So my personal bete noir, Abdel Bari Atwan, has resigned as editor-in-chief of London-based Al-Quds Al-Arabi. Often the darling guest analyst on both the BBC and Sky News, I always regarded him as not one, but two sandwiches short of a picnic. I swear I once dreamed of him dressed as a clown. Here are just a few of his outrageously stupid comments: ‘If the Iranian missiles strike Israel, by Allah, I will go to Trafalgar Square and dance with delight’; violence in Gaza might ‘mark the countdown to the destruction of Israel.’; Osama Bin Laden is only ‘half a terrorist’ (this is the one that has forced him to say bye-bye). One could go on and on.
Bari is now Atwan with all the other Mideast pundits who have fallen by the wayside. Don’t be surprised, though, to see him pop up elsewhere – perhaps as Beeb icon Jeremy Bowen’s authoritative sidekick. They would be well suited – as clowns, that is.
Israel’s new Christian Arab poltical party, which supports Israel as a Jewish state, and Arabs serving in the IDF, could be a game changer for Israeli society. The New Alliance party will provide an alternative for that sector of Israel’s Arab population that seeks full partnership in Israeli society, and which sees a Jewish democratic Israel as its home.