The Therapy Sessions
Friday, March 26, 2004
No longer Israel's problem
For the last 55 years, the Palestinians have had a problem. That problem is their refusal to accept the existence of Israel.
For the last 55 years the Palestinians have managed to make themselves into a problem for Israel. Sharon has now figured out a way to make it so that it will no longer be Israel's problem. With a pullout from Gaza, a completion of the wall around the West Bank and a pullout there, the Palestinians may well still have the will to target Israel but their means and their opportunity to do so will be drastically reduced.
Attacks on Israelis will continue, but the rate will be much lower than now, which is lower than it was a year ago. And there's good reason to believe that it will be reduced enough to bring about a crossover in Israel. It will no longer cripple Israel's economy or tie its politics into knots. That will be a major change.
The Palestinian strategy against Israel has always been the strategy that a small child uses against his parents when he throws a screaming tantrum in public. The child wants something and the parents refuse it, and the child has no direct ability to force his parents to change their minds. So the kid makes a scene and attracts attention, hoping the parents will yield in order to shut him up....
...All parents soon learn, if they didn't already know it, that giving in to a child's tantrum is a really good way to get a lot more of them. More to the point, doing anything which the kid interprets as being a reward for the tantrum, even if it was not intended to be, will get you more tantrums. It doesn't matter why the parents did what they did; what matters is whether the brat decides that tantrums are effective. By the same token, anything which seems to militants to be a positive result of their attacks will encourage more attacks.
Leave it to Den Beste to put the Palestinian problem in the context of Parenting 101.