Save Us From the Peacemakers


What sorcery is at play to explain President Bush's quixotic journey recently to the Middle East and efforts at Annapolis before to materialize peace where none exists?  Was it the urging of our State Department and its inept madam Secretary, Condoleezza Rice, whose efforts here hearken to the more depressing moments of the Jimmy Carter era?  Did Mr. Bush seek to rehabilitate his own Presidency in the eyes of the world and of history by making this one grand gesture?  Or was it the ill advised but overwhelming desire that comes to all Presidents to achieve what has eluded everyone else: to resolve the Arab war against Israel that has persisted since Israel's inception in 1948?  

In attempting to do so, the President's efforts follow a string of failures that date back to the unsuccessful “Peel Commission” in 1937 and include those of his predecessor Bill Clinton at Camp David, Sharm-el-Sheikh, and Taba in 2000 and 2001, followed by his own now moribund “Road Map” in 2002.  And there were a myriad of others, all well intentioned, all fatally conceived, all broken on the irrepressible realities of the region, chief of which remains a lingering yearning amongst many Palestinians to engineer the destruction of the Jewish state. 

There is also the matter of the Palestinians' narrative of suffering, their self-image as eternal victims, coupled with an adolescent but deadly rage from which flow the varying pathologies on display in the territories today.  In fact, one would not be incorrect in defining Palestinian society as the most radicalized polity in history, seized as it is by a culture of perpetual terror and militancy.  A misguided international community shares culpability for the phenomenon by showering the Palestinians with fawning attention and sympathy and unseemly amounts of aid; they have also granted them an undeserved global stage and a carte blanche for transgressions no matter how egregious. 

That this President in particular has chosen to overlook all this in light of all he has said and done since 9/11 is disconcerting to say the least.  

President Bush declared the following at West Point on June 24, 2002:
 “Today, Palestinian authorities are encouraging not opposing terrorism… the United States will not support the establishment of a Palestinian state until its leaders engage in a sustained fight against the terrorists and dismantle their infrastructure.”
Well, excellent, Mr. President, for saying, finally, what needed to be said.  But what evidence is there today, more than five years later, that the Palestinians have changed their ways? 

In democratic elections in January 2006, the Palestinian people voted overwhelmingly for Hamas, a terrorist organization that is unapologetic in calling for the annihilation of the Jewish state.  One presumes that those pulling the lever for Hamas shared this objective. 

Further evidence for Palestinian intentions is found in the Gaza strip.  When Ariel Sharon rendered Gaza Jew-free by forcibly evacuating 9000 or so Israeli settlers, uprooting vibrant Jewish communities and leaving the keys, so to speak, with the Palestinians, how did they respond to their new found liberty?  Did they, for example, build schools, roads, and hospitals, establish legal and civic institutions needed for a prosperous and free society, or develop their economy?  

Not exactly.

They celebrated their “victory” over the Zionists by promptly descending into civil war: Muslims killing Muslims and not a Jewish “occupier” in sight.  Hamas routed Fatah and now busily plots Israel's destruction, importing and smuggling weapons and missiles, allying itself with Hezbollah and Iran, and establishing Gaza as a base for global Jihad.  The economy remains in shambles and unemployment hovers at 50%.  Its one successful enterprise: the daily launching of Qassam rockets into civilian centers in southern Israel.  Instead of Singapore on the Mediterranean, as one Palestinian Minister sadly noted, “…we have Somalia and the Taliban.” 

What about Mahmoud Abbas and his Fatah party in the West Bank, whom Bush and others have rallied behind as the “moderate” face of the Palestinians - a remarkable leap of faith? 

Fatah, of course, was Yasser Arafat's creation.  Abbas was Arafat's number two man and successor in Fatah.  Arafat and Fatah were the chief architects of modern terrorism and specifically its most successful innovation, the suicide bomber.  Fatah launched the “second intifada,” the suicide bombing campaign that led to the deaths of more than a thousand innocent Israelis.  The Palestinians rejected Fatah in the January 2006 elections because of gross incompetence and corruption; indeed, Fatah insiders have filched much of the billions received by the Palestinian Authority while Palestinians still live in poverty. Fatah masquerades before the Western media as the secular, democratic alternative to Hamas, but this is a façade.  On the Arab Street, its rhetoric is equally as bloodthirsty and militant.  It is Abbas's Fatah, that is responsible for poisoning Palestinian society and legitimizing homicidal Jihadist groups including its own al Aqsa Martyrs' Brigade. 

In other words, they are not “moderate” at all.  Instead, they are corrupt and violent with no intentions of living peacefully with Israel. 

So how could Bush fall for this? 

How could the man who ended two terrorist sponsoring regimes in Afghanistan and Iraq, now willingly preside over the creation of a third?

It is a mystery.

But the Bush doctrine is now officially dead, abandoned by its author.  The man who said you are either “with us or against us in the war on terror,” has sided with the terrorists by negotiating with them, providing assistance, and attempting to confer upon them statehood even as they refuse to renounce terror and accept the Jewish state.

This is not peace for Israel but doom. 

And the man who felled Saddam Hussein and the Taliban should know this.   



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