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Where chickens get more electricity and water than humans

Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad is seen during a reception for the upcoming July 4 U.S. Independence Day elebrations at the American Consulate in Jerusalem, Wednesday, June 30, 2010 (AP Photo/Gali Tibbon, Pool)
Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad is seen during a reception for the upcoming July 4 U.S. Independence Day elebrations at the American Consulate in Jerusalem, Wednesday, June 30, 2010 (AP Photo/Gali Tibbon, Pool)

Nicholas Kristof, a renowned journalist and New York Times columnist is on a visit to Israel. In his recent article, “The Two Sides of a barbed-Wire Fence”, Kristof wrote about the electrified poultry farm on one side of the Israeli fence and the Palestinians, who live on the other side of the fence and who are denied access to electricity. Unbelievable but true - chickens are indeed getting more electricity and water on one side of the fence than Palestinians on the other side. Kristof has captured the plight of Palestinians in one simple yet powerful sentence.

Prime Minister Fayyad arrives for the opening ceremony of the Special Second Brigade base in Jericho
AP Photo/Nasser Shiyoukhi

Two generations of Palestinians were born and have lived in intolerable conditions. Sixty years of failed leadership, occupation, Arab neighbors providing just lip service, violence, loss of life, and denied hope of a better future – Palestinians have enough reasons to complain. But Palestinians are not chickens. They have realized the futility of such efforts.

Instead of whining and resorting to violence, they are focusing now on building their nation. Instead of waiting for a peace deal with Israel, Salam Fayyad, Palestinian Prime Minster and the President Mahmud Abbas are building schools and hospitals, constructing roads, and developing an independent judiciary and an effective police force. The new generation of Palestinian leaders in West Bank are attracting investment from Europe, bringing economic assistance and leading the way towards establishing an independent Palestinian State.

Youth without opportunities for education and employment are easy victims for militant ideology. The only long term, sustainable solution to extremism is to eliminate the root causes. Access to education, employment, and a safe living environment are essential ingredients for success, and Fayyad and Abbas are creating this environment in West Bank. This alone still won’t solve the Palestinian problem. They need their own state to live like anyone else in the world. Unlike Hamas, Palestinians in West Bank have accepted Israel and understand co-existence. It looks like Palestinian leadership is on track to announce Independence in 2012.

The current Israeli leadership led by Netanyahu and Avigdor Lieberman, who view the Palestinians as unsophisticated, illiterate and violent, have to grow up and accept the new reality. Netanyahu is not the only one who obtained a US education. Fayyad holds a PhD degree from the University of Texas. In addition, Fayyad worked for the World Bank and International Monetary Fund before becoming the finance minister of Palestinian territory. The new leadership in West Bank reflects the changing realities in the Middle East.

A weak Palestinian state with hopeless people glorifying suicide bombing won’t create a stable and peaceful Middle East but a strong Palestinian state that can govern itself well.

Read other articles on Middle East relations
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President Obama appoints special envoy to Muslim world – A step to increase American soft power


  • fayyad 5 years ago

    go fayyad

  • keb 5 years ago

    Israel will never never let the creation of Palestinian state.

  • Stan Transue (Habersham Co Conservative Examiner) 5 years ago

    Mr. Jawaharlal; thank you for passing on positive news about this situation. I have to admit, conditioning by the lame-stream media had me expecting yet another whinig peice of drivel about the evil Isrealis and the poor oppressed "Paliestinians." So you must understand how delighted I was to read about people taking personal responsibility for their conditions and working to make a life for themselves without blaming others.

    I must also admit that I am surprised that a NT Times article could be so balanced. I wonder if anyone ever recalls that the "Palestinians" have over the years recived hundreds of billions in aid, and that their "leaders" have lived in opulence while the people for whom the aid was given live worse than livestock. Arafat died a BILLIONAIRE and yet never did a lick of real productive work in his life.

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