Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Security The Internet Politics

New Mega-Leak Reveals Middle East Peace Process 760

Posted by samzenpus
from the like-a-sieve dept.
An anonymous reader writes "There's been yet another mega-leak, this time of 1,600 papers describing the Israeli/Palestinian peace process negotiations. It's independent of Wikileaks and came to light via al-Jazeera, showing perhaps that the mega-leak meme is here to stay whatever happens to Assange. The papers show a weak Palestinian side offering ever greater concessions to Israel, which flatly rejected this as being insufficient: 'We do not like this suggestion because it does not meet our demands,' Israel's then foreign minister, Tzipi Livni, told the Palestinians, 'and probably it was not easy for you to think about it, but I really appreciate it.'"
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

New Mega-Leak Reveals Middle East Peace Process

Comments Filter:
  • Its really (Score:4, Interesting)

    by alexborges (313924) on Sunday January 23, 2011 @08:16PM (#34976832)

    A whole new game, ain't it now?

    • Re:Its really (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Magic5Ball (188725) on Sunday January 23, 2011 @08:39PM (#34976966)

      It only seems like a new game because we've grown accustomed to the non-critical, non-investigative journalism that's handed to us on the nightly news. The news should be surprising to most people since we're mostly not experts in Middle-East relations, but astute readers of Foreign Policy, The Economist, AJ, or even La Presse should find very little new except for the details of individual human speech and interactions (the same can be said of any close transcript of almost any meeting or discussion).

      However, that's not to say that leaked details aren't valuable to somebody. If we were smart about this, we'd ask under what circumstances it's acceptable for professionals in general (who are also accountable to the public) to provide contrasting or conflicting private and public accounts of their professional activities as experts.

      • Re:Its really (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Dolphinzilla (199489) on Sunday January 23, 2011 @08:59PM (#34977136) Journal

        great post - anyone who travels much and sees the world through their own eyes will quickly realize that most of what we are told on the "news" is highly filtered and twisted to make it palatable to the sheep !

        • Re:Its really (Score:5, Interesting)

          by jamesh (87723) on Sunday January 23, 2011 @09:58PM (#34977462)

          For sure. It completely baffles me how anyone can have a strong opinion on any issue when they are only fed the information via the mainstream media. War on Terrorism is the main one that springs to mind - so many people wanting the US (and everyone else) out of there and obviously feeling very strongly about it, having only read about it in mainstream media and maybe a few forums. Maybe they're right, maybe there are a whole load of valid reasons why we shouldn't be over there, but how can they know for sure when they are just repeating 'popular opinion'???

          Even wikileaks leaves itself wide open to astroturfing with manufactured 'leaks' to suit someone's agenda. It doesn't even have to go that far if someone somewhere is deciding what to leak and what to bury.

          I don't have a better solution, but it does kind of bug me...

          • Re:Its really (Score:5, Informative)

            by u17 (1730558) on Sunday January 23, 2011 @11:35PM (#34978016)

            Even wikileaks leaves itself wide open to astroturfing with manufactured 'leaks' to suit someone's agenda. It doesn't even have to go that far if someone somewhere is deciding what to leak and what to bury.

            Wikileaks do their best to verify the leaks before publishing them. IIRC, they sent some people to Iraq to confirm the authenticity of the leaked video, before publishing "Collateral Murder", for example. While it's possible that they will make a mistake sooner or later, I don't think that what you're describing is so easy.

            • Re:Its really (Score:5, Insightful)

              by kdemetter (965669) on Monday January 24, 2011 @02:05AM (#34978720)

              Still , it's dangerous to just assume that everything leaked is automatically valid.

            • Re:Its really (Score:5, Insightful)

              by dkleinsc (563838) on Monday January 24, 2011 @08:01AM (#34979804) Homepage

              It should also be pointed out that Al Jazeera did the same thing here, doing their best to validate that these were authentic. While they've been demonized in the US mainstream press (largely for not parroting the US view of the Israel-Palestine Conflict), they're the equivalent of CNN or the BBC in the Middle East. Is it 100% credibility? Heck no. But it's a good 95+% credible.

