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Why Haven’t They Turned Lead Into Gold Yet?

The Palestinians could have transformed the Strip into the Singapore of the Mediterranean; instead, it became Hamastan. ~The Jerusalem Post

This is what we might expect from the Post’s editors, but it seems to me that this statement has reached a new level of absurdity that is remarkable even for this lot. One could observe that Singapore would not have been the Singapore we know today had it not been for a number of exceptionally favorable conditions that prevailed after WWII, and that it would probably not have grown into the commercial and financial center that it became if it did not have the security and peace of being under British rule for decades after the war and then quickly establishing its own independence over forty years ago. The Palestinians have been under occupation for almost as long as Singaporeans have had their own country, but the Palestinians are somehow to blame for not having created a new Singapore overnight under far worse conditions.

Having occupied Palestinian territory for decades and ruled over them as a subject people, Israel is supposed to be credited with leaving an impoverished, overcrowded enclave to the inevitable domination of the faction that was bound to control it, after having created the conditions that prompted the formation of Hamas and tacitly permitting it to grow as a counterweight to the PLO. Then, after just four years, most of which have been defined by embargo and occasional military operations, the failure to create Singapore on the Med will be used as evidence that Israeli policy has already been too generous. Singapore’s rise was fueled in no small part by foreign investment. Who would put their money in Gaza under current conditions of embargo and lack of sovereignty?

about the author

Daniel Larison is a senior editor at TAC, where he also keeps a solo blog. He has been published in the New York Times Book Review, Dallas Morning News, World Politics Review, Politico Magazine, Orthodox Life, Front Porch Republic, The American Scene, and Culture11, and was a columnist for The Week. He holds a PhD in history from the University of Chicago, and resides in Lancaster, PA. Follow him on Twitter.

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