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Debating on Democracy Now and Bloggingheads.tv

I wanted to share these two conversations I had recently on the Annapolis summit with two veryMustafa Barghouti different types of interlocutors – Mustafa Barghouti and David Frum. Mustafa is a former PA Minister from the National Unity Government, PLC Member and highly respected independent activist. He also heads the “Al-Mubadara” (Initiative), which is a political alternative to both Fatah and Hamas, and is the founder and chair of the Union of Palestinian Medical Relief Committees. I appeared with him on Democracy Now, an award-winning, independent and politically hard-hitting news program hosted by Amy Goodman that appears on over 300 stations, including Pacifica, NPR, and PBS.

By way of contrast, there is also a debate with David Frum, senior foreign policy advisor for Rudy Giuliani, former speechwriter for President Bush and is the co-author of the phrase “axis of evil”- on bloggingheads.tv, a video blog discussion site that promotes back and forth dialogue. Bloggingheads is the brainchild of my New America colleague Bob Wright and has a large following. The clip can also be seen here on the New York Times’ opinion page.




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Comments (4)


As many commenters pointed out on BHTV, Mr. Levy's comments on the 1967 war show complete ignorance regarding the law of war and the status of naval blockades as a casus belli (not to mention removing peacekeepers and massing troops on Israel's border.)

Noah Pollack also exposes, among other things, Levy's ridiculous reliance on the Mitchell Report to exonerate Arafat from pre planning the terrorism of the second intifada as a negotiating tactic.


Stephen Stein:

David - I'm listening to the Democracy Now piece. You say the Arab Initiative "got to yes" but Sharon balked.

But the Arab initiative called for "full Israeli withdrawal" to the '48 armistice line. (Meaning - give up access to holy sites in E Jerusalem).

When has Israel ever agreed to this? How can they?

Stephen Stein:

One more comment about David's comment near the end - he says that the '67 boundaries were acceptable to Israel in '67, '68, '69. I don't think that was true. After all, Israel annexed E Jerusalem and the Golan. I cannot imagine a scenario where Israel would give up access to the western wall.

Stephen Stein:

Daniel, you say (about the second intifada): "The violence begins when Ariel Sharon visits the Temple Mount". That's when the violence began, but there was no causality there. According to Imad Falouji, the Palestinian Authority Communications Minister, the violence had been planned in July, far in advance of Sharon's "provocation." He said:

"Whoever thinks that this [war] started as a result of Sharon's despicable visit to Al Aksa is in error. It was planned since Arafat's return from Camp David [where he] firmly stood up to Clinton and rejected the U.S. terms."

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Daniel Levy


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