10 years of empty predictions: Vote for your favourite Third Intifada Prophet

3 Nov

Former Shin Bet chief Yuval Diskin: A late run for the coveted top prophet spot

Yuval  Diskin, the former head of Israel’s Shin Bet secret service, has joined the swelling ranks of the Third Intifada Prophecy Support (TIPS) Group.

“All conditions are there for a Palestinian mass to rise up,” Diskin wrote in Yedioth Ahronoth this weekend.

It was a bold play for a prominent position in the overcrowded TIPS club, which includes many leading Middle East commentators and politicians.

The “Third Intifada” industry has been a colossal failure of punditry, outranking the “Palestinian Arab Spring” commentary club and the “King Abdullah’s days are numbered” round table.

But media pundits are paid to entertain and dazzle, not to be accurate. Which of the many predictions of a third intifada made on such a regular basis since (I kid you not) 2003 actually had you going? Steven A. Cook in The New Republic in 2009? Tony Karon in Time in 2010? Or Richard Cohen’s late run in The New York Times in 2013?

OK, they were all wrong, but which was the most convincing? Do you have your own favourite? Add it to the comments below and take a moment to vote for your choice as the best Third Intifada Prophet in our exclusive reader poll.

  • “Reopening the Temple Mount to non-Muslims would lead to a third intifada against Israel, one of Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat’s top aides warned Sunday. Ahmed Abdel Rahman, a senior political adviser to Arafat, said: ‘This could be the trigger for a third intifada.’ – Jerusalem Post, May 18, 2003
  • “The third Intifada could be looming like an approaching tsunami.” – Fred Schlomka, Jordan Times, May 25, 2006
  • “The ongoing brutality and harassment are fuelling a growing tension that will likely one day explode into a third intifada.” – Anna Baltzer, Electronic Intifada, April 30, 2007
  • “With a month left to go before the Annapolis summit, the Palestinians and Israelis are already basing their projections on the likelihood of it failing. And as different as these may be, they all proceed from the expectation of a third Intifada in the immediate aftermath of its collapse.” – Saleh Al-Naami, Al-Ahram Weekly, October 17, 2007
  • “Get ready for the third intifada.” – Haaretz editiorial, March 2, 2008
  • “A senior Palestinian official says Israeli government is prompting a new “intifada” (uprising) among Palestinians by its settlement expansion in the West Bank.” – Press TV, September 6, 2009
  • “The situation in the occupied Palestinian territories, especially East Jerusalem, is balanced on a knife edge and could erupt at any moment into a new explosion of violence or even a third intifada.” – Hussein Ibish, The Daily  Star, October 13, 2009
  • “The dynamics of Palestinian politics indicate that a third intifada is likely to erupt in the near future. ” – Steven A. Cook, New Republic, November 16, 2009
  • “Fatah had (sic) made a strategic decision to declare a third intifada against Israel, movement officials told Nazereth-based newspaper Hadith Anas, citing the failed peace talks as the reason for their resolution.” – Jack Khoury, Haaretz, November 20, 2009
  • “Some Palestinians are speaking about the possibility of a third Intifada, or uprising.” – Erika Solomon, Reuters, March 1, 2010
  • “Last Friday’s confrontations between Israeli police and stone-throwing Palestinian youths in Jerusalem may be a portent that the latest round of peace talks could, in fact, be starting under the cloud of a looming intifadeh.” – Tony Karon, TIME, March 8, 2010
  • Is third intifada a stone’s throw away? – Omar Karmi, The National, March 21, 2010
  • “It seems the break out of a third intifada is only a matter of time. Friday could be the day the phoenix rises from the ashes.” – Malik Samara, Al Akhbar, September 26, 2010
  • “Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas says a third intifada could break out over failed negotiations between the Palestinian Authority and Israel.” – Haaretz, January 23, 2011
  • “Third Intifada Underway” – Dr. Ashraf Ezzat, Salem-News, May 8, 2011
  • “If Adnan is to die, a third intifada is to rise.” – Richard Falk, UN Special Rapporteur on Situation of Human Rights in Palestine, to Ahram Online, February 17, 2012
  • “All of the incidents reveal a clear trend – we’re facing an intifada. The hunger-striking prisoners and the tense demonstrations, the violent clashes during which Palestinian civilians are killed, and the frozen peace process – all indicate that we’re sitting on a barrel of dynamite. It may very well be that Jaradat’s death will turn out to have been the match that lit it.” – Kadoura Fares, quoted in The Times of Israel, February 24, 2013
  • “The Hamas leader warned that Obama’s visit to al-Aqsa Mosque — Islam’s third holiest site — if accompanied by Israeli security forces will have ‘catastrophic ramifications on the current political situation.’ Bardawil predicted that a third intifada is on the horizon.” – Abeer Ayyoub, Al-Monitor, February 28, 2013
  • “A new spasm of fruitless violence, perhaps even a third intifada, is possible.” – Roger Cohen, New York Times, July 22, 2013


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