Recent WikiLeaks revelations exposed the hypocrisy exercised by Arabs when it comes to the words they verbalize in public or in Arabic as opposed to what they say in private or in English.
WikiLeaks has shown the Saudis to side with Israel against Iran and its nuclear ambitions by making it known that Israel is not the only concerned nation, anxious about Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s aspirations. These unearthed publications revealed a truth, long claimed by leaders of the Jewish state, that Iran poses a threat to the rest of the world, including its Muslim neighbors. It cannot be refuted now. The bully from the Persian Gulf is not only an Israeli concern. Dealing with it forcefully is the masked wish of most Arab leaders as they have secretly pleaded with the U.S. to take aggressive action against Iran.
Most recently, WikiLeaks has confirmed the covert cooperation between the PA’s and the Israeli security forces. The June 13, 2007, memo from the U.S. Embassy in Tel Aviv has made clear that during the civil war in Gaza that ended with the Hamas takeover, the Israeli security service was provided with all the intelligence that Abbas’ internal security agency collected on Hamas. The Fatah security forces sided with Israel against their Hamas brothers.
Hamas has long complained about Fatah’s cooperation with the “reviled Israeli Security Agency”. As it goes, most of the world’s Muslims view any collaboration between Arabs and Israelis as indistinguishable from the titanic crime of blasphemy. Prior to the WikiLeaks revelations, Fatah, in its efforts to save its authenticity, denied it had cooperated with the Jews; the PA believed they could get away with a bald-faced disclaimer, since there was no clear proof. There is one now, and Abbas must find a way to recover from this “horrific setback.”
There are two dichotomous options available to the PA president. He may keep denying that his forces have collaborated with the Israelis, or he can say, “Yes, we have done it; we still do it; we will keep on doing it.”
Let’s look at the consequences of each side of this troubled coin.
Denial in the face of cool and hard evidence may convince those who want to believe the lie. Years of brainwashing, teaching Jew-hatred in schools, rubbing out Jewish history and Jews’ connection to the land of Israel, persistent Nazi-style anti-Semitism — all have contributed to a deep-rooted mindset. This way of thinking, this paradigm, marks anyone who collaborates openly with the Jews — regardless of the merits or the benefits of such joint effort — as a traitor, a scum of the earth, a dreg of humanity. Those who want to believe the denial will use their cemented prejudice as a source of counter-evidence. They will accept the PA word as a final cut. No argument and no proof will change their mind.
On the other hand, there are skeptics (including opposition forces), even within the Palestinians. They include Hamas members, open-minded folks, and some “experienced” individuals within the Palestinian Arab masses who do not trust the PA. These groups pose a risk to Abbas and his colleagues. Their numbers may grow, leading to dwindling popular support — not a safe outcome for the deniers.
The second option available to the PA is admitting to the truth: “Yes we have collaborated with Israel. It was our best option when trying to protect the life and livelihood of our citizens from Hamas terror. It was the right move when trying to steer clear of constant war, destruction and never-ending Jihad. We want to live in peace and security, grow our economy, improve our standard of living. And if collaboration with Israel facilitates and promotes this cause, so be it.”
But, wait a minute…
Arab leaders who attempted this paradigm shift paid with their lives. King Abdullah (the present king’s great grandfather) of Jordan and Anwar Sadat are best historical proofs that the risk they had taken was deadly. And unfortunately, Abbas would face the same outcome should he dare walking in Anwar Sadat’s shoes.
The PA may not be able to admit to collaborating with Israel against Hamas, even in the face of hard evidence. They may not be able to stand up and declare in Arabic, in public, “yes, we have done so.” They may not be able to reverse years of brainwashing. They may fail the truth test.
And if they do fail the test, it will constitute one more proof that true peace in the Middle East is an impossible dream, a mirage. If Arab leaders are unable to bridge over and bulldoze the hate-chasm that they have cultivated for the past one-hundred years, then any peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinians may have little chance of being realized today. If they fail the test, but nonetheless, a peace miracle comes to pass in spite and against all odds, it may certainly never subsist beyond the next inevitable Palestinian regime change.
I wonder. Will the Palestinians fail the truth test? Or will WikiLeaks bring about a paradigm shift in the Middle East?