          • Re:Its really (Score:5, Insightful)

            by fishexe (168879) on Sunday January 23, 2011 @11:47PM (#34978060) Homepage

            For sure. It completely baffles me how anyone can have a strong opinion on any issue when they are only fed the information via the mainstream media. War on Terrorism is the main one that springs to mind - so many people wanting the US (and everyone else) out of there and obviously feeling very strongly about it, having only read about it in mainstream media and maybe a few forums. Maybe they're right, maybe there are a whole load of valid reasons why we shouldn't be over there, but how can they know for sure when they are just repeating 'popular opinion'???

            I don't know where you get the idea that popular opinion says to end the War on Terror, based on reading the mainstream media. It seems to me that almost every cheerleader of the War on Terror I've met was someone who limited themselves to the mainstream media and limited their discussion of the issue to repeating talking points, and almost every staunch critic of the War on Terror I've met has based their opinion on having done independent research including talking to people from the affected parts of the world on all sides of the issue, and could engage in lengthy and nuanced debates on the subject. Maybe you just assume because their view doesn't match yours that it must be based on lack of information? Or maybe you're in a country where that is the popular opinion and I'm just assuming you're in the US 'cause I'm a dope ;-)

            • I'm thinking that he's probably confuzzling the war on terror with the war efforts in Iraq and Afghanistan. An easy mistake to make, considering that the wars in those countries were triggered by the war on terror. There's an awful lot of people out there who were completely hawkish about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan who are now saying that the world should pull out of the region, because the human cost is too high. Those people piss me off. They didn't realize that there would be a human cost to fighti

              • Re:Its really (Score:5, Insightful)

                by radtea (464814) on Monday January 24, 2011 @11:48AM (#34981592)

                Wars can be won, and enemies can be stamped out.

                Tell that to the dead and consider the cost to the "victor". Wars can have first and second losers, and that's all.

                England and it's allies "won" WWII... at the cost of British economic supremacy. The United States "won" WWII... at the cost of discarding forever its tradiational isolationist policies, putting it on a slippery slope to empire that is still costing American lives today, to say nothing of progressively bankrupting the American state.

                Anyone who thinks wars can be "won" hasn't been paying attention to anything but military-industrial propoganda.

                • by fishexe (168879)

                  Wars can be won, and enemies can be stamped out.

                  Tell that to the dead and consider the cost to the "victor". Wars can have first and second losers, and that's all.

                  In the words of the first US Congresswoman, "You can no more win a war than you can win an earthquake."

            • Is it possible that both of you see the people on your side if the argument through biased lens of "clearly they are more intelligent people who have done way more research into the the matter because they reached the same opinion as me, and anyone who reaches a different opinion must not know as much as me or have ulterior motives."

              It is a rare day indeed when you find a person who will admit that someone who disagrees with them has done an adequate amount of research and fact finding and simply has reach

              • Re:Its really (Score:4, Insightful)

                by fishexe (168879) on Monday January 24, 2011 @01:02PM (#34982730) Homepage

                Is it possible that both of you see the people on your side if the argument through biased lens of "clearly they are more intelligent people who have done way more research into the the matter because they reached the same opinion as me, and anyone who reaches a different opinion must not know as much as me or have ulterior motives."

                No. I'm basing what I say on careful evaluation of people's arguments and stated justification for their beliefs. If I meet someone who has actually done more research into an issue than I have, I find that out and admit that it is the case; furthermore, I often change my position in response to meeting better and more-researched arguments than my own.

                It is a rare day indeed when you find a person who will admit that someone who disagrees with them has done an adequate amount of research and fact finding and simply has reached a different well informed opinion.

                I don't know where you hang out, but I (and many people I know, many of whom disagree with me on important issues) do it every day. For example, I'm willing to admit right now that you and I have a reasonable difference of opinion on differences of opinion. You're being reasonable enough here that you give me no reason to believe what you say is based on bias, and to give me every reason to believe you're basing what you say on serious thought.

