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Rescooped by Erin Miller from Geography Education

Israeli/Palestinian Conflict

With a simple class hashtag (e.g.-#geog400ric) you can create a backchannel for student to collaborate outside the classroom walls. 

Via Seth Dixon
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Rescooped by Erin Miller from Geography Education

U.N. approves Palestinian 'observer state' bid

U.N. approves Palestinian 'observer state' bid | APHG EMiller | Scoop.it
The United Nations General Assembly approved an upgraded U.N. status for the Palestinian Authority, despite U.S. and Israeli opposition.

While this may be primarily symbolic, it is still a highly significant move on the part of the United Nations.  65 years ago, the United Nations called for a two-state system.  This map of the vote that I found on Facebook (can't find another source as of yet) is quite intriguing. 


Questions to Ponder: Why might a country choose to abstain?  Can you think of a specific reason why a particular country abstained?  With this new geopolitical fact, how will Israel and Palestine move forward?   

Via Seth Dixon
Seth Dixon's comment, November 30, 2012 7:32 AM
I found this comment from Shaul Cohen, a Jewish Geography Professor who lived in Israel and served in the IDF: "Sixty-five years ago today the United Nations voted in favor of an independent Israel, a vote that was opposed by Palestinians and the rest of the Arab world. That opposition was a mistake, and they also were voting against the creation of a Palestinian state. Today the United Nations moved one step closer to the establishment of that Palestinian state, a move that was opposed by Israel and the United States. That opposition was a mistake.
In the intervening decades many lives have been lost, many families have been shattered, and the course of two nations has been warped by violence and hostility. Unfortunately, there are still too many people on each side that refuse to recognize the basic rights and fundamental humanity of the other community, and see the situation as a zero-sum contest. Indeed, there are those that celebrate when the other loses even more so than working toward realizing their own goals. This is a tragedy, and the guilt lies with the leadership on both sides, but also with those who justify their actions on fear and hatred… something that is too easily mobilized and manipulated by those opposed to compromise.
It’s way past time for Israelis to recognize that when Palestinians lose, they themselves lose, and for Palestinians to recognize that when Israelis lose, they too lose. The communities are too bound up with one another to suffer in isolation. In the long run Israel will not have what it wants before there is a Palestinian state, and Palestinians will not have their state so long as they contemplate war against Israel. The way forward, despite it all, remains two states for two nations, a configuration that has broad endorsement and a simple logic. ANYONE WHO ADVOCATES ON BEHALF OF PALESTINIANS MUST ALSO BE A SUPPORTER OF A SECURE ISRAEL; AND ANYONE WHO ADVOCATES ON BEHALF OF ISRAEL HAS TO SUPPORT AN INDEPENDENT AND VIABLE PALESTINIAN STATE. Anything else is a recipe for continued failure and bloodshed, and there’s been far too much of that already. Today is less a day for celebration than a day for reflection, and even more for dedication to a just and lasting peace. All the rest is just vanity…."
Rebecca Farrea's curator insight, October 31, 2013 10:25 AM

One year ago, the U.N. status regarding Palestine was upgraded from "non-member observer entity" to "non-member observer state".  While Palestinians believe that this is a major push for peace and for Palestinian independence, other countries believe that the change will not do anything for Palestine.

James Hobson's curator insight, October 28, 2014 10:17 AM

(Africa topic 3)

Though there is much to be said from this map, I would like to focus on the red and black countries. I was surprised that only 9 nations did not support the acknowledgement of Palestine as a recognizable political entity. Of those 9, only 2 are members of the G8 (or perhaps now G7 due to Russia's suspension) Summit committee. The countries which abstained likely did so out of a mix of reasons: to not offend some of their allies by voting no, to not offend other allies by voting yes, not having enough of an opinion to make a complete decision, or having a mixed opinion within their own borders. IN this way it's a "pleading the Fifth" motion, which I believe can be seen as a smart move, politically speaking. Just like the 2-party struggle within the US, sometimes there are no two clear right and wrong answers.

Rescooped by Erin Miller from Geography Education

Israel and Palestine

Watch this Jewish Voice for Peace 6 minute mini-primer about why Israelis and Palestinians are fighting..

This video from the Jewish Voice for Peace has a more politically motivated angle than most of the resources that I post on this site, but I feel that they do justice to both sides as well as the truth. In a simple way it lays out the roots of many of the problems in the region with historic and geographic perspectives.

Tags: Israel, Palestine, conflict, political, borders.

Via Seth Dixon
James Hobson's curator insight, October 28, 2014 9:58 AM

(Africa topic 1)

{{Note: Some topics and locations pertain to multiple geographic regions (i.e. northern Africa, the Middle East, and southwestern Asia, and topics in different regions may refer to the same country or location because of this.}}

I found it interesting to watch a video that comes from an implied anti-Israel standpoint, especially since the organization which made this video is called the Jewish Voice for Peace. Though there has always been disagreement as to who should occupy some of the most hallowed land in the world, it seems that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict stems more out of the UN repartitioning plan. Regardless of clashing religions and cultures, it does seem unfair that a minority of people control the majority of land and resources. This makes me wonder why exactly the UN made the Israeli state there: was is purely because of the Jewish religion associations?, or because no other country wanted to absorb the increasing number of refugees?, or because the UN wanted to gain a stronghold in the Middle East?, or perhaps a combination of all of the above?

Jason Schneider's curator insight, March 19, 8:40 PM

From 1946 to 2000, Palestine (Islamic individuals) have been at war with Israel (Jewish individuals) over land in Israel/Palestine. In 1946, Palestine took over most of Israel but throughout the decades up until 2000, Israel slowly won over almost every piece of Israel and now, Palestine barely has any land in Israel. From 1949 to 1967, Palestine took over a specific area of Israel known as the West Bank and another small part of Israel known as Gaza. There was a lot of war going on between Israel and Palestine because Israel discriminated against non-Jews. Palestinians became refugees but that didn't stop Israel from fighting to take over Palestinian land.

Kendra King's curator insight, April 30, 1:03 AM

The video was informative, but bias. I have a stronger understanding of how Israel is exploiting, how the borders were re-drawn, and how the make up of the original border mattered. However, the author gave me these facts in a very pro-Palestinian manner. The narrator sees the Palatines as refugees instead of the Jews, who as the narrator said, were "refugees living where people already lived." This similar identity clearly resonated with the narrator who almost 2 minutes of the video speaking about how the treatment of the new refugees was wrong. While a fair amount of the rest of the video advocated a solution to help Palestinian, hence the negative portrayals of the United States backed peace talks.  


What was missing from this video was Israeli's story. The Jewish community had become a large force within Palestinian, but was not being aptly recognized. In fact, the Palestinian's prior to the UN offer weren't treating the Jews fair. When this offer came along, it was the Palestinian's who started the fight, a point that was down played in this video as the narrator rushed to point the finger at Israeli's wrong doings. Yet, another portrayal of this conflict mentioned in class, showed the Israeli's feel threatened because they are a minority surrounded by enemies within the region. All of this information means that the Palestinian's and other neighbors play more of a negative hand in the land dispute than what the narrator says.    


To be honest, I don't know enough about either side to really say who I support. However, from what I gather, neither side is a bushel of roses. As learned in class their were a fair deal of geographic tensions from BOTH parties that caused the fighting and their is still a fair deal of geographic tensions from BOTH parties that factor into the fighting today. Thus, the bias of this video acts as a reminder that a person looking to understand a heated conflict, such as this one between neighbors, must view the information with causation.