Palestinians: Deserving of a State?
By Ari Lieberman
On November 20, 2012 six Palestinian civilians, accused of collaborating with Israel, were dragged from their homes in Gaza City by Palestinian gunmen. The butchery that followed represented depravity in the extreme, even by Palestinian standards. The six were summarily executed before an approving crowd that included children and at least one was dragged through the city streets, tethered to a motorcycle. There was no trial, no jury, no judge, no defense attorney and no prosecutor, only thugs armed with AK-47s. Welcome to “Palestine,” the sweetheart of the misguided, adoring left and the neo-fascist right.
The level of brutality witnessed on that November day is not confined to areas controlled by Hamas nor is it an aberration. The Palestinian Authority, which is dominated by the rival Fatah gang and which controls some 40% of Judea & Samaria (the West Bank) routinely engages in systematic torture, suppression of free speech, arbitrary jailing, incitement to violence and discriminatory practices against its ever-decreasing minority Christian population. Its leader, Mahmoud Abbas, is an unelected, Holocaust-denying, autocrat who is adept at deceiving Western audiences but expresses positions supportive of Hamas when addressing Arabic listeners.
David Keyes, in an insightful Op-Ed piece for the New York Times, correctly noted that how a nation abides by the treaties it signs with its neighbors can be measured by how it treats its own citizens. Judging by the Palestinian Authority’s abysmal human rights record (not to mention that of Hamas) it does not look encouraging.
There are currently twenty-one Arabic countries, all in various states of dysfunction. Iraq, wracked by internecine warfare, is swiftly unraveling with 1,000 of its citizens murdered in sectarian conflict just in the past month. Syria, whose leader recently used Sarin to gas his own people, has long since ceased to be a country, having fractured along ethno-religious lines. And Egypt, always regarded as the premiere Arab state, is just barely functioning and teetering on the brink full-fledged civil war. The rest of the Arab world is in no better shape and there appears to be no end in sight to Arab internal conflict and its brutal consequences.
If past performance is any indicator, the Palestinian state, should it ever come to fruition will almost certainly end up like the rest of the Arab lot and devolve into a stateless, lawless region marked by extremism, violence and terror. Such an entity will pose a direct challenge to regional stability. Indeed, the clan-based ethno and religious schisms that currently exist within Palestinian society are not new and date back to the 1930s and 40s when the Husseini and Nashashibi clans violently battled each other for Palestinian leadership roles.
The bloody 2006 Gaza clashes between Fatah and Hamas that left Hamas in control of Gaza was, like the Husseini-Nashashibi clashes, nothing more than a power grab with a religious twist. Palestinian society has not changed or evolved since the turn of the century. The transition of power is still effectuated through the barrel of an AK-47 and the democratic process is conceptually as alien to them as it was to Pol Pot’s Khmer Rouge and other despotic, fascist movements.
It is also worthwhile to note past aberrant Palestinian reactions to the suffering and misfortune of others. After the 9-11 attacks that resulted in the deaths of 3,000 civilians, Palestinians were seen gleefully cheering and handing out sweets. Other suicide attacks carried out by Palestinian Arabs in Israel garnered similar perverted reactions. There were reports suggesting that Palestinians cheered after the Boston Marathon outrage as well. During the 1991 Gulf War Palestinians sickeningly cheered as Scud missiles fired by Saddam Hussein landed in heavily populated urban areas of central Israel.
As the circumstances in Egypt, Syria and Iraq have taught us, the world can ill-afford the creation of yet another dysfunctional, undemocratic Arab state. The creation of such an entity will almost certainly invite regional instability. Moreover, a society that instinctively cheers as civilians are maimed and murdered and whose charter still calls for the dismantling of another U.N. member state is undeserving of statehood. It is time for the Palestinian-obsessed E.U. to shift gears, overcome its cognitive dissonance and take up a more worthy cause for a stateless but unique and indigenous people infinitely more deserving of statehood than the so-called Palestinians. The Kurds come to mind.