arabs are good people. The extremists will have to be confronted, and perhaps killed in self-defense. But how do you fight the extremists? If you just fight them on the battlefield along, you may kill some, but others will pop up in their place, because the violence along just augments their power. But if you attack them in the minds of their own people, by marginalizing them, and beating them at their own game, then after a while, they will be out of step with the will of the people, and they will have no choice but to hide in the shadows, or face the wrath of their people, who will not allow them to hold the people back from a better life. The ideological extremists will not be able to capture the imagination of the people, once people begin to imagine a better life for themselves. We can play a large part in making that happen.

You talk about Poland. But I think, with all due respect, that you are drawing the wrong lessons. The Communist system was corrupt, and off base. The main problem with Cummunism is that it robbed people of their incentive to do well, and the freedom to live their lives as they wishes. In the final analysis, the economic system collapsed of its own weight, and the Soviet Empire fell apart, and many of the Republics are beginning to remake themselves in a new light, with democracy, freedom, and economic growth based on personal incentive. That is the lesson to draw. That people can take a lot of abuse, for a long period of time, but sooner or later, common sense takes over, and the human spirit rises up and takes hold. Peace, prosperity and freedom make a lot more sense than war, poverty and oppression, and the Middle East is no different in this regard. But it will only be for the good if we take the initiative to put in place a new model for the Middle East, so that all this energy gets channeled in the right direction.

I wish you Shabbat Shalom, and please keep the comments coming in. There is much to correct in your thinking.
written by GABE1, March 25, 2011
... to be lost in your own little world and that is OK. At our age we need a hobby. But to say that you have a plausible idea is to simply toot ones own horn to the exclusion of rational thinking.

A billion or two billion dollars would be a spit in the ocean and would last less than a year before it disappeared into nothingness.

I have a model for the Middle East and that model is in place and it is called Israel. I am sorry to say that the Muslim world and your friends on the socialist left are trying to dismantle it.

I would bet my bottom dollar that this little hobby does not cost you a dime as all you are looking for is the "other" to finance it and you know full well that you are flogging a dead horse.

BUT as far as Leftists go you seem to be a kind hearted benign soul that just gets off with self agrandization and this is OK with me. You are welcome to continue trying to fix the ills of this world and I can see that you have sold yourself to yourself to the point that nothing will burst your false reality bubble.

PS: Just keep in mind that there are places much more deserving of your rose colored dreams that the Arab world and they may even thank you rather than try to kill you for that kindness.

I have exhausted my patience so I will bid you adieu and wish you luck no matter in how you measure "your" success.
written by GABE1, March 25, 2011
My wife's family name was Abadi and she was born in Cairo, the Sakhanin section.

Who knows we may even be related.

Would that not be a kick in the arse.
Don't Be Too Quick to Judge
written by Nissim Dahan, March 26, 2011
Gabe, you are quick to call me a "leftist," but I haven't heard too many leftists talk about the willingness to fight against ideological extremism and terror.

But perhaps you satisfy yourself with handy labels, instead of thinking the matter through.

If you read my book, and my articles, you will discover that I spend a great deal of time strategizing how to fight back against extremism. My argument is that self-defense is important, but is not the whole answer. We owe it to ourselves to fight with all out weapons. A multi-faceted attach requires a multi-facted response. And therefore, we must confront the enemy with all the resources we have at our disposal, including: ideology, investment, hope, diplomacy, and the willingness to fight in self-defense.

The military optiont alone has not worked and will not work to secure Israel and the West.

You say that your model for the Middle East is Israel.

Well, let's think about that for a while. Israel: a place where people are not married to one ideology, a vibrant economy with plenty of good paying jobs, a place that inspires a sense of hope, a place that sustains the hope with cultural and educational programs, and a place that has a strong military presence.

Sound an awful lot like Selling a Vision of Hope. So you know what, Gabe, you are right to say that Israel is an excellent model for the Middle East. Israel has a lot of what the Middle East needs. Israel is not the problem in the Middle East, but in many ways, the solution for the Middle East.

