Travel they say “broadens the mind”. That may well be true but it also empties the wallet and exhausts the body.
These reflections are prompted by our return from a family trip to the
In our relatively brief absence major natural disasters befell China and Myanmar, the xenophobic pogroms in South Africa gained high-profile treatment in major world news, Hiliary Clinton put her foot in it with a reference to the Robert Kennedy assassination, Bush visited Israel, talks between Israel and Syria (and even Hezbollah) were pursued further and pressure on Olmert continued to mount from all sides.
I missed the past 3 weeks of the debate within
Postmodern conflict is as much psychological as economic or military. Lies, distortions and selective simplifications are the tools of this devious craft whose objective to is weaken the enemy and gain popular support. Ugly though it is it must be fought. In so doing it poses its own ethical dilemmas similar to those confronted by conventional military conflict.
We all know the world seldom divides itself neatly into the categories depicted in political propaganda. Even those with right on their side make mistakes and commit sins. How do we defend ourselves against those without scruples or who are so caught up in the fervour of their cause that such considerations never cross their minds?
For myself I try to stick to the truth as far as I can perceive it at a given moment while bearing in mind the deeper and often unstated ramifications of the “debate”. One point which arises again and again are the “settlements” in the
In the best of all worlds, one would hope to see
In reality, hostility, mistrust and hidden agendas make such a solution extremely difficult to attain. Neither the Palestinians nor the Israelis have any overwhelming moral right to some clearly defined portion of the
But, under current political conditions, no resolution will satisfy everyone. Every group on both sides will calculate where the line between advantage and loss is drawn and will try to achieve the best possible outcome for itself. All this is caught up in greater battles both regional and global. Neither we nor the experts can find any simple solutions to these intertwined conflicts. The best we can be do is to remain on guard against those seeking maximal advantage for their side and, simultaneously, open to opportunity for peaceful resolution – a tricky balancing act.
Yet this is the uncertain and precarious path whereby we humans eventually reach resolution of seemingly intractable conflicts.
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