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Is a Society's View of Israel Directly Related to Levels of Poverty and Violence?


"...envy accompanied by violent resentment."

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A conservative economist is arguing that "the best litmus test for any society's success is its attitude towards Israel," claiming that nations harboring resentment against the Jewish state fail, while those that admire and try to replicate its accomplishments experience positive outcomes.

George Gilder, an economist and the founder of the Discovery Institute, a conservative think tank, made this claim in a new video lesson for Prager University, a conservative educational platform.

According to Gilder, much of the contention in the Middle East is centered on resentment and jealousy as it pertains to Israel's accomplishments.

"The great divide in the Middle East is not between Arab and Jew, but between admiration and achievement along with a desire to replicate it," he said. "And envy accompanied by violent resentment."

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Gilder spent the first portion of the video lesson recapping European Jews' move to Mandatory Palestine in the 1880s, claiming that they ushered in an "agricultural miracle" that benefited the lives of Arabs and Jews alike.

"The Jewish settlers drained malarial swamps, leaped salt from the soils, terraced the barren hills and planted millions of trees," Gilder said, noting that enterprises and jobs were also created. "The Arabs came to what would soon be the state of Israel because of the Jews."

As for Israel, since its founding he said the Jewish state has seen its population increase 10-fold, while also seeing agriculture and industry explode, creating a fair bit of jealousy.

According to Gilder, the nations who fail the so-called "Israel Test" end up being poorer and more violent, while admirers who try to emulate the nation's successes end up with rewards for their admiration, though he did not go into detail or provide specific examples.

"The 'Israel Test' is the central divide in the world today," Gilder continued. "How you answer it as an individual and ultimately how we answer it as a nation is a test of our own will to triumph over enemies who hate us as they hate Israel for what is best within us."

Watch the video lesson below:

What do you think?


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