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We should define victory precisely

Reader comment on item: Convincing Anti-Zionists that the Palestinian-Israeli Conflict Is Over

Submitted by Dave (United States), Sep 8, 2020 at 17:21

Victory is not just convincing Israel's enemies that they have zero chance of annihilating Israel. It also means defining exactly what victory looks like.

Our failure to do that in precise terms in other conflicts, such as in Iraq and Afghanistan, has resulted in waste, confusion and disillusionment.

We should compose a concise manifesto which sets out a vision of what victory looks like. It can advocate for such things as freedom of speech, religion, assembly, petition - as in the Bill of Rights. It could explain that full acceptance of Israel would lead to Israel's integration into the region (as well as other states' integration), with free trade and freer movement of people across borders, that the region would become much more prosperous and peaceful.

Let's try to analyze a bit before we moralize. The jihadist groups, as odious as they may be, have a precisely defined vision: the imposition of Islamic rule and Sharia law as put forth in the sacred texts. They envision a society governed by a comprehensive set of highly detailed, divinely inspired principles. Many people are attracted to this. They know exactly what they're getting and they like that certainty. Many successful systems, good and evil, have inspired people through such concise statements of principle.

It should be very easy to compete with the Islamist vision since we have the most successful political system in human history. I predict that many people, both secular and religious, will come to understand the advantages of a Western-style system and could start to change their attitudes. A manifesto can also form a template for constructive criticism, helping to guide Western politicians in their arguments.

Let's have some self-confidence and triumph in the field of ideas.

Submitting....

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Daniel Pipes replies:

"Victory is not just convincing Israel's enemies that they have zero chance of annihilating Israel. It also means defining exactly what victory looks like."

No argument that it's important to work out the details of what follows victory. But that's not something I wish to get into. I'm not Israeli. That moment is still far off. I want to put together as big a coalition as possible.

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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