Tuesday, June 26, 2007

The Endless Cycle of Islamic Appeasement

Ronbo noted to me the other day that he had noticed a certain fatigue among the better commentators: they are visibly getting tired, because they are saying the same things over and over again, and no one is listening or acting on the arguments they are making. Those who don't learn from history are doomed to repeat it—and those who cannot convince their fellow men to learn from history are doomed to repeat themselves.

But forget about learning from history—our leaders aren't learning from the present. They haven't learned from last year's Hezbollah assault on Israel, and they are not learning from the latest Iranian summer offensive. The issue on which our leaders are most steadfast in their refusal to learn is the case of the Palestinians. As the article below makes very clear, the "new" strategy of supporting Arafat's old Fatah faction has been tried again and again—and it always makes things worse.

"A Bad Week for the Good Guys," Tom Rose, Weekly Standard, June 22 The past week has been a good one for terrorists. The birth of the world's first truly terrorist state in Gaza was quickly followed by a Western response that, if sustained, all but guarantees that terror state's survival.

While there are plenty of examples, past and present, of states that encourage, fund and even practice terrorism, no nations have ever been created explicitly for the sake of terrorism. Not even the Taliban. Hamas was built upon the terrorist edifice created by the organization it recently supplanted—the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), or "Fatah" as it is has become more recently known. The PLO was created in 1964, three years before the Israeli occupation of the West Bank and Gaza, not to create the world's 22nd Arab state, but to destroy its only Jewish state. Hamas overthrew the PLO in Gaza not to change the PLO's dream, but to fulfill it.

What, then, is Washington's answer to Hamastan in Gaza? Why, another bailout of the one organization responsible for the entire debacle in the first place—the PLO. After 45 years of ground work preparing for Hamas' takeover by radicalizing Palestinian society through blood-curdling terrorism, mind-boggling corruption, and world-class inefficiency, the US and Israeli governments have announced their gratitude to Fatah with a billion dollar emergency aid package….

Palestinian society cannot be transformed by reviving the group responsible for its degradation. How does one fight terrorism by rewarding those who invented it?...

It might be one thing if a policy of saving the PLO had never been tried. But it has been tried, and it has failed, not once, not twice, but three times. It was tried and failed in 1970 when President Nixon pressured Jordan's King Hussein to let the PLO decamp to Lebanon after the PLO failed to destroy Jordan. It destroyed Lebanon instead. In 1982 the United States again came to the PLO's rescue by arranging its exit from Lebanon during the Israeli invasion. The third, most damaging resuscitation came with the Oslo Peace Accords in 1993, this time not at American hands, but at Israel's.

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