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Since 1948, we Arabs have been taught that all we need to do is get rid of the Jewish state, and ‎everything else will go well after that. Our dictators took full advantage of this idea. Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser locked up and executed his opposition members ‎using his famous excuse: “No voices are to be allowed except for those for the war with ‎Israel.” Iraqi President Saddam Hussein adopted the Palestinian flag and had it ‎printed, distributed and flown alongside his own flag, and even said, “Palestine and Iraq share the same ‎identical cause.” In short, we Arabs have put 70 years of our existence on hold while awaiting that ‎‎”glorious day” when we defeat Israel and “feed the Jews to the fish.”

But that day did not come, nor does ‎it seem to be coming, as Jordanian opposition figure Emad Tarifi once told me: “It seems the fish in ‎the sea are not betting on us feeding them Jews.” ‎

In addition, we Arabs have given our dictators carte blanche to impoverish, terrorize, oppress and ‎destroy us all in the name of “the great Arab struggle to end the Zionist entity.” The outcome of this has ‎been clear: While Israel made 10 new breakthroughs in cancer and cardiac treatments in the last two years ‎alone, we Arabs developed new execution methods. The latest is death by drowning in a cage, as ‎shown in an Islamic State group video two weeks ago.‎

We Arabs have wasted seven decades of our existence awaiting Israel’s demise. It is time to think of the future, and whether Israel’s “disappearance” should be our ‎ultimate wish.‎

Being the son of two Palestinian-Jordanian refugees, I find myself inclined to fear for the future. Regardless of my stance toward Israel, I have to think: What would happen if, one day, Israel were to disappear? While it does not seem feasible, it is the day around which entire Arab political, social and economic systems revolve. ‎

It is not only Arabs who want Israel gone. There are others who seek the same, for ‎example anti-Semites in the West. Just last week, neo-Nazis marched in London with swastikas and the Palestinian flag. The organizer of the march claimed it was a protest “by all of those ‎who have suffered because of Israel.” There are groups calling for a boycott of Israel “for ‎the sake of the Palestinian people.” There are countries whose entire foreign policy seems to revolve around opposition to Israel. We ‎Palestinians might have believed that these groups and countries actually care about us, but they take no interest in the fate of the ‎‎150,000 Palestinians being starved to death in Syria’s Yarmouk refugee camp, nor in an estimated ‎‎5.8 million Palestinians in Jordan (as indicated by a U.S. Embassy cable) who live as second-‎class citizens and are banned from government jobs and any form of state benefits while paying full taxes.‎

If these Israel-haters got their wish to see Israel disappear, what would ‎happen?‎

First, Israel is the only reason Iran does not yet have nuclear weapons. Iran could buy the ‎technology to produce them, or could learn it quickly the way Pakistan did. Why has Iran been slow in ‎doing so? Because it learned a lesson from the experience of Saddam’s Osirak reactor, which Israeli jets reduced to rubble in 1981.‎

Then, almost everyone, including George H. W. Bush who was vice president of the United States at that time, were furious ‎with Israel’s move. But 10 years later, when the U.S. fought to liberate Kuwait, ‎the situation would have been totally different if Saddam had kept his nuclear program — and the only reason ‎he did not was Israel.‎

Further, Iran already controls at least a third of Iraq and its resources through a pro-Iranian ‎regime. If Israel were to disappear, Iran would extend its influence into Jordan, Kuwait and Bahrain ‎the next day, as it would not have to fear an Israeli reaction. Iran could then bring the world to its knees by reducing oil ‎production.

Iran is not the only evil power in the Middle East: We also have Islamic State, which has now spread across ‎Iraq, Syria, Sinai and Libya, with clear ambitions to enter Jordan. Islamic State has not entered


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