How conditional can support for the Palestinians be?
By Ramzy Baroud
"A once profound and widely read commentator recently claimed he no longer writes about the Palestine/Israel conflict because "Palestinians are killing each other". Feeling his words have ceased to carry weight he simply decided not "to take sides".....
But the Hamas takeover of Gaza in June 2006, and the factionalism and bloodshed associated with it should not have come as a surprise. The conflict in Palestine, like any other conflict, is rational, and can serve as a classic example of a regional conflict with international boundaries, allowing opportunity for analysis that does in fact matter to Americans (the role of their country in the conflict, and the power of the Israeli lobby in their midst), the Europeans (who wish to see a truly independent Europe playing a less injurious role in a region where they have a vested interest in stability), the United Nations (whose credibility has been damaged too often by the belligerent US-Israeli alliance), and others.
Many questions must be asked and debated. Should solidarity with the people of Palestine wane because the Palestinians chose a religious group to represent them in democratic elections, hurting the secular sensibilities of many of their supporters? Can the Palestinians be held collectively responsible for the few among them who choose to align their interests with those of power and capital? Is what Mahmoud Abbas did -- working with the coloniser to isolate a large segment of his people -- unprecedented? Has any nation that fought for its freedom actually managed to avoid the peril of infighting?....."