Friday, April 25, 2014

Who will gain and who will lose?

Who does the current situation help and who does it harm?  Namely the formation of a Palestinian Unity Government between Hamas and the Palestine Authority (Fatah-PLO) and the cessation of negotiations in the so-called peace process between Israel and the PA due to the reconciliation with Hamas.  Let's be clear about this, since Hamas is a terrorist group openly dedicated to the destruction of Israel and since they have fired over 100 missiles into Israel this year to kill and maim civilians, there can be no continuation of the status quo.  For the PA, it's either them or us.
So the new situation first helps Hamas, because they are practically bankrupt due to the closing of the tunnels under the Egyptian border by the new al-Sisi Government, since these tunnels were the major source of income for the Hamas Government in Gaza.  A reconciliation now between Hamas and the PA allows new sources of funds to flow into Gaza, and Hamas have the prospect of winning in future joint elections in the West Bank, due to the total corruption of the current PLO government there.  The Palestinians in the West Bank know this, yet the EU and USA continue to pour money into the failed and corrupt system.  Only if and when Hamas take over, as they did in Gaza, will the western liberals maybe see the light.
The reconciliation with Hamas helps Pres. Abbas of the PA, in effect it saves him from assassination at the hands of Hamas.  Because if he had in fact come to any kind of reconciliation with Israel, any compromise whatseoever in the Palestinian position, he would be dead.  By standing firm on all counts and then reconciling with Hamas he has saved himself and his family for a quiet retirement.  A big loser will be the PLO-Fatah, since they have clearly been unable to make any peace with Israel and by turning to Hamas are likely to be swept away by Hamas in any future elections. 
In Israel, a big loser will be Tzipi Livni, she joined the Netanyahu Coalition Government in order to bring peace, and she was put in charge of the negotiations with the Palestinians.  But, the talks failed, they ground to a predictable halt, and with it her political future.  Her Tnuah party will be decimated in any future elections.  Similarly the Labor Party, who chose to send a large delegation of MKs to sit with Pres. Abbas in Ramallah and essentially plead with him to make peace with Israel only one week before the end of the negotiations.  How degrading, and what a political mistake.  They too will be decimated in any future elections, since they clearly have no idea about the reality of the situation.
Another big loser will be Secty of State Kerry and his boss Pres. Obama, the charitable interpretation is that they tried hard to do a good thing.  But, in reality there was never any chance of obtaingin any kind of agreement between the PA and Israel, given the intransigence of Abbas and the strength of the Netanyahu Coalition.  It is an embarrassing defeat for Kerry, who put far too much of his credibility on the line in the Middle East, and for Obama who will now not be feared by any opponent in foreign affairs, especially the Russians.  Failure can never foster strength. 
Perhaps the person who will gain the most will be Netanyahu.  The people of Israel have seen that even when trying hard and giving concessions nothing will avail, the Palestinians are basically intansigent and incalcitrant.  Netanyahu stood firm against them and his position is validated.  Another politician who may gain is Bayit Yehudi Head Naftali Bennett, who is against any compromise with the Palestinians.  But, Yair Lapid may be weakened because he wanted a peace agreement too much. The clarification of the situation by the Hamas reconciliation will cause a further lurch to the right in Israeli politics.


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