                We always want to believe people who disagree with us simply don't have all the facts or dismiss their opinions as misinformed ignorant sheep.

                True. That's why we have to be very careful in arguments not to lapse into that kind of sloppy thinking. I never just dismiss someone I disagree with without asking enough questions about their position to know why they disagree with me, carefully evaluating their reasons to see if there's something real there, and offering my arguments to see what their counter-arguments are (and also on the off-chance I might convince them of my position; arguments serve a dual purpose here). I don't claim to be perfect or bias-free, but I think the process of careful examination means more of my assessments of people's positions are based on the actual strength of those positions than on my bias, and I regularly criticize people on the same side of issues as myself for not engaging in the same sort of rhetorical integrity (as well as for making weak arguments or just plain being biased).

      • Hamas is pissed off and is claiming this shows that the Palestinian authority is in bed with Israel. So what side was exactly willing to make more concessions? It would be like the democrats agreeing to do X knowing full well the republicans can and will block it anyway.

        Diplomacy, it is a lot more complex then people think. There are rarely just two sides to deal with.

        For instance, one of the simplest solutions to all this would be to build a wall around Israel and make the occupied bits the problem of the

    • by Dunbal (464142) *

      "I read about it on the internet so it must be true"

      It strikes me as fairly easy to publish propaganda this way. I wonder who is behind these "leaks".

      • Re:Its really (Score:5, Interesting)

        by hoggoth (414195) on Sunday January 23, 2011 @09:23PM (#34977262) Journal

        You go ahead and forge 1,600 documents involving hundreds or thousands of players that intermingles hundreds of verifiable meetings and facts with your fake counter-intelligence. Good luck with that.

        The only chance of actually pulling off something like that would be if you actually got your hands on 1,600 real leaked documents and carefully wove a thread of fake edits throughout it. Oh, and hope nobody ELSE can get the same leak of 1,600 documents that contradict yours.

        • Re:Its really (Score:5, Insightful)

          by qbzzt (11136) on Sunday January 23, 2011 @09:51PM (#34977416)

          It would be difficult to forge those 1,600 documents.

          A much easier propaganda use is to go over the documents you do have, and decide selectively which ones to leak - the ones that make your side look good, and the other side look bad.

  • Good lord... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by gmhowell (26755)

    How can the following script be repeated for 1600 pages:

    "You started it!"
    "No, you started it!"
    "No, you started it!"

    Nuke them all. Their respective God will provide his true chosen people with the ability to live in the radioactive wasteland.

    • I thought maybe isolate both sides for 100 years or so. Give them time to cool off. Of course that is never going to happen.

      • Re:Good lord... (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Pharmboy (216950) on Sunday January 23, 2011 @08:32PM (#34976932) Journal

        I thought maybe isolate both sides for 100 years or so. Give them time to cool off.

        Yeah, because it's not like the Jews or Muslim to carry a grudge for hundreds of years, right?

        I'm guessing you are a fellow American. We tend to underestimate the longevity of a grudge in the rest of the world. The beginning of the US seems like a long time ago to us, but to the rest of the world, we are still kids. Then again, we haven't gone that far out of our way to prove them wrong.

        • I'm guessing you are a fellow American.

          No I am an Australian. I reckon isolating the region so no foreign military aid can get in would help cool things off. If you don't subsidise extremists the moderates may get more mind share.

          Not that this is going to happen in our universe. Foreigners will continue to use the region as a battleground.

          • Re:Good lord... (Score:4, Informative)

            by seifried (12921) on Sunday January 23, 2011 @08:43PM (#34977016) Homepage

            Israel has a huge defense industry, they even make their own tanks (the Merkava [wikipedia.org], it's huge and carries infantry). The Palestinians are generally doing what they can as well (making their own rockets to fire into Israel, called the Qassam [wikipedia.org]).

            Cutting off military imports to these guys won't work, I suspect even if you removed all the weapons they'd still throw rocks at each other... oh wait.. they're already doing that [reuters.com].

