In 1986-87, I worked in a town in the southeast corner of BC. It was kind of a weird place. There was a left over hippy community in one corner, a bizarre sect of Doukhobors who practised polygamy in another, a bunch of real redneck yahoos, and a few fairly normal types.
Over the 18 months I worked there, I got to know the mayor fairly well. Whenever the particularly bizarre happened, she would just roll her eyes and say, "it's something in the water."
"It's something in the water" is a phrase that could be used every day to describe the arab world. If they had any water. Maybe it's something in the sand.
The latest example of bizarro world arab thinking comes from none other than Mahmoud Abbas, the so-called moderate of paleolithic, ummm, sorry, palestinian politics.
(As an aside, I always love the use of "moderate" to describe Abbas. He's the head of an organization that has long been wrapped in terrorism and he, personally, wrote a university thesis on denying the Holocaust. In the world of palis, a moderate is someone who denies the Holocaust occurred at all, while a radical is someone who wishes to repeat it).
According to AP, Abbas responded to reports that the US and Israel were not going to accept a palestinian government that did not renounce violence and recognize Israel and its right to exist, by telling US envoy David Welch that he had reached the best possible deal he could reach with Hamas, and that the world would have to live with it.
Using diplospeak, I hope Welch responded somewhat like this: "No, Mahmoud, I don't know what kind of drugged up state of mind you are in, but the world does not have to accept a terrorist government running the palestinians...a government which does not meet a single one of its requirements under the Road Map for Peace. The world is not beholden to the ridiculous hate, moronic violence and insane actions of hamassholes. Perhaps you, Mahmoud, are but the rest of the world can sit back and wait while you idiots starve in the streets."
Maybe Abbas is under the impression that the world is all Jimmy Carters and Jacques Chiracs but he's wrong. Much of the world is just fed up with the antics of the palestinians. Since they elected hamas last year, their status in the world's eyes has fallen faster than Lindsay Lohan's acting career.
The plain and simple truth is that palis are not ready for a state, incapable of thinking more than about six hours ahead and don't want any peace with Israel that means there still is an Israel. The world does not have to, and absolutely should not, accept anything less than the palis living up to their commitments. The rest of the world should tell Abbas that the tail doesn't wag the dog and that his bluster has all the impact of a fart in a windstorm.
Let the palis go back to the drawing board and start again. The rest of the world has other things to do.