09 June, 2008

Thanks for the buzzkill, B.

While I was in Ormos, the closest I got to news from the outside world was when Inzela, who ran one of the tavernas and had lived in the U.S. for over 20 years, mentioned that Hillary Clinton was on television as we chatted outside while I was on my way to the beach one morning.

"Did she drop out?" I asked.
"I don't know and I don't really care," she said laughing.

It was only when I'd returned to Istanbul, relaxed and restored, that I discovered she was, indeed, ending her campaign. I felt a twinge of sadness, part of me giddy at the once very real possibility of an accomplished and deserving woman president in my lifetime. However, I like Obama. I heard him speak in Atlanta early last year, when he was in his ascendancy, and it was a truly moving experience, those of us in the audience looking around at each other, giddy with hope, ready to get to work doing something to bring about the change he spoke of and wanting to hold onto the feeling, together, when he finished. I want to say I didn't expect much from him on Israel. It seems a forgone conclusion in American politics that candidates will forever work from the same script. Sadly, I did expect more from him and his comments at the AIPAC meeting stung. This is a man who wisely said we must remember that true diplomacy should be about talking to those you disagree with. And, to those of you who believe talking to your enemies equates with surrender to your enemies, there is a big difference between negotiation and capitulation. I'll still vote for him and still believe he can do great things, at least I still have hope, but I am truly disappointed. People over here are still very interested in him and generally very supportive, likely because he's not Shrub or another Republican - yes, some people now associate the whole party with him. I'll be interested to hear what people have to say now...


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