GAZA (Reuters) – Hamas and Fatah gunmen exchanged fire on Friday
in political turmoil as the long-dominant Fatah faction was threatened
with a violent backlash from within after its crushing election defeat
by the Islamic militant group.
Hamas, whose shock parliamentary election victory changed the face of Palestinian
politics and plunged Middle East peacemaking deeper in limbo, said it would
hold talks soon with President Mahmoud Abbas on a "political partnership." But
Fatah leaders have rejected a coalition with Hamas.
The United States said it will review funding to the aid-dependent Palestinians
if Hamas enters government and Israel suggested it could suspend customs
revenue transfers, adding economic uncertainty to the political upheaval.
Extremely unsettling news. Hamas,
a terrorist group by any reasonable reckoning and the estimation of all
governments in the western world, has been elected to lead a country
vital to US
interests. Neither Israel nor the US will or can negotiate with a Hamas-led
government. The US and Europe cannot send another nickel to a Hamas-led
Palestinian Authority. Hell, in this country you can get spirited away
in black Lear jet and disappear into an officially non-existent gulag
of third-world black ops torture dungeons and coercion centers for funneling
money to terrorists.
It is clearly a case of reaping what one sows,
for all of the participants in this sorry open sore on the religious
heart of the world. The US has to accept that loosing a revolutionary
ideology like democracy on
often results in unbalanced regimes as election winners unprepared to
govern take over in pillaged countries around the world. Most of these
new governments are not going to like the US much, and the feeling will
In many cases these rookie governments will quickly fail on their own,
and either be overthrown by military rulers or see their countries
or civil war. In other cases, governments may, like the Nazis, discard
the trappings and mechanisms of democracy after winning elections and
attempt to stay in office indefinitely.
What are we to do in cases like this? It seems
here that we need to take a strictly hands-off attitude, at least as
far as direct involvement. It’s like having kids; there are certain lessons
they have to learn for themselves. There
is an old saying that in a democracy people usually get the government
have the right of self-determination. However, they have to accept
the fact that if they elect a government that openly favor armed warfare
and suicide bombing of civilian targets, the cash spigot from the US
and Western Europe is going to quickly dry up. Maybe the Iranians or
keep them afloat, but this would cause additional problems for either
or both of these wobbly regimes.
Meanwhile, the West Bank is breaking out in sporadic
fighting between Fatah and Hamas gunmen. The Fatah guys are freaking
out, because for the past 30 years they have BEEN the Palestinian Authority,
most of that time under the MaxAuthority of Yasir Arafat, and they are
all on the pad, getting fat envelopes of cash at the end of every month,
as the "foreign aid" funneled to the Palestinians got distributed
to Fatah loyalists and filtered down to the average thugs and gunsels
on the street.
Suddenly, for the first time in their lives, the tit
is being withdrawn. The money flow is going to stop. Interestingly,
they are turning on their leaders, the rich, corrupt old lions, who have
certainly salted away enough millions to quietly retire in Monaco, Miami
or join Michael Jackson in Dubai. The younger commanders and fighters
haven’t had the chance yet to accumulate that kind of loot, and aren’t
looking forward to being left behind to face a Hamas religious anti-corruption
revenge-minded government. No wonder they are freaking out. They
are afraid for their lives, hopped up on speed and hashish, and heavily
One can only wonder if the Israelis are not also reaping
what they have sown. For years we have been convinced that
Yasir Arafat himself was the ultimate Israeli masterstroke – abetting
and supremacy of the ultimate king of corruption. Arafat
held his own people down for 20 years, created a culture of corruption,
dependency and dysfunctionality, and conveniently rubbed out any anti-corruption
or charismatic young challengers to his absolute power.
It played perfectly into the hands of the Israelis and
worked to the detriment of any true Palestinian aspirations for a viable
state. Without Yasir Arafat a secular state of Palestine would have
existed for the last 10 years, at least. But it was a Faustian bargain
for the Israelis; a scheme so diabolically effective that it has eaten
the bodies and souls of two
generations of Palestinians and left the too smart by twice Israelis
without a rational negotiating partner in their belated grasping for
a lasting peace.
As our dear mother always says, "You made your
bed, now you have to sleep in it." At least she trained us to make
our own bed, although we won’t be sleeping in it much if we keep thinking
about the way the Middle East is moving…..