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Unsupportable Conclusion

Reader comment on item: Fund the Palestinians? Bad Idea

Submitted by Sheldon Tyber (United States), Dec 20, 2007 at 13:35

To preface: I'm often surprised to find that I support Pipes' points of view. Contrary to my frequent initial impression that a given viewpoint of his is extreme, thoughtful review of his positions results in (reluctant?) support. However, regarding this article, I do believe Pipes is W-A-Y off base.

The correlation to which he refers is just that: a correlation. It does not, IN THE SLIGHTEST, support a conclusion of causality (or whatever wording one wants to use for, essentially, the same thing).

The phenomena are correlated, no doubt, but I suggest that the more powerful explanation is exactly the opposite from Pipes' conclusion: The violence causes the funding. This is so since each occurrence of violence induces feelings of guilt, hopelessness, and helplessness on the part of every (well-intentioned, but sill "bleeding heart") donor. The more frequent are those pieces of violence, or the more horrific are the specific examples, the greater are the resulting feelings of guilt, etc. To ease their own consciences, donors provide funds. Typically, these funds arrive after some lagtime.

Of course, this state of affairs is lamentable. More importantly, it illustrates the sick logic supporting terrorists: The more the violence (by anybody), the greater the support for their cause. Terrorists have a vested interest in maintaining an atmosphere of violence.

This all makes the peace-lovers' task tougher. But it in no way justifies the conclusion that the Palestinians / Arabs should be starved of resources. This strategy would only give oxygen to the terrorists! With the numerousness of the Palestinians / Arabs, i.e. "fuel", we do not need to provide any extra oxygen. We need to fight them, as we are currently doing, on a selective basis. We do need to maintain a balanced approach. We will never have peace (or even stability!) if we attempt to starve the entire Arab world of resources.

Submitting....

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