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News and views on Israel, Zionism and the war on terrorism.

February 08, 2003

George Will: War a step to Mideast peace

The assumption implicit here by writer George Will is that things can not get worse than they presently are
George F. Will, who will be in Tucson next week, says U.S. military action in Iraq could be a positive step toward peace in the Middle East.

"It will mean one less extremist tyranny in the area. They've got to improve the neighborhood,'' said Will, 61, a longtime supporter of Israel. He will be the keynote speaker at a local event Tuesday to raise money for Israeli victims and survivors of terror.

The event, called an Israel Chai, is being sponsored by the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona and will be held at 7:15 p.m. at Congregation Anshei Israel, 5550 E. Fifth St.

Will has spoken to groups in Tucson before but never to "indigenous Tucsonans," he said in an interview last week, adding that he expects to discuss both Israel and a possible war in Iraq during his talk.

"I'm going to talk about what we've learned about Israel's dilemma during the past few years," Will said, explaining that the most Israel can offer in diplomatic concessions is much less than what Palestinian leader Yassir Arafat is willing to accept.

Will also believes that Americans have become more sympathetic to Israel since Sept. 11, 2001.

"Having lived with terrorism in our own country for 17 months, they have a greater understanding of what Israel has been living with for 55 years,'' Will said. "Although obviously the news there is dismal, the fact is there's a new clarity on American policy on Israel." [more]