Friday, November 12, 2004

Yet more about Barghouti

From Amira Hass's piece in the dovish Tel Aviv Ha'aretz daily newspaper:

Palestinian security detainees are waiting to hear what prisoner Marwan Barghouti has to say: What is his position on the emerging leadership? Does he intend to contend in the planned elections?

According to a lawyer who met with prisoners at Nafha prison this week, the security detainees, particularly those belonging to Fatah, speak of Barghouti as the Palestinian people's new leader. They await his pronouncements as they waver between wanting to give the collective leadership now taking shape a chance and mistrusting it.

Hass goes on to describe how keenly Barghouti follows current events as they unfold, his democratic instincts, etc, etc--all the things a lefty swoons over in an enemy's legend--but none of that really matters.

What does matter is this: the Palestinian hard cases in Israeli prisons instinctively respect and defer to Barghouti. If, as has been reported, the Israelis also like him, and grabbed him up primarily to prevent rival Palestinians from clipping him--then Marwan Barghouti is the future of Palestine. You read it here first.