Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Condi Rice Soothes Economic Doubts...in "Palestine"

I have previously blogged about this matter and now, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has been involved in another event of the Palestinian Business and Investment Forum over at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Washington, DC on October 14, 2008.

From her remarks (with added comments from me):

I also really want to pay tribute to Jim Jones and the hard work that he has done as Special Envoy for Middle East Peace and Security. In fact, Jim has been tireless in working to help the two of the legs come together in a more integrated way. It is absolutely true that security is clearly very important for the Palestinian people, for the neighborhood that both Israelis and Palestinians can feel secure. But that is not going to happen also without a sense of economic development and the work that Jim has done with the Palestinian businesses, the work that he has done with the city government, and most importantly, the work that he’s done with our great partner, Prime Minister Salam Fayyad,

Jim Jones is one of those persons laying the foundation for Israel's false sense of confidence that the Pal. Police will be able to provide it with enough security so that the US can pressure Israel to withdraw from territories even the US Chiefs of Staff of admitted are necessary for its defense.

I’m, of course, especially pleased to share the stage with my friend and colleague, Prime Minister Salam Fayyad, as well as leading representatives of the Palestinian and U.S. businesses. I can’t tell you how much difference – what a difference Salam Fayyad has made to his people, to his region, to the world. Prime Minister Fayyad has instituted reforms that I think people had clamored for for years, but really never thought possible. He is making a difference in the lives, first and foremost, of the Palestinian people. His leadership is truly extraordinary.

This is BS. Soon to be PhD (piled higher & deeper)

To the members of the U.S. business community who are participating today, I have no illusions about the challenges of doing business in the West Bank. But the Palestinian businessmen among you are your best resources to face and overcome those challenges as well as to share insight on future opportunities that exist.

Like terrorists shaking you down or building bomb factories in your basement, etc.

I had visited Bethlehem not too long before that and I had seen the difficulties of the hotel that was empty, of really not very much economic life. But of course, even before that, there had been another Bethlehem. The Bethlehem just a few years ago, in which tanks had been in the streets and in which literally, a hole had been blown in the Church of the Nativity by mortar fire...

Who had blown a hole in that Church?

Gee, she could have mentioned this from March 2002:
In Bethlehem, Palestinian militiamen executed two suspected informers, and tried to hang the body from a building overlooking the Church of the Nativity.
or this:
In an 2005 interview with the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs (JPCA), Steven Khoury, of Bethlehem's First Baptist Church, reported that the church had been attacked by Muslims from a nearby refugee camp "with Molotov cocktails 14 times. Our church vans have been burned. The church was broken into and defaced with graffiti five times."
or this:
2005 Dec 20, About two dozen gunmen briefly seized Bethlehem's city hall on Manger Square, demanding money and jobs in the Palestinian security forces. Worried clergy temporarily closed the nearby Church of the Nativity for safety reasons

I can tell you that when I go to international conferences now, the question on everyone’s lips is how can we help the Palestinian Authority to do what it is going to do. No one questions anymore its will, its honesty, and its capability to do so. That too is a major change from just a few years ago. In recognition of that, the United States has been committed to supporting the Palestinian Authority and to ensure that these reforms can continue. The United States has provided almost $600 million in total assistance to the Palestinians during 2008, surpassing our pledge at the 2007 Paris donors conference.

As a sign of this ongoing commitment, I announced at last month’s ad hoc liaison committee in New York that the United States has appropriated $150 million in budget support for the Palestinian Authority in fiscal year 2009

Throwing good money after bad.

now there is a robust Palestinian-Israeli negotiating track that I am certain will give birth to the Palestinian state. The Israeli-Palestinian conflict would not have endured for 60 years if the obstacles to peace were not difficult ones.

One obstacle, Condi: Arab refusal to recognize any Jewish political independent sovereignty anywhere in what they call "Palestine", starting 88 years ago in 1920 with the Jerusalem Passover riots.

The Palestinian Authority has to continue to dismantle the infrastructure of terrorism and to promote an atmosphere of tolerance. Again, I have heard Salam Fayyad say that the first infrastructure of terrorism that must be dismantled is in the people’s minds, that the people must be willing to say that terrorism and extremism are simply not and will not be the future of the Palestinian people.

Exactly what I just said: it's in their minds. But it's not the "terrorism" that has to be erased so much as the refusal to grant Israel, Zionism or Jews any rights.

Israel must also halt settlement activity, which can be seen as prejudging the outcome of negotiations and undermining its negotiating partner.

What pre-judgment? I can't live in Shiloh?

Know, too, that until that moment when I leave office, I will leave no stone unturned to see if we can finally resolve this conflict between peoples. It will mean more than the two-state solution which, frankly, sounds a bit antiseptic. It will mean that Palestinians can finally live in dignity in their own state. It will mean that Israelis can finally live in security with a partner that is democratic and that accepts Israel as a neighbor and as a partner.

Don't worry, Condi, the Arabs also leave no stone unturned. Unfortunately they throw them, as well.

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