Saturday, January 28, 2006

Hamas should thank the EU for its electoral victory

Since 1994, the EU has given hundreds of millions of dollars of aid per year to the Palestinian Authority. While the intent was good, and the aim was to benefit the Palestinian population and to help advance the Middle East Peace Process, the aid in part exacerbated the problems of the Palestinians and led to a radicalization of the population.

Since the Oslo agreement, the Europeans should have linked their aid to concrete steps toward an improved life for the Palestinians and prepare them for the prospect of a peace with Israel. Unfortunately, Europeans were reluctant to do so and allowed the governments of Arafat and Abbas to stir up the hatred of Israel and of the Jews, engage in massive corruption, and tolerate the presence of terrorist militias. As a result, Palestinians have become much more radicalized, hateful towards Israel and disgruntled with the Palestinian Authority. And their vote this week is unfortunately the best expression of these feelings.

How different would the Palestinian votes have been if Europe had forced the PA to actively fight corruption and promote peace among its people?

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