C-Span today broadcast a panel of the neoconservative Hudson Institute (Norman Podhoretz’s sock) at which a Russian immigrant neocon in the audience rose to say that he had observed a trend. Those who opposed neoconservatism now spoke of the importance of winning “hearts and minds” in the Arab world, but invariably they pointed to one place to win hearts and minds: the Palestinian problem. The Russian asked if the panelists were not as disturbed by the trend as he is.
One panelist readily agreed this was the main front in the ideological wars. Author Douglas Murray said there is now a “big lie” that Israel/Palestine is at the root of troubles between radical Islam and the west. The so-called occupied territories, he said, was one of those lies.
These are glad tidings. For one thing, it’s nice to get noticed by the neocons. They have had the only big idea of the last ten years. Now they’re hearing footsteps—the western critics of Israel/Palestine policy. And it is good when neocons baldly put their money down on the supposed lie of there being occupied territories. Taking such an absurd position can only help to elevate the occupation as an issue in the news, which is where it belongs. The more that Americans learn of the deprivation of civil rights to Palestinians under apartheid conditions in the West Bank, the more likely it is that an American sense of fairness will at last come to bear, politically, on this issue.
Here is the sensible take of cab-driver/blogger Denis Drew:
Israel is the size of New Jersey and right now it seems like it is being run by New Jersey politicians (whose military super power they just don’t comprehend the limits of). Jews put out some of the smartest people in the world over here: Richard Feynman, Laurence Tribe. But over there the government has seemed to sink to the usual useless politician level.