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Thursday, October 30, 2003

Lecture at RUTGERS finds a "common ground . . . beyond politics and ideology"
Headline at the Rutgers Daily Targum: Israeli expert discusses Middle East politics.

"What could this be?" I thought. The first paragraph was astonishing:
It may be uncommon to see pro-Israelis and pro-Palestinians sit in the same room and discuss issues on which they agree. But the two groups defied that image Tuesday when they came together for "The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict: Road Map to Where?" - a lecture featuring an Israeli politics expert who discussed where Israeli-Palestinian relations stand and where they are headed.
The two sides came together? via a Road Map?

The lecture - co-sponsored by the Center for the Critical Analysis of Contemporary Culture, the Center for Security and Democracy, the Center for the Study of Jewish Life, Rutgers Society of Arab Students and the Rutgers Hillel - was given by Yoav Peled, who holds that the major differences between Israelis and Palestinians are the result of the Oslo Accords (I would go back a little further, but okay, so far):
Israeli settlers were opposed to the accords because they would have to retract from settlements. On the Palestinian side, Peled said, refugees were not in favor of the accords because they would not be able to return to the land.

The current situation involves achieving peace through military victory, which Peled said would not work because it would "break the will of the Palestinian people to resist" and break up territories where Palestinians live. It would also ensure more curfews and checkpoints to make movement into Israel more difficult.
Oh, now I get it! The Arab students came together because they could've written this script themselves, and Hillel? Well, the expert was Israeli . . . Read more if you want -- The fence is bigger than the Berlin Wall, and what we really need is peace, "not through violence but through dialogue."

These guys look like they'd want to dialogue. Put the tea kettle on, and invite them over. Start with singing Kumbaya, and end with a group hug.


As children watch, masked gunmen from the radical Palestinian group Al Aqsa Martyres Brigade fire into the air, during a rally in Balata refugee camp, in the West Bank town of Nablus, Thursday, Oct. 30, 2003. The group is responsible for dozens of bombing attacks against Israeli civilians. (AP Photo/Nasser Ishtayeh)


C'mon, Hillel, get real.