Wednesday, May 04, 2005
Why the Ghetto exists in the first place
posted by: Frubious Bandersnatch at 11:14 AM
A puppet state? – Surely not….

Some people have argued that the only reason we have a Bethlehem ghetto in the first place (as well as the other Ghetto’s of course) is because the Palestinian cities became ungovernable after the first intifada. To me, this makes a lot of sense. Even with an authoritarian or military dictatorship in place the people still need to show a certain amount of willing in order for the Regime to remain in power. You only need to look at Britain’s withdrawal from India to see that sometimes the rulers hand is forced by more disobedience than it can handle. If there’s one thing you can say about the first intifada – it certainly demonstrated a lot of healthy disobedience as a truly popular uprising.

The remnants of Palestine simply became un-governable. Even with the regular use of the gun Israel had to accept that it was never again going to be possible to assert direct rule over the cities. It is important to note however that this ONLY applies to the cities, so now we have the situation where the population centers of Palestine have been jettisoned, but most of the land itself has been taken.

Now there are those who argue (in an infinitely naïve way) that the cities were granted independence because it was ‘the right thing to do’ and that the rest of the land will follow ‘when the Palestinians stop using terror’ against an entirely defenseless Israel - which just happens to be the fourth largest military machine in the world. Hmmm….

From the standpoint of this argument, it makes no sense for Israel to simply jettison the cities and leave them hanging over the abyss with no territory because they would quickly deteriorate into anarchic hot beds of terror. That is unless you are willing to pressure the new regime in the cities, under the guise of ‘security reform’, to govern them on Israel’s behalf. Could that be why there are only 7 doctors per 10,000 Palestinians and over 450 police officers to the same head of population? A cynical commentator would so yes – as would a realist.

In the same vein, this vastly over-inflated security force comes at a cost of one-quarter of the budget whilst agriculture, which has been devastated by the Israeli military, has managed to secure just 1% of the new regimes budget.

So why am I writing this? Is it to attack the PA? The honest answer to this is ‘no’ as there are many members of the PA who are genuinely trying to achieve change with their hands tied behind their backs. The blame goes to those in Tel Aviv who would dominate this fledgling regime and drive it into a corner (or series of disconnected ghetto’s).

The reason I wanted to present this argument on the blog today is to convince those readers who are not entirely certain, that the peace process is nothing more than a cynical jettisoning of ungovernable territories which in know way holds the Palestinians best interests at heart. The Zionist movement, with over a hundred years of momentum, has not suddenly had a change of heart and decided that natives should be treated with respect – I wouldn’t be working in Bethlehem if that were the case.

I write this because many abroad support the peace process through well intentioned optimism and hope. I ask those people to store their optimism for a few years and channel it towards a day when everyone in Palestine-Israel has full human rights and the ability to come and go as they please. The peace process will not come close to achieving these aims.
5 Comments
Anonymous Anonymous
Thopugh your thoughts are fine, there will be no coming and going freely when suicide bombers continue to sneak into Israel to murder Israelis...onl;y when there is a peace accord and both sides clamp down on their own extremists will there be a possibility for an accord.. And that means right wing Israelis in the territories and armed militats in the Palestinian areas.
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