Monday, February 23, 2009

Hide and Seek

All violence consists in some people forcing others, under threat of suffering or death, to do what they do not want to do.
Leo Tolstoy

That's what's going on in Jursalem

He that gives good advice builds with one hand; he that gives good counsel and example builds with both.
Francis Bacon

So who's working against truce now?

There would be no agreement until a captured soldier is freed.

That's all for now..
Let's pray for peace

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Blogger David said...

The picture in the Al-Jazeera article shows Ehud Olmert, so I assume you are talking about peace between Israel and Palestinians.

There was some bad news from Israel in the past couple days. The Israeli President asked Likud Party leader Netinyahu (sorry bad spelling) to form a government. This man wants nothing more than to expand settlements in the West Bank. There will never be peace while he is Prime Minister. Actually, I am shocked that he was even in the running to be Prime Minister again. Last time he was Prime Minister, he was involved in some serious scandals. The man has no shame! I am saddened that religious fundamentalist Jews have so much power in Israel.

2/23/2009 12:04 PM  
Blogger C.H. said...


I need to express my disagreement on this issue. I am praying for peace every bit as much as you are, but I don't think that even for one second Hamas or any of the other groups operating in the Gaza strip have the slightest interest in a truce...they aren't even interested in helping Palestinians, the people they claim they want to liberate.

Have you seen this video?

This is how Hamas really views the Palestinian people, and this is what type of political atmosphere they have built.

Netanyahu's election was a result of fear. Israelis are looking around and feel hopeless that anyone is serious about making peace with them.

My opinion is that instead of reaching out to Syria, Israel should try and make peace with Iraq...if only there could be more people like Mithal Al-Alusi and Hayder Al-Khoei. Iraq's role in the region is going to grow in the coming years, and I can imagine a situation where Iraq works to bring the Palestinians and the Israelis together...perhaps by signing a non-aggression treaty with Israel and helping to train the Palestinian police forces so they can remove fundamentalists on their own.

2/23/2009 8:55 PM  
Blogger khalid jarrar said...

The Arabic Link Attawie provided is a news peace from Aljazeera website talking about Israel deciding to stop the ongoing negotiations for declaring a truce by putting an unnegotiatioble condition of releasing the imprisioned Israeli sodlier Jilaad Shaleet, Hamas has been dicussing the terms and details of the truce with the Egyptian mediators.

Just wanted to add that to clerify Attawies post for non arabic speakers.

2/24/2009 1:43 PM  
Blogger C.H. said...


Did you see the video that I linked to above?

2/24/2009 9:04 PM  
Blogger attawie said...

I edited the post and provided another link for English readers. You said it "The man has no shame"

It seems whenever you comment you insist on watching that video, and I do the same and insist that you check the video I posted.

As a journalism student you need to get the two sides of the story - unless there's more sides - and then you can have look at the entire picture in order to shape your opinion.

I don't mind your disagreement with me and I welcome you to express your thoughts here but let me tell you that "people like Mithal Al-Alusi and Hayder Al-Khoei" are not heroes and not "that" respectable here in the this part of the world.

thanks for your explanation :)

2/25/2009 12:14 AM  
Blogger David said...

Thanks Khalid for your explanation. Thanks also Attawie for the link in English.

I am thinking that this new stance by Israel concerning its captive soldier is purely political and is designed to influence the formation of the new government. I hope that Jilaad Shaleet will be released soon. I am sure his family is very anxious to be reunited with him. However, it seems rather cynical of Ehud Olmert to treat him as a political pawn.

2/25/2009 7:49 AM  
Blogger C.H. said...


Expressing our disagreement is a very important helps us understand our differences so we can work together to solve them.

I have had the opportunity to speak with Mr. Al-Khoei and I feel he is a true Iraqi patriot. His Grandfather was one of the greatest Marjas in the Shia Muslim world before his death in 1991. But I also understand that his views may not be in line with much of the Arab world. The same goes for Alusi, although I strongly believe he is a man who understands the reality of a very dangerous situation. The fact is, people like Abu Musab Al-Zarqawi and his followers have inflicted far more harm on the Arab and Muslim world than Israel has, and this was the message that Alusi wanted to convey.

