While I’m by no means an uncritical worshiper of the Israeli government, neither will I blame the war and its carnage on Israel’s “apartheid” policies. If there is an apartheid state among the two, it’s surely Palestine, which won’t allow Jews to live there (in contrast, I was just in Israel and saw that Jerusalem was full of Arabs mingling freely with Jews), won’t allow Jews to walk the streets, oppresses women, and criminalizes gays, apostates, and infidels. How is that not an apartheid state?
Further, when people pin this war on Israel’s policies, blaming the plight of Palestine on Israeli oppression, they are neglecting several other causes. These are well known and I suspect many who pin the war on Israel neglect them on purpose. Here’s a list:
- Since the 1930s, Palestinians have turned down at least five offers of a two-state solution, and most of these offers were good ones—that is, offers that would be acceptable by centrists from both sides.
- Palestinians don’t want a two-state solution (and now neither do Israelis); most Palestinians want Israel eliminated. That, after all, is the meaning of the ubiquitous mantra, “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free.”
- Even a two-state solution won’t eliminate Palestinian terrorism so long as many Palestinians want Israel wiped off the map and terrorist organizations still exist.
- The 1988 charter of Hamas, the rulers of Gaza, explicitly calls for the elimination of Israel (see first paragraph). So long as Hamas is there, terrorism will be there, too. The charter even cites the fraudulent and anti-Semitic Protocols of the Elders of Zion, a Russian fabrication of a supposed Jewish plan to take over the world.
- Palestinian children are inculcated from a young age in school with hatred of Israel and Jews, and terrorism and desire for martyrdom will remain until the propagandizing stops. This is, of course, a religiously-based form of anti-Semitism.
- Until Palestinians depose Hamas as rulers of Gaza, the violence and attempts to eliminate Israel will continue, as both the PA and Hamas favor the elimination of Israel. Thus Abbas, (apparently President for Life of the PA) also needs to be replaced.
And here’s a seventh point, one that even the Palestinians recognize and grumble about (see some of the sources below):
7. Those who blame the problems of Gaza on Israel not only neglect the diversion of humanitarian funds by Palestinians into terrorism, but the fact that corruption is so rife that the higher-ups in Hamas, Fatah, and even Mahmoud Abbas, the head of the PA, are billionaires or millionaires. These leaders have simply diverted money meant to go to poor Palestinians into their own bank accounts. Don’t believe me? Read the five articles below, at least one of which comes from Arab sources (click to read). The dates of the pieces range from 2014 to 2023.
Click each headline to read:
From The Arab Weekly:
From The Algemeiner:
I won’t go through all of these, but the upshot is that many Palestinian leaders, from groups like Hamas, Fatah, and even the Palestinian Authority, are filthy rich, despite humble origins. (Abbas is apparently worth $100 million, while some Hamas leaders are billionaires.) Many terrorist leaders, like Ismail Haniyeh, the senior political leader of Hamas, undoubtedly involved in this last week’s carnage, are multimillionaires (last year Haniyeh was estimated to have $5 million). Not only that, but, like many wealthy Hamas leaders, Haniyeh lives in Qatar, where the living is luxurious compared to Gaza!
Like many terrorist leaders, Haniyeh gets his wealth by taking cuts from money charged for goods coming into Palestine from Egypt through tunnels (20% of the net worth). Other leaders, as you’ll read from above, simply skim off money given to Gaza or the West Bank that’s intended for humanitarian purposes.
Thus billions of dollars that rightfully should be going to the people of Palestine go into the deep pockets of terrorist leaders (and “regular” leaders like Abbas). Don’t blame that on Israel; it’s the fault of the pervasive corruption that we see in Palestine. Even Palestinians, seeing the mansions of terrorist leaders, grumble about it, but they know that they better not grumble too loud!
Why is Palestine in such bad shape? I gave some reasons above, and this is one I’ve learned about this week. Read the articles for yourself, do your own research, and see if I’m not right about the corruption. Corruption is in fact more concerning to Palestinians than Israel as a cause of their woes. This is from the Jerusalem Post but reports a survey of Palestinians led by a Jordanian organization:
Indeed, a study by AMAN – a chapter of Transparency International co-founded by Jordan – shows that, according to several surveys of the Palestinian population, the corruption of their leaders is the second most popular cause of their misery. According to the same surveys, the first cause would be the inability of these same leaders to create a strong economy. The Israeli occupation comes in third place.
Thus the Palestinians strike out against the only cause of their misery that they’re allowed to.
A bit more:
As one Palestinian interviewed said: “It is good to live in Gaza, but only for a small minority.” Another complains that hospitals and clinics never have drugs available. “They tell you to come back at the beginning of the month. You return on the second day of the month and there’s already nothing left. All the drugs have disappeared in 24 hours?
In Ramallah and Hebron, other interviewees noted that they often hear about international aid through the media and on the Internet, but that they themselves never benefit from it. The infrastructure, they say, is deplorable and no effort is ever made to fix it. But the palaces that appear in the documentary are spectacular and would make Hollywood stars dream.
The Palestinian Authority complains that it does not have sufficient funds. But that didn’t stop Abbas from having a house built for $32 million and buying a private jet that would have cost nearly $50 million. At the same time, the salaries of 190 employees of a fictitious airline “Palestine Airlines” were included in the Palestinian Authority’s budget until 2017. [JAC: These fake jobs are discussed in one of the articles above.]
Palestinians are humans; they deserve a fair shake. But they’re not getting it from their corrupt leaders. If they had honest leadership, things would be a lot better off in the Palestinian Territories.