So here's a wild and crazy idea Gabe: Why not use the Israel model as a way of revitalizing the Middle East?

I know your patience is "exhausted," but why don't you think about that for awhile.

I don't know if we are specifically related to one another, but I venture to say that in some way or another, we are all related to one another. All these differences we draw about one another are a bunch of BS. When you get to the heart of the matter, we share much more than divides us.

My wife was born in Cairo. Her Dad owned a factory that produced sport goods, and several retail outlets as well. He remembered a young Yasir Arafat coming to the store to buy soccer balls for his soccer team in Egypt.

On day, when my wife was 9 years old, her Dad was arrested by the Nasser regime, and accused of spying for Israel. Within a day or two, he left his apartments keys on the dining room table, and the factory keys to his employees, and left Egypt, with his family to Paris France.

I understand the importance of Israel to the Jewish people. My family goes back 200 years there. The parents of my grandmother were the first 60 families to start Tel Aviv. There is an iconic photo on the sand dunes which testifies to that fact.

It is precisely because of my love for Israel that I choose Selling a Vision of Hope. In the final analysis, Israel can never be secure unless there is a move to peace. Military might is important, but will not suffice in an of itself. And in my opionion, for what its worth, there is an opportunity to really secure Israel by positioning her in the forefront of an effort to revitalize and secure the Middle East.

And no, I don't have the money to make it happen. What I'm hoping for is to have the sales ability to persuade the people who do.
written by GABE1, March 28, 2011
One of my cousins was a commander of the Exodus, another was a minister in Ben Gurion's cabinet. My uncle was the landscaper that planted the menorah at the knesset. Whoopee for me. So what and who gives a flying leap.

You are one of those people that wants to garner the laurels of others and I am not sure of your love for Israel. You have not responded even once to the Antisemites on that MEWAR site and I have not seen any compassion from you for the victims of your beloved Arabs.

Your Vision og hope is nothing but unadulterated horse manure or as the Chines would say: Crap.

Israel will be secure when the Arabs are told to stop demonizing Israel and actually pay a price for demonizing Jews and including the so called settlers, instead of being rewarded for their murderous religious ways.

You are past delusional and frankly I would not entrust you with any of my money or trust your opinion as they have been debunked a gazillion times. Your rose coloured glasses prevent you from seeing the ugly truth and your one track mind prevents you from hearing the ugly truth.

You are like the three monkeys: SEE NO EVIL, HEAR NO EVIL, SPEAK NO EVIL. Evil my friend is all around you. Open your eyes and clean your ears.
And oh Ye
written by GABE1, March 28, 2011
One of my cousins led 38 Iraqi tanks into a trap in Jenin in the 1967 war and my brother in law was the first soldier to cross the Suez canal with Sharon in 1973.

I at least practice my love for Israel not show off with my relatives at the drop of a hat.
written by GABE1, March 30, 2011
A Canadian, a Univ. of Toronto graduate (potential $78,000) earner was arrested today on charges of terrorism when he tried to borad a plane to Somalia via Cairo to join El Qaida.

Eighteen Canadians arrested for trying to blow up the Parliament buildings and vowing to decapitate the Prime Minister. All from middle class families and with a high level of education.

That my friend is just the tip of the iceberg in Canada and the same could be said for France, Germany, the USA, the UK and other wealthy nations were the Muslims have jobs and are well off societally speaking.

YOU my friend are trying to sell snake oil in the guise of a solution even if you could gather the 50 odd trillion dollars in the next 30-50 years. DELUSION has no rational explanation.
written by GABE1, March 31, 2011
I find it absolutely hilarious that you object to being labeled a Leftist. But based on all of your posts both here and on MEWAR there is no doubt in my mind that you are a Leftist that may be somewhat conflicted but a Leftist nevertheless.

Billionaires for Peace
written by GABE1, April 01, 2011
Real misnomer my friend, it should read Trillionaires for Peace or as I would prefer Trillionaires for appeasement of the restless Arab masses. As that is what you are actually proposing.

