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Pedal Power solutions to petroleum dependence and polluting vehicles: Arcata Library Bikes, Pedal Power Produce, and more!

CAOE - Committee Against Oil Exploration - stop offshore oil drilling to protect sensitive habitats and cut petroleum dependence.

Culture Change through music! The Depavers eco-rock!

Take our Pledge for Climate Protection and learn about the Global Warming Crisis Council.

SEI hometown action!
Arcata city council's proclamation against war on Iraq and Kyoto Protocol proclamation.

Overpopulation has become a reality.  Overpopulation Resources and News Tidbits

Sail Transport Network

Fact Sheets
Press Releases

Long Distance


Non-sustainable Development
Palestine-Israel Hostilities: Historical Roots of War over Water and Oil amidst Overpopulation

Development in some parts of the world is in reverse, particularly in Palestine.  Houses and families are destroyed due to Israeli military/expansionist policy, simplified as a many decades-long land grab.  One practice used in the West Bank settlement-strategy by Israel is the destruction of Palestinian homes that the owners allegedly modify without hard-to-get permits.

Some world observers ascribe the decades-long violence, in large part, to the effects of U.S. aid and arms/intelligence deals.  Understandably, counter-terrorism or terrorism by Palestinians offends much of the world.  People on both sides are reaping what they are sowing.

Some history of the countries' relationship is of interest, partially recounted below.  However, we must not remain 100% immersed in our perceptions of ongoing, inevitable conflict as to specific who-did-whats.  Rather, we must keep in mind what the governments and corporate news media never mention: overpopulationówhich is worsening almost everywhere as you read thisóleads to pressures that make it hard to solve problems and plan sensibly.  Energy usage and water usage are considerably less per capita in Palestine and Israel than in the profligate USA, but pressures are clearly escalating.  Acts of aggression and collateral damage are symptoms, no matter where they occur.

Rats in a cage is an apt analogy for modern humanity's condition amidst overcrowding.  Are the names so importantóMr. Tough Rat?ó in a given conflict, that no government or news media corporation ever points out that we are in a situation much like too many rats in a small cage?  

Too many rats in the cage spells violence and has other negative results.  In humans' version of rats-in-a-cage, the phenomenon of gangsterism is included.  Gangsterism has more polite names that also involve patriotism and armed force.  In addition to society's need for more equitable structuring and treatment of people and all other species, population size must be stabilized now and decreased peacefully over time.

From the bestseller Dangerous Liaison:
"... Eisenhower and Dulles soon demonstrated that the U.S. was prepared to take severe measures against Israel when they thought it justified.  In September 1953, Dulles informed the Israeli ambassador in Washington that all economic aid was being suspended immediately.  Eisenhower had been infuriated by Israel's ongoing project to divert waters from the river Jordan for its own use, in defiance of a United Nations plan.  At first the cancellation of American aid was kept secret by both sides, but a month later a special unit of the Israeli army called Unit 101, commanded by a rising star in the IDF [Israeli Defense Forces] named Ariel Sharon, assaulted the Jordanian village of Kibya and blew up forty-one houses and a school.  Fifty-three civilians sheltering in their houses were killed.  Outraged, the president ordered that the aid cutoff be made public.

"Israel's lobby in the United States reacted to Eisenhower's initiative with public outrage, while [prime minister] Ben-Gurion darkly hinted at Foster Dulles' supposed anti-Semitism.  In the Truman days it had been possible to circumvent hostility from elsewhere in the bureaucracy by doing an end run through the White House.  Those days were past for the moment.  The Israeli government was not sure that pressure from the American Jewish community would be enough to bail it out, either politically or economically.  Moshe Sharett, the foreign minister, recorded a gloomy cabinet meeting summoned to assess the damage two days after Dulles made the aid cutoff official.

'Princhas Saphir [the finance minister] presented a program for a $50 million cut in the budget; $18 million would be raised in cash from Jews.  Golda and Yossi predicted, "The American Jews always give more in times of crisis."  I said to Ben-Gurion, "It depends what caused the trouble."  Later Gus [an American who worked in Ben-Gurion's office as an economics adviser] confirmed that a crisis in relations between Israel and the U.S. government would not encourage American Jews to donate.'

"It took only eight days for the Israelis to cave in on the water project, whereupon aid was resumed.  It was one of the rare instances when an American president had used the lever of American financial support.  The effect had been immediate and devastating..."

From Dangerous Liaison - The Inside Story of the U.S.-Israeli Covert Relationship, by Andrew and Leslie Cockburn, published by HarperCollins, 1991

See Culture Change's dispatches from international editor Pincas Jawetz online at

See Culture Change Letter's Late August 2002 edition #4: Where Lies Failure of the World Summit on Sustainable Development



Articles of interest:
Anti-globalization protest grows, with tangible results.  WTO protests page

Tax fossil-fuel energy easily
by Peter Salonius

UK leader calls War on Terror "bogus"

Argentina bleeds toward healing by Raul Riutor

The oil industry has plans for you: blow-back by Jan Lundberg

It's not a war for oil? by Adam Khan

How to create a pedestrian mall by Michelle Wallar

The Cuban bike revolution

How GM destroyed the U.S. rail system excerpts from the film "Taken for a Ride".

"Iraqi oil not enough for US: Last days of America?"

Depaving the world by Richard Register

Roadkill: Driving animals to their graves by Mark Matthew Braunstein

The Hydrogen fuel cell technofix: Spencer Abraham's hydrogen dream.

Ancient Forest Protection in Northern California . Forest defenders climb trees to save them.

Daniel Quinn's thoughts on this website.

A case study in unsustainable development is the ongoing crisis in Palestine and Israel.

Renewable and alternative energy information.

Conserving energy at home (Calif. Title 24)



Culture Change/Sustainable Energy Institute mailing address: P.O. Box 3387 , Santa Cruz , California 95063 USA
  Telephone 1-215-243-3144 (and fax)

Culture Change (Trademarked) is published by Sustainable Energy Institute (formerly Fossil Fuels Policy Action), a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) California non-stock corporation. Contributions are tax-deductible.