Israel’s motivation might be more about its own political interests than any form of altruism, but that doesn’t lessen the effect of this reality.
It’s by now no secret that the Palestinian Authority government in Ramallah has for the past 10 years been kept in power by the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) and the Israel Security Agency (Shin Bet). While Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas almost never opens his mouth except to condemn Israel on the international stage, Jerusalem is more concerned about who would follow should he fall. It is thanks to Israel’s unseen efforts that Hamas has not seized power in the West Bank as it did in Gaza. Israel is also responsible for keeping Abbas at the top of the food chain within his own Fatah faction. A year ago, when Fatah held an assembly in Ramallah, Israel arrested a number of Abbas’ opponents, ensuring he’d maintain majority support when the group voted on its future leadership. For Israel, Abbas is the lesser of two evils, even within Fatah.
In August 2014, then-Shin Bet...
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