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 Forecasting America's Destiny ... and the World's


Generational Dynamics Web Log for 3-Apr-06
Israel votes to move from occupation to withdrawal

Web Log - April, 2006

Israel votes to move from occupation to withdrawal

Israel's increasing bunker mentality complements the Palestinians' increasing belligerence.

Israeli March 28 election results. <font size=-2>(Source:</font>
Israeli March 28 election results. (Source:

The Israelis have just elected a group of leaders committed to having as little to do with Palestinians as possible.

The net of the election, according to analysts, is that the voters want to continue on the path laid out by former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon. Of course Ariel Sharon became comatose in January, so we have to guess what Sharon would be doing if he were still in charge, and that means that Sharon's policies are colored by current politicians' views, and those views in turn are colored by what these politicians heard from the voters during the election campaign.

One of the biggest shocks of the election was the third place winner: the double-digit win of the Yisrael Beiteinu party headed by Avigdor Lieberman. Lieberman is considered a racist because of a specific proposal he has: Give up some portions of Israel occupied mostly by Arabs back to the Palestinians, in exchange for other Palestinian lands occupied mostly by Jews.

Lieberman's objective is to keep Israel as purely Jewish as possible, with as few Arabs as possible. The Beiteinu party is considered to be far right and racist because of this proposal, and so its capture of 12-14 seats after never winning even one seat before indicates a sharp turn of the Israeli electorate to the right.

As I wrote a couple of weeks ago, Israel is on the verge of changing direction, and the new direction will not be decided by the politicians of any of the parties. The new direction is determined by the young generation, the teens coming into adulthood. And the change of direction will be chosen almost like a new fashion accessory.

There's a formula for predicting what choice the young generation will make, or at least for narrowing down the list of choices. The formula was devised by Hannah Arendt in her monumental study of the Holocaust, in the book, The Origins of Totalitarianism..

Arendt describes this change of direction in the following way: The young generation's attitudes and convictions are actually "the attitudes and convictions of the bourgeoisie cleansed of hypocrisy." Today we can use the term "political correctness." In other words, if you hate the Jews but still make peace with them, then "cleansing of hypocrisy" or removal of political correctness means killing them. That, in essense, is how Arendt described how opinions developed in 1920s and 1930s Germany, and that's where the Palestinians are going today.

It's pretty clear that the Palestinians and Jews hate each other, that they hold each other in contempt, and consider each other pretty worthless. It's also pretty clear that the politically correct statement of that fact is "we don't always get along with them, but we have to live with them, so let's look for a peace process that let's us live together."

That's the politically correct statement of the Jewish elders and the Palestinian elders.

Now, what happens when you strip those opinions of hypocrisy, of political correctness? There are several choices in each case, but given the respective electoral successes of Hamas for the Palestinians and Lieberman for the Israelis, we can begin to narrow down the choices.

The messages of the young Palestinians and Israelis

For the young Palestinians, we've already seen part of the message: A refusal to accept unilateral decisions by the Israelis, a willingness to "encourage" further suicide bombings and other terrorist acts against the Israelis. The young Palestinians see last year's Israeli withdrawal from Gaza as a Palestinian victory caused by terrorist acts, and many feel that similar acts will drive Israel away altogether.

For the young Israelis, we're now seeing a part of their message: A desire to disengage completely from the Palestinians, a willingness to let them suffer economically, a willingness to use the armed forces (the IDF) to strike back at the Palestinians for any terrorist act. The young Israelis see the withdrawal from Gaza as a victory because it means less contact with the Palestinians, and they're willing to give up some West Bank settlements to have even less contact, as long the IDF is available for protection.

So where is this going next? If you're like several pundits I've heard in the last few days, then you think that "pragmatism" will rule. According to these pundits, both the Israelis and Palestinians will realize that they have to get along with each other, and they'll become "pragmatic," and come to an agreement.

That, unfortunately, is not how it works. Maybe the Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas would like to be "pragmatic," and maybe Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert would like to be "pragmatic," but pundits who say that don't understand anything about the generational change that's taking place. The "pragmatic" older generation leaders are no longer in charge.

It's the young generations that are now in charge. And it's the young generations that are deciding policy. And the young generations are deciding policy by means of Hannah Arendt's formula: They take the attitudes and beliefs of their elders and strip away the hypocrisy, strip away the poltical correctness.

Now we've just described the young Palestinian and young Israeli messages so far. These messages will continue in the direction that they've already been going, rather than in the direction of "pragmatism." What are those messages?

As long as there are choices, then it's impossible to predict. But if you look at the messages so far, then it's not hard to narrow the choices. For the Palestinians, it's more and more terrorist violence. For the Israelis, it's more disengagement except for the IDF as needed.

For both, it's increasing contempt and hatred for the other side.

From the point of view of Generational Dynamics, I've been saying for years that it was Yasser Arafat and Ariel Sharon that have kept the Mideast at peace, despite the fact that they hated each other, and that once they were out of the picture, the Mideast would descend into chaos.

Generational Dynamics predicts that the Mideast will re-fight the violent, genocidal war between Arabs and Jews that occurred in the 1940s, surrounding the partitioning of Palestine and the creation of the state of Israel. And, as always, Generational Dynamics tells you the final destination, but doesn't tell you that path that will take you there.

But now we're beginning to see the path more and more clearly. The recent Palestinian and Israeli elections are clearly revealing the attitudes and convictions of the younger generation, and it's that generation that we have to understand if we want to know where the Mideast is going. Hanna Arendt's formula, the elder generation's attitudes and convictions stripped of hypocrisy and political correctness, gives you the answer.

In the weeks and months to come, I'll be writing about this formula as applied to other countries as well. But you can figure it out for yourself.

I like to brag that I've posted many, many predictions on this web site for over three years, and not a single one has been proven wrong. After all, it's easy to get a million predictions right -- just make two million predictions. What's hard is to make predictions and not get any wrong, and that's what I've done on this web site. Many of the predictions have been proven right, and some are still pending, but not a single one has turned out to be wrong.

I achieved this even though I'm not a psychic or a soothsayer or anything of the sort. I'm just applying the Generational Dynamics theory to real live situations.

The purpose of this web site is not only to make these predictions, but also to teach other people how to do the same thing. That's why I occasionally repeat various aspects of the theory -- partly to help new people, and partly to further educate regular readers.

Homework problems for you

So now you should be able to figure out for yourself where several situations are going. Here are some "homework problems" for you to work on:

If you'd like, send your homework answers to me at and I'll write back and let you know how you did. This will also give me a chance to see how well my readers are understanding what I'm talking about. (3-Apr-06) Permanent Link
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