Your assumptions have now been THOROUGHLY debunked with Libya and Bahraim but like a good soldier you continue fighting a losing battle.
Gabe: The Man Who Likes Labels
written by Nissim Dahan, April 01, 2011
Gabe, I hope your family buys you a label machine for Chanukkah, because you certainly seem to enjoy labeling others.

In the last several posts you've referred to me as: someone who garners the laurels of others, who doesn't love Israel, who is delusional, who can't be trusted, who sees no evil, who sells snake oil, who is a leftist, who is an appeaser, etc., etc., etc.

You seem to know a great deal about me. But I don't really know that much about you. Other than your cyncism and negativity, is there anything else worth knowing about you?

You may not agree with my vision for the future, but I at least have one. What is your vision? Do you even have one? If you do, have the guts to spell it out. Or is that asking too much? Perhaps you're satisfied to denigrate others, instead of coming up with something truly original.

I propose that you have no vision for the future, certainly not one that makes any sense, or that points to the possibility of hope. You say that there is evil in the world. Fine. What do you want to do about it? Is your sense of imagination so stifled that you've made yourself a prisoner of the past, with no regard to the future?

You want the Arabs to respect us, including the settlers you say. OK. How do you propose we go about doing that? Any ideas? Any ideas which have any chance of bringing something new to the table?

It is time, my friend, to take yourself out of the box you've built for yourself. It is time to imagine new possibilities, and to have the courage to make something new happen, something that hasn't been around before, something that is a little scary to even contemplate, because the alternative is even worse.

Yes, these are challenging times. And yes, maybe my ideas are not the right ones. But at least I'm willing to put something on the table. So far, I can't see that you've made that effort. It's not enough to knock people like me. You have to take it up a notch. Give us a plan that works better.

Unless we come up with something that works, and fast, we will surely all go down into that good night, even as we argue about who is right and who is wrong.
written by GABE1, April 02, 2011
I have no lofty visions of a quick turnaround so perhaps the box that I erected is in fact the best solution that can be hoped for in the current situation. I would suggest that your lofty wrong headed vision is not a vision of hope but in fact more war and misery. NOT ALL PROBLEMS HAVE A SOLUTION.

In the best of scenarios there would be separation between Jews and Arabs in the Middle East and no false claims against Israel for land that is not theirs. Palestine has already been divided once in 1922 and against the Mandate for Palestine it was tried a second time. So we should encourage the Arabs that do not want to live under Jewish sovereignity to get compensation and leave us the hell alone with their Qassams, intifadas and other murderous ways. I do not want to pay them off to like or love us, unlike you.

I have not heard you say how you propose to strengthen Israel or help Israel stop the onslaught that is going on in the UN or in the killings of Israelis. You seem to be obsessed with these poor murdering Arabs and their welfare. I have no such compunctions. MY NATION COMES FIRST.

I am educated enough to know when labels are apt and you do not give me that warm fuzzy feeling and you do not even contradict the Nazi like pronouncements on MEWAR. What does that say about you. Yet you expect me and others to think of you as something other than what you project simply because a relative of yours founded Tel Aviv.

I am satisfied with the way that the Right Wing government (labels again) of Netanyahu is taking care of business. Not that I trust Netanyahu ,but rather the supporting cast that is holding him to account.

History tells us that appeasement does not bring peace and as the framers of 242 said , Israel must have secure, guaranteed borders that are negotiated between Jordan,Israel, Egypt and Syria. Contrary to all news reports the Palestinians are not even a party to any agreements other than Oslo and just as in 1947 they even managed to abrogate Oslo. So if you think that Israel is a sinking ship than feel free to abandon it and do not tell me about your love for it. I am from Missouri-The Show Me State.

Israel does not need Arab recognition to be a State of the Jews: It would be nice if they had the strength to say it, but it is not required for Israels existence. A strong IDF, Secure borders and a strong Jewish population is a must.

