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SHARON, PAST AND FUTURE
MIDDLEEAST.ORG - MER -
Washington - 30 November 2004: In November
of 1998, just a few years ago in overall history but it seems now so
long ago for those living through it, MER published this article
focusing specifically on Ariel Sharon of Israel. Clearly it was a
foretaste not only of Sharon's past but of what was to come.
ON TO THE "FINAL AGREEMENT" -
SHARON THE "KILLER" IN CHARGE
"Sharon was a killer obsessed with hatred
I had promised Arafat that his
people would not get any harm.
Sharon, however, ignored this
Sharon's word is worth nil."
Ambassador Philip Habib -
Ronald Reagan's Special Middle
- MiddleEast.Org - Washington - 11/3/1998: History
takes strange turns indeed. The very man who has been at the heart of
Israel's campaign to massacre, disenfranchise, and push under the
Palestinians is now Israel's Foreign Minister, in charge of negotiating
the "final settlement". The very man who has championed Israel's
settlements and masterminded the "by-pass roads" and apartheid-style
"autonomy" is now mandated to "negotiate" with the Palestinians. The
very man who set up his personal settlement in the Muslim Quarter of
the old city of Jerusalem, flying the Israeli flag and a Jewish Menorah
on top of his building for all to see, this is the man the Israelis now
thrust forward to finish off the Palestinians.
What a disgrace. What an abomination. What
Sharon led the invasion of Lebanon
in 1982 as Defense Minister. He bludgeoned, bombed, and lied his way,
killing tens of thousands of civilians as he went, creating an Israeli
as well as an international crisis as his forces laid siege to Beirut.
The youngest tank commander in
Israel's history, Eli Geva, finally refused Sharon's orders and was
allowed to resign from the army rather than face imprisonment.
Desperate, though of course working in coordination with the Israelis,
the Americans orchestrated the PLO's departure from Lebanon, Arafat and
his men fleeing to Tunis.
A short time later, totally
contrary to all assurances, Sharon personally orchestrated Israel's
ally, the right-wing Lebanese Phalange, to slaughter thousands of
defenseless Palestinians in the refugee camps of Sabra and Shatilla.
Israeli searchlights illuminated the camps, while Israeli army
personnel watched through binoculars, as the death squads spread
unchallenged through the camps.
Much of the world -- including
many prominent Jews -- branded Sharon a genocidal war criminal.
Even the Israelis themselves, after a partial white-wash investigative
commission, publicly declared that Sharon has been "indirectly"
responsible for the massacres and forced his removal as Defense
That was the overall context for
Ambassador Philip Habib, Special Envoy of President Ronald Regain,
calling Sharon an obsessed "killer".
The following commentary about
Sharon's becoming Foreign Minister and his role at the Wye negotiations
is from a recent column by Professor Edward Said published in Al-Ahram Weekly:
The latest outrage concerns a
report published in the US press on Saturday 10 October. In reports of
General Ariel Sharon's appointment as foreign minister of Israel, a
leading Palestinian figure -- a minister, negotiator, and long-time
spokesperson for Arafat -- was quoted as registering a quite remarkable
reaction to Sharon: we are prepared, he said, "to forget history".
Remember that this Israeli
military man was responsible (the Israeli court at the time said
"indirectly") for the massacres of Sabra and Shatila, but for our
leaders this is perhaps too long ago to count as an obstacle to dealing
with the man. Sharon's record of crimes against Palestinian civilians
in any case is a very long one. He was directly responsible for the
"pacification" of Gaza in 1971, when numerous citizens were killed or
unjustly imprisoned, their houses demolished and the whole area
transformed into an Israeli jail. As the head of Force 101, as it was
proudly called, he inherited (after having participated in creating it)
the tradition of attacking Arab civilians, the massacre at Qibya being
only one example. Sharon used to boast that Israel could invade and
destroy any Arab country at will. His whole career was compiled out of
regular assertions of Israeli arrogance, all of which ended up in
exorbitant losses of Arab civilian life. Appointing him as foreign
minister -- an act which seems to have shocked many Israelis for whom
Sharon was a source of national shame as well as the author of a 1981
"peace plan" whose principal points seem to have been annexation and
the creation of Bantustans: exactly the "peace" situation of today --
was Netanyahu's way of humiliating the Palestinians still further,
forcing them to deal with a man first of all whose hands were literally
dripping with Palestinian blood, second, whose intentions are known
everywhere as radically hostile to Palestinians, and third, who
persisted in regarding Arafat as a war criminal. He wouldn't shake
Arafat's hand, he boasted.
