Published On: Wed, Jul 30th, 2014

Woody Allen: The Arabs Should Have Been Nicer to the Jews

woody allen

In a recent interview with the Daily Beast, Woody Allen proved was surprisingly pro-Israel, cutting the conflict between Arab and Jews down to a human scale. Basically, he argued, the Arabs should have been nicer to the Jews arriving from Europe.

It began with the Beast’s Marlow Stern asking: “Jews from New York are a very different brand from the Israelis. What’s your take on the situation in Gaza right now?”

Here’s Woody’s full reply, unedited:

“More terribleness. Ever since I can remember, when I was 21 years old, they were telling me, ‘Peace is around the corner between the Arabs and Israelis. The next generation. Right now, there’s a lot of bitterness, but with time, new generations will grow up and be more peaceful with each other.’ This would go on and on and on, and in the end, nothing’s changed. This situation remains tragic and terrible, and the leaders in Israel and the leaders in the Arab world have not been able to come to an agreement. It’s a terrible, tragic thing. Innocent lives are lost left and right, and it’s a horrible situation that eventually has to right itself—but I say that without knowing that it will. I hope that it will, but it seems, at this point, that nobody on either side is ready, willing, and able to.

“But I feel that the Arabs were not very nice in the beginning, and that was a big problem. The Jews had just come out of a terrible war where they were exterminated by the millions and persecuted all over Europe, and they were given this tiny, tiny piece of land in the desert. If the Arabs had just said, ‘Look, we know what you guys have been through, take this little piece of land and we’ll all be friends and help you, ‘ and the Jews came in peace, but they didn’t. They were not nice about it, and it led to problems, and over the years, both sides have made mistakes. There’ve been public relations mistakes, actual mistakes, and it’s been a terrible, terrible cycle of mismanagement and bad faith.”

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