The Show Must Go On

Ever since the tragic kidnapping and murder of the three boys, the majority of the Israeli political establishment has been united in calling for the destruction of Hamas.  Although certainly a good thing for the State of Israel, the problem is that this is not the whole story.  For in addition to the obvious objective of such an undertaking, the broader intention of the Israeli leadership, and this is clear to anyone who is carefully listening, is to destroy Hamas in order to strengthen Abu Mazen.


Whether it was the excessive praise of Abu Mazen for belatedly condemning the kidnapping, or the current suggestion being bantered around in the Israeli news that Abu Mazen’s security men replace those of Hamas at various locations in Gaza, the message is clear: Hamas is bad, Abu Mazen and the PA are good.  In other words, despite all the water under the bridge, the show must go on.


After nearly twenty-one years of the Oslo experiment, an enterprise which can be defined as repeatedly trying to force a square peg into a round hole, Israel pathetically continues to try.  Although it’s clear to all that the Arabs are not interested in peace – never were and never will be – Israel continues to place its head in the sand rather than dealing with this unpleasant reality.  For this same reason Israel cannot abandon Abu Mazen and the two-state solution despite the fact that no one honestly believes it will lead to peace.  Once again, the show must go on.


Similarly, while members of Hamas are called “terrorists” and Israel and part of the world are engaged in a war against “terror”, terms made popular by the Oslo crowd and their like-minded supporters around the world in order to obfuscate the facts and create a somewhat artificial difference between the supposed majority of peace-loving Arabs and the few deadly “terrorists”, Abu Mazen is spared harsh criticism and instead is considered a responsible leader and legitimate peace partner.  Although whitewashing Abu Mazen and the PA may allow certain Israeli MKs to continue wasting taxpayers’ money on futile negotiations, no one sincerely believes in this farce anymore.


This being the case, why does Israel continue with this seemingly childish game of make-believe?  Very simply, those who hold the power in this country are in a collective state of denial.  They cannot accept the fact that many Arabs, unlike themselves, have deeply held beliefs that are far more important to them than merely acquiring peace and quiet in order to have a pseudo American lifestyle.  Likewise, they refuse to internalize the uncomfortable truth that the majority of the Arab world will never accept a Jewish state in its midst.  Therefore, literally being prisoners to their skewed take on reality as well as unable to envision or accept any alternative, they blindly continue at all costs and against all logic to pursue their elusive peace and quiet.  For this reason, as long as the same people continue to hold all the power in this country, nothing will change since at the end of the day the show must go on.

About the Author
Yoel Meltzer is a freelance writer with an M.A. in Middle Eastern Studies from New York University. A former New Yorker, he moved to Israel in 1996 and currently lives with his wife and four children in Jerusalem. He can be contacted at