By way of response, and
forgetfulness, Arafat announced that he would in fact shake Sharon's
hand. And then, as I said above, one of his closest aides went on
record as being prepared "to forget history" and deal honestly and in
good faith with Sharon.
Forget history: the phrase has a
certain stink about it that emanates directly from the sty of
corruption and dishonesty in which the Palestinian leadership from top
to bottom now swims. Why this unholy zeal to forget the butcher of
Sabra and Shatila? Of Gaza? Of Sinai? A man who directly supports' the
settlers and who has planted himself and his gigantic belly in the
middle of Arab Jerusalem, "his" house surrounded by a small brigade of
guards, an Israeli flag waving disdainfully from its roof. A man whose
hatred and contempt for Palestinians is unparalleled in Israel today. A
man who not only wishes us no good at all, but who has in fact done us
harm for three decades. Forget history, says the distinguished
Palestinian minister. I realize that all I can do is to write these
lines in disgust and protest, to record what is being forgotten and to
mark what should not be erased from collective memory. But that we are
driven to have not just correct but cordial relations with a proven war
criminal simply outrages one's conscience beyond credibility.
Were this the only instance of
Arab lack of dignity, it would be bad enough. But it isn't. Last
winter, when I was in Palestine..., Sharon was sent to Jordan to meet
with its leaders.
Our Israeli soundman, whose
politics were liberal, told me that he was mystified as to why Arabs
seem to respect this dreadful man. To many of us Israelis, he said to
me, he's a war criminal. Why do the Arabs like him so much?
I must confess to having been
tongue-tied, as I am again now. But merely forgetting about it can go
too far, obviously. So it is our duty to remind these forgetful rulers
of ours that there is no way that Sharon's crimes against humanity will
be forgotten, despite the Palestinian Authority's forgiving spirit. The
danger is, however, that, having already forgotten their own people,
and certainly its right of return, as well as its rights of residence
on its own land, the great keepers of the Palestinian revolution, as
Fatah still refers to itself, will forget themselves too. Do you
suppose it is impossible that they may I apologize to Sharon for
Palestinian existence, ask his continued indulgence and beg him to let
us live on a little longer? As it is, the deal that they have accepted
of nine per cent withdrawal plus three per cent to be left as a nature
reserve is misleadingly referred to as a gain, even though our leaders
never point out that the 10 per cent contains only one or at most two
per cent that will transfer land from the Israeli area C to Palestinian
area A, plus some land from C to the jointly controlled area B. All in
all, then, forgetfulness is a disastrous method of procedure, whose
ultimate benefit is to the Authority's own survival under Israeli and
If you don't get MER, you just don't
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(December 18, 2004)
Unique and Exclusive: News, Views, & Analysis Governments, Lobbies, & the Corporate Media Don't Want You To Know. MiddleEast.Org
MER Article Causes Conf Cancellation as Palestinian Speaker Abruptly Backs Out
(December 17, 2004)
The organization it seems then quickly changed the homepage of it's elaborate website, removing the main lead picture at the top which showed members of the organization posing with senior National Security Council neocon Elliot Abrams. Also removed quickly was the picture of Khalidi.
Additionally all information about the phone conference which was advertised to feature Khalidi at 8pm Thursday evening simply disappeared; all mention of something that had previously been prominently promoted simply vanished without explanation or comment as if it never was to be.
Prof Rashid Khalidi helps Israeli and American Jewish Zionist groups
(December 16, 2004)
While courageous Israeli academics like Tanya Reinhart at Tel Aviv University, long time Israeli writers like Uri Avneri, and brilliant journalists like Robert Fisk are in fact speaking up loudly warning about what Sharon and Peres and their armies of propaganda agents and client organizations are up to; tragically Palestinian academics like Rashid Khalidi are cowering more than ever even to the extent of allowing themselves to be more blatantly used by the Zionist organizations than ever before.
