Thursday, July 26, 2007
A Good Comment
By Khalid Amayreh
"......There is no doubt that going to elections is the right way of resolving an internal conflict. However, under current circumstances and in the absence of a Palestinian consensus, holding the elections would only consolidate disunity among Palestinians and exacerbate the already grave rift between Fatah and Hamas.
To begin with, it is unlikely that without Hamas's consent, orderly and democratic elections can be organized. After all, Hamas is in firm control of the Gaza Strip where a million and a half Palestinians are living, and holding elections without these people's participation would be an act of national irresponsibility.
Moreover, it is clear that it would be very difficult to hold orderly elections under present circumstances in the West Bank, where tension runs high and lawlessness prevails. Indeed, one would really wonder how true elections can be held when institutions are stormed and vandalized, political leaders are abducted, beaten and imprisoned, and when a virulent black smear campaign is being waged against a movement that represents close to 50% of the Palestinian people?
Not only that. The proposed elections would be held under the sinister Israeli occupation whose concentration camps are filled to capacity with Palestinian political leaders of all persuasions. More important is the question of the wisdom of holding elections when the Israeli occupation army would arrest or abduct candidates and elected lawmakers as soon as results are announced?
Israel continues to detain more than 40 Palestinian legislative council members and the main charge leveled against them is their participation in the 2006 elections under the banner of a political party Israel doesn't like. This means that unless a given candidate succumbs to the will of the criminal occupier, he or she will be arrested either during the campaign or following the elections.
For these and other reasons, it would be a grave mistake to hold both presidential and legislative elections in the occupied Palestinian territories. However, if Chairman Abbas insists on holding elections despite everything, it will mean that that he is intent on rigging such elections, probably with American backing and encouragement. After all, it is unlikely that the Bush Administration, which regretted allowing the 2006 elections to take place, will allow another democratic election to take place if there is no solid guarantee that the "right people" will win.
Finally, free-minded Palestinians should realize that even if Abbas succeeded in holding the elections and would be re-elected as President by hook or by crook, he would not be able to do anything worthwhile for the Palestinian people and their enduring national cause. After all, the Palestinian people's problem is the Nazi-like Israeli occupation of their country, not who will form the next government.
Indeed, what is the point of having governments and "states" and "authorities," under foreign occupation.? This is, of course, unless Abbas and his American masters are planning another police-state without a state, otherwise known as a quisling entity."