Ros in Jo’Burg says this is a big issue there and we did a bit of looking around and it sems like it’s a good issue almost everywhere…
On the one hand, is your life better because you can get a good, cheap meal at a McDonald’s, listen to the latest 50 Cent album and watch the new George Clooney movie ?
Did your kids get a better upbringing because they watched Disney movies and learned to read and write with the help of Sesame Street ?
No-one forces anyone to choose Gap jeans over another brand, a Starbucks coffee over someone else’s, MTV over another music station – they’re just good products and people want them – so what’s the problem ?
Well, some say the all-powerful U.S brands undermine their national culture and make the world look the same. Phrases like “cultural imperialism” are murmured. Much fuss about nothing ? After all, the consumer is king…
We will not ignore the Israel/lLebanon story – the swopping of prisoners – and bodies – has captured the headlines in both countries.
Priya is talking to people who’ve responded to the BBC debate and we’ll try to get a feel for how this story is playing – is it a day of mourning, reconciliation, a day of anger ?
here’s a sample of the e-mails already in…
“Fadi from lebanon, Lebanon
I think Israel’s move was brave and very humane. The Israelis show us how much they value their soldiers. For Hezbollah, this transfer was only intended to advertise a victory. It had nothing to do with the value they have for their own people.
Barakeh, Sidon, LebanonThis is so inhumane keeping the families of the Israeli soldiers hopeful up until the last minute before witnessing “Black Coffins” on TV.
But then again, Israel does the same and commits seriously worse crimes.
I don’t care for either side, they have both destroyed my beautiful home country Lebanon (Israel in July 2006, Hezbollah in May 2008). They have both lost the war in my opinion, but the biggest loser here is Lebanon. I’m not going to go “Welcome” the prisoners as their convoy passes through the city I live in.
IbrahimIt was heartbreaking to see the image of the two black coffins. One can only imagine what the parents and families are feeling now. But, as a Palestinian, I don’t need an imagination for that. War has made coffins of us all.
We don’t need words of politicians who will try to exploit these events to their benefit. What we need is justice and peace. That is the imperative “moral obligation” for Israel, and that can be the only “Victory” for Hezbollah.
Said, GazaI think this swap is a great victory for Hezbollah,Palestinians and Lebanese, Arabs and muslims all over the world as it proves it is the only way to rescue our prisoners.
Ruth, IsraelThe exchange proves once again that Hezbollah, led by the abhorrent Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah, are totally inhuman. That they could keep silent for 2 years regarding whether the abducted soldiers were dead or alive, until the very last minute, proves their deliberate cruelty and joy in watching others suffer. A very sad day for humanity, and particularly for the families of Goldwasser and Regev, who have suffered ceaselessly for over 2 years — only to find out today that their sons/brothers/husbands are dead.
Gila, Jerusalem, IsraelI am deeply saddened by our present inept Israeli government at allowing such a preposterous and blatantly immoral deal. While my heart goes out to the relatives of Regev and Goldwasser who will at last get some closure, exchanging live murderers for dead corpses will not bring us peace. Far from it, it makes us look weak and will only encourage far more horrendous crimes by those who seek to destroy not only the Jewish people but any decent standards of morality whatsoever.
Blitz, IsraelWhy is it not mentioned in the media that during the last two years the fact these soldiers were already dead was cruely hidden from their families. This kind of psychlogical torture was done on purpose to increase the pressure on the Israeli government.
By contrast, Samir Quantar was imprisonned in jail, permitted visits, allowed to obtain a university degree and even to marry.
Shai, Tel Aviv, IsraelSamir Kuntar is a murderer that killed a 4-year-old girl – this is the hero that Lebanon has declared a national holiday to mark his return. Let Lebanon’s president explain this celebration to the world. Let him look in the eyes of 4 year old girls in Lebanon and celebrate the release of Samir Kuntar.