NY Times Op-ed: Blame Israel for Third Intifada
A Third Intifada will erupt and it will be Israel’s fault, according to an op-ed in Friday's New York Times by Nathan Thrall, an analyst of The International Crisis Group which is partly funded by George Soros, who also is benefactor of the left-wing J Street lobby.
Thrall is the same analyst who last month warned in the same newspaper that if Israel continues to oppose Palestinian Authority unity between terrorist Hamas and Fatah, it might face Al Qaeda instead of Hamas.
This time around, he theorized that the reason for a Third Intifada might be “price tag” vandalism “by Jewish settlers” or “the construction of new settlement housing...”
He added that whatever the cause, it will be Israel’s fault for allowing Israelis to “have come to believe they can eat their cake and have it, too.”
Thrall focused solely on what he called PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas’ ostensible efforts for security cooperation between the Palestinian Authority and the Israeli government [that] would make Israel feel safer and remove its primary justification for continuing to occupy the West Bank.”
He based his thesis that a new Intifada will break out on the claim that there have been “years of peace and quiet in Tel Aviv,” without mentioning the daily attacks on Jewish motorists and more than a few terrorist attacks in the Palestinian Authority, including the savage murders of six members of the Fogel family in Samaria last year.
Thrall praised Abbas as “one of the key architects of the Oslo peace process” and “perhaps its last remaining believer.”
Abbas “has been forced to pay lip service to the demands of those who advocate confrontation by issuing repeated pledges to confront Israel — by dismantling the Palestinian Authority or refusing to negotiate unless Israel freezes settlement construction — only to renege on each one,” according to Thrall.
The journalist then suggested that Abbas may become the next Antoine Lahad, the leader of Lebanese forces who allied with Israel in the 1980s against Hizbullah terrorists.
By painting the recalcitrant Abbas as a “peace partner” who has allegedly been patient with Israel, Thrall reasoned the lack of creation of the Palestinian Authority as new country has created distrust among Palestinian Authority Arabs and the PA security forces.
Following the Palestinian Authority’s failures to be recognized as a state despite anti-Israel boycotts and a unilateral push for recognition from the United Nations, Thrall opined that PA Arabs have no options other than “popular protest and armed resistance.”
“The first option faces enormous obstacles because of political divisions between Hamas in Gaza and Mr. Abbas’s Fatah in the West Bank,” he wrote.
“If mass demonstrations erupted in the West Bank, Israel would ask Palestinian security forces to stop any protests near soldiers or settlers, forcing them to choose between potentially firing on Palestinian demonstrators or ending security cooperation with Israel, which Mr. Abbas refuses to do….
“The second option is armed confrontation.”
Acknowledging “widespread apathy” among PA Arabs, he wrote, “A substantial number would welcome the prospect of an escalation….
“They believe that rocks, Molotov cocktails and mass protests pushed Israel to sign the Oslo Accords in 1993; that deadly strikes against Israeli troops in Lebanon led Israel to withdraw in 2000; that the bloodshed of the second intifada pressured George W. Bush to declare his support for Palestinian statehood and prodded the international community to produce the Arab Peace Initiative, the Geneva Initiative, and the Road Map for Middle East Peace.”
In a new twist on history, Thrall also wrote that the expulsion of Jews from Gaza and the withdrawal of the IDF from the area in 2005 “had the effect of freezing the peace process, supplying ‘the amount of formaldehyde that is necessary,’ as a Sharon adviser put it, ‘so there will not be a political process with the Palestinians.’”
Thrall’s conclusion, which dovetails with the Times’ editorial policy, is that history will credit Abbas but that “he has likely laid the groundwork” for a new Intifada, which is Israel’ fault because Israel supposed missed “a golden opportunity to sign an agreement with Abbas.”