BigMo’s Blog

Politics and Economics in Israel

Call Abbas’s Bluff

Jerusalem Post reporter Khaled Abu Toameh wrote a piece that appeared in the paper’s on-line edition on November 8th entitled “Abbas’s big bluff” in which he analyzes Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas’s decision to hold new presidential and parliamentary elections January 24th as one of his strangest moves since succeeding Yasser Arafat five years ago. It might seem strange, but actually, it is quite consistent with the character and quality of Palestinian leadership.

Simply stated, the Palestinian leadership is devoid of quality and utterly lacking in character. It is a cancer on the Palestinian people (who really don’t seem to care that they have a cancer), and on the Middle East.

This should come as no surprise to anyone. Fatah and Hamas, vying for leadership of this stillborn entity, are stocked from bottom to top with murderers, thugs, thieves and liars. Even the communist parties that ruled the USSR and its satellites during the Cold War could boast of competent technocrats. Perhaps with the exception of Zimbabwe’s Robert Mugabe, the dictator who has driven one of the more prosperous countries of Africa into abject poverty and despair, there is not a less-skilled group of “leaders” in the world.

As Toameh points out, Hamas has already made it clear that it won’t participate in the elections. It has declared that it won’t allow the vote to take place in the Gaza Strip and would punish any Palestinian there who is involved. This shouldn’t surprise anyone, let alone Mahmoud Abbas. As far as Hamas is concerned, there was an election, they won, why bother having another?

If the elections take place as planned, the Gaza Strip and the West Bank will become even more politically estranged than they already are. As Hamas legislator, Salah Bardaweel explained: “Abbas will then become the mayor or governor of the West Bank.”

Abbas’s decision to call the new elections came after the Egyptians failed to broker an agreement between Hamas and Fatah. The two rival parties were supposed to sign a “reconciliation” accord in Cairo last month. Hamas backed out at the last minute: better to rule in Gaza than serve in Ramallah. Toameh states that Abbas would be best served by maintaining the status quo, which allows him at least to argue that he’s a democratically-elected president.

However, most educated people in the world have come to realize that “Arab democracy” is an oxymoron. Israeli politicians should stop their hand wringing and just tell Abbas: resign, go into retirement, and write your memoirs. We’ll handle things.

November 8, 2009 Posted by | Middle East | , , , , | 1 Comment

Never Mssing a Chance to Miss a Chance

There is an old saying, “Every people gets the leaders it deserves.” If this is true, one has to wonder what dark stain the Palestinians have on their political souls that have cursed them live with the so-called leadership of the PLO and Hamas. A quick examination reveals that they have followed murderers – plain and simple – murderers, and allowed themselves to be plundered by these so-called leaders.

The PLO – re-styled since the Oslo Accord of 1993 as the “Palestinian Authority” has had sixteen years to build a functioning government and state, but cannot even collect the garbage on time. The PLO’s princes of terror, ensconced in official positions and granting themselves titles as if they had already achieved their long-sought after state, have systematically looted foreign aid and ruined the economy of the West Bank. Hamas, on the other hand, has erased every sign of development, prosperity, hope and democracy from the area it controls, the Gaza Strip.

One certainly cannot say that the Palestinians are uninformed. Ironically, they enjoy a degree of freedom of the press unavailable to the rest of their Arab brethren. Hamas and the PLO operate rival cable television and radio networks that the average Palestinian has no trouble receiving. This, by the way, is thanks to the electricity that Israel supplies. The Palestinian Authority has failed to build a single power plant capable of supplying even the smallest village.

Likewise, Palestinians have access to dozens of newspapers. Each supports the position of one of the alphabet soup of political parties: DFLP, Hamas, PFLP, Fatah, etc. They even have access to Israeli and Jordanian newspapers on a daily basis, not to mention broadcasts from Israel and Jordan. It might be time-consuming to tease the facts out of the opinions, but this is a responsibility that a citizen – any citizen – must take upon himself: critical thinking. It cannot be delegated, subcontracted or outsourced.

Unfortunately, it would seem that critical thinking is not the Palestinian people’s strong suit. If it were, after sixteen years, one would think that they would reject the incompetence and plundering of the PLO. One would think that they would reject the murder and Islamizing (the two often go hand-in-hand), not to mention the international isolation, that Hamas has visited upon them.

People in East Germany, Romania, the Philippines and many other nations have risen up and forced out cruel despotic leaders. The Free World congratulated them, supported them and welcomed all these countries into the ranks of democratic nation-states. The Arab people, and the Palestinians in particular, seem to lack the moral courage to take it upon themselves and make the difficult decisions that come with liberty and self-governance.

November 8, 2009 Posted by | Middle East, Palestine | , , , | 1 Comment