Updated: December 19, 2012 12:35PM
Over the next few days you’re going to hear a lot of analysis and commentary offering up this nuanced explanation or that complex interpretation for the latest round of Israel-Hamas fighting in the Gaza Strip and the latest drive by the Palestinian Authority for enhanced U.N. recognition. But there’s nothing nuanced or complex about them. Both represent the simple fact of the persistent, uncompromising, never-ending rejection of the state of Israel by the Palestinians and their Arab and Muslim supporters.
Yes, the PA and Hamas may be competing for support among the Palestinians by trying to demonstrate who’s doing the most to confront Israel — PA President Mahmoud Abbas by a diplomatic offensive in the U.N. and Hamas with a terror offensive of raining rockets on Israel. But the bottom line is neither demonstrates a willingness to sit down and talk to reach a peaceable settlement of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Yes, there may be frustration among the Palestinian population on the lack of progress toward reaching a settlement. But how can progress be achieved when Abbas turns a cold shoulder to Israel’s entreaties to come to the bargaining table and Hamas rejects the very notion of talks?
Yes, the so-called “Arab spring” adds a new element into the Middle East equation. But mostly it is only a more fundamentalist, aggressive and reckless hatred of Israel that could explode in incalculable consequences, in contrast to the more cautious rejectionism of Arab dictators like Egypt’s Hosni Mubarak, for whom self-preservation overruled hazardous provocation of Palestinians — a people they never cared for much.
Yes, the upheaval overthrowing regimes in places like Libya unleashed a flood of new weapons into the hands of Gaza-based terrorists. But Iran already was working overtime to get as many rockets, mortars and guns to them as possible.
All these factors have come together to produce the Gaza crisis at this time. But it was going to come eventually one way or the other given the history of rejectionism. As recently as 2008 Abbas walked away from a comprehensive peace settlement. In 2005 Israel uprooted settlements and left Gaza. That was an opportunity for the Palestinians to show they could create a civil society; instead Hamas built a terror statelet.
Now Abbas seeks U.N. observer state status — what the Vatican has — to use the levers of U.N. authority like the international criminal court to harass and demonize Israel. Israel may — and should — stop collecting taxes for the PA and distributing them to it to show what a charade Palestinian governance is. Besides those taxes, the PA lives off the charity of donor nations who have reduced their aid due to the West’s economic problems and probably to frustration with PA corruption and incompetence.
And no nation can — or should — tolerate unrelenting rocket attacks liked those inflicted on the Jewish state by the Hamas terrorists. In recent weeks, hundreds of rockets have been launched, killing, wounding and terrorizing Israelis. Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak says the airstrike that killed Hamas butcher Ahmed al-Jabari and the raids on Gaza terrorist strongholds and arsenals mark the beginning, not the end, of Israel’s “Pillar of Defense” campaign.
Blame all the bloodshed that’s to come where it belongs — Palestinian rejection of a negotiated peace and of the Jewish state.