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Re: The Palestinian Right to Resist

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  • james tan
    From: Christopher Bobo Reply-To: WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com To: faris osman CC: Sayf Fariis
    Message 1 of 3 , May 1, 2002
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      From: "Christopher Bobo" <cbobo@...>
      Reply-To: WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com
      To: "faris osman" <frovpt@...>
      CC: "Sayf Fariis" <terence_nunis@...>, "Tan James"
      <tyjfk@...>, "Wisdom Forum" <WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com>
      Subject: [WisdomForum] Re: The Palestinian Right to Resist
      Date: Tue, 30 Apr 2002 22:54:54 -0700

      Hello Faris:

      I think you should read some existentialism. You invariably describe
      Palestinians as if they had no freedom of choice and no free will.
      According to you, Arafat had no choice but to sign the Oslo Accords, the
      Palestinians have no choice but to wage war, and that they are forced to
      employ suicide bombings. What's more, they cannot be expected to be bound by
      their treaties and promises, no matter how solemnly they express them. You
      describe the Palestinians as if they are hapless victims, with no free will,
      no moral agency and no responsibility for their actions. This way of
      viewing the world is utterly alien to any Western conception of human
      beings. I have never before encountered such a complete abdication of moral
      responsibility. I believe that people have free will, that they make their
      own moral choices and that they are responsible for what they do. If you
      repudiate the basic foundations for any morality, then truly it is pointless
      to engage in a moral discussion with you.

      Similarly, if you utterly refuse to compromise, which is the essence of
      politics, then there is no point to engage in political discussion with you.
      Politics is, after all, the art of compromise.

      You seemed determined to live in a perfect world where there are no
      compromises, where you are little more than a puppet and where you have no
      responsibility for your actions. I don't think that this is such a world,
      but if that is the world you live in, I really have no power to argue
      against it. Still, it seems to me that you are headed for ruin with such
      beliefs but I am only one imperfect and limited person and you could be
      completely right and it is I who is utterly deluded about reality.

      Still, I wish you well and thank you for this debate. It has been truly
      informative for me, although it has not given me much hope for a peaceful
      and constructive future.


      ----- Original Message -----
      From: faris osman
      Sent: Tuesday, April 30, 2002 3:44 AM
      To: Christopher Bobo
      Cc: Sayf Uddeen Fariis @ Terence Kenneth John Nunis; James Tan; Wisdom Forum
      Subject: Re: The Palestinian Right to Resist

      Dear Chris

      Please understand that whatever "peace" agreements signed between Arafat and
      the Israelis entail one thing - the acceptance of the Palestinians to the
      occupation of their homeland. Other unfairness have been made aware to you
      in the article I sent you earlier.

      Arafat was free not to sign it but the fact that he did was indication of
      his frustration. The Palestinian right to continue liberating their homeland
      is not a thing to be compromised. In anycase it is a mark of bias to
      castigate the Palestinians for refusing to give up their homeland.

      You argued that the Palestinians have chosen war - nay, that war was forced
      unto them. They did not "purchase" another people's lands, committed
      atrocities like massacres to force mass fleeings and then continue to
      oppress the remants of that people in order to subdue their will to fight.

      You take offense to my usage of the word "colonization" yet you have argued
      little in way of proving that the creation of Israel is not. Jews purchased
      lands you argued. Jewish biblical claims, you said. It is recognised
      internationally, you argued again. Yet what you have failed to prove is how
      these "facts" could justify the uprooting of a community with one thousand
      years of roots in order to uphold the rights of a community with only
      historical claims.