            • Re:Good lord... (Score:5, Insightful)

              by copponex (13876) on Sunday January 23, 2011 @10:16PM (#34977580) Homepage

              The solution is to arm both sides equally. I'm sure negotiations would be much more productive if the Palestinians had helicopter gunships, tanks, jet fighters, and billions in military aid every year instead of barely enough food to eat. It would also stop the suicide bombing, since they would be able to target what they really want to hurt: the IDF.

              • by downhole (831621)

                What makes you think that the IDF is what they really want to hurt? The Palestinians have always had the ability to target the IDF with snipers and suicide bombers, but they target civilians instead. Or that they have barely enough food to eat.

              • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

                by cold fjord (826450)

                The solution is to arm both sides equally. I'm sure negotiations would be much more productive if the Palestinians had helicopter gunships, tanks, jet fighters, and billions in military aid every year instead of barely enough food to eat.

                So you think that would turn out better than when the surrounding Arab nations and the Arabs in Palestine went to war with Israel? '48, '56, 67, '73?

                It would also stop the suicide bombing, since they would be able to target what they really want to hurt: the IDF.

                Don't be ri

                • by copponex (13876)

                  So you think that would turn out better than when the surrounding Arab nations and the Arabs in Palestine went to war with Israel? '48, '56, 67, '73?

                  I didn't say arm all the Arab states. I said arm the Palestinians. If the tanks and bulldozers that cross into Palestine to destroy homes were confronted with tanks and bulldozers, I'm sure there would be more productive dialogue once Israel stopped being able to ignore Palestinian will.

                  Don't be ridiculous, it has nothing to do with the IDF - it is about killing and terrorizing Jews. Why do you think they sent suicide bombers into pizza parlors? Couldn't find an army patrol?

                  It has nothing to do with terrorizing Jews. The Jews were far more terrorized by Christians in Europe than by Arabs in the Levant. That's why for hundreds of years before the formation of Israel, Jews, Christians, and Arabs

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by Dunbal (464142) *

          We tend to underestimate the longevity of a grudge in the rest of the world.

                The rest of the world? I constantly have World War I and II shoved into my British face by every American I meet. We've had almost 100 years of "You would be speaking German if it wasn't for us". So I wouldn't limit grudges to "the rest of the world" only.

          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by KingMotley (944240)

            Hmm... I highly doubt that Americans just walk up to you at random and say that. From what I've seen it's usually a provoked response, typically started from anti-American comments by British/Europeans that feel they are superior to the rest of the world.

            • Re:Good lord... (Score:5, Insightful)

              by tragedy (27079) on Sunday January 23, 2011 @09:09PM (#34977192)

              Oh come on. A good chunk of the US still seems to practically define itself through resentment at the North over the civil war. Forget what Dunbal said about WWI and WWII, lots of Americans seem to be holding a grudge over colonial times and the War of Independence. They also seem to carry a massive grudge against the French for no reason I can figure out.

      • Re:Good lord... (Score:4, Insightful)

        by quanticle (843097) on Sunday January 23, 2011 @08:36PM (#34976950) Homepage

        No. Israel is trying to do that unilaterally with its containment wall. The only result (so far) is that the hard-liners on both sides (settlement movement, Hamas) have gained power at the expense of the moderates. Its a lot easier to demonize people you can't see.

  • by Haedrian (1676506) on Sunday January 23, 2011 @08:24PM (#34976872)

    The person who leaked this has raped me.

    Please arrest him immediately. Thanks.

  • by Culture20 (968837) on Sunday January 23, 2011 @08:39PM (#34976962)
    "'We do not like this suggestion because it does not meet our demands,' Israel's then foreign minister, Tzipi Livni, told the Palestinians"

    Things like right to exist probably aren't in it yet.
    • by Farmer Tim (530755) <roundfile@mind[ ]s.com ['les' in gap]> on Sunday January 23, 2011 @09:59PM (#34977474) Journal

      Do you mean Israel's right to exist or Palestine's right to exist [wholetruthcoalition.org]?

