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Arafat 'Very Sick,' Palestinian Leaders Summoned [update: died 11 Nov]

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Arafat 'Very Sick,' Palestinian Leaders Summoned [update: died 11 Nov]

Old 10-27-04, 07:12 PM
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Arafat 'Very Sick,' Palestinian Leaders Summoned

http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmp..._nm/mideast_dc

RAMALLAH, West Bank (Reuters) - Palestinian President Yasser Arafat (news - web sites)'s health has worsened sharply and he is slipping in and out of consciousness at his besieged West Bank headquarters, officials and medics said Thursday.


Arafat, 75, veteran symbol of the struggle for statehood, beloved by most Palestinians and reviled by many Israelis, was "very, very sick," a Palestinian cabinet minister said on condition of anonymity. Details of the illness were unclear.


Palestinian leaders were summoned to the battered compound where Arafat has been effectively penned by Israeli forces for more than two years, accused by Israel of fomenting violence in a 4-year-old uprising. Arafat denies the charge.


Arafat had issued a decree naming a three-man committee -- Prime Minister Ahmed Qurie, former premier Mahmoud Abbas and Palestine National Council speaker Salim al-Zaanoun -- to act for him in his absence, Al Jazeera television said. But one of the men told Reuters he had heard nothing of any decree.

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Old 10-27-04, 07:14 PM
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Death can not come soon enough for this murderer.
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Old 10-27-04, 07:23 PM
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Gee, that's a shame.
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Old 10-27-04, 07:24 PM
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There are some other posts about it at the end of the Sharon Withdrawal thread. It seems like its curtains for Arafat. Maybe a mod could put all the related posts together here?
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Old 10-27-04, 07:29 PM
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Actually, it <i>might</i> be a shame. While Arafat is a dangerous man, who's to say the next guy won't be worse? Sometimes it's better to keep the enemy you know in power, because you can somewhat predict what he's going to do in any given situation. His successor won't be as predictable.

Still, it's likely the next guy will need to do a lot of work to get the people behind him, so that's one thing I guess.
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Old 10-27-04, 07:30 PM
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Bummer.
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Old 10-27-04, 07:33 PM
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Originally posted by naughty jonny
Actually, it <i>might</i> be a shame. While Arafat is a dangerous man, who's to say the next guy won't be worse? Sometimes it's better to keep the enemy you know in power, because you can somewhat predict what he's going to do in any given situation. His successor won't be as predictable.

Still, it's likely the next guy will need to do a lot of work to get the people behind him, so that's one thing I guess.
As I said in the other thread, while I hate to wish ill on anyone -- even Arafat, who is pretty reprehensible -- I think his death can only improve the situation.

If a genuine partner for peace emerges, then there's a hope that the Palestinians will get a homeland and the Israelis will get security.

If another Arafat emerges, that will send a message: that the Palestinian leadership is not interested in peace, period. That opens up options, too, both for the Palestinian street and for Israel.
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Old 10-27-04, 07:35 PM
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Originally posted by naughty jonny
Actually, it <i>might</i> be a shame. While Arafat is a dangerous man, who's to say the next guy won't be worse? Sometimes it's better to keep the enemy you know in power, because you can somewhat predict what he's going to do in any given situation. His successor won't be as predictable.

Still, it's likely the next guy will need to do a lot of work to get the people behind him, so that's one thing I guess.

Based both on the past actions of the other leaders in the Palestinian hierarchy, and on the cult like following of Arafat, I find the possibilty that the next guy might be worse to be an extremely remote one. His death, mid to long term, will be welcomed.
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Old 10-27-04, 07:41 PM
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Originally posted by naughty jonny
Actually, it <i>might</i> be a shame. While Arafat is a dangerous man, who's to say the next guy won't be worse? Sometimes it's better to keep the enemy you know in power, because you can somewhat predict what he's going to do in any given situation. His successor won't be as predictable.

Still, it's likely the next guy will need to do a lot of work to get the people behind him, so that's one thing I guess.
Things will get worse for a while when Arafat croaks. But there is identically zero chance for long term peace with him in charge. There is a slim chance with somebody else there; the only way is up, but it won't be easy.
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Old 10-27-04, 07:51 PM
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There are not many people I'd say "good riddance" to.

In fact, I find it hard to say "good riddance" to even Arafat.

But he does come close.
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Old 10-27-04, 07:53 PM
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repost
http://www.dvdtalk.com/forum/showthr...hreadid=392824
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Old 10-27-04, 08:04 PM
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Originally posted by Seeker
There are not many people I'd say "good riddance" to.

In fact, I find it hard to say "good riddance" to even Arafat.

But he does come close.
I'll say it for you.

