So the Palestinians are “outraged” that Mitt Romney intimated that their culture may be partially responsible for their economic woes? Romney, speaking to Jewish donors in Jerusalem, said:
As you come here and you see the GDP per capita, for instance, in Israel which is about $21,000, and compare that with the GDP per capita just across the areas managed by the Palestinian Authority, which is more like $10,000 per capita, you notice such a dramatically stark difference in economic vitality … And as I come here and I look out over this city and consider the accomplishments of the people of this nation, I recognize the power of at least culture and a few other things.
Romney also cited Israel’s innovative business climate, the Jewish history of thriving in difficult circumstances and the "hand of providence.”
Predictably, the Palestinians screamed bloody murder. Saeb Erekat, a senior aide to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, said:
It is a racist statement and this man doesn't realize that the Palestinian economy cannot reach its potential because there is an Israeli occupation. It seems to me this man lacks information, knowledge, vision and understanding of this region and its people. He also lacks knowledge about the Israelis themselves. I have not heard any Israeli official speak about cultural superiority.
It’s too bad the Israelis don’t. The corrupt Palestinian Authority has been confiscating money meant for its people for decades. And just which “culture” was it that danced in the streets on 9/11, killed Israeli soldiers, and ripped the bodies apart to they could show their arms soaked in blood as they held them outside the window, and routinely used children inculcated in hate to strap bombs to their chests so they could commit murder?
As far as the Palestinian claiming that the Israeli ‘Occupation” is the source of their economic woes, try this: when the Israelis evacuated Gaza in 2005, American Jewish donors bought more than 3000 greenhouses at the cost of $14 million to donate them to the Palestinian authority. Then Palestinian looters ransacked the buildings. Even the Palestinian guards were disgusted; one said, “We’ve tried to stop as many people as we can, but they’re like locusts.”
Then three months later, the Palestinians, while allowing the firing of rockets from Gaza into Israel, had the gall to ask the Israelis who had run the greenhouses before they were kicked out for advice on how to make them work.
There has been plenty of money poured into the coffers of Palestinian leaders, but they prefer to pocket the money and foment hatred against Israel instead of taking care of their people. The Palestinian Authority has been corrupt for decades, and Mahmoud Abbas is no different from his predecessors in keeping the money for himself.