Wednesday, February 09, 2005

Condi in the News - but what about *our* political culture?

Condi Rice Snubs Arafat
Some Palestinians not pleased

I read the following on USA Today:
RAMALLAH, West Bank — Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice's motorcade drove past Yasser Arafat's glass-enclosed tomb Monday, one more snub to the late Palestinian leader who had been largely ignored by the Bush administration...Rice's decision will be viewed "as a slap in the face for all the Palestinians," said Fawaz Gerges, a Middle East expert at Sarah Lawrence College in New York. "In Arab political culture, one must show respect and dignity to fallen enemies"..."The people of Palestine will be unhappy about this," said Ali Sawafta, a journalist with WAFA, the Palestinian news agency. "They want the respect for the president, who was our leader for more than 50 years."
Well, in our political culture we don't honor mass-murderers, master terrorists, and failed statesmen or peacemakers, thieves, and embezzlers and Arafat was all that. If the Palestinians want to canohold such a one as a hero and example, that's their business. But we don't have to. Good for Condi!