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The Symbolic Power of Words

This blog is not a forum for furthering political agendas of any kind, and that is absolutely not the intention of this particular post.  What I am interested in pointing out, nonetheless, is the incredible power of words (at least their perceived power), and the topic I intend to draw upon happens to be highly politicized.

In reaction to the controversial and highly publicized speech President Obama gave in Cairo recently, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu intends to give a speech of his own…and the other members of his governing coalition are very interested in just exactly what will be said.  Particularly the figures further to the political right in his coalition: they have asked the Prime Minister to entirely avoid enunciating the phrase “Palestinian state” in his speech (visit this article for a deeper scoop on this issue).

It would seem that merely muttering the phrase, whether in a positive or negative context, implies the inevitability of the idea itself.  With that reasoning, perhaps we all ought to be much more careful about what it is we do and don’t say!

Of course, politicians are famed for their shrewd (well, with some exceptions) choice of words, so the pressure on Netanyahu, from any direction, is only to be expected.  Considering the touchy nature of the issue and the circumstances, I imagine that the real pressure will be on the official translators and interpreters of his speech–absolutely no room for slip ups on that assignment!