Arnon Grunberg


Colonial era

Rami G. Khouri in The Daily Star, a Lebanese newspaper, on Syria: “This leads me to conclude that the bigger story that links Syria with the other Arab uprisings and recent Middle Eastern developments is that the will and actions of indigenous Arabs, Iranians and Turks will always have a greater impact than anything done by powers abroad. The striking inability of the Americans, Russians and their assorted allies to shape events in Syria follow similar serial failures in recent decades in their attempts to promote Arab-Israeli peace, democratic transformations, economic trajectories or other such strategic issues.
Only when local people across the Middle East took matters into their own hands did conditions change, and history resume. The sentiments of ordinary people such as those in Bab al-Hawa, Midan, Deir al-Zor and Deraa are far more significant that the pronouncements of the world’s powers. The sooner we learn this lesson, the better off we will all be.
The colonial era may finally be drawing to a close.”

(Read the complete article here.)

I’m not convinced that the colonial era has come to an end and that “local people” are taking matters in their own hands. I’m afraid that new masters have come to displace the old ones, but I hope that Rami G. Khouri is right.

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