If only. Still, the Arab world does have a better handle on what is going on between Hamas and Fatah, even if they are doing nothing about it--actually, that may be the best sign that they actually do understand the situation. Unlike the West, they are in no hurry to pour their money and resources into a bottomless pit.
In some circles, it is still fashionable to blame Israel for all of the Palestinians' troubles, but in this instance, the leaders of Hamas and Fatah have committed crimes of equal magnitude against their own constituents. Not only have scores of people died at the hands of their armed forces, the fighting has also served to greatly undermine the Palestinian cause. It has become increasingly difficult for the international community to feel sympathy for the Palestinian people when their own leaders provide so much media ammunition to distract the world from their plight. The image of lawlessness and internecine warfare conveys the image of a people who are simply not ready for self-governance or an independent state.
The lessons from the Occupied Territories ought to also weigh heavily on Lebanese leaders, who have also shown a propensity to allow their power struggles to degenerate into violence that claims the lives of innocent victims. International mediators will soon grow tired of helping those who show no interest whatsoever in helping themselves.
The Washington Post has some of the numbers on the promises made by Arab countries to the Palestinian Authority--broken and otherwise:
Out of 22 Arab nations that made pledges, only three -- Algeria, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates -- have contributed funds this year, while oil-rich countries such as Libya, Kuwait and Qatar have sent nothing and still owe the Palestinian government more than $700 million in past-due pledges.Noah Pollak responds to Obama's interview on Meet The Press where Obama ties the resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to the resolution of tensions in the entire area. Pollak notes:
The Palestinian Authority uses the contributions to help pay salaries for civil servants, health-care specialists and other workers in the Palestinian territories. European governments, the World Bank and the United States have provided more than three times as much money as Arab countries this year to keep the government afloat, but officials said the Europeans and the World Bank have virtually depleted their resources, leaving a funding gap of about $800 million for the rest of 2008.
In this worldview, the ineffectiveness of Arab states as U.S. allies is due primarily to genuine — as opposed to claimed — objections over the lack of American involvement in the conflict, as if America’s failure to “create” a Palestinian state is because 15 years of Madrid, Oslo, Camp David, the Road Map, Annapolis, and billions of dollars in foreign aid represent an insufficient dedication of resources to the conflict.After targeting all of these resources over all that time--and nothing accomplished.
The Arab world knows what they are not doing.
Technorati Tag: Palestinians.