‘Thinking of Edward Said’ by Tariq Ali for Counterpunch, December 24, 2007
I think of Edward Said often, especially, but not only, when I read of the sordid deals in which the PLO is engaged with Israel and its US backers. I miss Edward’s impetuosity and righteous indignation. He would have had no truck with the shrivelled little Bantustans that the PLO wants to accept and would have morally destroyed the apologists for such a scheme or those intellectual fellow-travellers who think that defending the idea of a secular Palestine means remaining silent on the US-EU embargo on Hamas and who, exhausted by years of struggle and the receipt of handsome cheques from some corrupt NGO, are yearning for an accommodation with the enemy on almost any terms.
Already in his last writings Edward Said had supported the idea of a single state in Israel-Palestine and a break with the corruption and bankruptcy of the PLO. He may not have agreed with every dot and comma in Mearsheimer and Walt’s magisterial work, ‘The Israel Lobby’, but he would have loudly applauded its publication for breaking a sacred taboo. His voice is greatly missed in these bad times. read more