I watched your video and what those settlers are doing is to be strongly condemned. However, with or without them, the two-state solution is still going to be in shambles. First the Palestinian people need to decide what they want.

Do they believe Hamas is looking our for them? Do they want a secular or a religious state? Who is going to be their key ally in the region? These are serious issues that need to be addressed.

2/25/2009 10:51 AM  
Blogger attawie said...

This reminds me of an old joke was very popular in Baghdad after the US invasion. it goes something like this:

After the killing many civilians in Iraq, Bush and Condalisa Rice were in a conference and she showed concern about what explanation to give. Bush asked her not to worry and he found a good technique to let media forget about the civilians.

"Bush said: During the processw We'll kill 300 000 Iraqis and a dentist"

All the reporters asked "Why one dentist?"

Bush looked at Rice and said: "Did I tell you not to worry?"

You said: "Israel concerning its captive soldier is purely political and is designed to influence the formation of the new government." I don't have to add anything regarding this point. But what about the Palestinian prisoners? Some of them are jailed and yet there was no charge against them. Years have passed and I can assure you that there's a generation, almost my age, have seen their fathers only in photos hanged on walls.

Same is going on in Iraq BTW.

I don't know what material to recommend for you to read or watch but I'm sure you need to find the missing pieces of the real picture in the middle east.

2/25/2009 2:53 PM  
Blogger C.H. said...


The Middle East is one of the most beautiful places in the world with some of the nicest people, but it also has some of the most brutal conflicts. Given the fact that no one on any political spectrum has been able to solve many of these issues, its safe to say that everyone is missing a piece to the picture that is going to bring stability.

2/25/2009 10:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

With all due respect you hardly know what we as Arabs are talking about when we mention Palestine and our point of view. When I say we I mean the genuine true Arabs who believe in the Palestinian people are the rightful owners of Palestine.
Those who do not believe this they are traitors to the Arab Nation and Cause.

The whole world is fooled by the existence of Israel. An entity that should have never been created. I personally as a Muslim have no prejudice against Jews. One of the pillars of Islam is to believe in the holy divine religions which Judaism is one of them. But as an Arab, I have all the objection to the summoning of all Jews from all over the world and claiming that this is the promised land. We were and still are against the usurping of a land in front of the whole world (by the British in 1917 according to the Belfor promise) and giving it to people from outside the region claiming that they were and will always be the rightful owners!!!!

If the Jews and the Muslims in Palestine early last century entered then into a religious conflict, we would have accepted it as being two parties belonging to the same country but having people coming in and driving the rightful owners out is ethically and morally wrong let alone it being a blatant violation of the sovereign right or a nation (Palestine was like a province then that belonged to the Arab world which was one nation).

It is a long story and very controversial. The reality and truth got lost along the way; lost before the world but not before us the Arabs. The Muslim world is also aware but has no influence or authority to intervene.

It is also a pity that even the Christian world has forgotten the whole story and gave a blind eye to the issue. I say this because I am certain that the Zionists have vowed to destroy both religions I order for the new Judaism to flourish.
Also do not get me wrong, I am not an extreme or fanatic practicer of Islam.
Please open your eyes beyond the media and Zionist propaganda. Take the issue from the historical side and then look at the politics that played a filthy role in denying a whole nation of it inalienable rights. I am not accusing the west of manipulating the then prevalent conditions following both WW1 and WW2 as being the bad guys but also the Arabs who sold the rights of the land to the Zionist forces.

2/26/2009 11:40 AM  
Blogger David said...

Attawie, I think the joke tells the truth in the sense that Bush, Condi, and the rest of the neo-cons really did not care how many Iraqis died after the invasion. I am sure that Bush has no trouble sleeping at night.

Regarding Palestinian prisoners in Israel, I am sure you are right. Israel created its own versions of the Guantanamo prison many years before the U.S. They are probably doing the same kinds of torturing that Bush allowed for years. I wouldn't be surprised if the Bush administration consulted with Israelis on rough interrogation techniques.

Are there still a lot of prisoners being held in Iraqi prisons without and charge or trial?

