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Israel

Golan: Where Druze, Settlers And Tourists Cross Paths

Occupied by Israel for fifty years, the area on the Syrian border is a favorite destination for Israeli tourists. But most of the Druze who have lived there for generations do not feel Israeli.

Druze residents watch fighting on the Syrian side of the border from vantage point in Golan Heights
Druze residents watch fighting on the Syrian side of the border from vantage point in Golan Heights
Serge Dumont

TEL AVIV — Hana and Shimon Davidovitch had been waiting for this for a long time. For their silver wedding anniversary, the couple's two children sent them on a weekend to the lush, green Golan Heights.

The couple, retired civil servants, arrived with a chartered bus full of other sexagenarians, all visibly happy to be there.

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Geopolitics

Our 'Emotional' Divide: How The Ukraine War Reveals A World Broken In Two

Russia's invasion has created a stark global divide: them and us. On one side are the countries refusing to condemn Moscow, with the West on the other. It's a dangerous split that could have repercussions far into the future.

Protesters against the war in Ukraine demonstrate in front of the Russian embassy in London

Dominique Moïsi

-Analysis-

PARIS — "The West and the Rest of Us." That's the title of a 1975 essay written by Nigerian essayist and critic Chinweizu Ibekwe. I've been thinking about his words as the war in Ukraine both reveals and accelerates divisions of the world that I believe are ultimately "emotional" in nature.

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With war returning to Europe and the risk of escalation, there is a gap between the Western view and that of the "others," a distinct "us and them." This gap cannot be explained in strictly geographical, political, and economic terms.

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Central to the tragic absurdity of this war is the question of language. Vladimir Putin has repeated that protecting ethnic Russians and the Russian-speaking populations of Ukraine was a driving motivation for his invasion.

Yet one month on, a quick look at the map shows that many of the worst-hit cities are those where Russian is the predominant language: Kharkiv, Odesa, Kherson.

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