Is Arab Spring Bringing an Era of Arab Truth?

(Ynet News) Roee Nahmias - Dozens of Arab, Turkish and Israeli journalists met in Brussels last month for a seminar that highlighted the growing Arab openness in the wake of regional revolutions. The Arab world as I knew it is no longer the same. Instead of the automatic reactions we've become accustomed to, such as journalists who stay away from Israelis or the constant charge that "Israel's occupation is at fault for everything," suddenly I encountered a new, frank attitude. While some participants still clung to past views and odd conspiracy theories, others had no interest in Israel or the Palestinians. Some Arab journalists admitted, even if quietly, that their rulers exploited the Palestinian issue for many years and blamed it for Arab distress. "For many years, Gaddafi exacted a special tax from us - 'The Jihad tax for Palestine' - amounting to one or two percent of our salary," said Libyan journalist Reda Fhelboom. "They said this tax was for the benefit of Jihad, but we know it supported terror groups worldwide."

2012-01-11 00:00:00

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