L'Ombre de l'Olivier

The Shadow of the Olive Tree

being the maunderings of an Englishman on the Côte d'Azur

12 January 2009 Blog Home : January 2009 : Permalink

Gaza Thoughts

In no particular order and possibly not original.

The people who opine about how "a military solution" will never succeed regarding Israel's invasion of Gaza might ponder the opposite. How can "a terrorist solution" possibly defeat Israel? In military terms of course it cannot. And it doesn't seem to me likely that it would successfully convince the majority of Israelis to leave either. So Hamas' whole strategy is clearly never going to work either.

The same people might also think about Chechnya, espeecially when they claim that Gaza is a living hell, unparalleled  humanitarian catastrophe etc. The Israelis could implement Grozny rules (AKA Hama rules or "Desert called peace" rules) and win because there is nothing that can stop them militarily. A few fuel air bombs over the major population areas would handle most of the problem. They'd probably end up killing around a million Palestinians but there wouldn't be anymore rockets from Gaza, Once the bodies were buried and the rubble cleared the survivors would have a lowly populated, fertile land to live in. The Israelis haven't done this, and are highly unlikely to do this. But the only thing stopping them is their own conscience.

At this point in time, the Israelis would accept (bar the odd nutbag) a solution which would grant the Palestinians staehood, give them pretty much the entire West Bank plus Gaza to have it in and so on with very few preconditions. The only thing they would really want is some kind of belief that the Palestinian state would
  1. not attack them or permit others to attack from its territory
  2. not collapse into anarchy
The problem is that I can't see the Palestinians agreeing to this convincingly. I can't actually see the Palestinians as capable of creating a functioning state or even having the desire to create one.

It may be that the only way to fix Gaza is to treat the inhabitants as children and remove pretty much all of their rights until a program of education has taught them how to be responsible grown-ups. As well as removing the right to free speech, communication, access to information and to defend themselves, this would include the right to procreate. I don't know whether it would be easier to sterilize the males or the females but there probably isn't another way to stop another generation of disaffected dysfunctional Palestinians from growing up.

A follow up to the previous thought. Let us perform a thought experiment. Assume that the non Arab Israelis depart Israel now leaving behind territory that is occupied solely by Arab Israelis. Assume that the Palestinians in all their various refugee camps are sent back to the former territory of Israel. Assume that Gaza + Israel + West Bank is now given UN etc. blessing to be a single country. What do we expect the country to look like? My bet is that it would shortly resemble either Haiti or Somalia. It seems highly unlikely that such a state would produce anything of value to the rest of the world except the exisiting tourist destinations and it's likely collapse into near anarchy would mean no one would visit them.

Compare the bleak picture above with the products of Israel. Everything from oranges to high tech via guns. Pretty much the only things the rest of the Middle East produces that are valued by the rest of the world are oil and gas. I also note that Israel and Turkey are major trading partners. Turkey, unlike its Asian neighbours, has a thriving economy which also produces a wide range of products. It is not clear to me why the rest of the Middle East is so barren as regards exports that require human effort to produce but it is. About the only place less productive than the ME is Africa.