The possibilities for the Jewish Nation in Israel without the fifth column Arabs are endless. The relations of this Israel with the Arab Nations as neighbours is also endless. But the Arab nations, including the "palestinians" must realize that they cannot defeat the Jews and that Israel can offer them help in leading productive and enriched lives in peace and prosperity.

For that they must give up some DREAMS.

If that vision offends you than that is just plainly too bad as that is what the majority of Jews and Israeli Jews want and expect and Obamination and the antisemitic Europeans be damned.
written by GABE1, April 02, 2011
Hope and facts and reality are in a lot of cases and opposite sides of any philosophy. I hoped to be rich and famous as well as tall and handsome. Life did not turn out that way and so I thought until later in life. But in fact I am all of the above to the people that count the most: my wife of 31 years and my children and 8 grandchildren. so hope sometimes works out and at other times does not. But three out of four is not bad.

In 1956 my vision was that there would be no more wars in Israel but that was quashed in 1967 and further in 1973. In 1993 I rejoiced when the Oslo agreement was signed. Alas, no more wars to be cruelly disappointed with Arafats (mhrih) terror war on civilians. Again my vision was blinded by the Arab hatred that has not abated since than.

I do hope and have a vision that Israel can defeat the Arabs militarily and without mercy so that peace can finally be achieved.

written by GABE1, April 02, 2011
Reply by Jeff stern 7 hours ago
I must say I am a bit outraged to find this on a peace site... It shows Israeli soldiers shooting down unarmed civilians on the street..... This does not relate to any facts and just promotes hate in my opinion... I think videos like this just inflame the situation and doesn't promote re-consolidation....

written by GABE1, April 02, 2011
Let's Be Clear
written by Nissim Dahan, April 03, 2011
Gabe, one thing I have to do is to recognize your unique willingness to comment, and I do appreciate that.

I will respond to your points, but first I would like to restate my position as clearly as possible, because often times, in the heat of the moment, my message is gets lost in the shuffle:

1. I believe that there is a unique opportunity, today, to make something happen in the Middle East, not because people love one antoher, God forbid, but because some of the key players have a knife to their throats, and a knife to your throat concentrates the mind.

2. Many of the key players worry about two things: a nuclear Iran, and the man on the street. I believe that this common interest, what I call a mosaic of mutual self-interest, can be leveraged into a strategic/economic alliance between the Arab States, Israel, the US, and Europe. The purpose of the alliance will be two fold: to secure the region against the extremists, including the Iranian regime, and to revitalize the region with good paying jobs.

3. Even though this opportunity exists, a vision will be required to take advantage of the opportunity. The vision is a Vision of Hope, a vision of Peace, Prosperity and Freedom, as spelled out on the home page of this website.

4. A mechanism will be required to give substance to a Vision of Hope. The mechanism I propose is Billionaires for Peace, which will put in place a new model for the Middle East, by inspiring the world's top business leaders to embrace a Vision of Hope, to push the peace process forward from behind the scenes, and to help revitalize the entire region with good paying jobs, moderate candidates, and requisitie insititutions, for the sake of global peace, prosperity and freedom.

That is my vision in a nutshell.
Let's be Clear (Continued)
written by Nissim Dahan, April 03, 2011
Gabe, as to you point about MEWAR: I am not active on that site, except to post some of my blog posts, and to respond to comments that are made on my posts. I have not participated in any of the debates on that site.

It is also important to make clear that I do not encourage or participate in Israel bashing. On the contrary, I seek to empower and secure Israel, by encouraging her to play a role in securing the region from the threats of extremism, and revitalizing the region with jobs. My assessment is that until now, Israel has been conveniently used to inflame passions, and to deflect attantion from corruption, oppression, and inadequate governance in the Arab World.

The people on the street are looking for something more. They are looking for a greater measure of personal freedom, and a job, a way of supporting their families. Israel can play a role in this regard, and thereby re-construct her image in the Arab world, and cast herself as an indispensable ally in the quest of the man on the street to achieve a greater measure of freedom, along with the job creation that is required for real freedom.

