Skip to main content

PA official: Problem isn't Netanyahu, it's Israel

With Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's electoral win, the Palestinians fear that they have no option left but a nonviolent intifada under the theme of liberating East Jerusalem.
Palestinian protesters run from tear gas canisters launched by Israeli troops during clashes following a protest marking the Land Day, in the West Bank village of Nabi Saleh near Ramallah March 28, 2015. Palestinians marks Land Day on March 30, the annual commemoration of protests in 1976 against Israel's appropriation of Arab-owned land in the Galilee. REUTERS/Mohamad Torokman      TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY      - RTR4V9NG
Read in 

The mood in Ramallah is one of doom and gloom after the Israeli elections. In the words of a senior Palestinian Authority official, “If before the elections some of us thought the problem was [Prime Minister Benjamin] Netanyahu, now we all know the problem is Israel itself.” In his opinion and those of other Ramallah-based senior officials who spoke to Al-Monitor on condition of anonymity, “The peace process is now formally dead.”

A high-level Palestinian security official who asked his name be withheld told Al-Monitor that the new situation — without any Israeli peace partner and without any US ability to enforce a process — leaves the Palestinians with little alternative. The only option at their disposal now is a nonviolent intifada, probably under the theme of liberating East Jerusalem, that according to him may turn violent depending on the Israel Defense Forces' reaction. It may include Hamas and Islamic Jihad, as all these factions sense that they have little to lose. “This must become our war of independence,” the official said, “coupled with diplomatic activities to assure statehood along the 1967 lines.”

Access the Middle East news and analysis you can trust

Join our community of Middle East readers to experience all of Al-Monitor, including 24/7 news, analyses, memos, reports and newsletters.


Only $100 per year.