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« SEVEN | Main | Behind the Al-Reuters Headlines »

October 18, 2004


Harry FM

Very good commentary! Sounds to me like a true polititian. Its a pity that Zaaimans perspective does not come through more in SA,s obvious bias in the ME.


Excellent analysis, it's nice to see something resembling balance from the SA govt, and I especially like his "We need one Palestine, not two" statement with regard right of return.

However, his utter denial of any bias towards the Palestinians is a load of bollocks, as it's quite plain for any observer to see otherwise. In addition, relations between SA and Israel have at times deteriorated to such a point that I recall Israel's ambassador saying something along the lines of:"We recognise the Republic of South Africa, but sometimes it seems as if South Africa does not recognise the State of Israel."

South Africa was one of the leading countries to send delegations to the Hague to present legal arguments against the security fence, something practically no other western country did, yet the most it can do on Israel's behalf is to mouth obligatory condolences each time a really bad suicide bomber attack occurs, even as it never misses a chance to condemn each and every Israeli action against terrorists.

Perhaps the biggest indicator is the deputy minister of foreign affairs, Aziz Pahad. Quite frankly, he would do well as the foreign minister of an Arab country, that's how blatant his anti-Israel and anti-American bias is. This is, after all, the man who went on a tour of the ME and conveniently forgot to visit Israel, whilst visiting nearly all its neighbours.

So, while we still have people like Aziz Pahad in senior positions in our govt, the offerings of advisors such as Zaaiman, however balanced, will have little, if any, effect on SA's foreign policy. That's why you won't see his perspective come out more.



And...if he was speaking to a crowd of only Jews I am sure that he pandered to the crowd somewhat. But I agree with Impi about the "One Palestine not two" comment.

The sceptic in me still sees some aspects of a South African “democracy of hypocrisy”

We are still the "democracy of hypocrisy"


Yep, without a doubt. That's actually a good term to use, it fits rather well.

I mean, how else do you describe a country that professes to support democratic ideals, human rights and all that, yet lobbies to have Libya chair the UN Human Rights Commission? That's akin to lobbying to have Robert Mugabe chair a commission on responsible land reform and good governance....

Nevermind the fact that our govt has sided with just about every tin-pot dictator it can find, Aristide being the latest.

Foreign policy should have an element of morality. Despite claims to the contrary, the ANC's foreign policy has zilch to do with morality, and everything to do with ideology.


"I mean, how else do you describe a country that professes to support democratic ideals, human rights and all that, yet lobbies to have Libya chair the UN Human Rights Commission?"


I also seem to remember us blocking a UN resolution which would have condemned China. China is a anti-Western economic powerhouse. Two things that perfectly meet our requirements for support.

That said, I am pleased that SA have come out in support of a two state solution, but I still worry about pur views on "right of return".

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