Israel is, and should continue to be militarily strong. That is an imperative. No matter what happens, Israel should be able to defend herself, because it may very well be that all hell breaks out in the Middle East, and Israel must remain militarily capable of defending herself.

However, even as Israel keeps herself strong, there is not reason not to explore other avenues, such as a Vision of Hope, to further consolidate her security by becoming needed, and serving as a model, in the Arab world. I think conditions are ripe for this type of expansion, because Israel is not the problem in the Middle East, in many respects she is the answer for the Middle East. Israel has what the Middle East needs, and is one of the few agesnts who can help the Middle East transform itself, and thereby enhance her security.
Let's be Clear (Continued)
written by Nissim Dahan, April 03, 2011
Gabe, in terms of your specific points:

There may well be no solution, as you suggest, but it still makes sense to try, in case a solution may well be found.

In terms of your "fifth column" idea of paying Arabs off to leave, I don't think that is realistic, and such a proposal will inflame passions even more, making Israel even more vulnerable than she is now. Once a peaceful, prosperous and free Palestine comes into being, then some Israeli Arabs may decide to move there. But that should be strictly voluntary, and not coerced in any manner. By the way, on the flip side, I think it would make sense for Jews to live in the new Palestine, and to help grow that country. I also believe that it would be healthy for Jews to return to all the other Arab countries, if invited. That would be in the spirit of revitalizing the region as a whole.

When the Arab states kicked the Jews out, in many respects, they gave up on the future as well. The Jews played an important part in the Arab world, and there is no reason not to come back to that when the opportunity arises.

In terms of helping Israel, I am convinced that my plan will help Israel, even as she remains strong militarily, and maintains her ability to deter aggression.

With regard to Netanyahu, it is very possible that you will see him embracing some of these ideas. He can't count on Mubarak any more to maintain the peace. And the new government, whatever it will be, will be more reflective of the will of the people. So progress on the Peace front will be even more imperative. And therefore, Netanyahu will have no choice but to move forward on a comprehensive peace, or face the wrath of Egypt, and a whole host of Arab regimes, to are seeking to placate the rising tide of angry sentiment from the street.
Let's be Clear (Continued)
written by Nissim Dahan, April 03, 2011
In terms of appeasement, no, I don't believe in appeasement. I believe in remaining strong, and fighting when you have to. What I am proposing is not appeasement. I am looking at the mutual self-interest of the key players, and arranging the pieces in such a way so that everyone wins: they win to save their necks, and they win by revitalizing the region.

As to secure borders, I believe in them, and I think the final deal will be something along the lines that Barak and Clinton put on the table in 2000, as modified by Olmert and Abbas.

And yes, Israel does not have to have recognition in order to defend the Jewish people. But recognition, my friend, and a secure and productive relationship with her neighbors, will help, not hurt, Israel's mission to provide a safe haven for Jews.

When you say, Gabe, that Israel can offer "help" to her Arab neighbors, that is exactly what my vision is all about, big time.

When you say that your greatest assets are your wife, children and grandchildren, I couldn't agree with you more, and such is the case with me as well.

When you say that it will take a big war to usher in a lasting peace, that may end up happening, but it is risky as hell, and may end up destroying Israel, and destroying the dream that Jews have had for the last 2000 years. Instead of undertaking such a risk, I suggest we first try Selling a Vision of Hope. If that doesn't work, other options will still remain on the table.
written by GABE1, April 03, 2011
We seem to be talking at cross purposes. Creating a Palestinian State and hoping that peace will break out is like a horse bolting the barn and than closing the barn door. Or as a Chinese colleague of mine used to say: ASS BACKWARDS.

I have no problem showing hope to the Arabs but also showing them that if that promise of hope bring what Gaza brought, than all hell will break loose.I believe that Roosevelt, called it a carrot and stick approach. You are advocating the carrot without a stick and in fact are advocating a chocolate carrot approach with no consequences.

The probability of your position and dream prevailing is indeed very slim while history tells us and teaches us that what I am predicting is the more likely scenario.

