Barry Shaw made aliyah from Manchester, England with his family. He spent eleven years on various kibbutzim, ending up at Mishmar HaSharon, the same kibbutz that served as home to Ehud Barak. After leaving the kibbutz for Netanya, Barry Shaw set up a busy real estate office in Netanya. A former believer in the Oslo process.
The Palestinian Authority is busy globetrotting in a charm offensive to persuade nations to vote this September in the United Nations for a resolution calling for the creation of the state of Palestine.
They claim to have the support of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund who have declared that the Palestinians have their fiscal house in order and have developed the necessary infrastructure for nation building.
Reports suggest that more than one hundred countries favour adding Palestine to the United Nations membership list. But what sort of nation are they introducing to the world, and is their vote, at this time, a wise move? Would it not be better, before admitting yet another troublesome Middle East nation into the fold, to insist on other considerations beyond a nice bank balance and a healthy GNP?
Recent murders in Palestinian controlled territories, as well as the ongoing killings of Israelis, should give these voters pause.
Vittorio Arrigoni was an Italian activist with a hatred for Israel. He sailed into Gaza on an anti-Israel flotilla and made this place his home for three years. He identified fully with the Palestinian cause, placing himself close to Hamas in Gaza City. This did not prevent him from being grabbed off the streets by radical Palestinians, beaten to a pulp, filmed with the background music of a Palestinian victory chant, before being strung up and hanged. This naïve Italian had vacuously protested Israel’s human rights record. He discovered at the end, that Israel’s human rights record would have kept him alive. It was the lack of human rights in Palestinian society that killed him.
Just a couple of weeks before, the strange life story of Juliano Mer came to an end when Palestinian gunmen shot and killed him outside his Freedom Theatre in Palestinian-controlled Jenin. Mer promoted the Palestinian cause through theatre. His productions automatically accused Israel of all the sins under the sun. What he did not promote was mutual understanding and a pragmatic and peaceful solution between Palestinians and Israelis. He inculcated the Palestinian desire for the whole of Israel through plays and readings. This was insufficient to prevent his death at the hands of Palestinian killers.
Mer and Arrigoni, and the boycotters and flotilla activists, have no desire for any pragmatic two state solution. They , like both Fatah and Hamas, want it all and will not be satisfied until the Jewish state of Israel is eliminated. All their talk of oppression, occupation, human rights, and all the other slogans they throw at Israel encourage violence and distance any peaceful solution. But that is the whole point. A point not yet appreciated by a world that continues to nurture the violent birth pangs of a state that intends to enter this world with a vengeance and an agenda.
After a ten day struggle for life, sixteen year old Daniel Viflic died of the head injuries he suffered when a Palestinian rocket exploded on the school bus carrying him home. Had the Palestinian terrorists fired their missile moments earlier the deathtoll would have been much higher as all the other children had left the bus at the previous bus stop.
These deaths fade into Middle East normalcy when compared to the inhuman horror of the brutal killings of the Fogel family in their home in the village of Itamar.
Two Palestinians broke into their home and cut the throats of eleven year old Yoav and his brother , four year old Elad, while they were sleeping. Their parents, disturbed by noise in their house, met their young children’s killers and shared the same fate.
The killers, who share the same name but are not related, left the house but decided to return in search of weapons. When they entered one of the bedrooms they came across three month old Hadas. Showing no humanity they cut the baby girl’s throat before fleeing the scene of their horrific crime thereby missing two other Fogel children sleeping in another room.
They showed no remorse when arrested. So far as they were concerned, as they openly stated, they had killed five Israelis and five Jews.
These brutal murderers were not part of some extreme radical Islamic terror group. They were members of Fatah’s secular PFLP, founded by Yasser Arafat decades ago.
It also needs to be highlighted that the Mer murder as with the killing of the Fogel family and many others did not take place in the Gaza Strip but in the areas controlled by the “moderate” Palestinian Authority, nurtured and cared for by the United Nations, EU, and funded by most Western governments.
All these killers are products of a modern Palestinian Authority that continues to incite against Israel in their schoolbooks, in their mosques, on their state-run television channels, and by statements publicly made by their elected officials and politicians.
Not only have the Palestinian Authority staunchly rejected recognition, compromise, and peace talks with Israel, as their quest for nationhood gathers strength their voice has become more strident in their education and indoctrination to their own people that all of Israel belongs to them.
It goes way beyond the denial and expunging of thousands of years of Jewish history and archeological evidence. The hatred of Jews is expressed in their declaration that any Arab who sells land to Jews will be killed, and any territory given to a future Palestinian state must be Judenrein, free of Jews. This racism finds expression with the anti-Semitic statements to be found in the Palestinian Charter, which is the constitution of their nationhood.
Note! I am talking about the Palestinian Authority here, not the Islamic Hamas regime in Gaza. Both are guilty of human rights offences, racism and anti-Semitism. Both glorify murderers and terrorists, naming public squares, streets, cultural and sporting events after the murderers of Jews. The massacre of the Fogel family was cause for celebration in many Palestinian towns.
This then, in a nutshell, is the type of state that the Western world wishes to support and bring into being. While alarmed and concerned over the upheavals in the Arab and Muslim world they blithely encourage a Palestinian entity that will follow in the wake of radicalism and hatred. It is far from certain that a future Palestinian state will not fall to Hamas, or to even more radical elements. Hamas is being seriously challenged by groups loyal to Al-Qaida in the Gaza Strip.
The schism in Palestinian society is another reason not to award them statehood. The violent immaturity that expresses itself with bloodshed in not conducive to good governance. Is statehood meant to reward the Fatah-led Palestinian Authority at the expense of an internationally recognised terror organisation, Hamas?
Surely not. The current Middle East upheavals in the Muslim world that is leading to the rise of Islamic representation will surely find its voice in a future Palestine.
Surely statehood should be given to new authorities that prove themselves worthy by showing unity and the basics of democracy, namely regular free and open elections? Such a thing is currently impossible in the riven divisions of Palestinian politics. Statehood is not the balm that will cure all evils.
It may well be that the billions of dollars pumped into the development of a Palestinian state has turned them into an incurable middle class basketcase. All the evidence shows that the evolving Palestinian society, be it in the Fatah-led Palestinian Authority in the West Bank or Hamas in the Gaza Strip, is morally bankrupt and incapable of finding solutions not only to their internal divisions but also in making pragmatic steps to a viable peace alongside Israel.
No state should be introduced into the world until it can prove itself to be strongly pragmatic and at peace with its neighbours.
To do so would be to add oil to an already burning Middle East.