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Friday, December 11, 2009

Tom Friedman's 'Narrative'

Remember that Tom Friedman piece about ten days ago called the Narrative? Over at Pajamas Media, Moshe Dann rips him to shreds by applying the Narrative to Israel.
For many, Israel is the “oppressor of Muslims” and the “occupier of Arab land.” A reasonable conclusion might suggest the U.S. drop relations with Israel in order to improve relationships with Arabs and Muslims. This seems to be Obama’s policy — weaken Israel, force it back to the armistice lines of 1949, and arm Palestinians to the teeth.

Then, miraculously, Arabs and Muslims will embrace America’s “crusade” against Muslim countries. No more 9/11s and Ft. Hoods. A second Arab Palestinian state will make things better! No more nasty jihad!

Hardly. As smart as Friedman is, he distorts the conflict (and “The Narrative”) between Israel and Arab Palestinians by defining it as territorial rather than existential. He and his colleagues at the New York Times fail to understand the true nature of “Palestinianism,” in which Maj. Nidal Hasan believed, and its jihadist roots. Israel’s presence in any form is unacceptable, and anyone who supports Israel deserves death.

The “occupation of Palestine” did not begin in 1967; it began in 1948, when Israel was established. The root of “Palestinianism,” as Matthias Kuntzel points out in Jihad and Jew-hatred, Islamism, Nazism and the Roots of 9/11, is “the narrative” of jihad. Israel represents everything America and Western civilization stand for — democracy, tolerance, modernity — which is precisely what Islamists and jihadists despise.

Naively, Friedman calls on Muslims to promote a “positive interpretation” of Islam. Nice, if you don’t get murdered trying. And what about “liberating Palestine”?

If “ending the occupation” is a prerequisite for rapprochement, as Friedman proposes, let’s get that narrative straight. If “Palestinianism,” wiping out Israel, is simply another form of jihadism, then why not include that in “The Narrative”?

Read the whole thing.


At 1:31 AM, Blogger NormanF said...

As Barry Rubin noted again today, the Palestinian goal remains wiping Israel off the map. They are prepared to wait decades, centuries even to achieve it. And they will not settle for any compromise that would take that goal out of their reach. The real problem is when the rest of the world will finally "get it."


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