So I will keep my marbles and the Arabs can come and play with me with certain conditions that I formulate so that at the end of the game I come out alive and my marbles intact.

Ben Gurion presented a vision as did Peres/Rabin and even Olmert and Barack. The man on the street in Arab society is a virtual non entity and may have the upper hand as in pre Khomeyney Iran or post Nasser or even recently in Lebanon but in the end that society is religion and clan driven with nothing but murder on their mind. Not only against Jews and Christians but Sunni vs Shia vs Sufis vs Alewites vs Copts vs Druze vs Bahais and so on and so on.

Israel will not be destroyed simply because it will not commit suicide On the contrary it will survive and prosper and all polls show that Jews are becoming more Nationalistic and would like to see the Arabs gone from their day to day lives.

The Palestinians will not allow Jews to live in any area that they will receive and you know it just as well as I do. If you offer the Arabs money to leave to a non Arab state and give them money they will not hesitate for a moment. That my friend is reality and not inflaming.

There are numerous other options that the Arabs will reject out of hand simply because they do not want solutions: they want Israel annihilated.

PS I have not seen any comments on your blogs at MEWAR and yet you are a member in good standing even with the antisemitism there. Why, one wanders?
written by GABE1, April 03, 2011

L O L. L O L

Two Taliban suicide bombers caused carnage on Sunday at a Sufi shrine in eastern Pakistan, killing at least 41 people and wounding scores in the latest bloody attack on minority religious groups.

Police said some 65 people were wounded. They said the attackers struck during an annual ceremony for the Sufi saint to whom the shrine is dedicated. (Reuters)
written by GABE1, April 04, 2011
Please tell me how your feel good project would prevent the BEHEADING IN AFGHANISTAN OF THE UN PERSONNEL.

Two rich Muslim states fought a war where over a MILLION people died and a large number of children who were clearing mine fields with their bodies and a Quran. I guess good paying jobs and moderate leaders like Karzai of Afghanistan would certainly be the panacea.

Grown men coming up with such idiotic solutions. It boggles the mind.
written by GABE1, April 04, 2011
I Guess that his help was not appreciated.

'Israeli actor's murder in Jenin most likely pre-meditated assassination'

His mother was a Leftist PRO PALESTINIAN JEW and his father an Arab. He was PRO Palestinian. So where did he go wrong as far as the Arabs are concerned?
Good Question
written by Nissim Dahan, April 04, 2011
Gabe, you wonder how my "feel good project" would prevent the beheading in Afghanistan of the UN personnel?

It seems like a stretch, I know, but let's think about that.

If you were to make a statistical analysis of the Muslim world you would find that most of the people are normal people, like you and me, who want a better life for themselves and their children.

In fact, if you take 100 people, perhaps 10 to 15 would be extremists in their approach, and of those, perhaps 1, or even less would be prone to violence.

So, the Muslim world is not monolithic, just like the Western world.

Therefore, what we have to consider is not only the one terrorist, but also, the 80 or 90 who still remain open to suggestion.

Selling a Vision of Hope, and delivering on that promise with jobs, will help to reduce terrorism to several ways. In the first place, if we win hearts and minds among the majority, is we give them a place at the table, a stake in their future, then to that extent, they will now have a choice, and most of them will choose a better life right here and right now, than the promise of a better life in the life to come. As a result, the extremists will find recruitment difficult, and finanacing as well will become scarce.

But my approach will help in another way as well. It is true that we will have to fight, in self-defense, against extremism. But there are two ways to kill a terrorist. One is to kill him outright, and our vision will embolden us to wage the war that must be faught, because for a change, we will know what we're fighting for. We're not fighting a "war against terror." We are fighting a war to realize a Vision of Hope. There's a big difference.

But also, you can't kill every terrorist outright, because as you kill one, others pop up even more determined. Therefore, the best way to kill a terrorist is to kill him in the imagination of his people. Once the extremists begin to walk out of step with the people, once they no longer inspire a sense of hope for the future, then they will become weakened accordingly, and will be seen for what they are, people who would hold their people back from a brighter future.

