Why Has Israel Waited So Long to Crush The Palestinian War?

With this morning’s attack at the entrance to Kiryat Arba, the current Intifada continues to creep from knives to guns. In the last few attacks in Jerusalem and now back in Kiryat Arba, Palestinian Arabs have used serious weapons to attack.

These attacks have flipped what appeared to be “random acts of violence” to an armed uprising.  The question isn’t where we are, which has become clear to most people in Israel, but how are we going to deal with it?  

Incitement and Geopolitical Considerations have Slowed Israel’s Reaction

In order to answer that question, it is important to understand that most of what we are witnessing could have been avoided. The government has gone out of its way to try to politicize the attacks instead of crushing them from the beginning.  We can see this most clearly in the ongoing finger pointing at the Palestinian Authority’s use of religious and racial incitement against the Jewish  people.  Yet one has to wonder where the government has been up until this year.  We all know both Hamas and the Palestinian Authority, headed up by lifetime President Abbas, utilize children’s TV and radio to brainwash their populace.  In fact this has been going on for sometime. Another thing the government has been aware of is the Palestinian illegal arms build up in much of Judea and Samaria.  

By allowing this Intifada to simmer behind the point of a knife, the government has fed the notion to the Leaders of Fatah and Hamas that guns and bombs could in fact be used.  If the government had crushed the knife attacks in the beginning by going after the leaders’ livelihood and in fact their lives, the Arab street in Judea and Samaria would have gotten it. However, that would have required Bibi Netanyahu and Bogie Yaalon to treat this as a war.  They have not been ready to do that yet.  Understandably, their hands are tied into a larger geopolitical maneuver and declaring war on the Palestinian Authority would derail in their minds from dealing with Iran, while fending off a hostile White House and State Department.

Given the balance that needs to be struck between geopolitics and a homegrown war within Israel by Arabs who migrated to the Land within the last 150 years, a new approach must be undertaken to withstand the growing violence in Israel.

Implosion of the Palestinian Authority will Bring About a Paradigm Shift

Hints to a new course of action and trajectory by the government has been bubbling up into the media over the last few months. It is no secret that the PA is in the midst of an internal crisis.  Most Arabs and others dwelling within the Palestinian Authority areas have grown to hate the leadership as both ineffectual as well as corrupt.  Violent Palestinian Authority cops and officials use their power to steal public funds and shake down opponents.  With the above facts, the Israeli government seems to be inching towards allowing the Palestinian Authority to collapse on its own in a staged manner.  After the collapse local forces from within the various clans that make up the multi faceted Palestinian society can rebuild their relationship with Israel in the proper way.

In that approach, Israel will increasingly move towards a one state solution in a phased manner, all the while ensuring violent elements are removed and reinforcing local leaders.  

Crushing the Terror Groups Should Begin Now

Considering the fact that the PA is ineffectual as well as in a free fall, the Israeli government should make it clear that there is no longer any tolerance for any sort of attack.  By beginning now it can set the stage for lessening a chance  for a complete explosion when the Palestinian Authority’s collapse enters its final phase.

Geopolitics aside, the government in Israel must not only prepare for the day after a Palestinian Authority collapse by speaking about it, but it must be proactive ensuring the violence we have witnessed not only does not increase towards anarchy, but firmly puts it back in its place.