"Go to hell ya old bastid!"
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Old 10-27-04, 08:07 PM
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Originally posted by Myster X
repost
http://www.dvdtalk.com/forum/showthr...hreadid=392824
This deserves its own thread.

And let me add my voice to the above. I don't wish death on anyone. But the world would be better off.
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Old 10-27-04, 08:07 PM
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I'm drowning in my tears.
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Old 10-27-04, 08:08 PM
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Of laughter.
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Old 10-27-04, 08:13 PM
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Originally posted by OldDude
Things will get worse for a while when Arafat croaks. But there is identically zero chance for long term peace with him in charge. There is a slim chance with somebody else there; the only way is up, but it won't be easy.
True. Long term it will probably be better, even if it's worse in the short term.
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Old 10-27-04, 08:15 PM
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Old 10-27-04, 08:16 PM
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Originally posted by OldDude
Things will get worse for a while when Arafat croaks. But there is identically zero chance for long term peace with him in charge. There is a slim chance with somebody else there; the only way is up, but it won't be easy.
I agree. And I also predict that Arafat's death will also mean Sharon's political death shortly afterwards. Sharon is a "creature" of Arafat so to speak and would not survive politically without him.
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Old 10-27-04, 08:16 PM
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Hopefully that rat bastahd dies
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Old 10-28-04, 08:39 AM
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Originally posted by eXcentris
I agree. And I also predict that Arafat's death will also mean Sharon's political death shortly afterwards. Sharon is a "creature" of Arafat so to speak and would not survive politically without him.
I don't know about that, eX. There will still be the Palestinian question to deal with. Perhaps it depends on Arafat's successor. If he is a moderate, then yes, the Israelis may feel Sharon represents a bygone era, a resolved conflict, that they want to remove themselves from, as the Brits did after WWII with Churchill. But this situation is different than 1945 in that while Arafat may die, the conflict will remain. If Arafat's successor is another hardliner, I don't see Sharon going anywhere anytime soon.
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Old 10-28-04, 08:46 AM
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Arafat has been nothing but an impediment to the peace process. Good riddance when he goes.
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Old 10-28-04, 11:57 AM
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Yasser Arafat will be moved Thursday to a hospital in Jordan, a Palestinian official said, as associates described an ailing Palestinian leader who was too weak to stand, appeared confused and spent most of the day sleeping.

If the 75-year-old leader were to go to the hospital, it would highlight the severity of the health crisis and mark the first time for him to leave his battered, sandbagged Ramallah headquarters since he was confined there by Israel in 2002.

Israeli officials assured the Palestinians on Thursday that if Arafat recovered, he would be able to return to the West Bank, a prominent Israel-Arab lawmaker said. In the past, Israel was unwilling to make such promises.

Doctors from Jordan, Tunisia and Egypt were by Arafat's side Thursday, monitoring his vital signs in a small clinic at his compound after he collapsed and briefly lost consciousness Wedneday night. Palestinian officials initially tried to play down the health problems, saying he performed Muslim prayers before dawn Thursday and ate a light breakfast of cornflakes and milk.

But a close Arafat associate said the Palestinian leader spent most of the day sleeping. When he awoke, he was moved into a wheelchair because he was very weak and could not stand up, the associate said. At times, Arafat appeared confused, not recognizing some of his visitors, he added.

Arafat has been unable to hold down food, and also suffers from diarrhea, the associate said on condition of anonymity.

Israeli defense officials met Thursday to discuss the possible fallout if Arafat dies. Anxious Palestinians throughout the West Bank and Gaza Strip waited for any scrap of information about his condition, with many fearing his death would plunge their nation into a profound crisis.

"I was awake all the night," said Imad Samara, a 38-year-old teacher from Gaza City. "I pray to God to save him because we need him, he is the safety valve for everything here, he the father of all the Palestinians."

Arafat's wife, Suha also arrived in the West Bank from Tunis after she was called to be with her husband. Suha Arafat lives in Paris with their young daughter, and has not seen her husband since 2001.

On Wednesday evening, Arafat's persistent two-week illness had taken a sudden turn for the worse. Arafat vomited after eating soup, then collapsed and was unconscious for about 10 minutes, a bodyguard said.

Palestinian officials initially insisted that Arafat was suffering only from a severe flu, while doctors said he also suffered from a large gallstone. Israeli officials have speculated Arafat is suffering from cancer in the digestive tract.

Arafat has been confined to the sandbagged, partially demolished compound since May 2002. He has been kept inside both by occasional Israeli military blockades and by threats that he would not be allowed to return if he leaves.

Israel, fearing it will be blamed for any further deterioration in Arafat's condition, said Thursday it is ready to lift its travel ban and allow Arafat to leave.

Arab-Israeli lawmaker Ahmed Tibi, an Arafat confidant, said the promise had come from Dov Weisglass, a senior aide of Prime Minister Ariel Sharon.

However, Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak was skeptical. "If Arafat wants to come to Egypt, it would be difficult to get Israeli guarantees to let him go back," Mubarak told reporters in Cairo.

Sharon, in a telephone conversation with his Palestinian counterpart Ahmed Qureia, agreed to allow Arafat to be flown abroad for treatment if necessary, though they did not discuss the question of his returning, a Sharon aide said.

Arafat's health crisis has highlighted how unprepared the Palestinians are for their leader's death, making a chaotic transition period all but inevitable. Arafat has refused to groom a successor, fearing an impatient protege could turn on him.

Two Palestinian leadership groups, the Central Committee of the ruling Fatah movement and the PLO Executive Committee, planned to meet at Arafat's headquarters later Thursday.

One Palestinian official said Arafat has created a special committee consisting of Qureia, former Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas, and Salim Zaanoun, head of the Palestinian National Council, to run the PLO and the Palestinian Authority while he is ill.

But when asked if Arafat had set up such a committee, Arafat spokesman Nabil Abu Rdeneh said: "Nothing like that."

White House spokesman Scott McClellan, traveling in Michigan with President Bush, said U.S. officials were monitoring the situation.

Sharon met Thursday with his defense minister, Shaul Mofaz. Israel has prepared contingency plans if Arafat dies, including how to deal with possible riots and prevent Palestinian attempts to bury Arafat in Jerusalem.

Israel has marked a possible burial site for Arafat in the Jerusalem suburb of Abu Dis, in the West Bank, security officials said. The Haaretz daily said Israel has taken the location of the plot into consideration in planning the route of its West Bank separation barrier.

Israeli Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom said a Palestinian Authority without Arafat could become a partner for peace. "We always said we would be willing to talk to a Palestinian leadership that would be willing once and for all to bring an end to the bloodshed," Shalom told Israel Radio.

Reports about Arafat's ailment have varied widely. Palestinian officials said he had the flu. Israeli officials speculated he might have stomach cancer, but two of his doctors said Wednesday a blood test and a biopsy of tissue from his digestive tract showed no evidence of that.

On Tuesday, a hospital official said Arafat was suffering from a large gallstone. Israeli officials speculated Arafat had suffered a stroke. Arafat has shown symptoms of Parkinson's disease since the late 1990s.

During Arafat's long confinement in the Ramallah compound, doctors have equipped two rooms with medical equipment, including X-ray, ultrasound machines and emergency resuscitation gear.

In tests this week, Arafat was in his pajamas and wore a blue wool hat, instead of his trademark black-and-white checkered headscarf, an official on the medical team said.

The medical official said Arafat continues to sleep in a small room, which has only one window and is furnished with a bed and a closet, even though a new, sunnier room has been refurbished for him on another floor.

From his small window, Arafat looks out on rubble and heaps of cars flattened in previous Israeli raids.
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Old 10-28-04, 12:16 PM
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Originally posted by Mutley Hyde
I don't know about that, eX. There will still be the Palestinian question to deal with. Perhaps it depends on Arafat's successor. If he is a moderate, then yes, the Israelis may feel Sharon represents a bygone era, a resolved conflict, that they want to remove themselves from, as the Brits did after WWII with Churchill. But this situation is different than 1945 in that while Arafat may die, the conflict will remain. If Arafat's successor is another hardliner, I don't see Sharon going anywhere anytime soon.
Actually, given Sharon's moves toward the center, if they replace Arafat with a hardliner, I can see Israel replacing Sharon with their own hardliner.
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Old 10-28-04, 12:56 PM
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When I heard this, the following popped immediately into my head:

"Ding dong the witch is dead
Which old witch? The wicked witch!
Ding dong the wicked witch is dead!"


Which only proves that my mind is ever infantile and fixated upon rubbish.


All in all, his death would cap what's been a pretty tough year all around for despots and dictators.

To summarize:

Saddam- CAUGHT!
Gaddafi- decides to disarm! Balls essentially cut OFF! (remains to be seen how sincere he is.....)
Castro- trips, falls, breaks his ARM and KNEE!
Arafat- knock knock knocking on....well, the door to the AFTERLIFE!


I'd like to take this opportunity to express my sincerest wishes and hopes that twenty-aught-five is equally rough for:

Kim Jong Il
Osama (assuming he's not buried under a pile of rubble)
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Old 10-28-04, 01:05 PM
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As i am sad that this guy is slowly suffering...

But he is a terrorist and promoted it for a while...

He may been nice and sincere in these past years, but he killed many innocent lives....

If he does die, unfortunately, he leaves a legacy of terrorism that he promoted

Last edited by raven56706; 10-29-04 at 10:17 AM.
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