By Ramzy Baroud
"Recent demonstrations in protest of the rising cost of living have swept
across the West Bank. While they are not indicative of a Palestinian version of
the 'Arab Spring', they are still an important first step.
A reasonable demand, however, cannot possibly be for Ramallah-based
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas to sack the government of Salam
Fayyad. Neither has much sway over Palestinian economy, let alone political
He remains faithful to security coordination between his
authority and Israel, and continues to crack down on his opponents with an iron
fist. He is also desperately clinging to a loyalty to Washington policy -
despite the fact that the latter’s prestige and influence is quickly diminishing
in the region.....
How long the PA can continue to operate as a functionary of Israel and
Western interests will now largely depend on Palestinians. Even if more money is
pumped into PA coffers, the fundamental problem will not go away. Bribing a
nation with meager handouts to deny them political rights is superfluous at
best, and it will most certainly not last.
There are new calls for the dismantling of the Palestinian Authority. For
these calls to be meaningful, they need to be accompanied by a unifying
transitional political program which will guide Palestinians out of the
temporary chaos that is likely to follow. The program must be a part of a larger
vision, one that looks past charity-economics and frivolous talks of two-state
solutions, and which actually bridges the gap between divided Palestinian