And yes, I do believe in the carrot and stick approach. We have two hands. With one we will continue to fight the battles that must be faught. But with the other, we will invest to revitalize the region with good paying jobs. Most of the capital will be Arab money. But we will bring our knowhow to the table to help put that capital to good use.

When you say that Palestinians, or other Arabs, will not tolerate Jews among them, I beg to differ. For centuries, Jews and Arabs lived together, and there were times, such as in Spain, when both prospered together. We can't forget that some of our greatest scholars, including Maimonides, lived in Arab lands, and did well for themselves.

On the contrary, I believe that many Arabs would welcome a Jewish presence among them, as a way of jump starting the move to revitalize the region.

And yes, there is plenty of religious strife in the Arab world, and most of it makes no sense. Therefore, all we have to do is to sell people on a new religion, based on common sense. I know it sounds crazy. But I think it's time to begin selling an Ideology of Common Sense, a new framework for rational discourse, based on common sense principles, such as The Golden Mean, The Greatest Good, and The Golden Rule.

In a more perfect world, common sense, the collective wisdom born of shared experience, will inspire our thinking and inform our speech. In our fractured world, common sense is the common denominator.

As to the MEWAR sight, I know you are somewhat obsessed by that, since they kicked you out. Let me say this, I don't agree with some of the things that people say about Israel. I believe that Israel has a right to exist, and has a right to protect herself. Part of my efforts is to secure her by having her take the lead on this vision. However, I do post my blogs on all sorts of venues, just to get the word out, because I believe that I have a message that will resonate in the minds of some. In other words, you don't have to agree with everything that is being said, in order to have your voice heard.
written by GABE1, April 05, 2011
That is the only reply that I can muster without sounding sarcastic.

Germany was appeased by Chamberlain with the Sudetenland and the Nazis were a tiny minority and elected democratically. This tiny minority was not actively opposed by the vast majority and this resulted in about 23 million dead and tens of millions of refugees.

If you do not learn from history you are apt to repeat it.

You have a message but will not disagree vocally with the people that want to annihilate Israel. What does that make you?

But please lets not use any labels!!!!!

BTW. I have been banned from a number of WAR sites and for me that is a badge of honour as it shows that I am defending a principal that I believe and not some abstract notion that in five years of endeavour accomplished KLUM.
Learning from History
written by Nissim Dahan, April 05, 2011
Gabe, I would agree with you that it is important to learn from history, and to draw the right lessons which will guide us in making decisions today and into the future. But we have to draw the right lessons.

Hitler was appeased, and took advantage of that weakness to build and unleash his war machine, and millions perished as a result.

Fine, but that's not what I'm talking about. I'm talking about fighting, and fighting hard, but fighting with all our weapons.

A multi-facted attack requires a multi-faceted response. Yes, we are being attacked militarily with terror and the like, but we are also being attacked ideologically, economically, spiritually, and diplomatically.

We have to find a way to fend off and defeat all these various threats, even as we defend ourselves on the battlefield.

Therefore, my vision, a Vision of Hope, does not promise a pie in the sky solution. I am suggesting a multi-facted response to a multi-facted attack:

If the enemy attacks us ideologically with Violent Jihad, we respond ideologically with an Ideology of Common Sense.

If the enemy attacks us economically by funding charitable handouts, we respond economically by creating jobs.

If the enemy attacks us spiritually by promoting a vision of hope for martyrdom, or paradise, or virgins, or what have you, we respond spiritually by selling a Vision of Hope, a vision of peace, prosperity and freedom.

If the enemy attacks us diplomatically by undermining our resolve to come together in common purpose, we respond diplomatiically by building a strategic/economic alliance and sustaining those relationships with public diplomacy which sustains the hope and carries it forward.

And if the enemy attacks us militarily with terror, we respond militarily, and defeat him utterly, emboldened by the belief that what we are doing is necessary and morally just.

At every turn, we cut the enemy off at the pass, and beat him at his own game, and marginalize him in the eyes of his people.

