As the NYT's correspondent Greg Myre reports, Arabs of the Palestine Authority voted in "orderly municipal elections" and that "the turnout was large and the voting went smoothly, with no major glitches or security problems reported" ("Palestinian Voting Is Held Without Serious Incident", Dec. 24, 2004).
This reality, of course, highlights the falsity of the media-hype that was generated by PA spokespersons seeking to accuse Israel, aforehand, as interfering with the process of democratization upon which a peace depends. Israel, they succeeded in doing, is first guilty and when proven correct, no one remembers. This tactic is successful, too often, due to the bias that has crept into Western thinking as Senator Charles Schumer pointed out in his own letter published on the same day.
(One sentence in your Dec. 18 editorial "Timely Help for the Palestinians" betrays the subtle and inherent bias against Israel that pervades too much of Western thought. When supporting the removal of Israeli checkpoints in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, you write, "While those checkpoints have undoubtedly reduced the number of attacks by suicide bombers, they have made it virtually impossible for average Palestinians to move freely, whether going to the polls or simply trying to go to work."
Doesn't it make sense that Palestinians should be required to eliminate the suicide bombers
in their midst before Israel is forced to open checkpoints? What other nation would be asked
to put the ability of its adversaries to move freely over the need to protect the lives of its people?
Charles E. Schumer, U.S. Senator from New York