Thursday, June 14, 2007

Abbas Empowered

Calev Ben Dor speculates that the final destruction of the Palestinian constitutional system may empower Abbas to rule the West Bank without the mechanisms originally intended to check Arafat:
"Now, Hamas's disregard for the PA constitution in carrying out a military coup could work in Israel's favor. With a clear Fatah majority in the PLO, Abbas could use the fighting as an opportunity to break the constitutional Gordian knot tying Palestinian hands and annul the Basic Law, thus centralizing power in the West Bank under his leadership.

"This new scenario would, in effect, create two separate political-territorial units alongside Israel - a Gaza Hamastan and a West Bank Fatah-land...

"While no one would celebrate the official presence of a Hamastan a few kilometers from Sderot, the new situation would nevertheless provide opportunities. The de facto division between Gaza and the West Bank would allow Israel to maintain its boycott of Hamas in Gaza while utilizing the emergence of a political partner in the West Bank for the first time in many years."

Yael cites a Palestinian analyst at Good Neighbors who says Abbas will not just leave the government, but declare a state of emergency and rule through the military. That analyst also says at least one Fatah MP sees this as preparation for an eventual union with Jordan, something I called attention to earlier. In other words, despite the barbarism of the fighting, it might just kick-start the peace process once again.

(Crossposted to American Footprints)



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