Thursday, November 15, 2007

One courageous Palestinian freedom fighter

I'm not a fan of the suicide bombers who consider themselves servants of Allah and the Palestinian cause. But Khaled Abu Toameh, he's the kind of Palestinian freedom fighter I can get behind (his mother was Palestinian, his father an Israeli Arab). Why? Because Abu Toameh is a journalist like me, only he reports on the inner workings and scandals of Fatah and Hamas. Better yet, he writes for the Jerusalem Post.

When I was in Israel last summer and saw his name in the paper, I wondered how he could possibly stay alive. Sunday, I heard Abu Toameh speak at a conference at B'nai David-Judea, and was blown away by his candid assessment of the pathetic peace process -- really, political theater -- that is leading two wildly unpopular leaders, Olmert and Abbas, to an upcoming summit at Annapolis. (More on that later today.)

"People often ask me, 'What went wrong with you? When did you change? Are you a Zionist Arab? You started out working for the PLO, now you're writing for a Jewish paper,'" said Abu Toameh, who began his career as a journalist for the party of Yasser Arafat. "I find it sad that as an Arab Muslim I have to work for a Jewish newspaper because that is the only place that will publish my stories freely."

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