I heard Dennis Ross speak in Baltimore recently as part of the Hillel International Conference. He made it clear that Jimmy “sticky fingers” Carter (the president formerly known as Mr. Peanut) had lifted his maps without permission from his previously published book—indirectly accusing Carter and his publishers of plagiarism. He mentioned that he had communicated this to the Carter folks, and was waiting to go public with his criticism.

Well in a the most limp and lifeless way he has “fought” back. In yesterdays NY Times, he takes up the issue of the maps and Carter’s pathetic polemic (discussed in these illustrious pages). However, Ross is all about setting the previous record straight and not with the reality on the ground. Sure, its important to understand the myths that drive the conflict. But hey, the myths started LONG AGO DENNIS. He writes as if ‘ rejection of Clinton’s proposals was important historically, when in reality it was not. It was just the same’o thing as we have seen for generations.

Anyway. if you want you can read Ross here. And he ends with this brilliant piece “If history tells us anything, it is that for peace-making to work, it must proceed on the basis of fact, not fiction.” Mr. Ross, peacemaking is a state of mind, not a statement of facts. You are simply wrong.

Maps from Washington Institute

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Rabbi Yonah


  • I have had the pleasure of meeting with Ambassador Ross on a few occasions. He has never changed his tone regarding the rejection of the Clinton proposal. It feel squarely on Arafat.

    Ross, a smart man with decades of experience, knows a bit more about this situation than a person on the ground with personal opinions and clear biais. He knew Arafat, he knows Barak but he also knows what was really on the table.

    Carter’s book is a bad thing. Just today fourteen more members of the Cater Center stepped down. . This is because the idea of scholarship is fact finding and presentation.

    While the state of mind is important Rabbi Y, that state of mind must be free of myth and in full embrace of reality. Otherwise you stand upon the ether of blame and non-responsibility.

  • There is no such thing a “free of Myth” . Myth is central to identity. Myth forms who we are as Jews and Palestinians and Americans. Without Myth, then you are taking apart, deconstructing the identity of the modern Jew/Arab etc.

    That is highly unlikely.

    And was is reality? Reality is subjective according to each side and will never be agreed upon.

    You can agree on solutions. Blame will always be there too, where do you think it will go? Somehow they will magically agree who is to blame?

  • Yonah: Still a fucking hippie.

    Din is based facts, not individual perspective.