Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Carter Criticism Connundrum

(via Memorandum)

Carter to meet with Hamas Leader (possibly)

Wow, people judge Jimmy Carter pretty harshly. Personally, I was quite young when the whole Egypt/Israel Camp David peace treaty thing happened, but I remember how happy it made my parents.
“I’m not surprised that Carter would do this, as he has been supporting Palestinian extremism for many years,” said Steve Emerson, director of the Investigative Project on Terrorism, a watchdog group.

Carter would be the first Western leader of his stature to meet with the Hamas chief. Though Meshal met with Clinton officials in the 1990s, the Bush administration has sought to isolate Hamas, enforcing rigid sanctions on its government in Gaza and refusing to meet with its leaders unless it recognizes Israel and abandons terror.

“I think this [visit] undermines the U.S. policy of isolating Hamas,” said Emerson. “I think this encourages Europeans to further dilute their sanctions against the Hamas government.”
Really? Carter supports extremism? Why is it that I honestly feel that this guy supports peace above all else? Is it his mild demeanor? His lack of declaring wars? His work to provide housing to low-income families? His willingness to sit down with people who have their thumbs on an entire race of people and can influence their emotions at the drop of a hat to try and convince them that working with the US could help them more than working against it? Am I the only one who thinks he's trying to make things better for everyone? Oh, wait -
But Ibrahim Hooper, communications director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, a non-profit advocacy group, said Carter's efforts demonstrate he's a true partner in peace.

“I think if true, this report would indicate that President Carter is willing to travel any road in search of peace,” he said. “I think President Carter would only undertake such a mission if he believed that something could be achieved in terms of peace and reconciliation in the region.”

Hooper added that because of Carter's reputation among Palestinians he might be able to bring some pressure to bear.

“Obviously President Carter has a great amount of credibility in the region because of his past efforts seeking peace internationally,” Hooper said.
OK, I agree with the American-Islamic relations guy. I'm pretty sure that I'm an example of a Jewish person who wants good things for Israel. Am I turned around, here, or are people just being inflammatory out of reflex, and hurting themselves?

I think that people need to be working for peace, not supremacy. Maybe that's my problem.

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