By Vic Rosenthal
Khaled Meshaal, in Mecca (Jerusalem Post):
“I want to assure our brothers and people that we will not leave this place without agreement,” he said. “After we reach an agreement, the international community will be obliged to respect it and lift the sanctions imposed on our people.”
The world should make it clear to him that we don’t really care a fig about whether Hamas and Fatah can arrive at a mutual agreement about portfolios in the Palestinian Cabinet.
We should insist that the PA will have no money and no legitimacy until it renounces (and actually stops) terrorism, sincerely recognizes Israel’s right to exist, and accepts the Oslo agreements. And while they’re at it, they can actually abide by the agreements which require them to stop anti-Israel incitement.
Meshaal added that an agreement was needed to “face the challenges facing the Palestinians, first and foremost ridding the Palestinians of the occupation, restoring our rights and guaranteeing the right of return for the refugees to their homes.”
No, these are not the first challenges facing them. These are the rewards that they may get — at least the first two — if they can overcome the challenge of changing their society from a collection of murderous barbarian gangs to one that adheres to the rudimentary principles of civilized life.
Unfortunately they are in the grip of a mass psychological disorder, induced by the absorption of decades and decades of lies and hate from the like of Haj Amin al-Husseini, Yasser Arafat, etc. They have been rendered crazy by millions of dollars worth of media, conditioning, and propaganda orchestrated from Nasser’s Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Syria, and lately Iran. They have been turned into shells of humanity surrounding a core of hot anger and obsession to get revenge and redress for the crimes that they believe have been perpetrated against them. They have been rendered unable to see that they themselves are actors on the stage, not just passive victims, and that their own actions have consequences and can be moral or immoral.
Yes, Israel has denied Palestinian human rights, made their lives hard, built settlements on land that by justice should be theirs. But the Palestinians can’t see that because of their own murderous actions, from the 1920’s to last Monday in Eilat, they bear some — quite a lot — of the responsibility for what has happened to them.
Personally, I don’t see that there’s any hope for a peaceful and just settlement, because I have not heard any Palestinian say anything other than “you did this to us, you must pay”. I have not heard any Palestinian say “we should not randomly murder your citizens, because it’s wrong”; the closest thing has been “it’s bad for our cause”. I think Israel can change their behavior in a moral direction because Israelis still have a conscience; I don’t think the Palestinians do.
I’ve known some unfortunate people with severe depression. The more depressed they get, the more their window on the world narrows; the less they are able to empathize with others, the less they are able to know or care how their own actions affect others. They focus on the pain within and everything else is shut out.
Every negotiation, every peace plan will fail unless the Palestinian leadership (which I think is more or less a fair representation of the people) becomes totally other from what it is today. It’s not going to happen.