Egypt pushed and bribed to Economic 'Intercourse' with Israel
(December 15, 2004)
Since the first Camp David Middle East summit estimates are that overall, including economic, military, CIA, and AID American monies, Egypt has received in one way or another approaching $100 billion for agreeing to the American-pushed 'peace agreement'... The once proud though poor greatest of the Arab countries, Egypt, constantly feels the stain of historic political prostitution.
ABBAS/ALA/SHAATH Regime Running Fast - Half Palestinian People Not Allowed to Vote
(December 14, 2004)
In a few weeks the U.S. and Israeli approved and financed 'election' will take place. The most credible and respected Palestinian leaders are gone. The widely supported Hamas organization is boycotting. 'Israeli Palestinians' are not allowed to vote. 'Jerusalem Palestinians' will have to vote absentee. And forgotten most of all are the majority of Palestinians -- most of them still living in refugee camps throughout the region from Jordan to Syria to Lebanon -- who will have no vote at all thanks to the policies of Israel, the United States, and the 'new Palestinian leadership'.
Latest Washington Israeli Spy Scandal Escalating
(December 13, 2004)
There are some in Washington who think that the current spy investigations, possibly now expanding further, can be used to put a little pressure on the Israelis when it comes to the political deal making that may lie ahead both in the region and with the Palestinians. But there are others who think the Israelis are far better at this game than the Americans and that their list of Washington skunks and scandals involving many senior government officials now and past is considerably more extensive than what the Americans can pin on them should it ever come to that.
MER Track Record and the Assassination/Coverup of Yasser Arafat
(December 13, 2004)
Looking ahead, the historical stakes have become much higher, the costs in bloodshed and treasure already far greater, and the new 'peace process' already considerably more convoluted with even greater ominous implications for all in the international community of nations.
AMERICA the TITANIC
(December 11, 2004)
From the heart of the Washington Republican 'National Security' establishment, Harlan Ullman warns that the U.S. has sailed into very dangerous times and appears like the TITANIC headed for disaster. The dangers Ullman warns are in many ways as much from within as from without. The TITANIC metaphor is a powerful one, and Ullman repeats it a number of times for emphasis.
Palestinian Push - Over and Under
(December 10, 2004)
The big U.S. and Israeli Palestinian push is on. Put in place a new 'moderate' under control Palestinian regime, pump in some money for bribes and payoffs, train more regime 'security police', declare an end to the uprising against occupation (the Intifada), hard repress any and all opposition, kill and arrest those who continue to fight, and presto maybe you have a new police-state client-regime dutifully labled 'moderate' and 'democracy' however quisling in reality.
CHENEY Did It! Smoking Gun Court Case About WMD Scandal
(December 9, 2004)
In this eye-opening story today about a very unusual court case brought by a former senior CIA analysis which could serve as the smoking gun that the Bush/Cheney administration purposefully cooked the WMD books there's not a single mention of the unprecedented 9 or more once secret visits to the CIA of VP Cheney or the real potential significance of this legal political bombshell.
Ghosts of Vietnam and the 'Evil Empire'
(December 8, 2004)
More and more even in Washington circles these days one hears...but in spoken whispers certainly not in the corporate print or TV media..."police state", "fascism", "Good Germans". As for Capitol Hill, it looks more like a "no-go-zone" these days -- beyond being 'Occupied Israeli territory' -- than the Congress of a free and brave democracy.
Iraq and Palestine - Gloomy Predictions
(December 7, 2004)
Whether the further explosions and greater yet bloodshed and civil war will erupt in weeks, or months, or years, the course is now far more clear than the corporate media usually deals with. But today the New York Times is used for major leaks from the under-purge under-blame CIA about what to really expect in occupied Iraq, and recently the brilliant British journalist Robert Fisk wrote in The Independent about what to really expect in occupied Palestine.
America's Mubarak Regime
(December 6, 2004)
Moreover Mubarak is cooperating with the Israeli-American plan to now bring in Egyptian military forces to guard Gaza's southern border and help police the Palestinians into submission. If allowed to proceed by the Palestinians they can expect European and/or U.N. forces to be forced on them in the future in the deceptive guise of an expanded 'roadmap peace plan' to control the West Bank if the new Palestinian regime isn't up to the job.