In the finaly analysis, the ideological extremist will not be able to capture the public's imagination, once people begin to imagine a better life for themselves.

In terms of defending Israel, I do plenty of that. Look at by blogs on and you will see plenty of that. However, I try to keep the discussion as civil as possible. I would rather not get kicked off these sites, so that I can continue making my case, even as I continue to defend what I believe in.

As to you assessment that "five years of endeavour accompished KLUM, I respectfully beg to differ, although I will be surprised, to say the least, if I end up succeeding.

Gabe, we're talking about Middle East Peace. We're talking about revitalizing the entire region. We're talking about a new framework of understanding between the Western world and the Muslim world.

All this is about as impossible as one can imagine. And yet, these are my goal. So maybe you're right that I havene't accomplished enough as yet. I would have to agree with that. But I am making baby steps, and I've convinced myself, at least, that I'm walking the right path. My job is to get more of you, even people like you, to walk alongside with me. Stranger things have happened.
written by GABE1, April 05, 2011
If that is what makes you happy than so be it. I believe that people like you only encourage the opposite of what they intend. Gallstone is a good example of that and one of many examples where people believed that they tried to create a better world ended making it worse. The communist system in theory is a great system and look at what happened.

As a humanist, I have no quarrels with you as I truly believe that you believe that you are bringing a message of hope and a vision of a better future. As a concept, I disagree sharply with you based on history and human nature as well as societal constraints in that part of the world.

I am a liberal at heart on social issues but very nationalistic and protective when it comes to Jews so I do sympathize with you but have a duty to point out that it is unworkable and your silence towards other more pressing evils cancells out your humanism in this , your chosen area.
Fair Enough
written by Nissim Dahan, April 06, 2011
Gabe, I take your concerns to heart.

Yes, even if you think you're being idealistic, and even if your intent is to do good in the world, it is easy to miscalculate, or to be duped, or suckered, or taken adavantage of in some manner.

I agree with all that, and it is a danger.

I am not sure of Goldstone's intentions. As a judge in South Africa, he did show some courage under fire. But when it came to Israel, he was not fair in his assessments. Now he takes it back, but the damage has already been done.

To say that Israel intentionally targeted civilians in Gaza is grossly unfair. I remember, several years ago, a battle in Jenin, when it was initially claimed that Israel had perpetrated a massacre, only to find out that it was the 35 Israeli soldiers who were massacred, when they proceeded to search house to house, instead of bombing indiscriminantly.

In a recent assessment of the Gaza campaign, a high ranking British officer, who is not Jewish, states to the U.N. that he never witnessed such care to protect civilians during war, as he witnessed by Israel in Gaza.

I realize that there is a danger in drawing the wrong conlsions, and arguing for the wrong cause.

In my vision, however, I try to mitigate such dangers. In the first place, I don't force my ideas by saying that I am a great maven or expert, or that I have great credentials in this regard. Rather, I put an idea on the table, and let it speak for itself. If people buy into it, it is because it makes sense to them, and not because they know me, or fear me, or are impressed with me. I am behind the scenes so to speak. That is what an Ideology of Common Sense is all about. Forget about credentials, or wealth, or power, or good looks, or all of that nonsense. Look at the ideas for what they are. If they make sense, then believe. If they don't, then have the courage to let them go.

In addition, my vision is based, at its core, in the idea that there is a mosaic of mutual self-interest in the Middle East. People will come together around this vision, not because of me, or because of their inherent goodness, but because of self-interest. And there is no greater form of self-interest than the will to survive. What give this vision some measure of credibility is that it is about the key players coming together and helping one another to stave off some very common threats. That measure of self-interest is something we can count on, as opposed to the convoluted thinking that was behind Communism, or Fundamentalism, or Extremism, and the like.

So I would agree with you that there is a danger, even when we believe we are doing good. I've tried to compensate for this by appealing to your common sense, and by using cold-hearted pragmatic self-interest to bring people together in common purpose.
written by yushumei, June 17, 2011
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