The post about unbounded optimism wasn't a challenge to you [as Weiss framed it in posting it: AC accuses me of deluded optimism in believing in a sea change"] . It was a challenge to all the thinking that is
completely divorced from reality, from "facts on the ground," if you
like. What it was advocating is hope, which, unlike pure optimism, is
grounded in the wearisome history and the bleakness and reality of the
moment but trusts that it may not be permanent. Unbound optimism or
Panglossianism often features the latter characteristic but lacks the
former, and is therefore unrealistic, or deluded as you put it.
more, that is not to say that one should abandon hope. To do so is
fatal. Hope is the lifeblood of humanity. Regard the Palestinians, who,
despite everything, and intimately knowledgeable of, nay, living all
the horrors that comprise their wretched existence, conduct themselves
with sobriety and dignity that to an outsider appears incomprehensible
and carry a hope that it shall all come to pass. One must acknowledge
Sisyphus and his tortuous task as one labors up and down the mountain
with him, but not capitulate as he has done. Camus says otherwise, but
the Palestinians just might disagree.
P.S. A little girl, one of the few survivors of the Samouni family's bloody fate, walks the viewer
through what remains of her neighborhood and explains what happened to
her family. There's more humanity and truth in what this little girl
says towards the end of the clip about Israeli actions and objectives
than in all Israeli government spokesmen and defenders of Israel combined.
And while Palestinians are still bleeding from their last beating,
the kindly Olmert, the one who led the reeducation of the Lebanese in
2006, in order to save them from themselves, naturally, the one who
State of Israel and its sorrow and that of its soldiers for the loss of
civilian life among the citizens of Gaza who were not involved in
terror and served as hostages for the murders of Hamas. We did not
fight against them; we did not wish to harm them or their children or
their parents or their siblings. On behalf of the State and Government
of Israel, I convey our profound regret for these victims,"
today threatens, in a brotherly fashion, of course, a "fierce and disproportionate"
response [link is also here] if the Palestinians fire rockets. For those who brush this
aside as electioneering (but if it was, since when does what a
candidate says before an election not matter?) Olmert is not running for
No one believed for a second that Israel's response was
proportionate or just, not even the spokesman of the Israeli PM or the
spokeswoman of the IDF, who incessantly said so and leapt with great
fight at anyone who thought differently. No one believed it. And
Olmert's threat is hardly a revelation, either for the casual observer
or the learned student. Indeed, the Israelis developed such a response
and embraced it; they even named it, the "Dahiya Doctrine," (in this piece saying that Israel "plans to use disproportionate force in next war") referring to the suburb of Beirut brimming with civilians which Israel bombed with no regard and steady resolve in 2006.