Tuesday, September 30, 2008

What did the Palestinians learn 60 years later? Not much!

In few weeks Israel will celebrate 60 years since its creation and establishment in Palestine. Over the last 60 years, the Jewish nation became the 4th largest and most powerful military force in the world and number one military and economic nation in the region.

Celebration events are planned all over the world, with so many leading political, civil, media, arts, music personalities participating in this celebration. Israelis and Jews have every reason to celebrate. Palestinians are still waiting not for a state, but an end to the Israeli-Jewish Occupation. One would think the Palestinians will hold gathering and meetings all over the world to see what went wrong. No such hope it will happen.

In less than 70 years from the Holocaust where more than 6 millions innocent Jews were murdered simply because they were Jews, and from the ashes of Auschwitz rose a nation and people to become perhaps the most powerful nation and people on earth. Yes, powerful around the world with political, financial, and media influence never seen at any time. Israel is powerful because its own Zionist loyalist in every government and nation around the world.

Yes, one has to give recognition to the vision, creative minds and relentless commitment and loyalty of the Zionist movement and its leadership to the creation of the State of Israel. Mobilizing the world Jewish community and leading nations of the world to support not only the creation and founding of Israel, its policies of expansion, ethnic cleansing, Apartheid and continued occupation of what is left of Palestine.

While the world Jewish community, the West and especially the US celebrate the founding of Israel. Those celebrating the founding of Israel choose to ignore that Israel was not created in a vacuum, by a simple act of God, a Big Bang. Israel was created over decades with deliberate plans to force the exiles of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians from their homes using all methods including terrorism. Terrorist leaders such as Shamir and Begin became prime ministers. Israel continued to expand beyond its borders of 47 with the occupation of Sinai, West Bank, Golan Heights and South Lebanon.

Israel had the benefits of leadership and unwavering commitment, loyalty and support by the Jewish community and the West, securing over a trillion dollars in grants and compensations from the US and Germany alone ,added to that billions in arms including nuclear weapon technologies that enabled Israel to have some 150 war heads. Not to mention over $ 300 Billions from the Jewish community around the world.

In contrast, the Palestinians not only lacked a competent leadership but had corrupt, inept leadership for the last 100 years. There is absolutely nothing to be proud of with a leadership of the likes of Hajj Amin Al-Hussaini, or the late Yasser Arafat or the present leadership of Mahmoud Abbas, Ahmed Qurai or Farouk Alqadomi, let alone Ismaail Haniyah or Khalid Mishal. All have failed the people and the nation.

While the Israeli leadership enlisted the support of the best and brightest to contribute to the building of the new nation, the Palestinian leadership could not go beyond its limited mental and intellectual capacity and narrow selfish interest. The Hussaini and Nashashibi families, the leading “notable” families of Jerusalem at the time, where more interested in promoting their own family interest and feuding with each other over leadership than of leading a people under siege and immanent danger. Every thing from organizing the resistance to managing the politics was done without much thought and without any plans or a vision for the future, even without realizing the real and imminent threat of exile.

Then came the late Yasser Arafat, learning from mistakes of his previous predecessor Ahmed Shuquari who did not have absolute control of finance and funding, Arafat made sure he alone control the purse and with that he went ahead to manipulate and castrate the PLO and the Palestinian National Congress “PNC” and beyond it corrupt intellectuals and businessmen. While the Jewish leadership was dedicated to Israel, the Palestinian leadership was obsessed with its selfish interest, power and money, becoming the richest ‘liberation” leadership in the world. While the Israelis and Jewish community held the leadership accountable, the Palestinians leadership held the people accountable and hostage to its own failure and demanded absolute and blind allegiance and ran the PLO and PNC as it wished. Ruthless raw power and threats of death, members of the PLO and PNC never dared debate let alone hold the leadership accountable for many of its failures in Jordan, in Lebanon, in Kuwait. The absence of free and democratic institutions and raw and brutal power lead Arafat & Company to conclude Oslo as a security and management contract for the continued Israeli Occupation of the West Bank and Gaza.

Unlike Israel, the Palestinian cause lacked the independence and free thinking of intellectuals and businessmen, certainly smart and dedicated and “clean” leadership. More troubling was the total corruption of intellectuals and business community. Two groups one would expect would be the one that demand accountability and transparency form the leadership and within all Palestinian ‘institutions”. Both group colluded with the leadership resulting in the kind of leadership the Palestinians have for the last 45 years. All key players, the leadership, intellectuals and business community and so called ‘representatives” of the people, all colluded together to fail the people and nation.

While it took the Jewish leadership few years to found the nation out of the ashes of the concentration camps, the Palestinians leadership in over 45 years with tens of billions,, not only failed to liberate what it set out to do Palestine of 48, it failed to liberate what was left of Palestine and failed to end the Occupation that started in 67. The PLO and Fatah and all those “fasael” forming the PLO were so inept and unprepared for building a new nation, they could not come up with a management plan to manage traffic in Manara Square in Ramallah. The PLO came back to Occupied Palestine not as liberator but as sub-contractor for the Israeli Occupation, with no plans for the future. Arafat & Company where only interested in self preservation securing funding and jobs for the leaderships and several thousand functionaries, who failed to liberate and with the Palestinians Authority becoming the Civil Administration for the Israeli Military Occupation.

Arafat & Company while outside of Palestine never looked to those under Occupation and were satisfied with building “institutions” that served the very personal interest of the leadership and never the community under occupation. The opposite happened when Arafat & Company returned to take over and manage the Israeli Occupation. The leadership never looked back at the Diaspora Palestinians who contributed tens of thousands of “martyrs” and who made the PLO one of the richest “liberation” organizations in the world. Arafat & Company simply walked away from community in exile. Post mortem criminal charges should be brought against Arafat for all of the crimes he committed against the Palestinian people. He and the PLO are responsible for the total destruction of the Palestinian community in Kuwait. What happened in Kuwait was no less of a crime than what happened in 1948 and the Nakkba.

60 years later, what the Palestinians hope to achieve with the leadership they have? Not much. Oslo set the stage for Israel to keep 80 % of the Occupied West Bank for Jewish settlements, Jewish roads and the Apartheid Wall. The Palestinians at best can hope for is a limited administrative role of collecting garbage, paying militias to protect the leadership, the Palestinian Authority, certainly the Occupation. Contrary to what we read in newspaper of denials by the leadership, the PLO and the PA are negotiating an “interim solutions” with Israel as demanded by the US and was well known for many years. With “Jewish facts” on the ground, there is simply no way the Palestinians will ever have a Palestinian nation on the area occupied in 67 including Jerusalem.

Israel and the US are enticing the leadership and the PA with money to fund militias and keep Fatah functionaries on the payroll while solidifying the Jewish Occupation. The PA in over 13 years of negotiations failed to remove one road blockade. In fact it signed an agreement that put the City of Hebron and its people under virtual curfew day in and day out under the constant threats, humiliations and criminal abuse by the criminal thugs that makes the Jewish community in Hebron. Let us not put all the blames on the leadership. Let us also put the blame on a nation and people that remained and most likely will remain silent with no sense of dignity or empowerment to take charge and make a difference. Perhaps the Palestinians after all are not worthy of a free and independent state. Accepting the status quo and all the failures of the last 100 years and failing to do something about it does not speak well of the Palestinians as people or nation. Perhaps the best and only options is for the people to sue and become second-class citizen in the State of Israel, rather live under a Palestinian Authority that is part of the Occupation.

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