Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 3rd May 2013 20:10 UTC
Google "Internet giant Google has changed the tagline on the homepage of its Palestinian edition from 'Palestinian Territories' to 'Palestine'. The change, introduced on 1 May, means now displays 'Palestine' in Arabic and English under Google's logo. Using the word Palestine is controversial for some. Israeli policy is that the borders of a Palestinian state are yet to be agreed." Good but daring move.
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This is really not OSNews-related but as one who lives in the region I felt I could provide my own viewpoint to this (rather daunting) conflict...

I think you're all wrong in supporting, or even favouring one side or another. There can't, and won't be any kind of co-existence if both sides aren't equal in the first place.

For those who side with the Palestinians: well, when they have their state both sides will benefit. You can force Israel to recognise a state, but then again are you advancing peace? Aren't you preparing the grounds for yet another conflict to erupt?
The Jewish settlement in Palestine bought lands from the Arabs. As Zionism (the Jewish national movement) , and later WWII, lead more Jews to migrate the Arabs began to feel threatened and later reacted with their own national movement, but not before they tried to obliterate the new state of Israel with 5 armies (Egypt, Syria, Jordan, Lebanon and even Iraq). That's not an excuse to kill innocent people or occupy their territory, but it gives you an idea of the constant threat Israel has face on a daily basis (even with the peace treaty with Egypt I can't go there as an Israeli). By the way Israel is not present in Gaza since 2005 and in the West Bank there are about 350,000 Jews, and some of them have lived there for tens of generations. To complicate matters even more, some Palestinians are of Jewish origins, and that's just one reason why you can't make a clear cut between what's Israel and what's Palestine. Anyway it's not a coincidence that the Jews returned to this land, because they were not wanted anywhere else (I've already mentioned Europe, but there were also massacres in the Arab countries and forced deportations to Israel). Jews had to flee their homelands with no belongings to a new state. But that scenario was everywhere during the 20th century, and if the Palestinians want a brighter future they should start building cities to replace the old refugee camps, just as Israel developed itself.

For those who are pro-Israel: demonization of either side won't help any of them, it only magnifies even more the hatred. Being afraid of others is a stupid strategy to live by, and it's even more stupid to refuse to acknowledge one's right to self-definition (both sides fail here actually). The constant need to stay alert, to punish whole populations just because of a few radicals is taking its toll on Israeli society, and it becomes heavier by the day. If we really want peace and security we have to make Palestine a reality (that means even working towards mutual understanding between Hamas in Gaza, and Fatah in the West Bank, as absurd as it might sound these days). It makes no sense to me that there are people who choose to ignore the hardships many Palestinians have to withstand just because settlers want to live among them (with the ultimate goal to drive them off). It doesn't have to be this way, why there are so few Israeli Jews who know Arabic? Isn't it insane to ask for peace without even knowing how to hold a conversation with your partner? (I'm not proud of it, but my Arabic is in a very bad shape, but I'm learning at least to some extent) Or maybe it says that people aren't really interested to see an end to the war... You shouldn't long for "better partners" because they don't exist, you should try to make better partners and then you won't have to face the wall, trying to fend off all the attacks. Of course the Palestinians are the perceived heroes, they are the ones who take actions to make themselves a better future. Now all that Israel does are poor reactions to the ever-degrading state in the Middle East.

So, if you don't like one national movement or the other, dislike them all, because in the end nationalism is on the way to segregation and racism. While Imagine (John Lenon's song of course) is still far ahead of us, I think it should be the ultimate goal for ever-lasting peace and prosperity (I really believe it). Hate no one, try to understand the difficulties of both sides and bridge them.

Oh, and about Google? Good for them, just also add Tibet, Kurdistan, the Basque country, and dozens of other ethnic groups. Then I'll appreciate their sincere effort.

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