Saturday, May 15, 2004

Listening Project
A prominent Arab columnist calls for Arafat to resign.

Jihad Al Khazen:

I do not care what the enemies say. I care about you. However, I care more about the Palestinian cause, which must be more important to you than yourself.

Nevertheless, you did your best for Palestine. It is you right now to relax.

If you resign today, you will leave with your head up high.

A democratically elected Arab president resigns. Democratic elections are rare in our countries; resignation is rarer.

My friend, resign. Enough is enough. Do it and give yourself a chance. Give the cause a chance.

(Here is the Arabic version).

In the past, this columnist, Jihad Al Khazen, rejected Arab Holocaust denial, saying

"The Arabs did not murder the Jews in Europe or in any other place. The reciprocal massacres between Arabs and Jews throughout history, including the last fifty years, were very limited and cannot be compared with the murder of the Jews by the Nazis. Therefore, there is no need for us to deny a crime committed by others, and for which we have paid the price."


“…it is impossible for an Arab to come and claim that his knowledge about the Holocaust exceeds that of American or European historians. It is inappropriate for an Arab to defend the opinions of a historian [Irving] who was described by a Judge as racist, anti-Semitic, suspicious, and a supporter of neo-Nazis who treats the Jewish people in an insulting manner...”

"What is proper to say is that it is inconceivable that a people that was saved from the Holocaust persecutes another people, deports it, destroys its property, and steals its land."


* * * *

Yes but...
As if to prove Jihad Al Khazen’s point, according to AP, today Arafat

...called on his people to be steadfast in their struggle against Israeli occupation.

He ended the speech with a quote from the Quran.

"Find what strength you have to terrorize your enemy and the enemy of God," he said. "And if they want peace, then let's have peace."

But AP points out that

Arafat, whom Israel accuses of supporting militant groups, did not appear to be calling for new attacks on Israel. The passage in the Quran refers to the early Muslims' wars against pagans and is frequently invoked by Islamic leaders today to encourage strength in times of conflict.

Erm, okay.

[My dearest Bish, who has yet to get back at me for yesterday's post, supplied the links.]