Sunday, March 1, 2009

Bettering The Instruction

If you need something for your workout, you could do worse than watch this 50 minute debate between David Frum and Gershom Gorenberg. There is something slightly pathetic, hence irresistible, about an American neoconservative, clinging to the militant simplifications that got him so far, so fast, and seeing in his eyes the vague recognition that his formulations have been dangerously hollow. But the real point of watching is Gershom's deft use of Frum's stabs to instruct him, and us, on complexities Frum can barely fathom. I once knew Frum--before he chose to become notorious--and thought him smart and decent. Now his wishful thinking seems somewhere in the league of Sydney Webb. And if you are asking, Who is Sydney Webb?, you are getting a piece of my point.


Michael W. said...

I saw that "debate." Soooo boring.

David Seaton's Newslinks said...

Sydney Webb was certainly not a neoconservative. Are you sure you are not mixing him up with Jack (nothing but the facts, Mam) Webb?

Bernard Avishai said...

The facts are just the things Sydney Webb and the neocons found too confounding to gather, which is another piece of my point.

Y, Ben-David said...

Yes, Dr Avishai, you, unlike Frum are a deep thinker. You believe in looking at "complexities". That is why you supported the Oslo Agreements bringing Arafat and his FATAH terrorists to Israel and then turning him loose to kill, causing the death of over 1200 Israelis and the wounding of thousands more. See, Arafat had already controlled states-within-a-state in both Lebanon and Jordan and he ignited bloody civil wars in both leading to tens of thousands of dead. The corruption and brutality of him and his FATAH were well known. Yet, when Shimon Peres, in pursuit of a Nobel Peace Prize says "voila-Arafat is changed man", you, with all you deep analytical abilities and appreciation of complexities, go along with it. So then the whole thing blows up in our faces and peace is further away then ever. Then there was the time you told us about how Olmert approached you at the New Year's party and how he told you with tears in his eyes how he was going to make peace with the Palestinians, so you should support him. Did he make peace? No. Did this "man of peace bring us two wars within 3 years. Yes. So much for understanding "complexities".

Y. Ben-David said...

Here is a good explanation of why is it not possible to achieve a peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinians, certainly under current circumstances:
(Note that the writer is a veteran member of the Labor Party):

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