2/26/2009 11:55 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Back to your comment about stability and missing pieces, I can asure you there are no missing pieces. The pieces are there for all to see but they have chosen to ignore them.
No stability will ever be reached as long as the rights of the Palestinans are denied. check the British archives and you will see the truth.

2/26/2009 12:12 PM  
Blogger C.H. said...

When I say we I mean the genuine true Arabs who believe in the Palestinian people are the rightful owners of Palestine.

Anon, I am going to be frank and honest when I say is statements like these that have led to the Middle East being precisely the region that it is. To say that people like Hayder Al-Khoei and Mithal Al-Alusi are not "real Arabs" or "real Iraqis" simply because they are more outraged about what their fellow Arabs are doing to their people as opposed to the situation in Gaza is offensive and wrong. By that logic, the above statement could be turned around and I could say that the Palestinians who have marched in the streets to mourn Zarqawi's death are traitors to the Arab cause for supporting a madman who has inflicted some of the most horrendous suffering on Arabs and Muslims. But I don't believe that. Instead, I believe that the Palestinians mentioned in the link have somehow been brainwashed into believing that Zarqawi is a force for their cause when he sends suicide bombers to mass murder Iraqis who are trying to go about their daily lives.

The whole world is fooled by the existence of Israel. An entity that should have never been created

I am not going to go too deep into history. What happened to the Palestinians in 1948was wrong and I don't think that the British realized exactly what would happen. And you are right to point out the lunacy of some Jewish American from New York City coming across the ocean and telling the Palestinians that it is his land and not there's. But Palestine was already divided before that, and this is a part of history that the anti-Israel crowd would like to ignore. The fact is, the Hashemites rolled into Jordan and took over what was once Palestine, and today, under the Hashemite crown, the Palestinian majority living in Jordan is looked down on. Many live in squalid refugee camps that breed extremists. Just look at what happened with Fatah Islam in 2007, when the ferocious Tripoli battles almost dragged Lebanon into another civil war.

My support of Israel has nothing to do with religion or ethnicity. What I see when I look at the situation is that Israel gives more rights and freedoms to ALL of its citizens than any other country in the region. Israel is one of the few Middle Eastern countries where an Arab woman can cast a vote and feel free to make her own decisions free from a repressive government or family. If Israel disappeared tomorrow, Gaza is still going to be a miserable place so long as groups like Hamas and Islamic Jihad maintain popular support, never mind that they are more than willing to kill their own people--people they see as "traitors--whenever it becomes necessary.

Anon, look around and see what your belief system has brought: while Israel has managed to make itself into one of the most high-tech and advanced societies in the world, its neighbors, such as Syria, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, etc. are mired in abject poverty, unemployment, and general misery while being ruled by iron-fisted dictators who play the "Arab Unity/down with Israel" card as a means to deflect attention away from the suffering in their own countries.

I have absolutely no prejudice against anyone either...some of my best friends have either lived in the Middle East or currently live there. I have spoken out extensively against people who spread misinformation about Islam being a violent religion, and I am very proud to say I have attended Friday prayers at several different mosques here in San Francisco.

My question to you is this...instead of debating history, what should we do now? Should the Palestinians continue violent resistance or should they accept that Israel is here to stay? I hope that a contiguous Palestinian state is created--I would like to see Gaza City, Jenin, and Ramallah become as sucessful as Tel Aviv and Haifa. I am fully supportive of dividing Jerusalem and dismantling the settlements in the West Bank. What I DO NOT support is watching Israel give land to the Palestinians only to see it snatched up by a brutal regime (Hamas) that would prefer to watch its own people starve to death before accepting Israel's right to exist. Why should the Palestinian people trade one tragedy for another?

2/26/2009 12:42 PM  
Blogger C.H. said...


Mr. Bush can go to sleep comfortably at night because he knows that decades from now, long after he, Barack Obama, and the politics of the past have been written away to the history books, Iraq is going to be a shining beacon of hope that will light up this world that is all too often dark and unfortunate.

The elections on January 31st were some of the most moving images I had ever seen in my life.

2/26/2009 12:53 PM  

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