Jimmy Carter is a man of peace
On Tuesday, The Herald took time away from taxes to print a Chicago Tribune editorial criticizing former President Jimmy Carter. The opinion slams the president for his trip to Syria and meeting with the Hamas political leader, Khaled Mashaal.
The editorial omitted the fact that Palestinians elected a Hamas majority to lead them and has been targeted ever since by the United States and by Israel, including cruel sanctions.
The opinion also omitted the fact that Khaled Mashaal has been attempting to negotiate the release of the Israeli prisoner, Gilad Shalit, captured in 2006. (The conditions for release began with a demand that Israel release imprisoned Palestinian women and children.)
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Perhaps President Carter, agreeing to meet with the militant Mashaal, is mindful of the Rwanda impasse in 1994, when a United Nations emissary met with the murderous leaders of Interahamwe in hopes of ending the genocide. Lt. Gen. Romeo Dallaire had to try. (The title of his book, "Shake Hands with the Devil," refers to the bloody handshake at this meeting.) None of the world powers were helping stop the killing.
The peaceful Carter may be hoping to help the dying people of Gaza. None of our current leaders are doing that. Sometimes a bloody handshake is worth a try.