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MER - MiddleEast.Org - Washington - 12 January 2006: Meron Benvenisti repented for his own ways as Deputy Mayor of Jerusalem under Teddy Kolleck long ago. Back then he himself used the word 'segregation' in what he thought was a positive way to describe the policies he and Kolleck pursued to keep the Arab population of Jerusalem divided from the Jewish. It was at the time a kind of social/political benign division in comparison to what has now come to be in the Sharon era. Back then in the1970s it was prior to anyone conceiving of massive apartheid walls and barriers, with a very small 'settler' population, and before the Intifadas, the rise of Hamas, the takeover of right-wing hard-line Revionist Zionism (of which to be fair Benvenisti has been so thoughtfully critical for quite some time now), and before as well the brave new post-9/11 World Order so exploited by the Zionist Neocon/Evangelical takeover/alliance in the U.S.A. This article published today in Israel's leading newspaper, Ha'aretz, helps explain the real policies pursued over the years by Ariel Sharon and the twists and turns that resulted in the past few decades and may now be ahead. As for the ad that appears remember that Brit Tzedek is a Zionist front-group in the U.S. controlled and dominated by political forces aligned with what's left of Israel's Labor party, certainly not a group to be supported and definitely one to be very cautious in having any dealings with.

Sharon's second `big plan'
By Meron Benvenisti

The intense emotions of shock, orphanhood and fear elicited by Ariel Sharon's exit from the political arena evoked expressions bordering on kitsch, even from observers otherwise known for their sober approach.

"Parting from him is like parting from a father: expected, but always frightening and sad," Yaron London wrote, while Amnon Dankner described Sharon as "the portrait of a generation: "a figure embodying the split heart of everyone of us... from yearning to live peacefully to the necessity to resort to arms."

The similarity between Sharon and Yitzhak Rabin - and between those two and Moses on Mount Nevo - was inevitable: "From Moses to Sharon they all saw the land from afar, but none succeeded in bringing the train to a safe haven," one journalist concluded.


In other words, had his sickness not defeated him, Sharon would have brought us to the promised land - "peace with the Arabs and clear and recognized borders." The thwarted hope, or illusion, intensified the sense of loss. Again, cruel fate has robbed us of the chance for peace. Not our own acts and foibles, but "the angel of death, sharpening his scythe." But we will not stop pursuing peace and we will increase our support for Sharon's heirs, who are bound to continue his "heritage."

The sudden departure of a worshiped leader is always an opportunity to express his political will as one wishes to express it, not necessarily on the basis of the departed leader's real goals. The image of the "cruel general who became a peace hero" - although somewhat tarnished due to overexposure in describing Rabin - blinded the eyes of many. They failed to notice that Sharon was very close to the goal he had been aiming to achieve ever since he became an adult: a goal that has nothing to do with peace - to remove the Arab demographic threat unilaterally.

He was a junior partner to the removal of the demographic threat in 1948, by expelling hundreds of thousands of Palestinians. And later, when he climbed the rungs of power, his wish to initiate major historic moves grew.

His "big plan," which led to the war in Lebanon, attempted to solve the demographic problem by turning Jordan into Palestine, deporting the refugees from Lebanon, transferring them from the West Bank, and destroying the Hashemite kingdom. After this plan failed disastrously, Sharon drafted his canton plan, and strove to implement it in every post he filled. For many years he had to resort to underhanded, even illegal means, but he did not tire, and filled the territories with settlements and outposts.

Becoming prime minister enabled him to pursue his plan to "remove the demographic threat" - thus pulling out of Gaza seemed to subtract a million Palestinians from the demographic balance sheet. The "separation fence" next created isolated cantons, paving the way to fictitiously "losing" hundreds of thousands more. Setting up a separate transportation system, "border passes," and "closures" shattered the Palestinian community into four or five sub-communities, subjected to different conditions and gradually losing touch with each other.

On the eve of his hospitalization, Sharon could have surveyed his achievements with satisfaction. The moves to deal with the "demographic threat" gained unprecedented popularity that led him to believe he would be able to set up a Peronist-presidential regime in Israel. This regime would silence any criticism over his solving the "problem," by establishing an apartheid regime. The United States, entangled in Iraq, has signaled that the canton plan may be seen as the implementation of the Palestinian state, and the Israeli peace camp, crowning Sharon as its leader, also agreed enthusiastically.

