Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Gaza: Whose Side, A Practical Guide

In the latest events in Gaza, the confusion over whose side anyone is on is more confusing than ever as inter-Arab disputes, Israeli electoral politics, regime vs people divisions, and many other factors all seem to have converged. So, here is Non-Arab Arab's attempt at a quick guide to whose side everyone is on. Many have multiple checks reflecting either mixed motives or (in the case of populations) divided views among themselves. Obviously there's some division everywhere, I'm going with where I see overwhelmingly clear majorities. Also, clearly there are parties who would sell their soul and flip sides. This is less meant as a guide to the hearts and deep thoughts of each party as it is meant as a practical guide that will let you interpret comments and sources when you read about what's going on and decide how many grains of salt you should take it with. I started trying to write something descriptive but found myself getting too wordy for a quick guide (the meaning of being for one side or the other or for "themselves" can be a very nuanced tale), so if you disagree, fire away in the comments section. And feel free to ask if you'd like to see others added to the list, these are just the ones I rattled off the top of my head. Oh, and sorry for the ugly formatting, no table feature on blogger and I had to tinker with this numerous ways. Not pretty, but I think readable now at least.

[UPDATE: Was having way too much trouble trying to hand-format text, so I made a table in Excel and uploaded as an image. You can click on it to see in full size if it's too fuzzy. I also added a few more categories.]

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