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Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Palestinian Arabs preferring occupation

The New York Times has taken notice of a MEMRI article describing how some Palestinian Arabs are saying an obvious fact t hat was previously unthinkable for them - that Israel's terrible "occupation" was better than what they can accomplish on their own:
Recently, a few Palestinian columnists have broken a political taboo by referring to the Israeli occupation as perhaps preferable to the current chaos.

For example, Majed Azzam wrote in the Hamas-affiliated weekly Al Risala in Gaza that Palestinians “should have the courage to acknowledge the truth,” that the only thing that “prevents the chaos and turmoil in Gaza from spreading to the West Bank is the presence of the Israeli occupation.”

Another Palestinian writer, Bassem al-Nabris, a poet from Khan Yunis, in the Gaza Strip, wrote in the Arabic electronic newspaper Elaph that if there was a referendum in the Gaza Strip on the question of whether people would like the Israeli occupation to return, “half the population would vote ‘yes.’ But in practice,” he continued, “I believe that the number of those in favor is at least 70 percent, if not more.”

If the occupation returns,” Mr. Nabris added, “at least there will be no civil war, and the occupier will have a moral and legal obligation to provide the occupied people with employment and food, which they now lack.”

Not surprisingly, the NYT implies that it is only the security chaos and Hamas-Fatah battles that are the reasons for this attitude, but al-Nabris went much further:
[It did not begin] with the internal conflicts, but even earlier, in the days of the previous Palestinian administration, which was corrupt and did not give the people even the tiniest [ray of] hope. The fundamentalist forces which came into power [after it] also promised change and reform, but [instead, people] got a siege, with no security and no [chance of] making a living...
MEMRI clearly gets under the skin of Arabs and terror supporters, because it shows the Arab people in such a bad light. This article accuses MEMRI of cherry-picking articles to make Arabs look bad and of being Zionist, which is of course a crime to the critics. These critics (including Norman Finkelstein, Juan Cole and Ken Livingstone) seem to believe that the blood libel accusations, videos designed to encourage children to blow themselves up to reach an amusement park paradise, and Holocaust denial is not nearly as bad as MEMRI choosing not to translate Arabic weather reports. But not once do they accuse MEMRI of mistranslating.
(H/T EBoZ)