The donor states agreed to funnel financial aid unequaled since World War II, thus financing Sharon's canton plan.

Indeed, cruel fate has robbed Sharon of attaining his deepest aspiration, to eliminate, after 60 years of struggle, the Palestinian demographic threat. However, there are signs that his illness has spared him the disappointment he would have suffered had he remained in power. For the present "big plan" - as it was in the war in Lebanon - is based on hasty, erroneous assumptions.

The Palestinian Authority's crumbling is only a matter of time, and donor states' patience is running out, which will lead to the drying up of the PA's financial sources, and therefore, a catastrophic economic crisis. The anarchy in the territories will spin out of control, and the violence directed internally and at Israelis will raise pressure to "react appropriately."

Extremist groups in Israel will undermine the "treacherous government," a new attempt will be made to revive the "Jordan is Palestine" idea and export the problem to Jordan, since it has no solution in the territories, or whatever remains of them once the "settlement blocs" have been stolen from them. The U.S. will be called upon to restore order, maybe in the style of Bosnia or Kosovo.

Like in the "big plan" of 1981, the biggest mistake at present is the attempt to solve the problem unilaterally with dictates and excessive power. Ariel Sharon is no longer capable of changing his approach, and perhaps he never was. But those who claim to be continuing Sharon's heritage should never forget that "heritage" also means learning from his mistakes and avoiding them.

January 2006


Talking To The Enemy Indeed
(January 31, 2006)
In Iraq the U.S. is secretly talking with the 'insurgent' enemy... There will have to be actual significant policy changes by the American Empire or else -- especially when it comes to reversing Israeli apartheid and realigning American policies and interests in truly new ways, not just more rhetorical trickery and obfuscation.

Abbas, Shaath, Safieh, Fateh Officials Should Resign or Be Sacked
(January 30, 2006)
The danger of fractricidal conflict and civil war in Palestine -- an under-the-table goal pursued by the Israelis for some time no matter how much they deny it -- is now greater than ever. The major figures representing the exposed and corrupt remnants of Fateh are attempting to manipulate their way one way or another to retain money, guns, and power. Rather than resigning as he should Fateh's top man, Mahmoud Abbas, is using his considerable backing from the U.S., Israel, Europe, and the Arab 'client regimes' to attempt to keep himself and his cronies in power one way or another. It is an unprecedented dangerous political poker game of bluff, counter-bluff, and chicken being played out not just in occupied Palestine but on the regional and world stages as well and with quite unpredictable results at this point. Meanwhile the Iranians are racing ahead to prepare themselves for attack, the comatose 'peace process' is all but finally declared dead, international energy supply concerns and escalating prices could trigger more conflict and economic hard-times, and the Neocon/Evangelical regime in Washington (under unprecedented assault as the second article below suggests) is desperately seeking new ways for possible salvation and resurrection before the November 2006 mid-term election even as the still hesitant impeachment movement might yet gain traction.

LAWLESS WORLD Erupting Thursday in London
(January 30, 2006)
"...likely to cause a fierce new controversy on both sides of the Atlantic" the new edition of this damning book LAWLESS WORLD will not be published until Thursday in London, just hours after President Bush's State of the Union 2006 address to Congress at 9pm tomorrow. Major pressures are now building in both Washington and London to actually attempt to remove from power those who brought about the Iraq war through such chicanery and duplicity. But if the pressures really get too strong expect the tension with Iran to escalate further and maybe explode into military exchanges and/or another major 'terrorist attack' either from the pertrators most expect or from the underground manipulators connected to those in power whom many now suspect with considerable damning circumstantial evidence

Assassination Backlash - Hamas Landslide
(January 26, 2006)
When the Israelis released the founder of Hamas from prison some years ago they did so because they had attempted to assassinate in Amman the man who today heads Hamas from Damascus and they needed to provide King Hussein an excuse to give them back their caught and endangered Mossad henchmen. Then, a few years later, they assassinated Sheik Ahmed Yassin, a blind paraplegic who founded Hamas in the late 1980s, as he emerged from a Gaza Mosque one morning -- this on top of an ongoing anti-Hamas assassination campaign designed to dismember and weaken 'The Islamic Resistance Movement'. The actual result however is what happened yesterday in a sea of Hamas green.

