November 15, 2001 | Jeffrey Helmreich
As the smoke clears in New York and Kabul, one blind spot still blocks the Western lens in the war against terror. There remains no official definition of "terrorism." The need for such a definition was affirmed by representatives of over 150 countries at a UN conference held in October 2001 on "What is Terrorism?"
October 23, 2001
The October 22 request by the U.S. State Department spokesman that Israel "immediately" withdraw from and not return to Palestinian-controlled areas (Area A) implies that such actions are in violation of the Oslo Accords, that they hamper the prospects for a return to negotiations, and that they threaten the wider American war on terrorism. None of these implications are correct. The statement stands in marked contrast to the past understanding shown by President Bush that placed the burden of cease-fire implementation on Palestinian Authority head Yasser Arafat.
September 2, 2001
Last month's Palestinian draft resolution at the UN Security Council again described the West Bank and Gaza Strip as "occupied Palestinian territories." References to Israel's "foreign occupation" also appear in the Durban Draft Declaration of the UN World Conference Against Racism. This language was not just chosen for rhetorical purposes but in order to invoke specific legal claims: For example, Palestinian insistence on using the term "occupied territories" is usually connected to the assertion that they fall under the 1949 Fourth Geneva Convention. Yet, Palestinian spokesmen also speak about Israeli military action in Area A as an infringement on Palestinian sovereignty: If Israel "invaded Palestinian territories," then they cannot be regarded as "occupied"; however, if the territories are defined as "occupied," Israel cannot be "invading" them.
November 1, 2000 | Justus Reid Weiner
September 1, 2000 | Richard Butler