The “no kidding” stories of the day

John Danforth, a former senator and US ambassador to the United Nations, writes in yesterday’s New York Times that the Republican Party has fallen hostage to the religious right. “Republicans have transformed our party into the political arm of conservative Christians”, he said.

Palestinian women have borne the brunt of the pain inflicted by four-and-a-half years of conflict but their plight has been largely ignored, Amnesty International says and reported by The Independent today. Both the Israelis and Palestinians are criticised. The Israelis for regularly refusing women to cross checkpoints and gain medical access and the Palestinian Authority (PA) for not addressing issues such as honour killings.

Watch these stories ignored or spun out of recognition in the West. Bush devotees will mention his democratic vision and love of freedom, conveniently ignoring issues such as Guantanamo Bay and the Palestinians will be blamed for causing terrorism and therefore, by extension, shouldn’t be expecting treatment with compassion. The PA will be dismissed as corrupt (which it is) and ineffective (fairly accurate) but frequently forgotten in this debate is the fact that the Israeli military has spent the last four years destroying the entire infrastructure within Palestinian society.

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