The Oslo Process that began over twenty years ago was supposed to establish a Palestinian entity headed by Yasser Arafat that would "take care of Hamas without the courts and without Be'Tselem", as then Prime Minister Yitzchak Rabin famously said, alluding to the Israeli courts and the radical leftist self-titled Human Rights NGO that hindered an all-out war on terror.
The result is exactly the opposite of his hopes: Hamas has come out the winner in gaining the support of the Arab population of Judea and Samaria as well as Gaza. A public opinion poll held by the Ramallah-based "Palestinian Center for Political Research and Surveys" makes this abundantly clear.
The survey, held in the aftermath of Operation Defensive Shield, paints the following picture:
The Palestinian Authority (PA) Presidency: If elections were held today between Mahmoud Abbas and Ismael Haniyeh, Abbas would get only 32% of the vote while Haniye would get almost double, that is 61%. No less interesting is the internal analysis of this result: in Gaza, Haniyeh gets 53% and in Judea and Samaria 66%. Abbas gets 43% in Gaza but a mere 25% in Judea and Samaria, less than half of the votes Haniyeh received. This reflects the well worn truth that whoever is in power is subject to criticism and is less popular than the opposition, which has no responsibilities and therefore, fields no criticism. An important variable to take into account is that a full 77% of those eligible to vote took part.
Had the candidates been Ismael Haniyeh and Marwan Barghouti, Haniyeh would have received 49% and Barghouti 45%. This is the first time a Hamas candidate bests a "hero" of the PLO generation that took over for the aging first generation of leaders who are retiting from the scene. Had three candidates – Haniyeh, Barghouti and Abbas – all contended, the results would have given Haniyeh 48%, Barghouti 29% and Abbas a mere 19%. This means that about half of the the PA residents identify heart and soul with Hamas, irrespective of the PLO candidate.
The legislative elections survey yields a largely similar picture: Hamas leads with 46% of the vote, PA gets 31% and all the other parties combined 7%. Interestingly, not less than 17% - a sixth – of those asked had not made up their minds. This is twice the number of those who had not decided whom they prefer for the presidency, and it shows that the Palestinian public considers the presidency more important than the legislature.
A comparison with similar polls taken before Operation Defensive Shield shows that Hamas has gotten stronger due to the events of the past few months, while the PA and PLO have lost much of the trust and admiration of the Palestinian man in the street, both in Gaza and Judea-Samaria. The reason is clear: the Palestinian public prefers a jihadist movement pledged to destroy Israel more than an organization that signed agreements with Israel, despite the political gains these agreements gave the Palestinians, gains unmatched in any other Arab country.
The survey's results prove the claim that the Oslo Accords and all the agreements that followed them did not improve Israel's image in Palestinian eyes, because it shows that most of them are not interested in making peace with Israel but in a state that will arise on the ruins of the Jewish state. The educational system and media of the PA are run by the PLO, and it is they who have succeeded in sowing the idea of destroying Israel in Palestinian hearts. In effect, the Palestinian Arab public supports Hamas' goals and plans for destroying Israel, taught in school by the PLO, but it does not believe that the PLO will achieve them because it has signed agreements with the Jewish state.
Another interesting point that the survey reveals is that 69% of the Palestinians want elections within six months, 14% are willing to wait a year or more and 12% don't want elections at all. Those 12% are probably the ones who benefit economically from the PA as it is ruled today and don't want to rock the boat. They know what the results will be and are afraid of how a Hamas victory will affect their salaries and the monopolies they and their family members were granted by the PA. Another reason may be the fear of Israeli reaction to an inevitable Hamas victory. But 69% want a decision now and most of them want "Hamas Now."
I suggest that we try to imagine the situation with which will we will be faced after Hamas wins the elections for the presidency and the legislature.
The entire democracy-supporting world will tell Israel that Hamas won a democratic election, and therefore the free decision of the Palestinian people must be accepted as is. The day after the victory, Hamas will declare a state on all of "Palestinian territory" from the Mediterranean Sea to the Jordan River, with its capital in Jerusalem.
