Promoting Hatred; Thwarting Peace

This is a guest post by Joy Wolfe

So Ben White knows better than all the financial experts and Palestinian spokespeople when he claims that stories of the remarkable growth in the Palestinian Authority economy in the West Bank are false.

Yes, the same Ben White who is currently congratulating himself on being instrumental in a facebook campaign which resulted in the Cambridge University withdrawing an invitation to Benny Morris, calling him a racist.   Whatever happened to the hallowed concept of freedom of speech that is used to ensure terrorists, Hamas supporters and pro-Palestinian speakers who call for the destruction of Israel and “death to the Jews” to be welcome on campuses such as Birmingham and Manchester?

But back to the real subject in hand.

It is a well documented fact that the growth of the economy in the West Bank is nothing short of remarkable and said to be among the fastest growing economies in the world at the moment

A British Trade Union fact finding group which recently returned from visiting the West Bank reported how surprised they were by the conditions there and the economic growth and potential.

What the Palestinians really need is for people like Ben White and others who devote their energies to demonising Israel, calling for boycotts which potentially damage the Palestinian economy, to put their efforts into improving the situation of the Palestinian people, and also to encourage them to get back to the peace negotiating table.

Does Ben White seriously think his negative actions do anything to really help the Palestinians?   If he does he is seriously deluding himself, and badly letting them down.

Does he think that by destroying the infrastructure and the greenhouses that were providing some economic stability in Gaza, the authorities there did anything that improved the prospects and quality of life of the people.

Does he think that a suicide bomber who had been treated in an Israeli hospital trying to get through a checkpoint to go back to that hospital to kill and maim is conducive to the removal of checkpoints and Israel’s much needed security measures?

Does he condone and agree with an outrageous inciting sermon in a mosque last Friday that was broadcast on PA TV which promoted the view that “Jews are the enemies of Allah and humanity” and “The Prophet says: ‘Kill the Jews’.

What Ben White and his cronies in the Palestine Solidarity Campaign should be doing is encouraging the Palestinians to stop inciting hate and teaching their children to kill Jews, but to engage in positive cooperation at grass roots level that can start, albeit very slowly, to sow the seeds of trust and interaction that could eventually lead towards peace.

Instead last year he wrote an article that runs counter to what the vast majority of people today believe that a two state solution is the only way to achieve peace, he writes a book calling Israel an apartheid state when no country in the world is less deserving of that label, and he tours the UK spreading his negative anti-Israel message.

What would be of greater benefit would be for him to heed the words of highly respected Palestinian journalist Khaled Abu Toameh when he spoke at a meeting in the House of commons last month.   Asked what could be done to help the Palestinians he said,

“Instead of telling me how bad Israel is, why don’t you go over there and try to bring Jews and Arabs closer together? It’s much more important. Instead of organising Israel Apartheid Week, why don’t you come and teach Palestinian children about democracy and freedom?”

I commend those words to Ben White and suggest he looks at what he can do to promote better understanding instead of continuing to incite misunderstanding and hatred.
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