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"Comes a Time We Are All Enthusiasm": Understanding Palestinian Suicide Bombers in Times of Exighophobia

"Comes a Time We Are All Enthusiasm": Understanding Palestinian Suicide Bombers in Times of... n the days that followed the Israeli army’s reinvasion of the West Bank in March 2002 and the resultant destruction of the embryonic elements of a sovereign Palestinian society, I, like many, sat in my office fuming, e-mailing with depressed friends and colleagues to express our helplessness and despair at the unbelievable injustice of it all. Besides the death and devastation, most depressing perhaps was the mediatic normalization of the very idea of a nation’s military rampaging virtually unopposed—like Genghis Khan in tanks—in another nation’s cities and towns, leveling entire streets, destroying homes. It was for all of us an absurdly anachronistic form of violence: a medieval mode of warfare outfitted in modern technology. I took it upon me to send Arab, Jewish, and other concerned friends an e-mail that attempted to think through the nature and ramifications of this violence. While addressing the Israeli government’s use of Palestinian suicide bombers (PSBs) as an excuse for transforming cities into rubble, I pointed out that to a large degree the Israeli government shared with the suicide bombers a lack of concern with the humanity of the people murdered in the course of the conflict. In a communal Us versus http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Public Culture Duke University Press

"Comes a Time We Are All Enthusiasm": Understanding Palestinian Suicide Bombers in Times of Exighophobia

Public Culture , Volume 15 (1) – Jan 1, 2003

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Publisher
Duke University Press
Copyright
Copyright 2003 by Duke University Press
ISSN
0899-2363
eISSN
1527-8018
DOI
10.1215/08992363-15-1-65
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

n the days that followed the Israeli army’s reinvasion of the West Bank in March 2002 and the resultant destruction of the embryonic elements of a sovereign Palestinian society, I, like many, sat in my office fuming, e-mailing with depressed friends and colleagues to express our helplessness and despair at the unbelievable injustice of it all. Besides the death and devastation, most depressing perhaps was the mediatic normalization of the very idea of a nation’s military rampaging virtually unopposed—like Genghis Khan in tanks—in another nation’s cities and towns, leveling entire streets, destroying homes. It was for all of us an absurdly anachronistic form of violence: a medieval mode of warfare outfitted in modern technology. I took it upon me to send Arab, Jewish, and other concerned friends an e-mail that attempted to think through the nature and ramifications of this violence. While addressing the Israeli government’s use of Palestinian suicide bombers (PSBs) as an excuse for transforming cities into rubble, I pointed out that to a large degree the Israeli government shared with the suicide bombers a lack of concern with the humanity of the people murdered in the course of the conflict. In a communal Us versus

Journal

Public CultureDuke University Press

Published: Jan 1, 2003

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