Palestinians have "always admired the freedom of expression in Israel" and they say "we hope we'll have a free media like the Jews have."
Abu Toameh on democracy and Israel: This yearning for democracy is a theme that runs through Abu Toameh's revelations about what ordinary Palestinians want. They envy Israel and they "want to build something like what the Jews have." Under the occupation, the Palestinians got a taste of "democracy, prosperity and stability. We were exposed under Israel to all these things."He adds: "We Arabs are trying to become like the Jews. We see how much they've achieved. The Jews are moving forward and we're moving backward." Moreover, the ordinary Palestinians know who's responsible for their miseries: "They know the Jews did not prevent Arafat from establishing good government."
Abu Toameh on Fatah and Hamas: Fatah, of course, is considered the “moderate” Palestinian force, as opposed to radical Hamas. Abu Toameh thinks neither of them could be called moderate by any sensible Arabic speaker. Fatah makes moderate sounds in English but in Arabic sounds as anti-Semitic and anti-American as Hamas. Abu Toameh sees no moderates on either side. Both factions suppress moderate opinion wherever it raises its head, which is apparently not often.
“This is not a power struggle between good guys and bad guys,” he said in a recent speech. “It is a struggle between bad guys and bad guys.” He wishes they were fighting over what would be best for Palestinians. “But they’re only fighting over money and power.”Abu Toameh on Jewish Settlements: Most of the world believes, often with passionate intensity, that Jewish settlements on land claimed by Arabs limits the chances for peace. Abu Toameh disagrees. “I wish the settlements were the problem,” he says, because it can be solved by the Israelis. If settlements were the problem, he argues, then Gaza would now be at peace. After all, the Israelis pulled out in 2005. But the result has been war — war among the Palestinians, war with Israel. “The real obstacle to peace is not a Jew building a settlement but the failure of the Palestinians to have a government. Is there a partner on the Palestinian side for peace talks? No.”
What is to be done? He thinks Israel should simply wait until the Palestinians stop killing each other and create a credible political entity that can make a deal. Peace will then become possible.Below you will find several interesting articles regarding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict through the eyes of someone who has interests on both sides: "Palestinian sheds light on who's right in Middle East," Calgary Herald, By Naomi Lakritz (27/5/2009) "A Palestinian struggle between bad guys and bad guys," National Post, By Robert Fulford (11/7/2009) "Arab Writer: Obama Focus on Settlements Benefits Hamas," Arutz Sheva, By Hillel Fendel (7/9/2009) "Telling the Truth about the Palestinians," Middle East Forum, A briefing by Khaled Abu Toameh (27/4/2004) Khaled Abu Toameh Wikipedia Entry