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Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Our left, their left

What's the difference between our left and 'their' left? I'm not even going to tell you. I'm going to let an Egyptian blogger tell you instead, because this post is brutally honest.

Hat Tip: Kranky (in the civilized world)

The signs carried by those protesters say "Long live the armed resistance of Hezbollah" and "The Zionist existance is a crime against Humanity". The chants started calling on every arab country to send in its armies to fight Israel and eliminate it. And talking to the people was an interesting experience as well: One of them totally believed that the Israelis were behind the Harriri assassination all along, in order to get the syrian army out of Lebanon and invade it again. Nevermind the the shit that the syrians did in Lebanon, or that Bashar threathend Harriri with death, or even that the syrian army couldn't do shit even when it was in Lebanon. Also nevermind that Hezbollah are the ones who started this whole thing by kidnapping the 2 israeli soldiers. Nope, not interested in discussing it with you; Israel is behind it all.

I left the demonstration thinking of the american left and their demonstrations in the US. They US left is totally anti-War, any kind of war. Not our left. Our left has always called for War. Actually, the war with Israel and getting rid of Mubarak have always been the only 2 things that the egyptian left and the islamic right have always agreed upon. That's their common ground.


And then when I went home I saw this post by Lisa and it depressed me even more.

It was on a Peace demonstration held in Tel Aviv by the Israeli left, and attended by Arabs, Jews, Ashkenazi and Mizrahi. And From all age groups too.


I kept thinking that if arabs really wanted Peace, than those are the people that we really should be talking to, building bridges with.


But then I rememebrd that we- the majority of us anyway- don't want peace with Israel, and are not interested in any real dialogue with them. We weren't then and we are not now. The Entire peace process has always been about getting the land back, not establishing better relations. Even when we do get the land back, it's not enough. People in Egypt lament daily the Camp David treaty that prevents us from fighting. In Gaza they never stopped trying to attack Israel. In Lebanon Hezbollah continued attacking even after the Israeli withdrawel. And the people- the majority of the arab population- support it. Very few of us are really interested in having any lasting Peace or co-existance. I mean, if our left is asking for war, what do you think the rest of the population is thinking?

I think that the Israeli want peace with us because they don't want their lives disrupted. They don't want to have the IDF soldiers fighting in Gaza, rockets coming into their towns from Hamas or having to go to wars against Hezbollah to get their soldiers back. I think they want peace because they want their peace of mind. They view us as if we were a headache. We view them as if they are a cancer.

And this is why there will never really be any peace in the middle-east.

Because it signed a peace treaty with Israel, Egypt is the third-largest recipient of US foreign aid.

(Bolding and red color added by me. Lots of pictures in the original so it's especially worth taking a look).

Read the whole thing.


At 6:35 PM, Blogger Jeremayakovka said...

Carl, I think you and other bloggers give Sandmonkey more credit than he's earned.

In that same post, e.g., he says, "I left the demonstration thinking of the american left and their demonstrations in the US. They US left is totally anti-War, any kind of war." Do you agree with that statement? If so, you don't know the American Left.

It's a human foible to attribute virtue elsewhere while denouncing where it does not exist somewhere.

At 6:49 PM, Blogger Carl in Jerusalem said...


I grew up in the 60's and 70's. Most of the anti-war left people that I knew would have been opposed to any war other than a Pearl Harbor-type situation where the US was attacked. It wasn't just Vietnam.

At 7:24 PM, Blogger Jeremayakovka said...

Pearl Harbor was a different century. So, too, Vietnam. I was raised like many of the people you knew, but have since become much more suspect of self-described antiwar people.

Thanks for your $.02.



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