Palestine: US asset or liability?

By Yoram Ettinger

1. THE NATURE OF THE PROPOSED PALESTINIAN STATE, AND ITS IMPACT ON REGIONAL STABILITY, TERRORISM AND AMERICAN INTERESTS AND VALUES are attested by the raging Palestinian civil war and by the track record of the Palestinian Authority (PA) since 1993 and the PLO/Fatah since 1964 and1959: hate education, homicide bombing, systematic violent violation of commitments, inter-Arab treachery, corruption and oppression of Palestinians in general and the Christian community of Bethlehem in particular.

2. THE BROADER THE PA/PLO/HAMAS INDEPENDENCE, THE MORE INTENSE IS INTERNATIONAL TERRORISM. PLO independence was upgraded in 1993, transformed into the semi-sovereign PA; the most intense wave of anti-US terrorism has been conducted since 1993 (1st Twin Tower), culminating on 9/11. The 1993 establishment of the PA – by Palestinian terrorists from Iraq, Yemen, Sudan, Syria, Lebanon, Jordan and Tunisia – has adrenalized international terrorism. It has been perceived as a reward to the role-model of international terrorism, the PLO. The 1968-70 and 1970-1982 PLO autonomy in Jordan and in Lebanon provided training and inspiration to multitude of terror organizations in the Mideast, Far East, West Europe, Central and Latin America.

3. ROLE-MODEL OF INTERNATIONAL TERRORISM. Modern-day hijacking was introduced by the PLO in the late ‘60s, and then was emulated by other terror organizations. Since 1994, the PA has become the largest terrorist base in the world, a test site for “virulent hate-education as a manufacturing line of terrorists.” It is an incubator for modern-day terrorism, such as homicide bombing and car bombing, which have been exported to Iraq, Afghanistan, England and other arenas.

4. OUTPOST FOR ANTI-WESTERN REGIMES. The PA, PLO and Hamas have been allies of Bin-Laden, Saddam, post-Shah Iran, Syria, Sudan, North Korea as well as Russia, China, Cuba and Venezuela, as evident by official Palestinian education, media and clergy systems. For example, on Sept. 11, 2001, Abu Mazen’s daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida stated, “ANTI-US HOMICIDE BOMBERS ARE THE SALT OF THE EARTH…Today’s homicide bombers are the noble successors of the homicide bombers, who taught the US Marines a rough lesson [300 Americans murdered in 1983].” Palestinians fought US forces in Afghanistan and in Iraq. The ideological mentors of the PLO and Hamas were the allies of the Nazis and the Communist regimes of the USSR and East Europe.

5. DEATH SENTENCE TO THE PRO-WESTERN REGIMES. A Palestinian state would doom the pro-US Hashemite regime, whose population and territory is 65% and 75% Palestinian, would export terrorism against the relatively pro-US regimes of Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and Bahrain and would provide an eastern Mediterranean platform to Iran, Russia and China.

6. LEOPARDS DON’T CHANGE SPOTS, ONLY TACTICS. The 1993-2007 profile of the PA is consistent with precedents. In 1950, Arafat and Abu Mazen fled Egypt due to subversion. In 1966, they fled Syria after murdering a number of Syrian intelligence officers. In 1970, they were expelled from Jordan following a foiled coup against King Hussein. In 1975 they tried to topple Lebanon’s government, triggering a multi-year civil war and Syrian occupation. In 1990 (while Bush/Baker brutalized Israel!), the PLO spearheaded Saddam’s rape of Kuwait, which hosted Fatah since the 1950s. Therefore, Arab regimes prohibit PLO to bear arms on their soil, while pro-Palestinian Arab rhetoric has been matched by anti-Palestinian Arab action and by minimal financial Arab aid.

7. THE PALESTINIAN ISSUE HAS NOT IGNITED ARAB-ISRAELI WARS. For instance, the 1948/9 War was fought by the Arab countries at the expense of the Palestinians, hence the Jordanian and Egyptian occupation of Judea, Samaria and Gaza following that war. Neither the 1982 Israel-PLO war in Lebanon, nor the 1987-92 1st Intifadah, nor the 2000-2006 2nd Intifadah ignited Arab-Israeli wars.

8. THE CLASSIC OXYMORON. The proposed Palestinian State and US national security interests constitute a classic case of oxymoron! A Palestinian State would exacerbate problems and paralyze solutions.

July 14, 2007 | 4 Comments »

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4 Comments / 4 Comments

  1. Yamit, you are right it is not just about oil, though oil figures largely into the mix. The West has allowed the world economy to become an oil based economy.

    It is not correct that a few select Western companies make billions in oil profits. There are more than a few such companies but there are also a very great many Western service, brokering, engineering and technological companies that make fortunes in fields related to oil.

    Politically, neither the EU nor America can forget the Saudi led oil embargo in 1973. No Western government wants to go through that again. If they allowed that to happen by the policies they instituted, they could very well pay dearly for that choice in the polls at their next elections.

