Worth Reading Today

December 4, 2003 22:15 by

* The NY Times reports that an international war crimes court found three Rwandan media executives guilty of genocide for inciting to kill. One was a newspaper editor and the other two worked for a radio station. The last media person convicted of genocide was Julius Streicher, the founder of Nazi mouthpiece Der Stuermer.

“The power of the media to create and destroy human values comes with great responsibility,” the court said in a 29-page summary of its judgment. “Those who control the media are accountable for its consequences.”

If this type of incitement is an international war crime, why not have similar tribunals for the terror-promoting Palestinian media?

* Elizabeth Sullivan of the Cleveland Plain-Dealer thinks the Geneva Accord’s a real breakthrough, and that its promoters are the “true patriots.”

* Boston Globe columnist Jeff Jacoby disagrees:

It is hard to say which is more atrocious, the content of the Geneva document or the process that produced it. Its principal authors are Yasser Abed Rabbo, a longtime lackey of PLO chieftain Yasser Arafat, and Yossi Beilin, the reviled leader of Israel’s appeasement lobby. Beilin — whose far-left Meretz party was trounced so badly in the last election that he lost his seat in parliament — has no more standing to negotiate with the PLO than Pat Buchanan has to negotiate with North Korea. Buchanan would be scorned if he ever pulled such a stunt. Beilin should be, too.

* The NY Times has a profile of Alexis Keller, a Geneva academic who dreamed up and financed the Geneva plan.

* AFP talked to Fatah’s biggest loose cannon, Zacharia Zubeidi, who heads the Al-Aqsa Brigades in Jenin, and makes it clear that the negotiators in Cairo and his terrorist cell are separate entities:

Zubeidi, 27, insists on being described as a member of Fatah, but he categorically rejects the group’s legitimacy to represent him and his fellow militants in Egypt, retorting that the Brigades make their own decisions.

* Palestinian Islamic Jihad sent two suicide bombers to attack Israeli schoolchildren at the ORT Alon junior high school in Yokne’am. The two were captured Wednesday by security forces, while they were in a West Bank mosque. A security source confirmed that Munir Rabiah, 23, of Gaza City, and Morad Zeitoun, 20, of Zbubeh, near Jenin, are both members of the PA security forces.

* A resident of a small Iowa town laments her public library’s decision to support a film festival, “Palestine Unabridged,” that presents only pro-Palestinian material in over a dozen films:

What was not shown was the necessity for the checkpoints, the reasons for destruction and detention. Also not shown – in any of the six other films I’ve seen so far – were pictures of suicide bombers revered as heroes. Or interviews with Hamas or Islamic Jihad.

As a secular Jew who passionately believes in free speech, I am trying to think clearly about this. And while I can’t presume to have answers for the Middle East, I do have answers for a public library here in the heartland.

I believe the library – which defends the decision on free speech grounds – made a mistake that has divided our town. Instead of education and enlightenment, there has been dissension and pain. People who have been co-workers and friends have had relationships sorely strained. Simply put: A public library should not have sponsored this film festival.

 

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