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Intifada Or Not
By Micah Halpern

Monday November 10, 2014

I've Been Thinking:

They are calling it the "Silent Intifada." In Arabic, some are referring to it as the "Automobile Intifada."

It is certainly a period of rioting and unrest. And over the past few weeks the level and intensity of the violence has waxed and waned.

The word "Intifada" is a hard word to translate. Most people just say, uprising, resistance or rebellion. The root in Arabic actually means to shake off, even to shake up, to awaken and, to get them to stand up.

The word "Intifada" was first used in 1965 to describe politics in Bahrain when leftists rose up against British colonial power. In 1970 the term was used again as the "Zemla Intifada" against the Spanish in the Sahara.

"Intifada" became best known as a term during what is now called the First Palestinian Intifada which lasted from 1987-1993. And then it resurfaced during the Second Palestinian Intifada from 2000- 2005.

And now - the Silent Intifada. This Intifada gets its name because there is no organized controlling power. The two previous
Palestinian Intifadas were well organized and perpetrated by trained leaders and organizers.

While this Intifada is certainly being egged on by leaders, there is no Tanzim identifying targets and orchestrating demonstrations. This Intifada thrives on spontaneity. It can spin out of control or it can fizzle out at any moment. Or it can linger for a long time creating a low level, constant, terror and rock threat.

Interestingly, the most powerful force in a spontaneous riot is Mother Nature. When it rains or is cold outside, fewer people participate. The good news here is that the region is in the rainy season and it is getting darker earlier. I would guess that the weather will put a damper on this Silent Intifada.

That is of course unless it gets organized.

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4 June 2017 12:13 PM in Thoughts

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