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Friday, August 15, 2014

Fareed Zakaria, "The fantasy of Middle Eastern moderates": Fareed Again Fudges the Facts

In his latest Washington Post opinion piece entitled "The fantasy of Middle Eastern moderates," Fareed Zakaria takes the position that there are few "moderates" in the Muslim Middle East:

"For decades, U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East has been to support 'moderates.' The problem is that there are actually very few of them. The Arab world is going through a bitter, sectarian struggle that is 'carrying the Islamic world back to the Dark Ages,' said Turkish President Abdullah Gul. In these circumstances, moderates either become extremists or they lose out in the brutal power struggles of the day. Look at Iraq, Syria, Egypt, Libya and the Palestinian territories."

Zakaria makes a point of ignoring Tunisia and the semi-autonomous Kurdish enclave of Iraq.

But then Zakaria takes his argument one step further and claims that Israel has prevented Mahmoud Abbas, currently in his tenth year of a four-year term of office as president of the Palestinian Authority, from holding new elections:

"In the Palestinian territories, Mahmoud Abbas, who heads the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank, is indeed a moderate. But notice that the Israeli government and the West have happily postponed elections in the West Bank year after year — because they know full well who would win. Moderates don’t do well in an atmosphere of despair and war."

Although Abbas and friends have indeed feared that new elections on the West Bank would not fare well for Fatah, where has anyone ever claimed that Israel prevented Abbas from holding these elections or has postponed these elections?

As was reported by Ynet back in 2010:

"Palestinian local elections scheduled to be held in the West Bank on July 17 have been postponed indefinitely, officials said on Thursday. Hamas Islamists, who seized control of the Gaza Strip from Western-backed Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in 2007, had already said they would boycott the vote.

The Palestinian Authority said the vote was delayed so as not to compromise efforts to reconcile with Hamas, but, as Ynet reported earlier in the week, the delay is due to internal disagreement and division within Abbas' Fatah faction.

Fatah hasn’t been able to reach an agreement over the candidates for many of the municipalities and councils.

The Palestinian Central Committee failed in its efforts to reconcile the camps, and some fear Fatah's image might significantly be jeopardized over the internal rift.

Fatah also feared that Hamas supporters would back Fatah opponents. 'We are concerned that in many places, especially where Fatah is weak and divided, the Hamas will tell its supporters to vote for our opponents, which will ensure Fatah's defeat in the elections,' a PA official told Ynet a few days ago."

Or stated otherwise, Israel had no involvement in the postponement.

Once again (see: and, it is time to seek clarifications from the management of The Washington Post.

1 comment:

  1. Another day, another antisemitic scoundrel is barking.
    Nothing new.