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October 19, 2003
Poll: Majority of Palestinians Back Suicide Bombing

Once again, I have to ask the question: is it a smart idea to bestow sovereignty onto the Palestinians?

Seventy-five percent of Palestinians support the suicide bombing at an Israeli restaurant two weeks ago in which 21 people, including four children, were killed, a Palestinian survey showed Sunday.

The survey by the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research, which questioned 1,318 respondents in the West Bank and Gaza Strip (news - web sites), also showed that 85 percent of Palestinians support a "mutual cessation of violence by both sides."

The poll found considerable anti-American feeling among Palestinians. Just over 95 percent of respondents said the United States was "not sincere" when it says it seeks to establish a Palestinian state alongside Israel.

Unfortunately, I think we are all too sincere about the two-state solution, which after all is mandated by UN resolutions which we supported, or at least allowed to happen without our opposition. In an area where we are trying our best to eliminate terrorism as a method of political action, we're about to hand the keys over to a group of people who have fine-tuned terrorism to an art form, and who do not appear at all motivated to change their ways. I understand that you only make peace with your enemies, but it seems to me that we'll be talking about Palestine tomorrow the way we talk about Iran today.

Do I have any other solutions? Unfortunately, no. The Israelis cannot continue the "occupation" as it is. Either they have to evict the Palestinians, which is the equivalent of the ethnic cleansing in the Balkans, or they have to agree to a Swiss-like canton government that gives equality to Palestinians within the Israeli structure (which is the equivalent of the elimination of Israel), or the Palestinians have to have their own state, free of Israeli settlements and as contiguous as possible. The only advice I can offer is that current Palestinian leadership must be removed from the equation and that the Palestinians must realize that the occupation will continue as long as the bombings do. And as the dominos fall in the Middle East, there will be less and less support for continuing the Palestinian intifada. Iraqis are already expressing their contempt for Palestinians; expect more of that as other governments are forced to become more representative and cannot blame their problems on the Israeli occupation.

UPDATE: Read this post from David Bernstein at the Volokh Conspiracy regarding the Palestinians. He has better and more specific suggestions, which could be used by the US as well as Israel.

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Posted by Ed Morrissey at October 19, 2003 11:07 AM

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