Thursday, May 26, 2011

Ilan Pappe: Throwing a Shoe at Obama’s Betrayal


by Ilan Pappe, CommonDreams, May 24, 2011


At 4:17pm GMT on Sunday, I threw a shoe at my television screen, aimed at US President Barack Obama, precisely at the moment he began to explain that the reference in his Thursday speech at the State Department to the 1967 borders was in accordance with
the Israeli interpretation of these borders.

Palestinians protest after Obama’s Middle East policy speech, Qalandiya checkpoint, occupied West Bank, 20 May 2011. ( Anne Paq / ActiveStills )

Not that I was thrilled with that speech either but it was at least as meaningless as his previous speeches on the topic. But at 4:17 he said there will be “no return to the borders of June 4, 1967” and the thousands who attended the AIPAC convention cheered wildly. Annexation of Israeli settlement blocs built illegally in the occupied West Bank and the creation of a small Palestinian bantustan in the spaces in between was the essence of Obama’s real vision for peace.

It was a soft shoe and all it did was to bounce off the screen. Being such a harmless weapon it was also directed at my Palestinian friends who since Friday explained, publicly, how unusual and important was Obama’s speech at the State Department.

It is tough enough to know that in the White House sits someone who betrayed not only the Palestinians, but all the oppressed people in the world and in the US he promised to engage and represent.

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