I call it the Alice in Wonderland effect. Each time I tour the United States , 
I stare through the looking glass at the faraway region in which I live and 
work for The Independent - the Middle East - and see a landscape which I do no 
recognise, a distant tragedy turned, here in America , into a farce of 
hypocrisy and banality and barefaced lies. Am I the Cheshire Cat? Or the Mad 

I picked up Jimmy Carter's new book, Palestine : Peace Not Apartheid at San 
Francisco airport, and zipped through it in a day. It's a good, strong read by 
the only American president approaching sainthood. Carter lists the outrageous 
treatment meted out to the Palestinians, the Israeli occupation, the 
dispossession of Palestinian land by Israel, the brutality visited upon this 
denuded, subject population, and what he calls "a system of apartheid, with two 
peoples occupying the same land but completely separated from each other, with 
Israelis totally dominant and suppressing violence by depriving Palestinians of 
their basic human rights".



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