A land divided

by Michael O. Allen on March 18, 2008

Two friends, I’ll identify them as “M” and “Anon,” offered these reactions to the part of the speech by Sen. Barack Obama, (D-IL), that I said rang false to me.

First “M”:

It is a tactical decision indeed, as all actions and words are by all the candidates. And by all politicians in general. This looks to me like an insurmountable problem.This is not a government for the people, by the people.

Regarding the Israel comment of his I highlighted, it seems that he has acutely changed or modified his attitude. (Again or the attitude he tactically puts out in the public). It may be hard to believe, but my Arab-ness has really nothing to do with my feelings about Israel. I was also raised Coptic Orthodox (and am agnostic) and relate little if at all to Muslims or any religions. That being said, I do have very strong feelings about Israel occupying a country and committing countless inhumane acts (on a regular basis) against Palestinians.

The worst, almost laughable part of it, is that Zionism was born from the horrifying reality of the Holocaust.

And yet, here they are perpetuating and creating apartheid on another group of people. And no country is brave enough to stand up to Israel? To even discuss it in THOSE terms? For fear they may be labeled an anti-semite? It’s preposterous. Just today the news reported the German chancellor paying her visit to Israel.-and all the “shame” Germany felt for the past.I wonder if she took a look over the wall.


My concern is that the Israel/Palestinian issue is probably one of the leading driving forces of the problems between the “Muslim World” and the “West.”

The injustices wrought on the Palestinian people are not make-believe. They are very real and they are easy to reference.

As Ralph Nader said after he announced his candidacy on Meet the Press, our politicians MUST discuss this particular issue openly and critically. But critical dialogue is foreclosed and indeed Mr. Nader used Obama as an example.

As a state senator he spoke with great compassion for the Palestinian people. Once he took the national stage he tone changed markedly.

I love Obama, I love what he stands for, but I hate that not even he can honestly address one of the most important and complicated issues of the current, and the last several generations.


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