Canadian Politics from Canada's Centre

Monday, January 29, 2007

Mohammed "The Moderate" Abbas

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The ever-mediocre media have just reported a bombing in the city of Eilat, in Israel. Besides their traditionally ridiculous ab-use of the word 'militant' to refer to terrorists, the media have in the past few months been destroying a word I hold dear: "moderate." Palestinian Authority President Mohammed Abbas and the al-Fatah organization he leads keep being called "moderates."

The al-Aqsa Martyr's Brigades, who claimed responsibility for today's bombing along with Islamic Jihad, are part of Abbas' al-Fatah. Their gangs of gunmen rove around Palestinian areas engaging in gunfights with Hamas gunmen and killing civilians in the process - when they aren't busy plotting how to explosively embed nails in Israelis. These are not moderates.

A moderate is someone who isn't blinded by ideology and dogma. A moderate is someone who acts based on the objective value and reasonableness of his action. Who can see the other side of the story and sympathize, even if he isn't necessarily convinced by its arguments.

"At his family home in the northern Gaza Strip, Siksik's brother Naeem told reporters: 'We knew he was going to carry out a martyrdom operation. His mother and father prayed for him to succeed.'" (The quote is from Reuters, but as they did such a terrible, mediocre job reporting the story, I won't be giving them the benefit of a link.)
Killing himself is success? Killing random strangers in a bakery is success? What objective criteria in the world could possibly be taken to view death as something to value? How is this in the least rational? The Siksiks and other Fatah supporters and members are not moderates.

Here's a rational response from a real moderate. Ms. Parvinder Sandhu was Dawson shooter Kimveer Gill's mother. Here's what she had to say to the victims of her son's atrocity at Quebec's biggest CEGEP. "He was a little bit sad this year, but we never, never thought that this could happen," Ms. Sandhu told the National Post yesterday. "The person who would never hit or hurt -- even with words -- someone, how could he do such a big thing? This is the shock we have now. It is out of the question, what he did."

She went on:
"The girl, I feel so sorry for her parents. If you want to give them the message, tell them that the parents are feeling very, very sad and very, very mad about what happened there, and we never expected that," Gill's mother said.

"My sympathy is with them, and they should forgive us because it's not our fault. We did not raise him that way."

That is a normal moderate action. If you're a journalist and you read this, please stop calling Abbas, al-Fatah and company 'moderates'. (And if you could use the more accurate description "terrorist," instead of militant, that would be great too.)

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Here are some related articles:

Hamas Plan to Kill Abbas
Background to Palestinian on Palestinian violence
Mediocre Media 6

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