Almost all the 56 Muslim countries will recognize that state immediately, since they don't recognize Israel's existence anyway. Europe will react mildly and recognize the Palestinian state without reference to its borders and capital city. Besides, the world never recognized Jerusalem as Israel's capital anyway. The international journey to erase Israel from the map will set forth, generously funded by Qatar.
The first delegation to visit the Hamas state will be from Qatar, which will thus be granted the credit it deserves for its unlimited support and for the monies the Emir of Qatar gave the successful Hamas jihad. Khaled Meshaal, the first Supreme President of the Hamas state, a post he will assume without elections, will accompany him.
The second delegation will be from Turkey, headed by Sultan Erdoallah the first, while at his side stands Prime Minister Davotoglu, who will remind listeners that his name means "son of David" and that his vist to Hamas State is in honor of David, the Muslim Palestinian king, who was born in the Muslim city of Bethlehem and established the first Muslem Palestinian kingdom 3000 years ago in his city, Al-Kuds. The Palestinian narrative, by the way, has King Solomon building a mosque in Jerusalem.
Next to arrive will be the US delegation, the European one and representatives of all the other nations, who will congratulate the young Palestinian state and its legitimate leaders. The fact that these leaders are pledged to destroy Israel will be a minor detail in the eyes of many of the visitors. A small number of them will suggest a visit to Tel Aviv and Israel will have no choice but to agree, because why turn away people who want to come for a visit?
The Iranian delegation will include a large number of security personnel, who will sign an agreement to establish military industries in all of Judea-Samaria, for manufacturing the most up to date Iranian and North Korean missiles. Iran will sign a mutual defense treaty with Hamas State, one with a double understanding: If Israel or any other country attacks Iran, Hamas will attack all the area from Dimona and Beer Sheva in the south to Beit Shean and Afula in the north, including the coastal plain of Tel Aviv, Gush Dan, Rishon Letzion, Rechovot, Ashkelon, Ashdod, Kfar Saba, Raanana, Herzliya, Netanya, Hadera and Haifa and all the strategic equipment in the region. If Israel attacks the Palestinian state, Iran will launch missiles that will hit the entire range from Dimona and Beer Sheva to Beit Shean nad Afula via (see above)… Can anyone stop a Palestinian state from signing an agreement like that? Or from establishing an arms industry?
The UN will grant the Palestinian state membership immediately and begin the process of ejecting Israel from its various agencies. The world will be busy with other wars – in Ukraine, against the Islamic State in Syria and Iraq – and no one will have the patience to attend to the complaints of a tiny nation whose small number of supporters, mostly Jews, are scattered all over the world and living in fear and trembling at the rise in electoral strength of the Muslims in Europe, America and wherever, all of whom are ardent supporters of the Hamas state.
And the most important delegation will come in secret. That will be the IS one, which will arrive without fanfare and press releases. It will come to remind the heads of Hamas that the best, most ultimative and efficient way to cleanse Palestine of the unclean Jews is to nab several of them, dress them in orange, behead them before the camera and put the video on the web. The Jews in Palestine will do what they learned how to do for the 2000 years before they had a state – flee.
Now I invite anyone who thinks I am mistaken or exaggerating to prove it. No one in the world has a way to prevent this scenario after the PA elections. If a Hamas Palestinian state should arise, Israel must take the following steps right away in order to avoid this most plausible scenario from occurring:
1. Announce that the Oslo Accords and any related agreements are null and void because of the PLO's failure to dismantle the Hamas terror infrastructure.
2. Dismantle the PA and expel all the PLO members who came from Tunis and anywhere else.
3. Establish immediate sovereignty over all of Judea and Samaria based on the San Remo Conference Resolutions (1920) of the League of Nations and the Judge Edmond Levy Report.
4. Declare a plan for "Palestinian Emirates" with the end goal of creating eight individual emirates in Gaza and the Arab cities of Judea and Samaria, while Israel remains in the villages to prevent the plausible scenario described above. Details can be found by clicking here.
Written for Arutz Sheva, translated by Rochel Sylvetsky