Yaacov Lozowick's Ruminations
22 May '10
(While we do not necessarily arrive at the same conclusions many times, Yaacov is very good at getting the factual material correct. Y.)
The storm caused by the Peter Beinart article in the New York Review of Books blows on, generating lots of excitement in corners of the blogosphere that get excited by such things. I responded once, and decided not to engage any further. Beinart and most of his respondents are arguing vehemently about an Israel which doesn't exist, or at most exists in the feverish minds of a tiny number of Israelis so far to the left that they can't even be seen from where normal people live.
I'm re-engaging here to point out how fabrications about Israel become incontestable truths. Jeffrey Goldberg and Beinart are already into their third round of discussing the issues, and at one point Beinart throws in a false comment which is so deep in the general narrative that Goldberg doesn't call him on it, and may well not even have noticed it.
...after all, Israeli governments haven't respected all past agreements--Netanyahu said explicitly that he rejected Oslo when he was elected in 1996...
Black and white, simple and clear. Netanyahu said explicitly that he rejected Oslo when he was elected in 1996. No ifs or buts, no weasel words. Netanyahu rejected Oslo.
I recognize that 1996 was a very long time ago. Hillary lived in the White House; Elvis was recently dead (19 years); and Digital Equipment Corporation was a household name. Twitter hadn't been invented, nor Facebook, the iPhone, the blogosphere nor even Google. It was a truly benighted era. On the other hand, the Internet and even the World Wide Web already existed, as did the PC; people drove cars, not horses and buggies, and most homes in the developed lands had plumbing.Why, some of us old codgers even have (faint) memories of those far-off days in 1996.
Enough to know that Beinart's assertion is factually challenged. As a matter of fact, it's the opposite of the truth, not vaguely off mark.
Here's a short version of the story of those days.
In September 1993 Israel and the PLO signed the Oslo agreement. Rabin's popularity skyrocketed, and the agreement basked in the warm glow of 70% support in the polls, which is very high in Israeli terms. Almost immediately, however, Palestinians terrorism began to climb, contradicting what many of us had said would happen. Over the next two years, until the Fall of 1995, Israel made a string of further concessions to the Palestinians, terrorism got worse, Rabin resorted to ever harsher words to describe his opposition, and the opposition felt ever more secure they would win the next elections, scheduled for November 1996.
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