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From the January 2002 issue of World Press Review (VOL. 49, No. 1)

Middle East: No Peace, No Process

The Intifada Is Not a Political Ploy


Ramzy Baroud, Palestine Times, (monthly English-language Internet publication), London, England, November 2001

Whenever a significant event takes place, many wonder: How will this event affect the Palestinian Intifada? And now, with the Sept. 11 attacks on the United States, many were sure that the United States would be keenly interested in ending the Middle East strife, so as to strengthen its coalition for the “war on terrorism.” The Intifada, however, will carry on. What most people fail to see is that the Intifada is not a ploy, nor is it a political tactic aimed at pressuring Israel for “more concessions.” The Intifada is not a puppet show run by the Palestinian leadership to garner international support using the world’s media. The Intifada was and shall always be a genuine act led and developed by the oppressed masses who are in fact revolting against oppression, political ploys, and empty promises.

Unlike what Israel alleges, Yasser Arafat is not in control of the uprising, nor even Hamas, Islamic Jihad, or any other group. What truly controls the Intifada are the unwritten principles of justice and freedom that most Palestinians—in the West Bank, Gaza Strip, and elsewhere—have agreed to uphold. One must admit that many have tried to trick Palestinians and manipulate their uprising to serve a political agenda.

The Intifada will end when Palestinians lose track of their priorities and become apathetic to their freedom and legitimate rights. You know as much as I do that this would never happen. So let President Bush try all of his political maneuvers to strengthen his coalition; let him envision a “Palestinian State,” and let Shimon Peres meet with top Palestinian officials, sip coffee, and talk about the good old days of Oslo.

The Intifada is not a political ploy. It is truly a people’s cry for justice.


 
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