Some things just make me tired. After everything that’s happened, we are still hearing this kind of crap from supposedly intelligent, informed (and important) people:
Former US president Bill Clinton said Tuesday that solving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict would take away much of the motivation for terrorism around the world.
He described the long-running conflict as the key problem in the region and said resolving it would have a knock on effect [sic] that could result in Syria ending its support for the Lebanese militant group Hizbullah and Iran turning back its controversial nuclear program.
“It will take about half the impetus in the whole world — not just the region, the whole world — for terror away,” he told an audience of Egyptian businessmen from the American Chamber of Commerce in Egypt. “It would have more impact by far than anything else that could be done.”
Does he — can he — believe that the Iranian nuclear program is in any way related to the situation of the Palestinian Arabs? Can he have missed the clear intention of the Iranian regime to control the region and its oil resources, and by the way, to destabilize the regime of Mubarak or his successor in Egypt?
Does he think that Syrian ambitions in Lebanon have anything to do with the Palestinians?
Does he think that the Palestinian issue motivates al-Qaeda or the Muslim Brotherhood in their efforts to banish Western influence from the Mideast and replace conservative regimes with radical Islamist ones?
Not to mention that ‘peace’ according to the usual formula is wholly unobtainable! Check out this list of 21 elephants in the room that prevent it.
But that’s not all. On another topic,
Weighing in on the controversy surrounding an Islamic Center being built in New York two blocks from the Sept. 11 attacks, Clinton suggested dedicating the proposed building to the 60 Muslim victims of the attacks.
“I think the decision to dedicate this center to the memory of those who lost their lives on that day would send a set of messages that would if not make this crisis go away, would dramatically reduce it,” he said.
The ‘crisis’ is that a majority of New Yorkers (and of Americans) think that the center should not be built in that location, either out of respect for the feelings of the families of the victims (all the victims) or because they have a suspicion that the center is intended to be — and will be perceived as — a triumphalist monument to the defeat of the US by radical Islam. It’s hardly likely that dedicating it to the Muslim victims of the attack would defuse these issues.
Possibly the AP report is incorrect and Clinton meant to suggest dedicating it to all the victims. Even so, the fact that it is a Muslim structure built on the scene of a successful attack in the name of Islam remains. There is one simple way to “make the crisis go away,” and that is to move the proposed structure by a few blocks. Of course, the fact that the promoters won’t agree to do this is telling.
I suppose that what this proves is that if you are a political celebrity like Bill Clinton, you can’t just tell every audience what you think they want to hear. Someone will report it and then, in the wider world, you’ll look like an idiot.