Hamas Wins Big
(January 26, 2006)
There's a long history to why Hamas has been so victorious in occupied Palestine. And whatever the Israeli p.r. spin about what has happened they and the U.S. are really the midwives.

Iran Crisis
(January 25, 2006)
This day was destined to come sooner or later. With the Israelis having a considerable arsenal of nuclear weapons and the ability to delivery them tactically to the battlefield as well as strategically by submarine and airplane a gross imbalance has been there in the region for some time already. Furthermore there should be no doubt that Israel's apartheid and bloodletting policies toward the Palestinians have been a major force enflaming Arab and Muslim sentiments throughout the region; while militant neo-imperialist U.S. policies on top of the American-Israeli alliance and the rise of Christian Fundamentalism have fueled the raging passions and led to today's imbroglio.

Hamastan Indeed
(January 24, 2006)
Hamas is not taking power tomorrow in occupied Palestine; it is instead asserting power in what can be seen as a kind of historic political blowback for so many awful years of miserable corruption, gross ineptitude and dastardly co-optation by those whom the U.S., Israel, and the Arab 'client regimes' pushed so hard to date to lord over the millions of Palestinians in the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip. Call it as well a kind of democratic payback for the Israeli/U.S. assassinations of the senior generation of Palestinian leaders including in recent years the founder of Hamas, Sheik Ahmed Yassin, and the long-time Chairman of the PLO, Yasser Arafat.

Questions About 9/11 That Don't Go Away
(January 23, 2006)
So much of what is happening now in our world can be traced back to the year 2001 when Bush/Cheney and the Neocons came to power in Washington, Ariel Sharon came to power in Israel, and what we all now simply call 9/11 happened. But just what did really happen? Nagging questions not only are not going away, they are surfacing from credible people and need to be very seriously and independently investigated.

U.S. Caught In The Act In Occupied Palestine
(January 22, 2006)
American credibility has rarely been lower; American duplicity has rarely been higher; and the exposure of American lies and hypocrisy has rarely been more evident than in the lead story in today's Washington Post.

Torturing Palestinians
(January 21, 2006)
From MER in January 1997: Torture of Palestinians is not only routine and systematic, in it actually sanctioned by the Israeli legal system that has been twisted to serve Israeli policies. Going back to the Shinbet scandal of the early 1980's, even more sadistic forms of torture have given way to the kinds of 'legalized' torture methods outlined in this important article from one of the few independent and courageous media sources in Israel, The Alternative Information Center (AIC). Among the reasons the Israelis get away with such systematic torture of Palestinians is that hardly anyone is willing to protest. The so-called "Palestinian Authority" practices similar and even worse torture techniques, as do nearly all of the Arab governments in the region -- so they are hardly in a position to protest. And the "liberal" American Jewish community has been morally bankrupt about such issues for so long now that to speak up at this point would be to condemn themselves for permitting, and even encouraging in many cases, such Nazi-like behavior by the Israelis for decades.

"WAR on TERRORISM" - Noam Chomsky Lecture on 18 Jan
(January 20, 2006)
This important lengthy lecture was delivered a few days ago in Dublin. Plus information about how to get a unique and now rare video documentary about the start of the "New World Order" -- available now exclusively from MER. At the start of Gulf War I in 1991 -- the beginnings of the Bush-era "New World Order", Noam Chomsky came to Washington and spoke to a huge overflow audience at George Washington University. This video documentary captures the entirety of his speech as well as the extensive question and answer period that followed. This documentary is essential to a serious understanding of U.S. foreign policy worldwide today. Chomsky uniquely provides the background and understanding needed to appreciate what the War in Iraq is really all about as well as the many misrepresentations and lies Washington propogates so often about the Israeli-Palestinian "Peace Process". From the back of the video by Mark Bruzonsky: "There's no one like Chomsky if you want to truly understand the realities of both U.S. policies and the overall situation in the Middle East...

