Friday, June 21, 2002

Judah Ariel's Stage Left has a good bit on the "Hamas veto", where Hamas gets to drive the "peace process" by timing its attacks to disrupt any attempts at peace.

This is an important point, all the more so because of the "Borgastinian" massmind caricature that we've been seeing bouncing around the Echo Chamber and in the press. By neglecting to draw a distinction between extremist groups and the Palestinians (who, yes, might support them, but who could just as easily desert them if a better opportunity presented itself) the idea that the Palestinians themselves are trying to disrupt peace initiatives becomes accepted conventional wisdom, and obscures the reality that a small group of them don't want peace (just as a small group of Israelis don't want peace, but considering the questions about Hamas' support, maybe they're one and the same).

Terrorism, after all, is an attempt to use civilian fear to gain your political ends. Right now Hamas (and any other terrorist group that times its bombs to scuttle peace) is successfully using terrorism to achieve the exact goals they were hoping to, and every single commentator who mixes up the goals and desires of the Palestinian people and the extremist terrorist groups is, in their own way, aiding and abetting these acts of savage monstrosity. Just like the commentators who are by inches calling for a holy war between the West and Islam, they're playing right into the hands of their supposed enemies.

(If Osama Bin Laden really is an evil genius, then his political genius has been proven by the reaction of the American right. They're doing exactly what he wants them to, in every possible respect.)

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