Condoleezza Rice is returning to the Middle East to call for end to the Palestinian violence caused by her policy of cutting off aid to the PA. Because of the desperate situation in Palestine, particularly in Gaza, different factions are fighting amongst themselves.
Ten Palestinians have been killed and more than 100 wounded since clashes between the al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades and Hamas began on Sunday in Gaza.
“Innocent Palestinians are caught in this violence,” Ms Rice said.
She did not directly blame Hamas, but she said the Hamas government was unable to deliver for the Palestinian people – and could not represent a responsible government to the international community.
To implement a policy of starvation and to allow repeated attacks by Israel and then to casually observe that the government is unable to deliver to the Palestinians is yet another breathtaking act of hypocrisy from the US Secretary of State. She is returning to a intolerable situation that she is partly responsible for causing. Her mission to the Middle East will achieve nothing as she has nothing to offer the Arabs except for more of the same misery. She failed in her objectives in Lebanon and managed to earn the hostility of the Lebanese Prime Minister, one of the very moderates she is supposed to be engaging with.
During the conflict in Lebanon, Israel used the confusion as a cover to further expand illegal settlements in the West Bank. And while the world’s attention was focussed on Lebanon Israel was able to slaughter the Palestinians without very much in the way of media coverage let alone international condemnation. So just what does Condoleezza expect to achieve in her mission?
Speaking in Jeddah, Ms Rice urged a halt to fighting between Hamas and Fatah factions in Gaza. But she made plain there would be no let-up in the US-directed boycott of the Hamas-led Palestinian Authority which is stoking those tensions. And while paying lip service to a two-state solution, she did not diverge one inch from the administration’s line that countering extremism in Iran and Iraq, and among al-Qaida and like-minded jihadists, was Washington’s top priority.
In other words this is more of an attempt to bolster support for Israel and to make the USA look like it is trying to do something positive in the Middle East before the November mid-term elections while in reality doing nothing of the sort. The very chaos Condoleezza Rice is speaking out against is exactly the chaos that her close ally Israel wants in order to prevent the possibility of a Palestinian state being created.