Saturday, November 13, 2004

"A revolutionary's send-off" 

A futility of one life encapsulated in one sentence:
"At the end, they came in their tens of thousands to give Yasser Arafat the burial he surely wanted; a revolutionary's send-off to a chorus of gunfire, bloodcurdling chants and the wailing of ambulance sirens."
It might have been a statesman's send-off instead; the burial of a head of state and not an amorphous "Authority", with his people's democratically-elected representatives paying their last respects, and a twenty-one gun salute by the smartly-dressed national army. That after forty years of fighting for Palestinian statehood Arafat has been put to ground to the sound of indiscriminate gunfire, bloorcurdling chants and ambulance sirens says more about his failure as a leader than a hundred learned obituaries.


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