Thursday, August 17, 2006
The main news on my shortwave radio for the past month has been the Israel-Lebanon situation. The news on the Wolof and French radio stations in Kaolack is much the same so the folks here, at least the ones with radios, are well aware of what is going on there. In fact I got into two discussions on the topic today. One man at the post office started off by saying that Israel is evil and that George W. Bush and his co-workers are terrorists. I couldn’t let that go without saying something so we had a nice long conversation. The second two men that I got caught up in conversation with were more sympathetic to both Israel and the U.S. from the beginning. Both conversations were very interesting and from them I can say that there are 3 major factors influencing the Senegalese view on the situation in the Middle East. First and foremost is their love of peace, second is the loyalty and brotherhood many here feel toward Arabs and other Muslims and the third I would have to say is probably the French news service where much of the news here is likely coming from.