Monday, March 13, 2006

The beginning

I suppose I'm here as a direct result of my good friend, Fayrouz. She began blogging her experiences from Palestine on this site and in order to comment on her postings, I had to start an account of my own. I'd been meaning to start blogging anyway, so it was a welcomed obligation. Shukran, Fayrouz.

I suppose that this blog will consist of political and social commentary focusing largely on the Middle East. I recently returned from a ten month stint in the region during which I worked with a Palestinian news agency in the West Bank. Thanks to a terrific group of people, I learned a lot about the true dynamics of conflict in the area. The nature of my relationships with people on both sides of the political divide enabled me to see the human toll of the conflict. Sadly, in all the politicized coverage of the war, those of us outside its reach often lose site of how individual people are really feeling, something that seriously undercuts our understanding.

As I can only handle so much politics, I'll also post personal reflections and observations about a lot of things. I doubt that these will draw much interest.

I look forward to sharing views and ideas with people on the site. While I tend to be opinionated, I look forward to discussion and criticism. We have nothing to gain from agreement.

I hope that this blog may serve as a tool for discussion and progress. We are living and dangerous times and dialogue must be our compass.

I welcome any and all comments!

All the best,

Pete