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Africa News
April 24, 2002
Egypt; Daily Press Roundup
Cairo Press Review

[Posted 4 May 2002]

Not content to have launched an appalling aggression against the Palestinian people and their National Authority and to have committed the most revolting massacres known to mankind, Israel has gone a step further by destroying all hope of peace with the Arabs. It has killed the Oslo accords when it set up buffer zones separating it from the Palestinian territories. Agricultural land in Area A, completely under Palestinian control, have been confiscated and used for that purpose. Sharon, it seems, understands the way the game should be played. And as long as he enjoys the protection of the US, the world's only super power, he is likely to pursue his policies of aggression.

However, it is essential that both Israel and the US learn their lesson.

They must come to terms with the fact that there exists a simple formula for a just peace: namely to have the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people returned to them. That is the only viable way to achieve peace, security and stability in the region.

"Al Ahram"


The US has often been accused of applying dual standards in dealing with the outside world. In no other case is this more evident than in the Palestinian question. The US Administration lends its support undiminished to Israeli injustices and to the Sharon government. Meanwhile, it stands opposed to the Palestinians in their struggle against Israeli occupation; a struggle, which it prefers to list, unjustly, under terrorism.

"Al Akhbar"


The magnitude of the Israeli crimes, committed against innocent Palestinian civilians, has rendered the US unable to go against the consensus of the international community to dispatch a three-member fact-finding mission to the Palestinian territories, namely to Jenin, where evidence has it that around 800 houses were destroyed and 500 people killed.

"Al Gomhoureya"


Nowhere can the inconsistency of American foreign policy be seen clearer than in the Middle East. Washington's fudging of regional tensions, aggravated by Israel's massive and bloody incursions into the Palestinian self-controlled areas, is raising questions over the American agenda.

Over the past three weeks, the Bush administration has hastily and unquestionably 'bought' the Israeli misinterpretation of the grim situation. Following a week of eerie silence, President George W. Bush came forward to describe the Israeli invasion and confinement of Palestinian President Yasser Arafat, in his headquarters in the West Bank town of Ramallah, as an act of self-defense. Under heavy pressure at home and abroad, Bush sent his Secretary of State Colin Powell to the volatile region, with the aim of brokering a truce between the Palestinians and Israel. The trip got off to a shabby start as Powell spent almost half of his 10-day mission away from the trouble spots. When he left the area last week, hopes for a fair-minded American approach to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict were all but dashed.

Hours after he returned home, Powell drew praise from his boss for making progress. If the term is to make sense, it means in this particular case, what is widely perceived in the Arab world as American approval of Israel surging ahead with its atrocities against the Palestinians and its defiance against an outraged world.

This blatant tilt towards Israel is not confined to the Bush administration. Congress has jumped on the bandwagon as well. Key members of the House of Representatives seek approval of up to $200 million in urgent aid to Israel. In the same vein, two senators have tabled a bill to slap sanctions on the "besieged" Arafat and the Palestinian National Authority.

Infuriated, Arabs wonder if the US does not give a hoot about their feelings and its massive vested interests in this region. Is Washington unable or unwilling to play the honest broker to bring the Middle East back from the brink? All signs suggest that it is reluctant to act fairly, and is even uncaring about the anger its unqualified support for Israel's misguided policies is generating.

"The Egyptian Gazette"



Although the political conscience of US President Bush and his hawkish Administration may have tolerated the holocausts and massacres committed by Sharon using Israel's American-made military arsenal, could Bush, the orthodox Christian, who preaches charity, faith and freedom to mankind in all his speeches, accept that Israelis publicly desecrate the Church of Nativity, the most sacred Christian relic, the place where Christ was born.

Could he tolerate its alter being exposed to the fires of racism. Brought up as a Christian, Bush should know that in the past it was Jews who betrayed Christ, just as today it is they who slaughter the priests of his Church.

By: Salah Eddin Hafez, "Al Ahram"


On the win in the first round of the French presidential elections of President Chirac in first place followed by ultra right-wing leader Jean-Marie Le Pen, with the Socialist Party's Lionel Juspin trailing in third place. Juspin is known for a well-famed statement, when on a visit to Jerusalem, in which he described the Lebanese resistance against the Israeli occupation as an act of terror.

All of us in the Arab world are thrilled over the results of the French elections. The reason: It is certain that the Arab vote is bound to greatly influence the outcome of the second round to be played out between Chirac and Le Pen, whom reports maintain would suffer a major defeat, indicated by the raging demonstrations organized by the Arab community in support of the Palestinian question.

By: Galal Dowidar, "Al Akhbar"


At long last, the Arab and Islamic vote has come to count as influential in the making of political decisions outside the Arab and Islamic worlds. An accurate reading into the results of the French presidential elections are enough to lead to this conclusion. The shocking defeat of the French left led by Juspin, while justifying a scare across Europe, does by no means imply that the extreme right has won a majority to carry it into the Elysee.

Juspin has made a major mistake to bargain on the Jewish vote ( of about 600 thousand). He was wrong to adopt an overly pro-Israeli line; to underline his understanding of Israel's motives so much so that two years ago he found himself in a predicament, when he was beaten and exposed to stonethrowing in Ramallah's Bier Zeit University for insisting on stigmatizing the Lebanese resistance as terrorist organizations.

In short, Juspin's defeat is of his own making. It is my belief, that President Chirac is likely to be the first European president to express full gratitude to Arabs and Muslims for a landslide victory in the second round to be held on 5 May.

-- By: Morsi Attallah, "Al Ahram Al Messa'i"


It is quite ironic that US President George W. Bush should urge the Arab countries, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Jordan in particular, to stand against Middle East terrorism. The irony lies in the fact that these countries, especially Egypt, have engaged in a vicious war against terrorist organizations which found a safe haven in the US and other Western countries.

President Bush forgets that it was Egypt who first sounded the alarm against terror. Cairo's warnings had, however, gone unnoticed until the 11 September 2001. More ironical still is Bush's call for the three countries to assume their responsibilities in the fight against terror, i.e.

Palestinian terror. He urges that Palestinians killed in suicide operations against Israelis be proclaimed not martyrs but murderers. Bush forgets that it is Israel alone that is responsible for all Middle East terror, with the massacres and the slaughtering carried out by Sharon and his army.

-- By: Mohammad Barakat, "Akher Sa'a magazine"

(c) 2002 Africa News Service, Inc. * Reprinted for Fair Use Only










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