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

April 15, 2003

Shark attack: two views of reality

This nice juxtapostion by Stefan Sharkansky
Meanwhile, on the peace side of the balance sheet, Ariel Sharon gave an interview to Ha'aretz He said, among other things

One has to view things realistically. Eventually there will be a Palestinian state. I view things first and foremost from our perspective. I do not think that we have to rule over another people and run their lives. I do not think that we have the strength for that. It is a very heavy burden on the public and it raises ethical problems and heavy economic problems.
and
It comes from the depth of my soul. Look, we are talking about the cradle of the Jewish people. Our whole history is bound up with these places. Bethlehem, Shiloh, Beit El. And I know that we will have to part with some of these places. There will be a parting from places that are connected to the whole course of our history. As a Jew, this agonizes me. But I have decided to make every effort to reach a settlement. I feel that the rational necessity to reach a settlement is overcoming my feelings.
Here's how Al-Jazeera chose to report Sharon's conciliatory statements
Sharon: Peace requires the Palestinians to give up the right of return

The Israeli Prime Minister announced his government's willingness to surrender settlements in the West Bank as part of a comprehensive peace with the Palestinians, preconditioned on giving up the right of return to settle the conflict. Palestinians dismissed these remarks as not serious and wanted actions, not empty statements

It is not news for an Israeli Prime Minister to rule out the so-called "right of return" for Palestinians. It is news for Ariel Sharon to acknowledge the inevitability of a Palestinian state and the necessity to evacuate West Bank settlements.

Al Jazeera's reportage, estranged from the actual world, will not prepare the Arab public for a realistic peace with Israel, any more than it can give the Arab