These quotations relate to the Arab-Israeli conflict.
Organized alphabetically by author.
- Palestine is the cement that holds the Arab world together, or it is the explosive that blows it apart.
- We are not asking for the moon.
- Whoever thinks of stopping the uprising before it achieves its goals, I will give him ten bullets in the chest.
- My generation, dear Ron, swore on the Altar of God that whoever proclaims the intent of destroying the Jewish state or the Jewish people, or both, seals his fate.
- It is … undeniable that no settlement can be just and complete if recognition is not accorded to the right of the Arab refugee to return to the home from which he has been dislodged by the hazards and strategy of the armed conflict between Arabs and Jews in Palestine. The majority of these refugees have come from territory which … was to be included in the Jewish State. The exodus of Palestinian Arabs resulted from panic created by fighting in their communities, by rumours concerning real or alleged acts of terrorism, or expulsion. It would be an offence against the principles of elemental justice if these innocent victims of the conflict were denied the right to return to their homes while Jewish immigrants flow into Palestine, and, indeed, at least offer the threat of permanent replacement of the Arab refugees who have been rooted in the land for centuries.
- From the "Progress Report of the United Nations Mediator on Palestine" by Folke Bernadotte. 16 September 1948. United Nations General Assembly Doc. A/648. Part one, section V, paragraph 6.
- These discussions with the Palestinians.... this administration has failed to lead. They came into office basically determined not to do anything that Bill Clinton did. I think that was the basic guideline. And so, they have allowed unremitting violence between Israel and the Palestinians with hardly an effort to stop that through U.S. leadership. And now, it’s almost too late.
- The pre-eminent obstacle to peace is Israel’s colonization of Palestine.
- We came to a region that was inhabited by Arabs, and we set up a Jewish state. In many places, we purchased the land from Arabs and set up Jewish villages where there had once been Arab villages. You don't even know the names [of the previous Arab villages] and I don't blame you, because those geography books aren't around anymore. Not only the books, the villages aren't around...
- We, the people of Palestine, stand before you in the fullness of our pain, our pride, and our anticipation for we long harbored a yearning for peace and a dream of justice and freedom. For too long, the Palestinian people have gone unheeded, silenced and denied, our identity negated by political expedience, our right for struggle against injustice maligned, and our present existence subsumed by the past tragedy of another people
- The Arabs never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity.
- Palestinians and Israelis were connected by a fatalistic dialectic towards an apocalyptic conclusion. One might argue this dialectic enveloped a land, mythical and actual, spiritual yet earth-bound, ancient yet very much poised towards unfolding actualities. This land conjures images of return and redemptive possibilities. Palestine and Israel are two strands intertwined in our collective imagination. They are linguistically exclusive and yet reference a singular place.
[R.F. Georgy] quoted from Absolution: A Palestinian Israeli Love Story. May 26, 2014
- Peace is not a discrete event; rather it is a renewable proposition, filled with affirmations designed to mitigate against the collective distrust of two people who knew little beyond hatred, suspicion, blame and counter blame, intellectual gamesmanship, fear, paranoia, historical necessity, retribution, and a host of other deeply engrained emotional projections that are constantly lurking beneath the surface.
[R.F. Georgy] quoted from Absolution: A Palestinian Israeli Love Story. May 26, 2014.
- If there's something that frightens me about Holocaust remembrance it's the recognition of the revolting processes that occurred in Europe in general, and particularly in Germany, back then – 70, 80 and 90 years ago – and finding signs of them here among us today in 2016.
- [The Holocaust] must make us think deeply about the responsibility of leadership, the quality of society, and it must lead us to fundamental thinking about how we, here and now, treat the stranger, the orphan and the widow, and all who are like them.
- There is nothing easier than hating the stranger, nothing easier than to stir fears and intimidate. There is nothing easier than to behave like an animal and to act sanctimoniously.
- On Holocaust Remembrance Day we ought to discuss our ability to uproot the seeds of intolerance, violence, self-destruction and moral deterioration.
- Yair Golan, as quoted in "IDF Deputy Chief Likens 'Revolting Trends' in Israeli Society to pre-Holocaust Germany", Haaretz, 4 May 2016.
- We have always said that in our war with the Arabs we had a secret weapon — no alternative.
- Peace will come when the Arabs will love their children more than they hate us.
- Golda Meir, Statement to the National Press Club in Washington, D. C. in 1957, as quoted in A Land of Our Own : An Oral Autobiography (1973) edited by Marie Syrkin, p. 242
- The truth is that if Israel were to put down its arms there would be no more Israel. If the Arabs were to put down their arms there would be no more war.
- [When asked about Peace negotiations] I'll be honest with you. A) This is just really hard. Even for a guy like George Mitchell, who helped bring about the peace in Northern Ireland. This is as intractable a problem as you get. B) Both sides — the Israelis and the Palestinians — have found that the political environment, the nature of their coalitions or the divisions within their societies, were such that it was very hard for them to start engaging in a meaningful conversation. And I think that we overestimated our ability to persuade them to do so when their politics ran contrary to that. From [Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud] Abbas' perspective, he's got Hamas looking over his shoulder and, I think, an environment generally within the Arab world that feels impatient with any process. And on the Israeli front — although the Israelis, I think, after a lot of time showed a willingness to make some modifications in their policies, they still found it very hard to move with any bold gestures. And so what we're going to have to do — I think it is absolutely true that what we did this year didn't produce the kind of breakthrough that we wanted, and if we had anticipated some of these political problems on both sides earlier, we might not have raised expectations as high. Moving forward, though, we are going to continue to work with both parties to recognize what I think is ultimately their deep-seated interest in a two-state solution in which Israel is secure and the Palestinians have sovereignty and can start focusing on developing their economy and improving the lives of their children and grandchildren.
- It will be a war of annihilation. It will be a momentous massacre in history that will be talked about like the massacres of the Mongols or the Crusades.
- Azzam Pasha, Secretary-General of the Arab League. Interview in Akhbar Al-Yom Newspaper, on the impending Arab attack on the fledgling state of Israel, 29 November 1947
- Whatever the outcome, the Arabs will stick to their offer of equal citizenship for Jews in Arab Palestine and let them be as Jewish as they like. In areas where they predominate they will have complete autonomy.
- Azzam Pasha, Secretary-General of the Arab League, Palestine Post, 21 May 1948, p. 3.
- We, the soldiers who have returned from battles stained with blood; we who have seen our relatives and friends killed before our eyes; we who have attended their funerals and cannot look in the eyes of their parents; we who have come from a land where parents bury their children; we who have fought against you, the Palestinians-we say to you today, in a loud and a clear voice: enough of blood and tears. Enough.
- Yitzhak Rabin, Israeli prime minister. Excerpts of PM Rabin Knesset Speech (21 September 1993)
- Not only [are] our states . . . making peace with each other,. . . you and I, your Majesty, are making peace here, our own peace, the peace of soldiers and the peace of friends.
- The greatest security for Israel is to create new Egypts.
- Should there be maniacs who raise the idea, they will encounter an iron fist which will leave no trace of such attempts.
- Our image has undergone change from David fighting Goliath to being Goliath.
- It’s true that this conflict is not special in how bad the violations are. What is special is how much the liberal west actively supports [Israel].
- Kobi Snitz, Israeli mathematician and activist, as quoted in "BDS: how a controversial non-violent movement has transformed the Israeli-Palestinian debate," The Guardian, 16 August, 2018.