Saturday, July 22, 2006


Listening attentively to CNN for the past few days, either there is a deliberate policy decision to not clarify the situation or the journalists have no depth.  They repeat like a mantra that Hezbollah is responsible for the blows that are destroying the country in which they represent 40% of the population, and in whose parliament they sit.

It's as if Israel had not been occupying the Palestinian territories, engaging in a war of attrition against the people whose land they took, for over fifty years!  To hear them, this group with the sinister-sounding name is just trigger-happy - or violence prone.  The Israeli-Palestinian conflict has dropped off the radar!

When Condoleeza Rice  says she cannot support an immediate cease-fire because we would be back with the same problem in a matter of months, she is either tacitly admitting that the U.S. doe snot want to see Israel and Palestine living side by side within recognized borders, or, at the very least, that it is more important to U.S. interests to remake the Middle East, with Israel as a spearhead.

Apparently, the Israelis don't understand that it is in their interest, as the new kid on the block, to play by the playground rules, offering a lift in Daddy's Mercedes to the poorer kids on the block, rather than getting behind the wheel and running them over.  If there remains the slightest chance that Israel can survive as a state in a region inhabited and governed by Muslims, it has to be seized upon before it is too late.  The leaflets dropped over Lebanon advising inhabitants to flee manage to be provocative in their signature: The State of Israel.  That is not the form usually used in government communiques.

Hopefully, the American public is coming to realize  that the Palestinians elected a Hamas government in a free and fair election; that the Lebanese elected member of Hezbollah to their parliament, and that is as deserving of respect as the abominable fascist Le Pen in France, or the Sinn Fein in Ireland (the two having nothing in common!)

It's time Americans realized that entire populations stand behind these organizations because they are to the Palestinians what our Minutemen were to the American Revolution.

Moreover, the mainstream press has to stop avoiding the issue of equity: every country has a left and a right, a group in power and a larger group trying to obtain more from those in power.  In different ways, Hamas, Hezbollah, the Ba'athists and yes the Sunnis in Iraq who are also Ba'athists, and even the Iranian Revolution, are all, to varying degrees trying to make life better for the majority.  (Our commentators never tire of remarking that "the Iraquis" are well-educated, they had a modern economy", but they somehow fail to point out that it was thanks to thirty years of a Ba'athist/socialist government, however brutal the head of it became.  The Syrian facilities that are caring for refugees must make the Katrina refugees wish in retrospect that they had been so treated.

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