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"Reflections on Ariel Sharon" and "The Next Crisis" from Leonard Fein at APN's Online "Conversation"

Read and respond to Fein's most recent two essays -- his reflections on Sharon and on the Iraq War and Iranian threat to Israel...

Go directly to the Ongoing Conversation at

Reflections on Ariel Sharon

"Talk about casting a giant shadow. It is tempting to call Sharon Israel's Comeback Kid - but at 5'7" and 260 pounds, 'Kid' doesn't quite fit." (1/10/06) Read on and comment.

The Next Crisis

"...Israelis were enthusiastic at the prospect of America neutering Hussein's Iraq." (1/17/06) Read the entire essay and respond.

"Welcome to the Conversation" message from Leonard Fein:

In 1978, when Shalom Achshav was founded, the first notice of its existence was taken by Moment magazine, of which I was then the editor. Not long thereafter, when Shalom Achshav held its first major rally, in Tel Aviv, I was one of several people who prepared and sent a telegram (there were such things, once upon a time) of commendation to the organizers of the rally - an event then so rare that it received (notice: "received," not "warranted") front page coverage in The New York Times. And then, in 1980 (or perhaps 1981), while visiting in Israel, I was asked to address yet another Shalom Achshav mass rally in Tel Aviv. That last remains one of the most vivid memories I carry with me after 60 or so trips to Israel stretching all the way back to 1953. I brought what may best be described as "fraternal greetings" to the rally, and then, as I later wrote, stood in considerable awe as 40,000 people sang Hatikvah, deeply aware that when, the next day, I was on my way back to Boston, many of those who shared the platform with me would be donning their fatigues and reporting for their annual reserve duty.

All of which is to say that I have long been a fan of Shalom Achshav, hence also of Americans for Peace Now.

And now this, an effort to engage people in an ongoing conversation about Israel, its neighbors, peace and such. By "such" I mean to include, now and then, developments within Israel that may not be directly linked to the pursuit of peace.

From time to time, the "kick-off" essay, meant to provoke a conversation, will be contributed by others, and those others will not always be of like mind. It seems to me important, even critical, that we in the so-called "peace camp" be fully aware of the reasoning and the arguments of thoughtful people on the other side(s).

As to the rules, they're what you'd expect: No vulgarity, no screeching, none of the personal invective that so often subverts such on-line endeavors.

And a last introductory word: The views I and other here express are not necessarily the views of Americans for Peace Now. APN has not asked, nor would I have agreed, that I hew to its policies. A full explication of those views is available on the APN website. Here, the views you'll read, as also (I trust) the responses, are entirely personal.

Welcome, then, to what we see as an ongoing conversation.

Leonard Fein

I invite you to join the Ongoing Conversation