links for 2007-04-21
Yet More Journamalism from the Economist: The History of Neoconservatism

Tim McGurk Reports on Gaza from Jerusalem

He writes:

Gaza School Blast - The Middle East Blog - TIME: When an Israeli intelligence officer told us, with admirable specificity, that Palestinian militants had smuggled 31 tons of explosives into the Gaza strip, I assumed the explosives would be used to fight the Israelis. Was I wrong.

In the last two weeks, those explosives were applied in Gaza against an internet café, a culture center, a library, a popular family restaurant, and a Bible Society which taught computer studies to both Muslims and Christian Palestinians. Today, another target was added to the list: Gaza’s only international school, which gave the kind of quality education that would enable young Palestinians to pursue higher studies elsewhere, to make something of their lives beyond Gaza's stockade-like walls. On the internet, I looked up the American International School in Gaza. Their website showed neatly dressed, proud kids sitting beside a sports field. The kids looked bright and shiny. And the website said “We are all extremely proud to be a part of the vision for the future of Palestine.”

That bright future ended on Saturday morning when gunmen tied up the school guards and went from building to building, laying explosive charges. But first, before blowing up the school, they stole computers and other valuable equipment. Fortunately, it was too early for class and nobody was injured. Those who destroyed Gaza's schools, libraries and computer centers try to pass themselves off as Islamic militants, but it’s hard to see them as anything other than vandals and bullies. The school administrator said he would keep the school open, even if he had to teach kids in a tent. Who knows... then they'll probably steal the tent pegs...