Reading List: Palestine Peace not Apartheid

“Palestine Peace Not Apartheid by Jimmy Carter”:http://www.amazon.com/Palestine-Peace-Apartheid-Jimmy-Carter/dp/B00119PSS8/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1203344757&sr=8-1

Cater is considered one of most dove figures in US politics. In this book, he criticized Israel’s policy as the main obstacle to the peace in Middle East. The book spelled out many Israel’s crime toward Palestinians, those facts are not normally reported in mainstream media. However, as a regular reader of Noam Chomsky’s work, I would urge you not to fall for all the things Carter said in the book.

IMHO, Carter has a bias against Palestinians, even though in a subtle form of wording. For example, in many places in the book, he often expressed the conflict as “” Israel responded the the violence committed by Palestinians” but not the other way around. Or “Palestinians provoked Israeli response”. He also omitted many inconvenience truths. He did not project a correct picture of the important role US has in the region. US has a lot of influence on Israel policy, however in the book, Cater gave an impression that US gov could not do anything (at least under his president term) but try to convince Israel on certain issues.

Btw, Carter is not really a dove as mainstream media suggested, http://www.zmag.org/content/showarticle.cfm?ItemID=2463. Having said all these, the book still spoke a lot of truths. I just want you not to take his words for granted but try to learn about this complex matter from many different point of views.

Updated: (from “Link”:http://www.zmag.org/content/showarticle.cfm?ItemID=12604)

AMY GOODMAN: Do you think it’s changing, for example, with Carter’s book coming out?

NOAM CHOMSKY: I think it’s one of the signs of change and there are many others. Or is it just a change mood in the country, I mean, anybody who’s been giving talks about this just knows it from personal experience. I mean not very long ago, if I was giving a talk on the Middle East, I mean, even at MIT, there would be armed police present, or at least undercover police to prevent violence, disruption, breakup of meetings and so on. That’s a thing of the past. By now it’s much easier to talk about this. Actually, Carter’s book is quite interesting. Carter’s book was essentially repeating what is known around the world.

AMY GOODMAN: Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid.

NOAM CHOMSKY: Yeah. He — there were a couple of errors in the book, they were ignored. The only serious error in the book, which a fact checker should have picked up, is that Carter accepted a kind of party line on the Israeli invasion of Lebanon in 1982. Israel invaded Lebanon and killed maybe 15,000-20,000 people and destroyed much of southern Lebanon. They were able to do it because the Reagan administration vetoed Security Council resolutions and supported them and so on.

The claim here, you know, you read Thomas Freedman or someone, is that Israel invaded in response to shelling of the Galilee from — by Palestinians, Palestinian terror attacks and Carter repeats that, it is not true. There was the border, there was a cease-fire, the Palestinians observed it despite regular Israeli attempts, something as heavy bombing and others to elicit some response that would be a pretext to the planned invasion. When there was no pretext, they invaded anyway. That’s the only serious error in the book, ignored. There are some very valuable things in the book, also ignored. One of them, perhaps the most important is that Carter is the first, I think, in the main stream in the United States to report what was known in dissident circles and talked about, namely that the famous road map, which the quartet suggested as steps towards settlement of the problem, the road map was instantly rejected by Israel.

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