      (Dreadful source, but the map is accurate)

      • by yariv (1107831) <yariv.yaari@gma[ ]com ['il.' in gap]> on Monday January 24, 2011 @07:26AM (#34979694)

        The map is correct? Each of the for maps use a different definition of Jewish/Palestinian land!

        I don't even know what is the definition of the first map, probably attempt to use private ownership, or maybe the Jewish settlements are in white and everything else is considered Palestinian. The negev desert (bottom half) was largely unpopulated at the time (and very sparsely populated today).

        The second map is of the UN decision, not of anything actually there. The Palestinians didn't accept this decision until 1988, and the result was the Israeli war of independence.

        The Third actually depicts something somewhat meaningful, this are the borders by the end of mentioned war. However, the "Palestinian land" in this map wasn't Palestinian, it was either Jordanian or Egyptian (Gaza was under Egyptian control, the west bank Jordanian), the area didn't have any special status in those countries.

        The fourth map is the result of the Oslo agreement, and it is basically the opposite of the first map. The agreement, since it was supposed to be only a step towards a permanent agreement, established the PA, and gave it control in most Palestinian populated areas. All further discussions between Israel and the PA assumes that these areas will remain under Palestinian control and almost all the occupied territories will be passed to them as well. If you accept the definitions of this map, it is a big step from the situation in 1967-1993, all white map.

        Dreadful source, and in the maps as well (although each map, maybe except the first, can be said to be correct by some definition, comparing them is a lie).

  • by unity100 (970058) on Sunday January 23, 2011 @08:39PM (#34976968) Homepage Journal
    "we are the the most psychopath right wing coalition that can ever come into being in a country through a democratic process", Tzipi Livni should have said.

    no really, its beyond fathoming, the nature and formation of this ungodly coalition is. my israeli friend (colleague too) says that the exterior minister of this coalition, liebermann, is known as outright mafia in israel. not in a manner of speaking, but, literally. he says the entire coalition is filled with similar right wing zealots and psychos, came to being as a coalition government only through an unholy alliance they have set up among each other after the scattered elections. they, naturally, dont even reflect the true will of the majority of israeli people.

    its no surprise to me to hear these leaks, after being told about the situation in israel and nature of these people by my friend, tho it may be worthy of news to some people.
    • by yariv (1107831)

      Except that the leak is about the previous government...

      I can't believe you were modded interesting (and not off-topic), but of course, it's /..

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday January 23, 2011 @08:51PM (#34977076)

    ...but not the right to expand by force.

    • by hedwards (940851)
      Which is the problem. The Palestinian Authority also has the right to exist, assuming that it can do so peaceably. The view by zealots on both sides that anything other than a 2 state solution or one in which both groups share the same nation is possible is just plain fantasy.

      They lived like that for a long time until the balance was upset by outsiders.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Rayonic (462789)

      ...but not the right to expand by force.

      Every other nation seems to have claimed this right at some point in history. That's basically how most of today's large, well-defined nations formed. At some level it's just humans defeating other humans, and then later saying they're sorry.

      I'm just playing Devil's Advocate here, but it seems like Israel is getting flak for acting in a more humane way than historical standards. Had they just kept the land they won through war and drove everybody out, we might not even be talking about it today. It'd ju

  • by definate (876684) on Sunday January 23, 2011 @09:33PM (#34977330)

    It's independent of Wikileaks and came to light via al-Jazeera, showing perhaps that the mega-leak meme is here to stay whatever happens to Assange.

    I think history will find that Wikileaks and by association Julian Assanges greatest contribution to the world, will not necessarily be the Wikileaks service, but helping to cultivate a greater culture of leaking, by showing that it can be done effectively, and that your message will be heard.

    Now that, is something extremely valuable, that's almost impossible to be taken away.

  • by dkleinsc (563838) on Sunday January 23, 2011 @10:35PM (#34977674) Homepage

    Al Jazeera [aljazeera.net]

    New York Times [nytimes.com]

    Any question on why Americans and Arabs have completely different perceptions of the same conflict?

"Text processing has made it possible to right-justify any idea, even one which cannot be justified on any other grounds." -- J. Finnegan, USC.

Working...