March, 17th, 2003. CSCAweb (www.nodo50.org/csca)
Palestinian leaders disgrace
themselves while Israel gets a new victory for free
"Let the Palestinians
engage in never ending discussions about ministerial appointments
and accountability, let the world talk about P.A. democratic
ways and performance, let Western think tanks and newspapers
elaborate about this new discovery of Middle East policy. In
the meantime Israel can keep on with its well known dreadful
policies. What the old Zionist guard used to say in the last
century, still holds true today: 'it does not matter what the
gentiles say or do, what it matters is what Israel does' -and
what the US approves of".
While rank and file Palestinians of the resistance against
the occupiers of their land are risking their lives everyday
in an unequal war; while Palestinian civilians, many children
amongst them, are striving for survival; while many non Palestinian
people are carrying out solidarity actions in favor of the Palestinian
cause all around the world, Palestinian political leaders in
the Authority and in the Legislative Council waste their time
picking up a new speaker to talk on their behalf with the other
"partner in peace", that is, Israel, and the "honest
broker", that is, the United States.
Do not they have anything better to do for the struggle of
national liberation, while their constituents are being killed
by the hundreds? Could Abu Mazen protect a single child from
being shot at by a snipper -soldier or settler, in any event
both largely equipped, supported and financed by the US- since
the second Intifada began? Did he say he is going to do it from
now on? But, wait a minute, several mistakes have slipped in.
The authority stopped fighting for liberation some time ago.
What they have been doing lately is trying to find an accommodation
between the Zionist movement and its aims and the Palestinian
people and their aspirations. Perhaps, one of the signs of this
-although not the only one- is that Israel kills children and
freedom fighters, but not Authority representatives. Incredible
as it may seems, Arafat and Co. are still unaware that Zionist
and Palestinian goals are totally conflicting. What any stone-thrower
under 18 years of age knows, Arafat does not know. That is why
that child goes to the Gaza streets to confront the Merkavas,
and Arafat goes to Camp David to shake hands with the one who
sends the tanks to Gaza.
Nobody pays attention to the P.A. lately. People is concerned
about events in Iraq and stopped caring for the what Arafat say
and do even before the crisis erupted. However, as it happens
with children, P.A. leaders like to get some attention from their
tutors. Now you can hear a Prime Minister is going to be appointed.
The appointee is Abu Mazen. The news bulletins in the West say
again and again that both the position a new one- and the
person -a senior one- are a must for the Palestinian democracy
and management and for a better relationship with Israel. Why,
then, do not these bulletins call for general elections instead?
Why, then, do not these bulletins criticise P.A. security forces
interrogation methods of political detainees and the Authority
treatment of opposition leaders? In any event, what kind of democracy
are the critics aiming for? A democracy made in the US, or in
Israel, which send tanks and war airplanes to kill civilians
in their homes and children in their way to school in Iraq, Palestine
and some other countries?
The truth is that there are no constituents in the Occupied
Territories, there is just a whole population living inside an
ever shrinking and suffocating prison. Most of the Palestinians
are not only prisoners but third class prisoners, that is to
say, they have all kind of constraints, many are even malnourished.
Neither human rights nor democracy for these millions. Western
leaders talk about democracy for their counterparts, just for
the P.A. leaders, they never mention the remaining three million
prisoners. There will be some democracy for the prison jailer
deputy and the much heralded Prime Minister: the Authority and
It is enough to compare Abu Mazen's luxurious villa in Gaza
with any refugee's house in the same city, although not in the
same area, to realise that the owner is not the kind of leader
a people fighting for national liberation needs now. But, in
case you still have some doubts, listen to what Israeli or US
commentators say about him to be sure he is definitely not the
right person for Palestinians and the favourite of those. Dennis
Ross, for example, says he is the best partner as far as he really
has executive power. In other words, if Abu Mazen can once and
for all crush the Palestinian resistance movement, then, he,
and not Arafat, will receive the prison's keys and will be allowed
to travel to Camp David and to appear in front page pictures
with world leaders.
But this crushing and this travelling is what Israel and its
main supporter, the US, want. Only traitors, collaborators in
Palestinian parlance, could accept this proposal. Israel, as
any other occupying power, is very conscious abut the real leaders
of the people it has to keep under the boot. That is why Bargouti
is in prison and that is why HAMAS and Islamic Yihad leaders
are trying hard to avoid being the target of the IDF missiles.
If hundreds of your people are being killed, if thousands are
being injured, if hundred of thousands are being fiercely repressed
by an occupying force, you can do many many things for them before
accepting the position of Prime Minister that will only satisfy
This is the double tragedy of the Palestinian movement nowadays:
Palestinians confront both a very powerful army commanded by
a remorseless leader, and a leadership that has totally renounced
to its national aims. There is no way for the resistance to win
in both fronts at the same time.
At the same time, unfortunately, the Zionists have placed
themselves, again with invaluable US help, in a winning position.
With a Palestinian Prime Minister, Israel will change a tired
and incompetent old leader for a new and more compliant one.
It also buys time. Now, Abu Mazen has to prove he deserves this
new opportunity the Palestinians have been given. The only way
for him to do so is to satisfy Israel and US demands, which are
not the Palestinian needs. If he fails, Israel will win, since
it and the US will put the blame on him and Israel will crush
the Palestinian by itself, with renewed US support. But if he
succeeds, Israel will win as well. Neither the IDF, nor Israeli
prisons, but the Palestinian security forces and Palestinians
prisons will repress the Palestinians. No more Western TV crews
filming the Israeli soldiers breaking into Gaza streets and shooting
at Palestinians. The myth of the ethos of the Israeli soldier
will shine again. An up to date version of occupation by remote
Let the Palestinians engage in never ending discussions about
ministerial appointments and accountability, let the world talk
about P.A. democratic ways and performance, let Western think
tanks and newspapers elaborate about this new discovery of Middle
East policy. In the meantime Israel can keep on with its well
known dreadful policies. What the old Zionist guard used to say
in the last century, still holds true today: it does not matter
what the gentiles say or do, what it matters is what Israel does
-and what the US approves of.