    You do make a good point that the oil producing nations that make trillions of dollars have invested heavily not only in America, but in other Western nations.

    If these Arab oil giants called their loans, pulled their assets out or even threatened to do so, it could well destabilize the economies of Western nations.

    That financial power of the Arab oil producing nations is a secondary consequence of their oil and so it is part of the oil leverage the Arab oil producing nations have over America and the EU.

    Another lever that the Muslim nations have found useful is that Western nations are greedy for the billions of dollars that can be made in the oil business. Muslim nations ensure they can extract concessions and Western appeasement by playing to the greedy natures of many Westerners.

    Yet another lever the Muslim world uses against the West is fear. There are 1.3 billion Muslims in the world. Apart from the fear that radical Islam strikes in the heart of the West, we have witnessed time and again just how easily it is for radical Muslims and angry Muslim leaders to get a very great many ordinarily silent Muslims riled up enough to become violent in their protests and their advocacy against America, Israel and the West.

    Many of the 56 Muslim member states of the OIC have no direct oil leverage. They along with the U.N. Palestinian contingent are all part of the great Muslim umma. The views of the more powerful Muslim states that are part of the O.I.C. as you know continue to successfully orchestrate an annual litany of politicized anti-Israel/anti-Semitic based U.N. resolutions. Those resolutions have had the support of most, if not all EU nations, being the lackies of the Muslim power brokers behind the O.I.C. and of course the Arab League.

    There are of course other factors as well, some of which I have alluded to in the prior post and this one, but I will stop it there and leave a more extensive review of the situation to a treatise I might write on the subject, if and when I can find the time.

  2. Bill I do not think it is just about oil, I think it has a two fold purpose. OIL PROFITS FOR A FEW SELECT COMPANIES are one primary purpose. The rate of high priced oil makes domestic extraction very profitable but as long as the prices keep rising America and her Industrial and commercial giants are making Billions in windfall profits. If America were to lose these options they could always fall back on Domestic reservers which are sufficient to last almost forever including Shale. America could always fall back on coal with modern technology to filter the dirt. I dont think it is supply that is the problem but continued obscene Corporate profits that always line the politicians pockets one way or another.
    The other factors are the the Big oil producing countries have invested heavily in American enterprise and own trillions of Americas debt. In other words they kind of own America. This includes the Chinese and the Japanese. America is not a free country in determining its foreign policy.

  3. In spite of Yoram Ettinger’s 8 fact statements, the Palestinians and the drive to push them to have their own independent state is akin to a short term American asset and a long term liability.

    Whether it is an individual or a government, both act to protect their assets for so long as those assets are seen to be on balance an asset and not a liability.

    The U.S. policy to promote the notion of an independent Palestinian state a policy linked to America’s other policies that are intended to advance American interests in the Middle East.

    The U.S. perceives that the Arabs, by virtue of oil are in a position of power over the U.S. and the E.U. which America desperately wants to find some support from. The Arab oil states are also in a position of power in Muslim Middle East. For so long as the U.S. therefore perceives that the Muslim Middle East wants America to pressure Israel to go along with American efforts to ultimately achieve an independent Palestinian state, the U.S. will continue to promote that goal.

    America appears to believe that anything that helps America achieve her own goals in the Muslim Middle East is in American interests.

    If an independent Palestinian state emerges and that is a very big if, it is very likely that it will be a welfare and terrorist state that will continue to find reason to attack Israel.

    It is unrealistic however to expect that if such turns out to be the case that the world will have run out of excuses to blame Israel for the Palestinian instability and radicalism or that it would suddenly take a hands off approach when Israel attacks back.

    Gaza is now a virtual state of Palestinian terror run by Hamas with about 80% support from the Palestinians for their Jew hating agenda to destroy Israel. Hamas has made no pretence of its position that on behalf of all Palestinians, Hamas is at war with Israel.

    I doubt during WWII the Hitlerian Nazi government enjoyed nearly as much as 80% support from German citizens. The Allies in WWII did not hesitate in carpet bombing and wreaking havoc in and destruction on Dresden, Cologne, and Berlin out of concern as to how many innocent, anti-Nazi and non-combattant Germans suffered and died.

    The reality was that Germany, led by its government was at war with the Allies. In that context, the allies had the moral duty to defeat the German enemy and victory meant nothing less then Germany’s utter defeat.

    We again have a virtual Palestinian state whose government is Hamas that is in its declared war with Israel.

    So why does Israel not engage her enemy as the allies engaged Germany with victory being the only goal?

  4. All the above points are true. The problem is unless the Pallistinians are given there own independent state, Israel and the US will be blamed for all the trouble. Whether that is based in reality or not that is how it will be portrayed.

    After they have their own state and it fails economicly and launches attacks against Israel only then can the blame be put where it belongs, on the Palistinians.

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