10 WAYS TO SPOT A BONA FIDE ISRAEL-PALESTINE EXPERT

  1. They refer to Israeli politicians by their top-secret code-names: ‘Bibi’ (Netanyahu), ‘Bougie’ (Herzog), ‘Bogie’ (Ya’alon), ‘Silver Fox’ (Lapid), ‘Longstocking’ (Livni) and ‘Sweet cheeks’ (Lieberman)
  2. They are aware of the strategic importance of the highly successful Iron Dome
  3. They appreciate the fact that the Middle East is a tough neighbourhood where nothing is certain
  4. They have further discovered that the conflict, contrary to less informed opinion, is highly complex and neither black nor white
  5. They do not report Israeli parties’ stated positions on the various final status issues over time – such trivialities are beneath their analytical prowess and ill-suited for their eloquent prose
  6. What Palestine Papers?
  7. Being so intimate with the region’s politics, they rest their conclusions upon ‘conversations’ and ‘things they saw’; in more high-end venues, they may also cite a column by Nathan Thrall
  8. They do not make predictions – cf. points 3 and 4 above – but concentrate on the important task of arguing about what just happened and what ought to happen
  9. They are aware that a complex and multifaceted term like ‘two-state solution’ resists simple or indeed any definition
  10. Their psychoanalytic acuity has enabled them to divine that ‘Bibi’ has a ‘Churchill complex’, and their political insight allows them to see that this is really quite important

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