Khaled Abu Toameh at Boston University

Khaled Abu Toameh is an Israeli-Arab journalist who currently writes for the Jerusalem Post and the U.S. News and World Report. An Arab-Muslim, he has been extremely critical of Hamas and the PLO, and has spoken his mind on the threat of extremist Islam.

Abu Toameh spoke today at Boston University. He said that both parties leading the Palestinians, Hamas and Fatah, are ‘bad guys’, contrary to Condoleeza Rice’s assertion that it is a struggle between good guys (Fatah) and bad guys (Hamas). He highlighted the fact that the Palestinians have gotten rid of Fatah in elections, and therefore, Abbas does not have any mandate to negotiate on behalf of the Palestinians. Furthermore, he would not have the ability to implement any agreement, rendering negotiations with him futile.

Toameh rejected a questioner’s assertion that poverty causes corruption. He said that the corrupt Palestinians, the PLO leadership, were actually fabulously wealthy.

Toameh discussed Pallywood as well. Last month’s blackouts, staged by Hamas and lapped up by the media, were crudely staged events. Hamas invited journalists to a room lit by candles. The catch is that this was done during the day, in a room darkened by sheets over the windows. Toameh reported on it, but the MSM went along with the charade. Toameh also recounted how Palestinians would call him and request that he inform foreign journalists that a protest was scheduled for a certain date. The hour before the protest, he would receive a call asking where the journalists were. He would inform them that they would not be attending, and the Palestinians would cancel the protest if no journalists were present to document it.

Most Palestinians miss the ‘good old days before the peace process’, Toameh said. Before Oslo, there were no militias walking around with guns, there was one power with whom the Palestinians knew how to deal, the IDF. There were rules and fairness. West Bank Palestinians would adamantly oppose Israel ending its presence in the West Bank.

Toameh adamantly underscored Israel’s treatment of Palestinians compared to that of other Arab states. Israel is the only country in the Middle East with anti-racism laws. Lebanon bars Palestinians from working in 72 professions. Kuwait forbids Palestinians from owning homes, and Toameh’s own father and grandfather were summarily ejected from Kuwait during the first Gulf War.

I would take issue with Toameh’s claim that suicide bombers are driven only by a hatred of Israel, and not a significant religious motivation. Though many suicide bombers are not especially religious, this fervor and widespread support is a phenomenon that is unique to Muslim extremism. I would also argue with his statement that Palestinians are fighting for a two-state solution. I would say that most are fighting for a one-state solution, Palestine without Israel.

Toameh is to be commeded for his dedication to reporting truth as he sees it, and not listening to those who say that he is bound to a certain viewpoint because he is an Arab Muslim.

8 Responses to Khaled Abu Toameh at Boston University

  1. David M says:

    The Thunder Run has linked to this post in the – Web Reconnaissance for 02/27/2008 A short recon of what’s out there that might draw your attention, updated throughout the day…so check back often.

  2. Michael B says:

    “… but the MSM went along with the charade.”

    A veritable chorus and refrain, that. Should an artful talent ever take up the task, I can see it repeated – and repeated and repeated – in an ode, one heavily invested with ironies and satirical wit, to the MSM.

    Elsewise, I’m consistently impressed by Abu Toameh’s clear headed reportage and analyses. Refreshing, to say the least.

  3. Lynne T says:

    I wonder how many of the people who rail at Israel’s security barrier realize that many portions of it were built using cement produced by companies owned by leading members of the PLO?

    But of course, only evil, greedy westerners could be guilty of employing that numb-brained Naomi Klein refers to the shock doctrine.

    Clearly, we know who the masters are at the game of creating crisis that they can exploit financially. The bosses at Halliburton get put to shame every day, not only by the way these characters not only cream off foreign aid shamelessly, they even get a piece of the action protecting Israelis from the rocket attacks and suicide missions they pay their “militant factions” to carry out.

  4. Joanne says:

    I think it wouldn’t be a contradiction to say that suicide bombers are generally motivated by nationalist AND religious ideologies. It’s just that, these days, and especially with Hamas and Islamic Jihad, religion and nationalism seem to have melded into one.

  5. [...] – vor allem den PalArabern – richtig gestellt, die im Mainstream so verbreitet sind. Der Blog The Augean Stables hat (in Englisch) kurz aufgezeichnet, um welche es sich dabei [...]

  6. Lynne T says:

    Joanne:

    Persons claiming more expertise about Islam than me would tell you that in Islam, religion and politics merge. Some believers in Islam would rival the crackpots in Natura Kuerti who take subsudies from the State of Israel while campaigning against its very existence as they say only God can create a Jewish state. Some Islamists believe that only God can rule the Ummah and any non-Sharia state contravenes religious doctrine. Moreover, they also believe the entire world should be in a state of submission to Allah, with devote Muslims being the arbitors of what God’s will is.

  7. fp says:

    How do the neturei karta know that israel was NOT created by god already? isn’t god the creator of all existence?

  8. Evan Holt says:

    Kahled, in the faint hope that this may reach you, I will be grateful if you can help in regards the family name ‘Abotomey’. My wife’s family came to Australia from Lebanon around 1880. As it was not fashionable then to be Oriental, Arabic or even middle European the family chaged its name to Abotomey, and we have been puzzled over that name’s origins. Having seen an article in the Sydney Morning Herald of yesterday, Monday 19th January 09, in which Paul Sheehan quotes you, the name Abotomey suddenly made sense – Abu Toahmeh. Grateful for any comments. Best wishes, Evan Holt

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