ONE WOULD THINK THAT ARAFAT BEING ALIVE, BRAIN DEAD, OR FULLY DEAD would be a testable and verifiable condition.
I do not mean to make light of the Palestinian leader’s condition at all, but seriously, there seems to be no end to the spin one way or another about issues that should be clear cut.
My friends at UPI have just sent two reports, one longer than the other. Maybe this will all become clear with the “official statement” from the family tonight. However, let me give the next generation of Palestinian leadership some advice. Transparency will help your cause — whether it is about the health or lack thereof of your leaders or other matters. If Mr. Arafat is dead, or technically so, and it turns out that this was covered up — you only perpetuate the image of the Palestinian leadership as a secretive, boss-driven, organized thugocracy.
If he is dead, declare it — and help move the world forward into a more positive and constructive stance regarding Israel-Palestine possibilities.
The UPI pieces are here and here.
— Steve Clemons