Wednesday, February 09, 2005

Morning round-up

The Monk expects to be busy for the rest of the a.m., extending to mid-afternoon. Thus, here are some quick hits:

First, the Jerusalem Post notes what was missing from the Sharon-Abbas ceasefire dog-and-pony show:
Israel has given up the dream of many of its citizens to permanently reclaim the Biblical heartland that it captured in 1967. At least as profoundly, the perception of a Palestinian state has flipped from being regarded as a mortal threat to being seen as a historic necessity.

The Palestinians, by contrast, have not begun the parallel evolution that must take place for a two-state solution to have a chance. They have not begun to give up their claim to a Palestinian right to live on both sides of the Green Line.

Abbas has not begun to speak, even in general, of the need for painful Palestinian concessions, let alone specifically of the need to give up, forever, the dream of "return" to Haifa, Jaffa or Safed, where Abbas himself was born. On the contrary, yesterday he repeated the well-worn code words for such unacceptable demands.

Meanwhile, Rachel DiCarlo reports on the Palestinian media's endemic anti-Semitism -- promoting blood libels and killing Jews.

Leonard Pitts, a black semi-conservative columnist excoriates black church leaders for working with social conservatives, one of the GOP's main constituencies. Why? Because the social conservatives are the heirs to the tradition of rooting every heinous degradation of one's fellow man (slavery, lynching, segregation) in the dictates of the Bible, and Pitts views religion-based homophobia as the scion of this ideological family.

Dick Morris, former Clinton advisor and no friend of Mrs. Clinton, tells the GOP to watch Condoleeza Rice and, if she continues to progress, draft her as the anti-Hillary. The Monk has long thought that the first female President would have to be a conservative or else the voters would doubt she had the intestinal fortitude to stand up to America's enemies (and allies).

Finally, this piece by Nelson Aescher is definitely worth a read. Here's a quick snip:
Those whom the fall of the Berlin Wall had left orphans of a cause, spent the next decade plotting the containment of the US. It was a complex operation that involved the (in many cases state-sponsored) mushrooming of NGOs, Kyoto, the creation of the ICC, the salami tactics applied against America’s main strategic ally in the Middle-East, Israel, through the Trojan Horse of the Oslo agreements, the subversion of the sanctions against Iraq etc. . . It was above all the case of the spirit of the times converging, through many independent manifestations, towards a single goal. Nonetheless we can be sure that, after those manifestations reached a critical mass, there has been no lack of efforts to coordinate them.

And so, spontaneously up to a point, anti-Americanism became the alternative ideology that came to fill in the vacuum left by the failure of traditional, USSR-based communism and its Maoist or Trotskyite satellites. Before 1989, the global left had something to fight for: either the strengthening of the communist states or the correction of what they called their bureaucratic distortions. To fight for something is simultaneously to fight against whatever threatens it, and thus, the leftists were anti-Western and anti-Americans too, anti-capitalistic in short.


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