Any Questions or Comments - CHAT at 12pm today
(January 20, 2006)
If you hvae any Questions or Comments about this program or MER use CHAT at 12pm today (Washington, DC time)

Palestinian 'Election' Approaches...Still Maybe
(January 19, 2006)
In the end it may be that the failing remnants of the disgraced 'Palestinian Authority' -- after so many years of miserable corruption and co-optation -- are now too weak and fractured to even manage to 'postpone' the long-promised Legislative election... Now the past is coming back to haunt the PA -- and their godfathers as well.

(January 18, 2006)
Though they run a far more effective propaganda network the Jewish and Zionist establishments don't always get their way and have in fact lost quite a bit of credibility and following. This article from earlier this week in The Christian Science Monitor. And we certainly hope that those in Iraq who are legitimately and so courageously standing up against the US/UK/Israeli invasion/occupation will decide to release the CSM correspondent they are holding hostage, showing that they are sophisticated enough to distinguish between hostile and friendly Christians and thereby giving hope amidst so much despair and bloodletting.

(January 17, 2006)
The cultural and emotional differences between Islam and Christianity and Judaism are considerable -- never more so than in the areas relating to women and sexuality. This interesting but not really adequate article is from today's Guardian in the UK: SEMINAL QUESTIONS - As scholars question the place of nudity in marriage, Islamic clerics are hotly debating exactly what sexual practices are acceptable, writes Brian Whitaker

The Faster March To International War
(January 16, 2006)
Joining the rising chorus is a growing group of sometimes neo-con, sometimes evangelical, sometimes hustling and/or sponsored academics. They are now contributing to the growing 'New World Order' hysteria that now dominates American political life through the pages of associated magazines and newspapers. While Harvard Professor Niall Ferguson for instance is right indeed to be warning about the great dangers now immediately ahead, his analogies and heroes are so misguided and off the mark one has to wonder just who is really orchestrating and behind this kind of thing. This Ferguson article appeared over the weekend in The Telegraph published in the U.K.

Historic Anti-U.S./Israel Crucible of Hatred and Revenge
(January 15, 2006)
One day Pakistan will no longer be lead by a military General empowered by the U.S and manipulated by the CIA. Remember now that today's feared Zawahiri left his Cairo medical practice to oppose the U.S. when he felt Egypt was deceived and co-opted by the U.S. Bin Laden himself, after working with the Americans to oust the Soviets from Afghanistan and working intimately with the American-sponsored Royal Family of Saudi Arabia, turned against the U.S. when American troops on top of the CIA directly occupied his country. And of course Iraq is today a country erupting as a result of U.S. occupation and destruction while Iran is a country today still rebelling after so many years of tortuous rule by the Shah and so much CIA-plotting to control that country.

INFORMATION For Persons Using This Program MiddleEast.Org
(January 12, 2006)
Useful INFORMATION For Persons Using This Program always available at MiddleEast.Org/MER

What Sharon Has Wrought; and What He Has Left
(January 12, 2006)
Understanding what has happened between Israel and Palestinians over the years requires not only expert analysis but considerable memory, ideological as well as political understanding, and an ability to put the historical pieces all together. Meron Benviniste's article today in Ha'aretz is of considerable help in summarizing the situation past, present, and maybe future.

Ariel Sharon - by Robert Fisk
(January 6, 2006)
There are few journalists who have the knowledge and perspective of Robert Fisk. This from his recent book, footnoted at the end and highly recommended.

Chaos and Geostrategic Changes of Historic Consequences Looming
(January 6, 2006)
The Year 2006 is now more ominous than ever.

Sharon's Huge Legacy
(January 5, 2006)
Sharon's legacy is overwhelming, and not for the positive

MER Mark Bruzonsky on Channel 5 Evening News Tonight in Washington, DC area
(January 4, 2006)
MER Mark Bruzonsky on Channel 5 Evening News Tonight in Washington, DC area

Sharon - 'significant stroke' reported tonight in Israel
(January 4, 2006)
Sharon - 'significant stroke' reported tonight in Israel

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