(December 4, 2004)
Now what's going on with the Presbyterians is not at all "anti-semitism" as that term has been known over the years. It is anti-Israel, and many of the American Jewish Zionist organizations will insist it is anti-Jewish -- which in a sense is true if the positions these Jewish organizations take are fair game for protest, which indeed they are.
Ziad Asali - Latest Washington Palestinian Quisling
(December 3, 2004)
One of the many reasons the Palestinian people are in the terrible predicament they find themselves has been the extraordinarily co-opted quisling persons that so tragically have been allowed to represent them in Washington and to the American media for so many years. For those wondering about this choice of words, the definition of 'quisling', admittedly very pointed and harsh, does not give the full explanation of what has happened in Washington but it will have to do for now. During the German ooccupation of Norway in World War II the head of the Nazi-installed regime was Vidkun Quisling. His very name has since come to mean: A traitor who serves as the puppet of the enemy occupying his or her country.
9/11 was foreseeable one way or another
(December 3, 2004)
What has happened in recent years, indeed what happened on 9/11 and then it's aftermath, were in general quite foreseeable, no matter how much official Washington keeps pretending otherwise. The aggressive, imperialistic, self-righteous, deceptive, and oh-so-arrogant policies of the United States and Israel were at work for decades provoking and creating a kind of historical blowback that the whole world is now forced to live with. The following MER Editorial was published on Thanksgiving day in November 1997.
To Book Publishers and Literary Agents
(December 3, 2004)
MER is now looking for a literary agent and a publishing house. With events in the Middle East now gripping the headlines, with another round in the Israeli-Palestinian 'Peace Process' now at hand, and with the crusading 'neocons' firmly empowered in Washington, serious book publication on these subjects is more timely and more needed than ever. We have a unique compendium of exclusive MER articles, plus program and speech transcriptions, in addition to a number of highly qualified individual expert authors, which we are now interested in publishing.
FBI and Israeli-Jewish Lobby Square Off
(December 2, 2004)
You'd think that when the Capitol Hill offices of the most important foreign policy/Middle East 'lobby' are invaded by the FBI, computers and files seized and subpoenas served against top officials, this would be important news in Washington.
War Crimes Escalating - From Guernica to Fallujah
(December 2, 2004)
The new American-Israeli crusade, masquerading as the bringing of 'democracy and freedom' to the Muslim and Arab peoples, is marching on with new targets now in sight: Iran, Hezbollah, Syria, Hamas, N. Korea, Pakistan (if, or is it when, Musharraf falls)...and who knows who else as all are being coerced or forced to march into the bleak unknown. Fallujah is not meant to be an end for the coalition of fundamentalist and Zionist Neocons who now have Washington firmly in their grip; it is rather another new escalating beginning.
NewsFlash - Barghouti IN! After All
(December 1, 2004)
Now with Barghouti's entrance into the Palestinian election race and with Hamas in part threatening to 'boycot' if their own interests are not met -- and with Iraq exploding in greater hatred and violence against the Americans -- the entire U.S.-Israeli strategy for January 'elections' in both occupied Palestine and Iraq is very much in doubt.
Sharon - Past and Future - MER FLASHBACK
(December 1, 2004)
"Sharon was a killer obsessed with hatred of Palestinians. I had promised Arafat that his people would not get any harm. Sharon, however, ignored this commitment entirely. Sharon's word is worth nil." -Ambassador Philip Habib, Ronald Reagan's Special Middle East Envoy*
(December 1, 2004)
Pablo Picasso's haunting painting, 'Guernica', has immortalized that Spanish city whose brutal destruction was a precursor to all the horrendous death and suffering of World War II, now a finally fading generation ago. It was on Thanksgiving Day that we published detailed foreign reports about what has been done this month by what many in the world now consider to be the imperial crusading forces of the United States and Great Britain, 'on our watch', to the Iraqi city of 'Falluja' -- Falluja in Memoriam on Thanksgiving. Now this haunting essay, "Fallujah: America's Guernica", suggests a historical twist in time and fate we all should be pondering.