Menachem Mendel

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The World and Middle East Peace

An exception to the shallow, uninformed, biased, and unoriginal writing that one usually finds about the Middle East in American newspapers, magazines, blogs, etc., is Walter Russell Mead. I strongly recommend his most recent post, The World Must Do More For Middle East Peace. (hat tip)

3 Responses to “The World and Middle East Peace”

  1. 1
    S.:

    I didn’t think it was so great. He completely ignored the religious element in the conflict, even assuming that it really was absent 50 years ago when the Israelis and the Palestinians were supposedly so secular.

    In addition, he doesn’t explain why the opportunity to become citizens of Western countries all over the world will satisfy Palestinians in Gaza and Lebanese refugee camps. They say they’re dreaming of olives and lemons, not Michigan and Paris. Why shouldn’t we believe them?

  2. 2
    Menachem Mendel:

    I also noticed that he ignored the Islamic side of things, but I do think that many Palestinians sitting in refugee camps would choose a Western country if given the option. One of his points was that the US, EU, UN, haven’t even begun to realize that the problem is much larger than a Palestinian state in the West Bank and Gaza.

  3. 3
    S.:

    I’m sure many would, just as many Israelis do, but isn’t the real sticking point those who don’t? All you need is 10,000 who believe armed resistance is their birthright. How do you think they’d react to the idea that, say, 800,000 of their brothers should just give up being Palestinian altogether, as part of the solution? This comes off very much like Clermont–Tonnerre famous “To the Jews as individuals everything, as a nation, nothing” or however he framed it. I suppose you could reply that in fact that would have worked had the Europeans actually enacted such a policy in practice. I guess we’ll never know.

    I think the one useful point he makes is that the international community ought to notice that they’re often part of the problem.

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