Posted by brynb on September 17, 2012, at 14:56:47
In reply to Israel, posted by sleepygirl2 on September 15, 2012, at 8:02:40
> Why is it so important politically? Particularly with the us
> Any out there with some understanding of world affairs?
Great question (albeit a very complicated one). I think the complications arise in that it's such a convoluted topic; it's multi-faceted in its various political, religious and historical issues.
My understanding (in a very, very condensed and simplified nutshell) is that politically speaking, Israel is the only democracy in the Middle East, and in being a Jewish Democratic State, they support the same values as Western culture. This makes them our obvious ally; strategically, in supporting them, we help strengthen and reinforce our presence in the Middle East (and North Africa). American aid to Israel means that we show our support of internationally accepted policies in other countries (and militarily occupied territories in the Middle East) that very often violate established legal/ethical standards of internationally accepted conduct.
Israel possesses nuclear warfare/missiles/weapons and cooperates with us. They also have a very formidable military and intelligence service and throughout their existence as a state, have aided American intelligence.
Also, Israel is geographically about the size of New Jersey. It's literally surrounded by geographically expansive nations that want to completely obliterate its existence. This has lead to horrific terrorism, a practice the Western world clearly doesn't tolerate. Can you imagine if Iran, who is refusing to adhere to the international diplomatic code, and presumably has nuclear weapons, decides to engage in a battle with Israel?
From there, many more political reasons for assisting Israel emerge. That's a super limited, abbreviated version, anyway. Does that make any sense? My brain hurts...
With that, I must say Israel is a magical place, no matter what your religious beliefs are. I spent three months there (Tel Aviv) in 2000, and also traveled to Jordan and Egypt (which is no longer possible). It has this powerful energy and is something like a weird (in a great way) hybrid of Europe, the Middle East and the Mediterranean.