      My final words are these - if Israel wants to exist in other people's land,
      then it has no right to complain about terrorism be it suicide bombings or



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    • james tan
      it is quite a risky and totally unpragmatic thing to leave the safety of your own country (or home, for that matter) at the mercy of ur potential enemy s
      Message 2 of 3 , May 1, 2002
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        it is quite a risky and totally unpragmatic thing to leave the safety of
        your own country (or home, for that matter) at the mercy of ur potential
        enemy's reasonableness and whims. such kinds of things just simply cannot be
        taken for granted. it is better to be tough than sorry, and as a head of a
        country, i guess sharon owes it to his electorates. it is useless for
        heinrich to argue that not all palestinians wants war; the fact of the
        matter is that many militants groups which are responsible for terrorist
        acts are hugely popular in palestine, and arafat himself as chairman of plo
        ostensibly fail to stop the terrorism. the palestinians have to LEARN that
        terrorism as a means to get what they want (and if they want nothing less
        than the total removal of israel, then they are asking for the impossible)
        will not be reinforced by israel not doing anything about it. the fact that
        israel retaliate IN RESPONSE TO palestinian's suicide attacks in no cause
        for the palestinians to complain of israel's cruelty. the sooner the
        palestinian realise and accept the reality that israel is there to stay,
        that compromise is the only way to have dignity back to their lives, the
        better it will be for all. it is a very tragic thing for a palestinian youth
        as young as 17 or 18 having to decide to blow himself up for a futile cause,
        tragic for himself and his parents. is life so cheap and disposable? arafat
        as a leader should really spare a thought for these palestinian youths and
        his electorates, and not just his own skin. he can't go on denying the
        reality (i am not sure the fact that he is a muslim reinforce the illusion
        that his allah will deliver him a miracle one day and thus he will
        'perservere') and wishing for the impossible. anyway, for heindrich, it is
        not an option for sharon not to do anything in response to palestinian's
        continuous suicide's attacks on israeli civilians. if u have better
        idea/options how sharon should react, maybe u can share here. it is
        infinitely easier and convenient to condemn than to come up with a feasible


        From: "Christopher Bobo" <cbobo@...>
        Reply-To: WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com
        To: "Wisdom Forum" <WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com>
        Subject: Re: [WisdomForum] Re: The Palestinian Right to Resist
        Date: Wed, 1 May 2002 10:50:42 -0700


        I think you are quite right. Theory and ideas have lost their power here in
        this situation. It is purely a matter of practice and pragmatics. Talk,
        debate, and discourse have reached their limits and actions must be taken.
        I suppose that is one reason that human societies have generals and soldiers
        in addition to politicians and diplomats.


        ----- Original Message -----
        From: james tan
        Sent: Tuesday, April 30, 2002 11:55 PM
        To: WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com
        Subject: [WisdomForum] Re: The Palestinian Right to Resist

        for myself, i can't help seeing the palestinians' suicide killing as an
        invitation (or incitement, or provocation) to war, by any standard, israel's
        or international's. sharon could either give in totally to the palestinian's
        demand (and they actually want to have nothing less than the entire land of
        palestine and removing the entire state of israel in palestine) as a result
        of palestinian's suicide attacks, which is a kind of war, or to defend by
        fighting back, nothing short of a war. it is not a matter of western
        perspective as u charge chris, but a matter of self-defense. and it is not
        stupid to defend against a intruder by force if there is no other way for a
        intruder who refuses to negotiate peacefully. u may think this has become a
        dog's world, but then that is the situation we sometimes find ourselves in,
        and instead of asking why it should be this way, and moralise, and idealise,
        sharon simply thought of how he could deal with it. try reasoning with a mad
        dog why it shouldn't bite u and u may begin to realise that reason can be
        futile if the opposite party is not interested in compromise but insisting
        only on his pt of view. palestinian is not just resisting over israel's
        present temporary occupation in a certain small part of west bank, what they
        resist in the ENTIRE state of israel. nothing short of getting rid of israel
        will stop them from their provocative attacks via suicide bombing. if u
        think war is terror, how would u respond when someone took a knife and
        threaten ur life, those of ur wife and children? i am sure u would try to
        defend even if it means killing the intruder, terror or no terror. this is
        just the pragmatic thing to do.


        From: "heindrich m´┐Żller" <albatros444@...>
        Reply-To: WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com
        To: WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com, frovpt@...
        Subject: Re: [WisdomForum] Re: The Palestinian Right to Resist
        Date: Tue, 30 Apr 2002 21:51:01 +0200

        "I would like to persuade you that war is not the best solution for the
        Palestinian people, but if they are determined to have war, so be it."

