Reality On The Palestinian Ground
The late Rachel Corrie’s parents got a taste of the violent society their daughter died defending. On one of their religiously regular pilgrimages to the Palestinian Authority, gunmen attempted to kidnap the Corries. The thugs were dissuaded after being briefed about Rachel. Another human rights activist, Kate Burton, traveled to the PA to assist in “The Struggle.” She too, parents in tow, was grabbed by those she was trying to “save.”
Kidnapping is trendy in the anarcho-terrorist society under construction, adjacent to Israel. Palestinians are taking hostages in exchange for jobs in the Palestinian security forces, the release of imprisoned relatives from PA prisons (where torture is mandatory), or other personal matters unrelated to “The Struggle.”
This is what chaos looks like: any faction that imagines its wishes are being frustrated kills or kidnaps its foes.
After her release, Burton vowed to continue hobnobbing with Hamas hotties … I mean, helping to heal the wounds inflicted on the Palestinian people. Will Burton—who has expressed sympathy for her captors—speak up about the wanton murder and maiming of Arabs by fellow-Arabs for alleged collaboration with authorities (Israeli or PA)? Will she protest the fate of Christian Arabs in the PA? (In desperation, the Vatican recently beseeched Israeli authorities to defend this endangered population from Muslim intimidation.)
For peace, Israelis withdrew from Gaza and the northern West Bank, taking along their accursed hothouses. We were told the proverbial wolf would then dwell with the lamb and the leopard lie down with the kid. Instead, as those with a comparative advantage for agriculture were evicted, cutthroat killers prevailed. Kassam rocket attacks into Southern Israel are now a daily occurrence that complements Hezbollah’s Katyusha offensive in the North.
About the fata morgana of Palestinian democracy, National Review’s Barbara Lerner has this to say:
“Abu Mazen is president of nothing; his Fatah party no longer exists. It never was anything but a collection of competing terrorist gangs, but Arafat was a master manipulator who controlled them all by keeping the big carrots and sticks in his own hands and wielding them with ruthless cunning. With his death, Fatah splintered into a multitude of shifting groups and now they're not just competing — they're at war, regularly breaking up each others meetings with gunfire and shooting each other down in the streets, along with hapless bystanders.”
Hamas, Jihad Islami, the Popular Resistance Committees, al Aqsa Brigades (a wing of Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas’ ruling Fatah), and other goons in Gaza and the West bank may be competing to control the PA. But they are cooperating against Israel: DEBKAfile’s intelligence sources reveal that most recent attacks on Israeli civilians were carried out by Abbas’ al Aqsa Brigades. Indeed, the radicalization of this society has continued apace under Israel’s partner in peace.
The world blames Israel for this sorry state. As the left-liberal root-causes rot has it, people are basically good. When and if they go astray, it’s because someone caused them to. Crime is said to be precipitated by factors outside the perpetrator. Therefore the PA’s cruel complexion reflects not on members of that society, but on their Israeli neighbors, whose society, incidentally, bears no resemblance to the Palestinian anarcho-terrorist commonwealth.
Well before Israel declared independence in 1948, the “Yishuv” had well-established, self-governing, democratic national institutions, which facilitated an orderly transition to statehood. Israeli civil society had also been thriving for decades, sporting daily newspapers, theatres, a symphony orchestra, hospitals, universities—the stuff of life.
Howard Jacobson of the Independent once wrote that, “It is fanaticism of sympathy to grant the power of life and death to those who are dissatisfied, as though unhappiness were a sort of absolution that wiped out every other human obligation." The Palestinians have been duly absolved by a fanaticism of sympathy. As the scorecard stands, they have no human obligations, only claims.
Palestinian genius is to have turned criminality into a symptom of deprivation. Whenever a suicide bomber kills or cripples innocents, the nations of the world convene to condemn the victims and to debate how to alleviate the plight of the perps. When will Palestinian society reform? Their politicians, masters of circular reasoning, respond by telling us to continue pushing Israel for concessions. One day, when the Palestinians finally become menschen, we’ll know that their pain has been assuaged.
Meanwhile death, not freedom, silhouettes the PA. Far from embracing Jeffersonian democracy, Palestinians are expected to give Hamas a substantial show of confidence in their upcoming democratic parliamentary elections. Having superimposed their phantasmagoric narrative about Iraq on the world, Bush and Rice have set about validating the Palestinian parallel universe. They are now forcing Israel to let Hamas, whose plank includes the destruction of Israel, to campaign openly in East Jerusalem. Bush thinks he can change reality by announcing that forthwith, Hamas is just another party in the smorgasbord of Palestinian “democracy.”
Semantics, however, don’t alter facts. No amount of wanking with words is going to change that Palestinians, unlike their Israeli neighbors, don’t live under the rule of enlightened Western law, don’t have a free and ferociously critical media or liberal courts, and are more likely to approve when their coreligionists strap on belts of nails and dynamite and blow up innocents.
Words won’t change that ordinary moms and pops in the Palestinian “democracy” encourage their kids to go out with a bang; canonize suicide murderers; sanction the “honor killings” of women and their subjugation, and abide preachers and teachers who preach and teach that “all weapons must be aimed at the Jews, at the enemies of Allah, the cursed nation in the Koran.”
No theory of culpability will raise the PA’s abysmal gross domestic product per capita. Or produce the kind of individuals who make possible a civil society. You see, unvarnished objective reality is morality’s best measure; and human action the ultimate adjudicator of moral worth. Societies are only as good as the individuals they comprise.
© 2006 By Ilana Mercer