Saturday, August 20, 2011

What Palestinian State?

The new round of violence between Israel and terrorist organizations in Gaza reminds us how crazy it would be to declare a Palestinian state next month. Mahmoud Abbas wants to declare both the West Bank and Gaza as sovereign Palestine, but his government does not control the latter at all, and only partially controls the former. Such a declaration would be futile.

Gaza, in a way, is not under anyone's complete control. Hamas may rule over it, but the organization seems unable or unwilling to clamp down on the splinter groups that somehow manage to be even less reasonable than Ismail Haniyeh's band of terrorists.

If Palestinians insist that both the West Bank and Gaza must become part of the State of Palestine simultaneously, then Palestinian independence will have to wait until Gaza is no longer ruled by terrorists unwilling to recognize Israel. That might take a few decades, if not eternity. A "West Bank now, Gaza can join later" approach seems much more realistic. Unfortunately, the Palestinians themselves reject the idea, claiming that Israel is trying to put a wedge between the two parts of the Palestinian people (ignoring the fact that it is the Hamas and Fatah who are responsible for the split).

With this kind of behavior, the Palestinians can kiss their dream of independence goodbye, at least for the foreseeable future.

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