        How on earth can an otherwise intelligent man as you be so narrow-minded and
        one-sided when it comes to this issue (and political issues in general)?? Is
        it a serious statement that palestinians a a whole are 'determined' to have
        war? Not very philosophical.

        Try seing things in different perspectives for a change - try something
        different than the westernized/american/israel point of view. It is as
        though you once and for all has chosen your side - this renders you just as
        blind as a dedicated inner-circle sovjet communist. They meant well too, you

        I *don't* mean to provoke by this comment, I just can't help wondering...

        One wrong cannot justify another. Terror is war. War is terror.

        >From: "Christopher Bobo" <cbobo@...>
        >Reply-To: WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com
        >To: "faris osman" <frovpt@...>
        >CC: "Wisdom Forum" <WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com>
        >Subject: [WisdomForum] Re: The Palestinian Right to Resist
        >Date: Tue, 30 Apr 2002 00:08:19 -0700
        >Your effort to evade the constraints of the Oslo Accord is unpersuasive.
        >Your frequent use of words like "colonization" and "crumbs" is mere
        >sloganeering and claptrap. The fact of the matter is that Arafat signed
        >the agreement on behalf of the Palestinian people. At the time, he was
        >free not to sign it--he was not a captive. No, you cannot lawfully reject
        >agreement that you have freely entered into. If you repudiate such an
        >agreement, you are in the wrong. I believe that your reference to the
        >Anti-Ballistic Missile Agreement is not on point. Correct me if I am
        >mistaken, but that agreement had a mechanism for withdrawal. I'm not
        >of such a provision in the Oslo Accords. Besides, America's current
        >efforts at missile defense would not be effective against a Russian
        > Moreover, Bush announced that the U.S. would be withdrawing from the ABM
        >Treaty and discussed it with the Russians. To my knowledge, Arafat has
        >never announced that he was that he was withdrawing from the Oslo Accord.
        >He seems to want to have his cake and eat it too.
        >I don't think that Israel has openly reneged on the Oslo Accord, the
        >Palestinians did. I would like to persuade you that war is not the best
        >solution for the Palestinian people, but if they are determined to have
        >war, so be it. I think in the long run they will only hurt themselves,
        >I could be wrong. If the Palestinians are determined to fight, I only
        >that they do so in a more "moral" fashion than has heretofore been the
        >case. I can only hope that we are both in agreement that whatever the
        >solution, both Palestinians and Israelis will some day live in peace and
        >justice for all, as Chairman Arafat said below, "rejecting violence and
        >terrorism, contributing to peace and stability and participating actively
        >in shaping reconstruction, economic development and cooperation."
        >----- Original Message -----
        >From: faris osman
        >Sent: Saturday, April 27, 2002 11:52 PM
        >To: cbobo@...
        >Cc: Sayf Uddeen Fariis @ Terence Kenneth John Nunis; James Tan
        >Subject: Fw: The Palestinian Right to Resist
        >Dear Chris
        >Firstly, the right to resist the occupation / attack / colonization is the
        >inherent right of any people. I doubt that given the choice, no community
        >would ever give up this right. Oslo is merely a surrender of Palestinian
        >claim to Palestine where the Palestinians are made to accept 1. the
        >colonization of their homeland and 2. only the remaining crumbs for
        >As with the Noam Chomskly interview which I sent you, Oslo was damaging to
        >Palestinian rights.
        >Arafat might have signed it but certainly out of desperation. Many
        >Palestinians obviously disagreed with this and they should. I doubt
        >the vast majority of the Palestinians knew what he was signing away. Would
        >they have agreed to live in a Bantustan ? Do they know what the "peace"
        >accord actually meant ? Oslo was a sham and I think that the Palestinians
        >have the moral right to reject it now in order to protect their rights and
        >interests (in the same way that the American government pulls out of
        >international treaties because in retrospect they do not serve American
        >interests ).
        >In anycase, do not expect the Palestinians to abide by the Oslo accords
        >when Israel has openly reneged on it.
        >Again, Chris - are the rights of a living, existing community with ancient
        >roots inferior to the claims of a community which can only claimed
        >historical and religious links ?

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