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Gaza a pawn in the new great game

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Gaza: A pawn in the new ‘great game’

By Alastair Crooke, Asia Times, January 14, 2009

As Europeans watch the humanitarian disaster in Gaza unfold on nightly news bulletins, many may wonder why this crisis seems to have left their governments groping in such apparent fumbling disarray. The answer is that it is the result of policies pulling in opposite directions – of an acute irreconcilability at the heart of their policy-making.

What has happened in Gaza was all too foreseeable. A few Israelis forewarned about this coming crisis, but the appeal of the “grand narrative” – of a global struggle between “moderates” and “extremists” – overrode their warnings to the Israeli electorate.

The thesis that literally “everything” must be done either to lever “moderates” into power, or prevent them from losing power – euphemistically called “supporting moderation” – lies at the heart of the Gaza crisis.
It is a narrative that has served Israel’s wider interests in garnering legitimacy for the Israeli campaign against Iran, and in dichotomizing the region into Westernized “moderates” and Islamist “extremists”.

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Guardian correspondent david beresford presents truth is a strange fruit

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(source: the guardian)

One of the most shocking stories of the anti-apartheid era may have been uncovered by a British correspondent. It is the disclosure that former prime ministers, Hendrik Verwoed and John Vorster, and the former head of the security police, General Hendrik van den Berg, were co-conspirators in a crime which led to another man being sent to the gallows.

The man who was hanged was John Harris, the so-called “mad bomber” executed for bombing Johannesburg’s Park station in 1964. Harris was the only white man hanged for a political offence during National Party rule.

It now appears that the three most powerful political figures in South Africa at the time – Verwoerd, Vorster and Van den Bergh – knew that the bomb had been planted and had plenty of time to stop it, but chose not do so. The reason was that they anticipated – and were proven right – that the bomb would deliver a hammer blow to the anti-apartheid movement. Harris was the chairman of Sanroc (the South African Non-racial Olympic Committee) which was leading the campaign against apartheid through sports boycotts. The bomb, which went off at 4.33 pm on Friday 24, 1964, also destroyed the Liberal Party.

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