Thursday, January 26, 2006

Looks like Green is the new Red

Photos taken this week from the West Bank show Hamas members waving large green flags proudly, after party members took 76 of 132 votes in a preliminary election for Palestinian legislative elections.

Crowds of Hamas supporters crowded streets in celebration, signifying the probable end of 40 years of rule under Yasser Arafat’s Fatah leadership party. The images are striking, and were plastered on front pages and Web pages yesterday and today.

It’s almost remniscent of those Bolshevik Revolution images you see in history books, like this:

It appears likely that Hamas will take control, and they’ve stated, according to reports, that peace talks with Israel will come to a screeching halt, according to this

It’s got to feel empowering for the Hamas. But what’s next for Middle East peace talks?


At 5:40 AM, Blogger Jaz said...

The Palestinians, god bless them, have elected Terrorists to lead them. I don't see this as a bad thing necessarily. There has been carping recently in the media decrying the implications of bringing democracy to the Middle East. Chants of "Be careful what you wish for" and sentiments suggesting that democracy is not desirable are hogwash. Under a democracy people are allowed to vote for whomever they want. That's how it works. Like a child allowed to think for itself for the first time it is not a surprise that mistakes are bound to be made. If Palestinians believe that they are best represented by killers than so be it. Perhaps someday they will become responsible "adults", to continue the analogy. It's very simple: if Hamas continues its blatant anti-Israel policies American will marshal the international community to not subsidize the Palestinian people. In a way it's better now. At least we now know what we're dealing with. By doing this The Palestinians just abandoned any international credibility. Also, interestingly, perhaps with the added responsibilities of actually running a government rather than simply throwing stones from the outside, Hamas will become more moderate. In a sick way it's not as romantic to be building infrastructure rather than suicide bombs so I won't be surprised to hear that Hamas has modified some of their policies.

At 2:07 PM, Blogger theillestone said...

I have an interesting trick for us to all to try...

Take jamr's comments and everywhere you read "Palenstineians" replace with "Americans".

I think it is quite smug and arrogant to refer to the Palestinian people as "children". That is how shall I say very "American" not to mention racist. Painting a portarait of people of color as children simply because they made a democratic choice for thier country that you do not agree with is a low blow. This line of reasoning is in line with the racist imperialist thinking which has pervaded the world over the past 500 years. The "mother country" America and Europe and the "uncivlized native children" which includes any area once colonized or still suffering from neo-colonization. "The right thing to do" is always what the elder, wiser, parent suggests. Because ofcourse we all know; parents know best. Please...

I belive the turn out for the recent election in Palesine was 77%. Does anyone recall what the turnout was for the U.S. presidential elections of 04'???

Let's just say; statsitcally speaking, that the Palestinians made a "firm" democratic decision. They played the game just as the U.S. and E.U. wanted and it backfired on them! Deal...

I'm sure that the U.S. government and it's co-defendants will come up with another plot to control the Palenstinians and the entire Middle East.

At 12:29 PM, Blogger Jaz said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 12:32 PM, Blogger Jaz said...

I refer to the Palestinians as children because that is a valid analogy in reference to the level of their intellectual proficiency as demonstrated by the fact that they would prefer to engage in violence rather than debate, not because of the color of their skin. How absurd. Yeah they're children because of the pigmentation of their skin. That's what I believe. That argument is a straw man. Liberals like you are incapable of making almost any kind of value judgment. You represent the multiculturalist moral relativism crowd, who are apologists for those who in engage in morally repugnant acts such as killing women and children. And your charge of imperialism smacks of Michael Moore and other self-hating Americans. Do you honestly believe that America would like to control vast territories as the Roman Empire attempted to do? Most conservatives would honestly rather be isolationists like Pat Buchanan for example, leaving the world to their own devices. Unfortunately, the Buchanan isolationism line of thinking does not work either because festering cesspools of backwards un-enlightened human rights abusing countries and regimes cause problems around the world which, in turn, eventually effects us (as in gee I don't know 9-11). And if you read my comment closely you would have gleaned the fact that I agree that democracy implies that the decision is up to those doing the voting not those helping to institute democracy. The fact that America and the EU would prefer perhaps different results in burgeoning democracies has almost nothing to do with the fact that democracy itself is a better option for a corrupt society which is used to forms of government like despotism and oligarchy than went out of vogue in the west back in the middle ages. Yes we have, mainly because of the enlightenment period (you know, John Locke, Rousseau, Voltaire et al.) progressed in rational thought further and faster than the Middle East has. And more to the point, we happen to know a thing or two about fashioning a peaceful and productive society. Democracy, as Winston Churchill said "... is the worst form of government except all the others that have been tried."

