Thursday, January 31, 2008

Punishing Gaza Only Harms Those Backing Peace

Poor Gaza, once the most moderate of Palestinian regions - where the women wore bikinis and the men drank whisky - has been transformed into the most radical. For why? This - sent us by ATFP - provides one take on the situation:

A Daily Star (Lebanon) opinion by Daoud Kuttab, published in collaboration with Project Syndicate, analyzes how the collective punishment of Gaza's population weakens the moderate majority and strengthens the extremist minority:

By Daoud Kuttab
In The Daily Star (Lebanon), Opinion
January 30, 2008
When the Gaza Strip was plunged into darkness last week as a result of the Israeli fuel blockade, many people around the world were surprised. But the optimism produced by the Annapolis peace process, which included President George W. Bush's promise of an agreement in 2008 to create a Palestinian state, was clearly unrealistic.

Gaza is usually viewed in terms of Hamas' overwhelming support there, but the reality is much different. Opinion polls conducted in Gaza by the Near East Consulting Group in late November 2007 indicated 74 percent popular support for a peace agreement with Israel. Only 15 percent would vote for Hamas parliamentarians or a Hamas presidential candidate, compared to 55 percent for Fatah candidates. The Annapolis-inspired peace process received 81 percent support.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

So drinking Whiskey and wearing bikinis is the definition of "moderation"? What a disgusting, sexist and shallow comment. Do you think people in Palestine are yearning to wear bikinis? They are yearning to be rid of the racist Israeli apartheid state backed by the US and the EU which has reduced their lives to hell.