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POLITICS

Yes, Palestinian culture is a problem

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Politics,Beltway Confidential,Philip Klein

Speaking at a fundraiser on Monday, Mitt Romney stated the obvious — that cultural differences were a big reason why Israelis have been more economically successful than Palestinians. Predictably, Palestinians criticized the remarks as “racist” and tried to blame Israel for their economic circumstances. The media dutifully portrayed this as a foreign policy gaffe by Romney. Today, in the wake of the controversy over his non-controversial remarks, Romney told Fox News that he “did not speak about the Palestinian culture.” But if we are going to have an honest discussion about the Middle East, it would only be fair to highlight the self-destructive culture of Palestinians.

As an example, back in 2005, when Israel withdrew from Gaza, international donors had supported greenhouses that were supposed to provide jobs for Palestinians and spur the agricultural economy.

Yet here’s what happened, within weeks, as reported by the Associated Press:

NEVE DEKALIM, Gaza Strip — Palestinians looted dozens of greenhouses on Tuesday, walking off with irrigation hoses, water pumps and plastic sheeting in a blow to fledgling efforts to reconstruct the Gaza Strip.

American Jewish donors had bought more than 3,000 greenhouses from Israeli settlers in Gaza for $14 million last month and transferred them to the Palestinian Authority. Former World Bank President James Wolfensohn, who brokered the deal, put up $500,000 of his own cash.

Palestinian police stood by helplessly Tuesday as looters carted off materials from greenhouses in several settlements, and commanders complained they did not have enough manpower to protect the prized assets. In some instances, there was no security and in others, police even joined the looters, witnesses said.

This wasn’t an isolated instance, either. The following February, 2006, Haaretz reported:

Some 200 dunams of greenhouse space in the Gaza Strip were ransacked recently by dozens of armed Palestinians and residents of Khan Yunis.

International donors had purchased the greenhouses from evacuated Gush Katif settlers for the benefit of the Palestinians.

According to Palestinian and international sources involved in running the greenhouses, the armed robbers belonged to two militias, the Assistance Committees and the Popular Army, affiliated with former Palestinian ruling party Fatah. These militias had been hired by the Palestinian Authority to guard both the ruins of the former settlements and the greenhouses, which were all under cultivation. But instead of guarding the greenhouses, the guards decided to rob them.

According to the sources, the robbers used bulldozers to break the iron supports of the buildings’ frames, then swarmed over the equipment inside, which included piping and irrigation computers. The damage to the greenhouses, which are meant to provide employment for hundreds of Palestinians and increase the PA’s exports, is irreparable, the sources added.

When Palestinians weren’t busy destroying greenhouses that could have boosted their economy, they elected the terrorist group Hamas in Gaza, built an intricate system of tunnels for smuggling in weapons, launched thousands of rockets into Israel in the hopes of killing civilians and produced  a children’s TV show that glorifies suicide bombers and teaches their children to be martyrs through characters such as a Mickey Mouse look alike talking about the annihilation of the Jews and a Jew-eating rabbit.

The only way there will be peace in the Middle East is if there’s a major change in culture among Palestinians. But unfortunately, the media has decided that it’s too politically incorrect to acknowledge this reality and they would rather allow Palestinians to blame Israel for their problems.

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