Friday, May 16, 2003
The ridiculous "solution" to the problem of Palestinian reform, whereby Arafat remains ar-raiis (el Presidente) while Abu Mazen pretends to be PM, is already proving to be a non-starter. Israeli TV news reported last night that since Abu Mazen's inauguration, the level of violence in Gaza has risen, and all indications are that Arafat is inciting the violence.
The idea was still to start with - it's like America saying that Saddam can stay in power but must appoint a Deputy. It's hard to imagine Churchill declaring, "Only Himler will be an exceptable leader of the Third Reich". But there we have it. The many opportunities to be rid of Yasser were missed (the Dolphinarium bombing was the occasion when Arafat should have been terminated), and now his power is on the rise again, thanks to old buddies like Javier Solana.
Meanwhile, Ha'aretz newspaper continues its campaign against Ariel Sharon. I heard an Abie Nathan supporter on the radio this morning describing it as "the thinking man's newspaper". I cannot imagine what such people are thinking about, but Ha'aretz is no less of a rag than the other Israeli papers, certainly when it comes to political reporting. Its endless vendetta against Sharon has led a stream of palid daily propagandist tracts that convince those who require no convincing and bore everybody else. Ha'aretz's failure to tackle the serious questions relating to the consequences of establishing a Palestinian state and its wholesale and uncritical adoption of the far-left's "peace" propaganda (which actually proved to be the recipe for war in the last few years) have rendered the newspapers analysis almost totally worthless.
The "thinking man" (let's not forget the "thinking woman") needs to be a tad more sceptical of such propaganda, and to ask why, in spite of all the predictions, Yasser Arafat failed to deliver the goods and brought disaster upon his people and the region as a whole. The true thinker needs to ask what guarantees exist that the guerilla war that Arafat launched will be brought to an end. Perhaps this thinker might also think why the Israeli government under the leadership of Rabin and Peres failed to insist upon an end to anti-Israel incidement in the Palestinian media and education system, which together guaranteed that the conflict would be nasty, brutish, and long.
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