Friday, May 10, 2002
Church of the Absurdity
The Second Coming
Ariel Bin Sharon
Full of Shit
First of all, the Italian government was not aware of this hypothetical agreement and we havenít been involved in any of the negotiations.Ö In addition, it is as yet unclear who is making this request: the Israelis? The Palestinians? The Americans?... Finally, I think that this request should be brought to the EU as a whole, and not just to Italy.
Within the framework of the Arab-Israel conflict, the policy of the George W. Bush administration is less pro-Arab than that of its predecessors, perhaps because many of its members recognize that the Arab aim is to destroy the Jewish state in stages and this would not serve US interests in a world where Islam is increasingly aggressive. However, State Department policies have more than nine lives and are traditionally pro-Arab. So Colin Powell has often disagreed with Vice-President Cheney, Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld and National Security advisor Condaleezza Rice on the Middle East and other global issues.
After the gunmen from the Church of the Nativity emerged they were taken to a nearby military base, where the Israeli army briefly questioned them. Thirteen were then driven to Israel's international airport near Tel Aviv and flown to Cyprus, where they were expected to stay for a few days before being sent to various European countries. Another 26 were driven in two buses to the Gaza Strip, escorted by U.S. officials.
In nominating General Colin Powell as the next U.S. secretary of state, Bush has chosen a symbol not a diplomat, a soldier not a peacemaker, an ardent nationalist not an internationalist.... General Powell, it is said, is a hero, the personification of the American dream. Unfortunately, his new job is about dealing with the deeply unheroic realities of life beyond America. For this he appears unsuited, except as a symbol...of this new administration's likely refusal to engage on equal terms with a world it by turns distrusts, fears, cannot understand and seeks to dominate. General Powell is famous for his military doctrine of 'overwhelming force.' But, like his boss, Gen. Powell seems determined to delimit the U.S. world role, to view international obligations through the prism of narrow, national interest. Yet, again like Mr. Bush, he believes the United States retains the right to threaten unfavored regimes, dictate global business and trade terms, ignore environmental standards, flout treaties, defy international law, and build destabilizing, self-insulating missile systems in defiance of allies and adversaries alike. Gen. Powell helped create an army that will not fight. Now, symbolically, he looks set to sound the retreat from a multipolar world.
There were signs. The simmering anger in the aftermath of the failed Conference on Racism in South Africa was unsettling. Watered down resolutions that nobody intended to follow anyway, raised the stakes higher than they have been raised in ages. America's arrogant display -- turning its back on a conference designed to address racism -- was just another step toward the isolationist hegemony America had come to represent on the geopolitical stage. The rise of anti-Semitism was obvious and Israel's departure did little to stem it. Recent and increasingly violent concerns over globalization from Seattle to Genoa amplified a sinister global uneasiness.
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