Monday, October 01, 2007

Two important items of news:

Ayaan Hirsi Ali forced to leave the US and move back to The Netherlands

(Hat tip: Myrtus):

Dutch authorities told Hirsi Ali they were no longer willing to finance her personal security while living in the US and American authorities have refused to pick up the bills too, so she decided to move back to The Netherlands where she's guaranteed shelter and the same security measures she had previously enjoyed.

This is what terrorism does: It shrinks the physical space around a person, it denies her freedom of choice and movement.

De-Mythification of a Child-Martyr:

Seven years after the incident that precipitated the "Al Aqsa" intifada, Israel officially disclaims responsibility

(Hat tip: Solomonia):

Seven years after the death of the Palestinian boy Muhammad al-Dura in Gaza, the Prime Minister's Office speaks out against the "myth of the murder".

An official document from Jerusalem denied – for the first time – that Israel was responsible for the death of al-Dura at the start of the second intifada.

The document argued that the images, which showed al-Dura being shot beside his father and have become a symbol of the second intifada, were staged.

"The creation of the myth of Muhammad al-Dura has caused great damage to the State of Israel. This is an explicit blood libel against the state. And just as blood libels in the old days have led to pogroms, this one has also caused damage and dozens of dead," said Government Press Office director Daniel Seaman.

The arguments were based on investigations that showed that the angles of the IDF troops' fire could not have hit the child or his father, that part of the filmed material, mainly the moment of the boy's alleged death, is missing, and the fact that the cameraman can be heard saying the boy is dead while the boy is still seen moving..."

Myths, once they are inserted and settled into people's mind, are nearly impossible to dislodge. Perhaps the Post-modernists who gave us deconstruction, can start constructing a psychological, literary, judicial methodology for de-mythification.

Two precedents come to mind:

1. The relatively successful model of of de-Nazification, which aimed, among other things, at loosening the grip on the German mind of myth upon which the Third Reich was erected.


2. The failure of the discovery of the "Judas gospel" to even make a dent on the traditional Christian narrative. You may remember that The Gospel of Judas presents a different view of the relationship between Jesus and Judas. Contrary to what canonical Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John tell, in which Judas is the evil embodiment of an avaricious traitor, this Gospel portrays Judas as acting as Jesus' messenger, when he turns him over to the authorities.

Somehow I can't believe that this news about a staged film that shows a small child being killed by Israelis will have much currency among the Palestinians.


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