June 18 was another day of agony for Israelis. Palestinian statehood would put an end to Israel's suffering -- along with its existence.
Seconds after he boarded a Jerusalem bus, a Palestinian aptly named Mohammad al- Ghoul exploded a nail-studded bomb, killing himself and 19 passengers, mostly students. It was the 69th suicide bombing since the Palestinians began their bloody march toward sovereignty 21 months ago.
Shrapnel from the blast ripped through flesh and bone. Rescue workers collected body parts in the street. In a recent poll, 67 percent of Palestinians said they expect such unspeakable evil to pay political dividends.
The latest carnage has delayed President George W. Bush's anticipated speech outlining his proposal for a provisional or interim Palestinian state.
Since such an entity has never existed before, no one can say exactly how it would function. Would it have transitional control of its borders and limited power to import armaments from Iran and sign treaties with Arafat's friend, Saddam Hussein?
In the past, Bush has cautioned that statehood can only come after the slaughter ceases and democratic reform -- the first ever in the Arab world -- takes place. Still, Secretary of State Colin Powell and others are pushing the president to pick up his pom-poms and act as a cheerleader for Pal State.
When Washington talks about statehood for terrorist enablers, it sends an unequivocal message to ghouls great and small: Keep those body bags coming in and handsome dividends will accrue.
In truth, if the carnage ended tomorrow, if an Arab Gandhi were somehow elected to lead the Palestinian Authority, if Hamas, Islamic Jihad and Arafat's Tanzim militia linked arms and sang "Kumbaya," a Palestinian state would still be a raging cancer consuming Israel.
The Palestinians have never given up their dream of conquering all of the land from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea.
The Palestinian people is a myth concocted for this purpose. In a 1977 interview with a Dutch magazine, PLO executive committee member Zahir Muhsein admitted, "The Palestinian people does not exist."
Zahir explained that there are no inherent differences between Syrians, Jordanians and Palestinians. "Only for political and tactical reasons do we speak today about the existence of a Palestinian people, since Arab national interests demand that we posit the existence of a distinct Palestinian people to oppose Zionism."
As a sovereign state, Jordan can't demand Ramallah and East Jerusalem. As a so-called dispossessed people, the Palestinians can.
Two days after he shook hands with the late Yitzhak Rabin on the White House lawn in 1993, Arafat set forth his strategy in an interview on Jordanian television: "Since we cannot defeat Israel in war, we do this in stages. We take any and every territory that we can of Palestine and establish a sovereignty there, and we use it as a springboard to take more. When the time comes, we can get the Arab nations to join us for the final blow against Israel."
That death stroke will be preceded by the total militarization of the Republic of Jihad -- the docking of a Karine A a day -- and Katyusha rocket attacks against Israel's narrow waist (with 70 percent of its population and 80 percent of its industrial base).
Instead of a 40-mile border with Jordan, Israel will have a 200-mile long border with Arafatistan. (The better to infiltrate you, my dear.)
Jerusalem will no longer occupy the high ground of the hills of Judea and Samaria. Instead of coming at the Israeli Defense Forces on the heights, Israel's enemies will be entrenched there.
Poised on its border with Palestine, Syrian tank columns could reach the Israeli heartland in less than an hour. Over Palestinian air space, troops from the other Arab states could rapidly be transported to the front.
Israel and Palestine living peacefully, side by side (and the suicide bombers shall lie down with the victims), is a dream of diplomats disconnected from reality. A provisional Palestinian state would be an interim, but irreversible, step toward the abolition of the Jewish state.
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