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The new Palestinian Authority "President" hadn't even been sworn in before he criticized the "cycle of violence" in the Middle East. An inaccuracy, to be sure. Mahmoud Abbas knew exactly what he was saying.
Today we think of Fallujah as the site of ongoing battles between courageous American forces and assorted enemy fighters. But back on the last day of March of this year, Fallujah was briefly known for the manifestly unheroic behavior of its Arab/Islamic combatants. Then it was the place where Islamic insurgents openly dramatized their long-cherished practice of desecrating the dead.
Neither President Bush nor Senator Kerry addressed an absolutely key issue of current American foreign policy in the opening debate.
Apocalypse, of course, was pretty much a Jewish invention (at least if you ignore ancient Persia and the Zoroastrians), and there is certainly an apocalyptic element in Chicago's own Saul Bellow.
What sort of "freedom fighters" applaud the close-range murder of a pregnant Israeli woman and her four young daughters? There is only one correct answer: Palestinian terrorists. There is, in fact, no other insurgent movement on this persistently bleeding planet that can begin to compare with Arab/Islamic terror. From the standpoint of sheer barbarism, of a primal evil that mocks any human pretension to being a civilized "resistance," no other movement even comes close.
Earlier this month, a previously unknown Arab/Islamic terror group claimed the murder and mutilation of four American civilian contractors in western Iraq as "retaliation" for Israel's assassination of Hamas leader Sheikh Ahmed Yassin.
The Palestinians continue to speak of "occupied territories." They are joined by their civilized European allies whose traditional anti-Semitism is now reinvigorated by Arab/Islamic Jew hatred.
"Do you know what it means to find yourselves face to face with a madman?" asks Luigi Pirandello's Henry IV. "Madmen, lucky folk, construct without logic, or rather with a logic that flies like a feather."
Each time I get on an airplane, I am struck by contradictions. We are a species that can take tons of heavy metal and transform it into an instrument of travel, transporting millions of passengers at very high speeds from one place to another. At the same time, we are required to take off our shoes before being allowed to board the plane, not for reasons of civilized comfort, but rather to ensure that we are not about to destroy the aircraft.
This past spring, I spoke at a synagogue in Skokie, IL. about the situation of Jewish students on our college campuses. As a professor at a large midwestern university who is faculty advisor to a pro-Israel organization (Israel Council at Purdue or ICAP), it wasn't difficult for me to identify the increasingly perilous circumstances of Jewish students.
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