UPDATE: Reduced rock throwing in Judea and Samaria overnight. No terrorist missiles fired.
The Palestinians love for foreign media to come to Gaza, Judea, and Samaria “to see the squalor” that they live in. The Palestinian public relations service has been careful to steer journalists away from the middle and upper economic class neighborhoods in these areas and into the lower class neighborhoods for pictures and stories.
Of course this strategy is nothing more than a ploy to create “victimhood”–a ploy that has become decreasingly effective in recent years. Even a blind person can see the massive construction taking place in all of the Palestinian controlled areas–and the numerous Palestinian businesses sprouting up everywhere.
This week, for example, has seen the first Kentucky Fried Chicken franchise go into operation in Ramallah (next door is the new Pizza Hut opening later this month). It has been packed from morning to night with “poor Palestinians.” It is just down the street from the Mercedes dealership.
But again, the downside of this affluence is that foreign donors have begun withholding their promised money. In response to an undelivered 1.1 billion dollars this year, PLO Prime Minister Salam Fayad has proposed a doubling of the personal income tax rate from 15% to 30% to cover the budget deficit. Of course, this has been met by howls of disapproval from the people on the Palestinian street–who are not used to taking responsibility for their own affairs.
It seems that no Palestinian wants to spend a shekel to improve his or her living situation. Nowhere is this more true than in Samaria, where 21 out of 22 Palestinian villages have adamantly refused to be connected to the regional sewage system used by Jewish communities. Instead the Palestinian sewage flows through the villages and ends up being dumped directly into the area’s streams–contaminating the aquifer for the entire region, creating a health hazard for everyone, and substantially reducing the amount of available water.
As Israeli Environmental Protection Minister Gilad Erdan said yesterday: “. . . we are doing everything we can to prevent pollution in Judea and Samaria, but the Palestinians refuse to cooperate.”
Why are they refusing to cooperate? Simply because the Palestinians want donor countries (read: the European Union) to pony up the money, so they don’t have to.
So the next time, dear reader, you see a report about Palestinians living in squalid conditions surrounded by raw sewage, remember that most Palestinians are not living in such conditions and that those that are–are living that way because of their own choice.
It is fascinating that the Palestinians–who disingenuously profess such a great love for the land they live on–are in reality so willing to contaminate and destroy it.
THIS DATE IN ISRAELI HISTORY
On February 5, 1948, the Associated Press reported from Damascus that “600 trained Syrians had crossed the Jordan two nights before and moved into prepared positions 60 km inside Palestine.” On February 9th, it was reported that another 1000 Arabs, “armed with light artillery and automatics had crossed into Palestine unhindered between February 5th and 7th.”
Unhindered by whom? Unhindered by the British who were busy policing and arresting Jews who were trying to get ready to defend themselves from the Arab onslaught when the British Mandate came to an end on May 14, 1948.