The need to preempt Iran and export gas to Egypt was the reason the government gave to push through its controversial plan for Israel's natural gas. Now, this reason may no longer exist.08:52 31.08.15 | 1 comments
On September 7, 2005, the UN Development Programme released its Human Development Report 2005. If carefully reviewed, this report has widespread implications for the Arab-Israeli conflict. While the UN is eager to condemn Israel for violating Palestinian rights, its own data suggests otherwise. The data disputes Palestinian claims that they are suffering as a result of a harsh Israeli military occupation. On the contrary, the Palestinians have actually benefited from their association with the State of Israel and their difficulties are the result of self-inflicted wounds. Palestinian problems stem from their intolerance, hostility, violence, and corruption, not from Israeli occupation. The report observes that in 2003 there were 29 ongoing violent conflicts, down from 51 in 1991. In Sudan alone, the conflict has claimed two million lives and displaced 6 million people (p.153). Yet the focus of world sympathy and concern seems to be directed towards 3 million Arabs living in Israeli territories who are receiving the highest amount of aid in the world on a per capita basis. The HDR chapter that is most relevant to the Arab-Israeli conflict is Chapter 5, dealing with violent conflict. The chapter opens with a quote from UN Secretary General, Kofi Annan, "What begins with the failure to uphold the dignity of one life all too often ends with a calamity for entire nations." The report notes that since 1990 more than 3 million people have died in armed conflict, mostly in developing countries. About 25 million people are currently internally displaced because of conflict or human rights violations (p.151). Yet the most international aid is still directed towards 3 million Arabs in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, and the State of Israel is most often cited by the UN for human rights violations. The data provided by HDR 2005 suggests that the difficulties experienced by the Palestinian Arabs largely results from their own policies, not from oppression by the State of Israel. Even more revealing are the income and poverty tables (p.228). On the Human Poverty Index, the OPT is ranked seventh on a list of 103 developing countries. It is on par with Cuba, Singapore, and Colombia. The other Arab countries are ranked below the OPT. Wealthy Saudi Arabia is ranked 32. Egypt is ranked 55. The implication is that the high amount of aid going to OPT is funding militias and promoting violent conflict instead of improving the lives of the population. Israel, as the occupying power, should be absolved of any blame because the area is controlled by the Palestinian Authority. The Palestinian Arabs are suffering from deep, self-inflicted wounds, not from Israeli occupation. The population would not benefit from the establishment of an independent state that would only continue a policy of intolerance, discrimination, corruption, and violence. You don't believe? Go and download the report from www.undp.org and learn for yourself. Yes - Khalit - you too!