MideastWeb Middle East Web Log
Tuesday, July 26, 2005
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in Gaza
There's an irony in the warm embrace which the anti-disengagement movement has extended to the late Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
In 1988, during the first intifada, a group of Israelis organized a program at the International Cultural Center for Youth in Jerusalem in memory of the assassinated U.S. civil rights leader The occasion was the opening of "Hand in Hand for Justice," a U.S.-produced exhibit on King's relationships with Jews and Israel.
The organizers decided to invite as one of the speakers a rabbi from a settlement outside the Green Line. Before immigrating, the rabbi had taken part in U.S. civil-rights activity.
Sponsors of the program included the education ministry and the foreign ministry. A U.S. diplomat and former President Yitzhak Navon, then minister of education, were among the speakers.
by Joseph M. Hochstein @ 08:41 PM CST [Link]
Thursday, July 21, 2005
Disengagement in Gaza: The unsettling end of orange?
Orange used to be a popular color in Israel, but apparel store owners say they can't sell anything orange anymore. Orange is the color of the settlers protesting against disengagement. The color was chosen because it was always the color of Gush Katif supposedly, or because it was the color of the Ukrainian peaceful revolution, or because a publicity agent liked it, or all three. [more]
Thursday, July 14, 2005
Disengagement diary: Wayward taxi
TEL AVIV --- Walking to the post office on an urgent errand, I encounter a huge truck on the sidewalk. It hogs the pavement, blocking my path. Orange ribbons festoon its door-handles and rear-view mirrors. The driver is nowhere in sight.
At first it's only this driver's illegal parking that annoys me. By the time I have threaded my way through the Tel Aviv traffic and made it safely back to the sidewalk on the far side of the truck, I have transferred my annoyance to his orange ribbons.
In the last few months, the color orange has come to stand for opposition to the Israel government's planned withdrawal from 21 settlements in Gaza and four in northern Samaria. Flying an orange ribbon from your antenna is a way of saying you support the movement that is trying to overturn the government's plan and preserve the settlements.
by Joseph M. Hochstein @ 04:11 PM CST [Link]
Wednesday, July 13, 2005
Bombing in Netanya - Chaos in the Palestinian Authority
The suicide bombing carried out in Netanya on July 12, like the London blasts of July 7, now revealed to be suicide bombings as well, both point to the same unmistakable conclusions about terrorism. They do not support the thesis of Robert Pape, that suicide bombers are aimed at national liberation or the thesis of Professor Eagleton, that suicide bombings are the acts of desperate altruists. The London bombers were apparently all native British Muslims, and not oppressed by any occupation. They were also, apparently, comfortably well off and not desperate in any way. Both bombings were attempts by terror groups to increase their popularity among their own constituencies. [more]
Thursday, July 7, 2005
9-11 in London: Bomb blasts bring Britain into the Al-Qaeda victims club
It had to happen sooner or later. Everyone understands that they may be a target of Al-Qaeda, but they cannot feel it in their hearts until it happens. Six blasts set off in London underground (subway) and buses have killed at least fifty and critically injured many more. An Islamist-based Web site "credited" Al-Qaeda with the attacks, and they are said to bear the stamp of Al-Qaeda methodology, but authorities have not officially blamed anyone. Tony Blair left the G-8 summit to return to London, though current reports say the summit has not been cancelled, contradicting ealier news. Britons and tourists have jammed the telephone system to get news of loved ones, and, as may be expected the Internet news services collapsed under the pressure of events.
Monday, July 4, 2005
The Missing Peace II: Peace is not a Piece of Paper
Review of "The Missing Peace," by Dennis Ross, Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2004, Part II.
As we saw in Part I, the "Peace Process," at least as related by Ross, took place in a vacuum almost completely unrelated to reality, with goals such as FRDs (Further Redeployments) and CBMs (Confidence Building Measures) that were entirely irrelevant to anything the sides really needed to achieve. It is easy to fix the fault for the failure of the Middle East Peace Process on one side or the other, depending on your initial assumptions, and provided that you ignore either all or most of the reality. It is especially easy if, as some have done, you begin your analysis in 1999 when Ehud Barak became Prime Minister. [more]
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