At 9:54 PM, Blogger theillestone said...

jmars; the Palestinians had a DEMOCRATIC election. They had a 77% turn out rate. Furthermore, nowhere did I suggest that democracy was "hogwash".

What is hogwash is your hypocritcal and racist reaction and description of a country and its people who just excercised itself in a diplomatic; democratic, non-violent, and "enlightened" manner as children.

You called them children because they did not vote the way you would have liked. In your latest comment you suggested that they, middle easterners are somehow less rational than people in the west. You name dropped a couple of philosphers and writers from the various phases in western thought but I bet you cannot name one thinker from the middle east from this same era. You simply assume that there were none, or if there was they were INFERIOR to western thinkers; and that they were just sitting in the "dark" waiting to be saved like "children" I guess.

Again your arrogance and racist ideology consumes you.

You speak of international credibility. You claim the Palestinians have some how lost there's with there "childish" behavior.

But again that is a matter of perception. If you took a poll around the world I'm pretty sure you would find that America's credibility rating is just as low.

The only difference between the Palestinians and the Americans is economic and military strength and capability. It is not values and definitly not morals! To imply so is absured.

Refering to people of color as children is racist. You are so consumed in your racism that you do not even realize this, think I don't realize this, or perhaps you just don't care. All you would have to do is consider the history and legacy of colonialism and the ideology which was used to justify it. Part of that justification, part of that ideology, was the belief that these people of colour, these natives, could not gonvern themselves, were not civilized enough, or not "rational" enough. Really it just means that they weren't white and so anything they possed, land, resources, women, etc was rightfully the mother countries.

In 2006 to be arguing along these lines is sad and a great example of why this "enlightend" western civilization is having so much trouble dealing with it's "children". It would seem the children are rebelling I guess huh...

And another thing; if you are gonna spout off authors and thinkers, as if that is supposed to mean anything, why don't you start at home by seperating the thinkers by ideas instead of just lumping them together. America has a distinct philosophical and intellectual tradition which is seperate from the Romantic, classical, etc. periods. My guess is that you probably never really read any of these authors or more importantly understand any of their ideas(European or American). You figured that I haven't either so you thought you could just get away with yelling "western thought" blah, blah, blah.

That is not enlightnement my friend, that is just petty and a good example of why China and India and soon the rest of the underdeveloped world will be competing on an even footing with the United States. People like you, who are supposed to be such defenders of freedom and such loyal patriots really don't know your own intellectual heritage but have the audacity to speak upon the middle east and other foriegn places with a persumed knowledge of theirs, or rather, the lack of theirs.

Arrogance is always the prelude to the fall.

I am not a liberal or any other fractional political group which you familiarize and identify with. I am simply a human being. I don't get into all those games that you guys and gals like to play with each other. I could care less what right winged middle of the road married to a left wing radical protestant catholic hindu babbysitter says or believes in. It's just me...

Don't try to obscure my argument with your pre-set categories. All these categories do is prevent people from discussing the issue at hand by trying to set theoretical boundaries around people.

At 5:00 AM, Blogger Jaz said...

Why is it so hard for you to comprehend that I make a value judgment on the way people behave not because of what their skin color happens to be. It doesn’t even occur to me to call Palestinians "people of color" as you do. Seems to me that you’re the one injecting race into this. I label you as a multiculturalist moral relativist and you (angrily) call me a racist.

My whole children analogy was meant to be provocative. (Apparently it was)

I never accused you of not being in favor of democracy (a western concept) somewhere you got confused.

As far as I know John Locke (life, liberty and property), Jean Jacques Rousseau (The social contract), and Voltaire (who praised English institutions and religious tolerance) are all considered "Enlightenment" philosophers. All lived around the same time and were concerned with the philosophy of government. Nice try, but these writers were not as you say, "...from the various phases in western thought". You also state, " America has a distinct philosophical and intellectual tradition which is separate from the Romantic, classical, etc. periods." I would beg to differ. Certainly at our country's inception, the founding fathers were drawing largely on the very period of intellectual thought to which I refer to when I say "The enlightenment". In fact, (and I'm surprised you don't know this) Thomas Jefferson, when writing the Declaration of Independence, paraphrased John Locke when he said "...that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness. " Yes, very distinct from the European enlightenment, if by distinct you mean very similar.

And why don't you enlighten us as to whom some these various brilliant Muslim thinkers are and what their contributions to the creation of a peaceful society would be. Drawing a blank perhaps...who's fronting now?


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